The Millennium Challenge Corporation, or MCC, Board of Directors held its quarterly meeting on Dec. 16, 2015, and approved three countries as eligible for compacts and two countries as eligible for threshold programs. MCC is an independent U.S. Government agency working to reduce global poverty through economic growth.
Three of the five countries are new partners for MCC and all have worked hard to improve their performance on MCC’s scorecard, which measures countries’ commitment to ruling justly, economic freedom, and investing in their people.
The Board selected Cote d’Ivoire, Kosovo and Senegal as newly eligible for compacts. Cote d’Ivoire, which was selected in December 2014 for a threshold program, will now transition into the compact program after showing continued improvement on its scorecard and achieving greater political stability.
Kosovo, which passed MCC’s scorecard for the first time after making progress on democratic rights, is a new partner for MCC. Senegal successfully completed its first MCC compact in September and demonstrated improved scorecard performance over the life of the partnership.
In both Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire, the Board recommended that MCC explore potential investments that address regional obstacles to economic growth, in addition to domestic investments, while recognizing the need for statutory authority to optimize regional impact.
The Board also selected Togo and Sri Lanka to develop MCC threshold programs. Togo has shown a clear upward trajectory on overall scorecard performance over the past few years. Sri Lanka has embarked on a remarkable effort over the past year to reinvigorate its democratic institutions, improve governance, and restore protection of human rights.
Nepal, Niger and the Philippines were reselected by the Board to continue developing their compacts. The Board reselects all countries in compact development as part of the annual selection process.
The Board deferred a vote on the reselection of Tanzania and Lesotho for compact eligibility until relevant governance concerns in both countries have been addressed.
Finally, the Board reaffirmed its commitment to developing a compact with Mongolia and its support for a potential strategic partnership with India to advance economic growth and poverty reduction in South Asia.
The United States, through the Millennium Challenge Corporation is proud to work with its partners – new and old – in meeting the development challenges in the years ahead.