Press Release

For Immediate Release

August 16, 2005

Contact: 202-521-3850

Email: info@mcc.gov

Millennium Challenge Corporation Board Approves $295.3 Million Compact with Georgia

Washington, D.C. The United States, through the Millennium Challenge Corporation, has approved a five-year $295.3 million Compact with Georgia. The Millennium Challenge Compact aims to reduce poverty and stimulate economic growth in the regions outside of Georgia’s capital, Tbilisi, where more than 50 percent of rural households live below the poverty line. By focusing on rehabilitating regional infrastructure and promoting private sector development, the program will directly benefit approximately a half-million Georgians. In addition, over one quarter of the population of the country will receive indirect benefits from the program; for example, the reliable transmission of gas will reduce environmental, health, and safety risks.

Congratulations to the people and Government of Georgia for developing an integrated program targeted at helping the regional poor, said MCC Vice President Charles Sethness. Georgia’s proposal was truly a homegrown effort. They had a vision for reducing poverty and submitted a thoughtful, results-oriented program to execute that vision. This Compact is a testament to Georgia’s commitment to development. MCC looks forward to building on our partnership with the people of Georgia to ensure that they have the tools needed to lift themselves out of poverty.

The Millennium Challenge Corporation anticipates signing the Compact with Georgia in September. In addition to approving a Compact with Georgia, MCC has signed Compacts with Madagascar, Cape Verde, Honduras, and Nicaragua. MCC is also actively engaging with other Millennium Challenge Account eligible countries.

Launched by President Bush, the Millennium Challenge Account is a historic approach to development assistance that recognizes sound policies and good governance are critical to poverty reduction and economic growth in developing countries.

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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.