A Call to Action

As world leaders gathered last week in New York for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) to discuss climate change, food security, and other pressing world issues, MCC co-hosted with InterAction a widely talked-about event on country-led development. It was encouraging to see the standing-room-only crowd made up of civil society, government officials, and ordinary citizens, who came to hear and participate in an important dialogue on country ownership and smart aid. Keynote remarks were delivered by representatives of MCC partner governments, including President Kikwete of Tanzania, President Compaor_ of Burkina Faso, and Prime Minister Berisha of Albania. Each thanked the American people for their generosity in providing grants to help their countries combat corruption and reduce poverty. Prime Minister Berisha said it best, There is no more fundamental way to fight poverty than by combating corruption.”” MCC couldnt agree more.

Last week also marked the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh, where world leaders discussed ways to revive the global economy. Moving forward, MCC hopes that global leaders will engage the private sector to help developing nations achieve economic growth. As MCC Board member Alan Patricof stated in his recent op-ed in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, For the sake of the worlds poor, as well as Americas own prosperity, there is no substitution for the active participation and contributions of the private sector. It is now up to the private sector to heed this call and act creatively to parallel, complement, and add to what the government is doing to fight global poverty.

The events at UNGA and the G-20 Summit highlight a fundamental reality: the fight against global poverty cannot be won alone or with development assistance only. Rather, it requires engaged and responsible partner countries that are willing to do their part and lead their development. Poverty reduction also requires the private sector to pick up and build where aid leaves off. We can make a sustainable difference in the fight against global poverty by working together, and MCC remains committed to this effective collaboration that delivers results for the worlds poor.