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Celebrating 20 years of Economic Growth through the U.S. Millennium Challenge Corporation
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January 24, 2024


U.S. Embassy Niamey




January 23, 2024



Celebrating 20 years of Economic Growth through the U.S. Millennium Challenge Corporation

(NIAMEY) — Today the U.S. government celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) – an independent U.S. agency designed to facilitate economic growth to reduce poverty.  With nearly $17 billion in grant capital invested across 47 low and lower middle-income countries, MCC is a proven partner in countries pursuing lasting, sustainable economic growth.

The United States has invested $459.5 million through MCC grant financing to support the economic growth of the people of Niger.  In 2008, MCC provided $16.9 million to facilitate the construction of 62 primary schools built to encourage greater attendance for local girls. More recently, MCC provided $442.6 million in grant financing to strengthen Niger’s agriculture sector.

“Improving the agriculture sector in Niger impacts the livelihoods of 80% of all Nigeriens,” said U.S. Ambassador to Niger Kathleen FitzGibbon.  “The MCC-Niger Compact enhanced the country’s agricultural sector at every level – from improving soil health, to access to irrigation, livestock health and access to markets for farmers.  The MCC investments are just some of the many ways the U.S. is supporting economic growth in Niger.  We applaud the efficiency and effectiveness of our joint implementing body – the Millenium Challenge Account – staffed by some of Niger’s top professionals.”

The MCC-Niger Compact achieved great progress for Niger’s agriculture sector by:

  • Rehabilitating 100,000 hectares of degraded land by building more than 2 million demi lunes to improve rainwater capture – ¾ of which were built by locally employed women and youth;
  • Investing over $100 million into the Konni Irrigation Perimeter and into tapping groundwater resources in southern Dosso allowing at least 6,000 small-holder farmers access to water year-round;
  • Ensuring three-quarters of all livestock in Niger are receiving timely vaccinations by financing three national vaccination campaigns;
  • Modernizing 14 key livestock markets across four regions to improve volume of sales and prices of live animals for local and regional trade;
  • Reforming the fertilizer sector to allow greater private sector importation, distribution and participation in public fertilizer e-vouchers to support more than 30,000 most vulnerable farmers;
  • Rehabilitating 300 kilometers of roads to allow farmers to reach markets faster – the six hour trip between Dosso and Gaya now only takes two hours;
  • Providing $7.5 million in grants to 85 agriculture producing organizations that will benefit more than 23,000 people; and
  • Ensuring Nigeriens have the ability to continue to grow by providing more than 8,000 people with literacy and numeracy training in Hausa and Zarma.

MCC was conceptualized in the early 2000s, following the global commitment by world leaders to pursue the Millennium Development Goals.  MCC emerged as a bold experiment to test innovative, cost-effective, and data-driven approaches to end global poverty.  It represented a new approach to development: a focus on strong economic policies, good governance, and democracy, country-led solutions, and country-led implementation.

Today, we celebrate these accomplishments and the agency that was founded 20 years ago that made it all possible.  Together, the U.S. government and the people of Niger, can and will build a strong economic future for all.