The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), an independent US foreign assistance agency fighting against global poverty, has selected the Philippines for a “second compact” or agreement to further support its poverty-reducing efforts.
“Once designed, proposed and approved, this new compact would allow the Philippines to continue to benefit from MCC’s poverty alleviation initiatives and build upon the Philippine government’s strong policy reform efforts,” a statement from the US Embassy in Manila said on Friday.
The signing of the $434-million Millennium Challenge Compact in 2010 is one of the first victories of the administration of President Benigno Aquimo 3rd.
Reportedly, the MCC was granted, in part, because of the confidence in Aquino’s anti-corruption drive.
Some of the projects implemented under the grant are the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS), the Revenue Administration Reform Project and the Secondary National Roads Development Project.
These projects are set to be completed by 2016, the statement said.
Under the current compact, “the Philippine government has been a strong partner with MCC and a second compact would allow the Philippines to build on the momentum of its current compact and make a rapid and seamless transition and contribution toward eliminating poverty in the Philippines once and for all.”
Created by the US Congress in January 2004 with strong bipartisan support, MCC is changing the conversation on how best to deliver “smart US foreign assistance” by focusing on good policies, country ownership and results.
MCC’s Board of Directors select countries for compact eligibility based on a commitment to good policy performance and governance.
“Through continued policy reforms, the Philippines successfully met MCC’s criteria to qualify for support,” the statement said.