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Washington, U.S.A. — This week, Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) and Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) introduced the Economic Growth and Development Act (H.R. 6178/S.3495) to strengthen alignment and coordination between U.S. development programs and the private sector.
“I applaud efforts of Rep. Chabot and Sen. Isakson to promote a sustainable poverty reduction that could benefit millions of lives,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World. “This bill is consistent with Bread for the World’s work to improve poverty-focused development assistance, making it more effective in meeting the needs of local people.”
The Economic Growth and Development Act calls for the U.S. government to establish more effective relationships with companies that are making critical investments in alleviating poverty, fighting disease, and bolstering economic growth in developing countries.
Both the Senate and House versions comprise a bipartisan effort to reform foreign assistance. Through better coordination among U.S. development efforts, the bill will ensure that U.S. companies participating in the fight against poverty have a designated point of engagement.
The Obama and Bush administrations have made positive changes in U.S. global development policy to leverage the private sector’s expertise, resources, and impact. However, more needs to be done to fully realize the promise of a closer and better coordinated partnership. For several years, Bread for the World has pushed for reform that encourages more productive coordination between the private sector and U.S. development agencies.
“We welcome reform that enables accountable coordination between the private sector and U.S. development agencies,” added Beckmann. “In these tough fiscal times, all of those working to end poverty must be at the table. By cutting red tape, the Economic Growth and Development Act would allow for thoughtful partnerships that can fuel inclusive, sustainable economic growth and combat extreme poverty.”
Bread for the World is a collective Christian voice urging the nation’s decision-makers to end hunger at home and abroad.