Using Concurrent MCC Compacts to Advance Regional Economic Integration
MCC is seeking to change the Millennium Challenge Act of 2003, as amended, to allow for concurrent compact authority in order to maximize the economic impact of its work through regional investments. Concurrent compacts would allow MCC to complement its proven country-focused model with the ability to develop regionally-oriented investments. MCC will be able to simultaneously research and work with multiple eligible countries in a region to identify, negotiate, and eventually fund investments that would have positive economic impact both for each country as well as the region.
Concurrent compact authority would allow key steps—such as economic analysis, project identification, due diligence, negotiation, agreement, and implementationwith each individual country involved to occur on a simultaneous timeline, which is critical to effecting successful regional investments.
Text of change is as follows:
SEC. X. MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE COMPACT
- CONCURRENT COMPACTS.—Section 609 of the Millennium Challenge Act of 2003 ((22 U.S.C. 7708)) is amended—
- by striking the first sentence of subsection (k); and
- by inserting after subsection (k) the following new subsection:
“(l) CONCURRENT COMPACTS.—In accordance with the requirements of this title, an eligible country and the United States may enter into and have in effect more than one Compact at any given time, including a concurrent Compact for purposes of regional economic integration or cross-border collaborations, only if the Board determines that the country is making considerable and demonstrable progress in implementing the terms of the existing Compact and supplementary agreements thereto.
- CONFORMING AMENDMENTS.—
- Section 609(b)(1) of such Act (22 U.S.C. 7708(b)(1)) is amended by striking “the eligible country” and inserting “each eligible country or regional development strategy in the case of regional investments”; and by striking “the” and inserting “each” before “country” in subsections 609(b)(1)(A), (B), (E) and (J);
- Section 609(b)(3) of such Act (22 U.S.C. 7708(b)(3)) is amended by inserting after “national development strategy” “or regional development strategy” and by inserting after “government of the country” “or governments of the countries in the case of regional investments”;
- Section 613(b)(2)(A) of such Act (22 U.S.C. 7712(b)(2)(A)) is amended by striking “the” before “Compact” and inserting “any”.
Changes to Appropriations Language
The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016 included four provisos which may appear in the FY 2017 appropriations bill and should be adjusted or stricken.
Provided further, That up to 5 percent of the funds appropriated under this heading may be made available to carry out the purposes of section 616 of the MCA for fiscal year 2016
The Millennium Challenge Act of 2003, as amended, allows for up to 10 percent of appropriated funds to be used for threshold program assistance under section 616. Restoring the 10 percent cap allows the agency more flexibility in selecting countries for such assistance and developing robust threshold programs.
Provided further, That no country should be eligible for a threshold program after such country has completed a country compact
In cases where there has been significant political or governance changes since MCC’s previous compact, threshold program assistance may be more appropriate than either a subsequent compact or no engagement. Removing this restriction would allow more flexibility to select countries at the appropriate level of assistance and “test the waters” before a subsequent compact.
Provided further, That none of the funds made available by this Act or prior Acts making appropriations for the Department of State, foreign operations, and related programs shall be available for a threshold program in a country that is not currently a candidate country
This proviso restricts MCC’s authorities under the Millennium Challenge Act.
Provided further, That publication in the Federal Register of a notice of availability of a copy of a Compact on the Millennium Challenge Corporation Web site shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of section 610(b)(2) of the MCA for such Compact
This proviso enables MCC to avoid the administrative burden and expense of publishing the full text of compacts in the Federal Register. MCC requests similar authority regarding the requirement to publish quarterly reports pursuant to section 612 of the MCA. MCC can fulfill the requirement to provide the public with this information by disseminating the quarterly reports on its Web site and other appropriate platforms. MCC proposes that the proviso reads as follows: “Provided further, That publication in the Federal Register of a notice of availability of a copy of a Compact on the Millennium Challenge Corporation Web site shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of section 610(b)(2) of the MCA for such Compact, and posting the information required by section 612(a) on the Corporation Web site shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of section 612(b).”