Press Release

For Immediate Release

May 17, 2006

Contact: 202-521-3880

Email: info@mcc.gov

Millennium Challenge Corporation and Tanzania Announce $11 Million Threshold Program to Combat Corruption

Washington, DC —On May 3, 2006, the United States and Tanzania signed an $11.15 million Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Threshold program agreement to initiate a multi-sectoral attack on corruption.  Today, Chief Executive Officer of MCC, Ambassador John Danilovich, Tanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Deputy Administrator Frederick Schieck formally announced the execution of the agreement.  Treasury Secretary John Snow, U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania Michael Retzer, and Tanzanian Ambassador Andre Daraja were present at the ceremony.

Tanzania’s Threshold program is expected to span a two-year period and will enable Tanzania to improve the ability of civil society to monitor the government’s progress in combating corruption; strengthen the rule of law so that corruption cases can be successfully tried and offenders convicted; establish a financial intelligence unit to detect financial crime; and increase the transparency of public procurement. 

"Congratulations to the Government of Tanzania for developing a results-oriented Threshold program,” said Ambassador John Danilovich.   " Corruption erodes the institutional infrastructure necessary for poverty reduction and economic growth.  This ambitious program will strengthen the rule of law and curb corruption, giving Tanzanians greater access to opportunities and prosperity.  We value our partnership with the Tanzanian people and are proud to stand with them in this fight.”

Ambassador Danilovich continued, "I applaud President Kikwete for his leadership and continued commitment to tackling this difficult issue.  I also would like to acknowledge the hard work of our colleagues at USAID, the Treasury Department, the Department of Justice, and the U.S. Embassy staff under Ambassador Retzer in making this program a reality. ” 

USAID, assisted by the Departments of Treasury and Justice, will administer and oversee implementation of Tanzania’s Threshold program.  In November 2005, Tanzania was also selected as eligible for MCC Compact assistance.  Tanzania’s Threshold program will run in parallel with the country’s development of a proposal for an MCC Compact. 

The Threshold Program is designed for countries that are on the "threshold,” meaning that they are committed to undertaking the reforms necessary to improve policy performance in the indicators central to eligibility for Compact assistance.  To date, MCC has approved approximately $116 million in Threshold Program assistance in six countries: Burkina Faso, Malawi, Tanzania, Albania, Paraguay, and Zambia.  MCC has signed eight Compacts totaling over $1.5 billion, with Madagascar, Honduras, Cape Verde, Nicaragua, Georgia, Armenia, Vanuatu, and Benin. 

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Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a U.S. government corporation designed to work with some of the poorest countries in the world, is based on the principle that aid is most effective when it reinforces good governance, economic freedom, and investments in people that promote economic growth and elimination of extreme poverty.