Total Funding: $18.5 million*
Project Duration: August 2013 - August 2018
Implementing Partner: Deloitte Consulting LLP
*USAID $9.75 million, Sida $9.75 million
Lack of jobs is the leading concern of working-age citizens in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). Unemployment rates in BiH range from 24 percent to 44 percent and are especially high for youth. BiH lags behind its neighbors in political and economic reforms. As a result, the level of Foreign Direct Investment per capita in BiH is among the lowest in the region. At the local level, economic growth has been hampered by a number of factors, including costly and lengthy business startup processes, inadequately skilled workforce, inaccessible credit and a lack of municipal engagement in attracting investors. BiH needs to unlock its potential for economic growth, increase productivity of private enterprises, and substantially improve the business environment to attract investments and increase exports. This means improving economic governance, institutions, systems and processes to increase private sector competitiveness.
USAID’s Growth-Oriented Local Development (GOLD) project is jointly-financed by USAID and the Swedish International Development and Cooperation Agency (Sida). To assist local communities in achieving their economic growth and development goals, the GOLD project:
• Promotes integrated and inclusive local economic development (LED) planning and implementation – across municipalities, cantons, and entities – in the sectors with the highest potential for rapid, sustainable job growth;
• Helps unlock the economic potential of municipal assets and promote new investments that support the targeted sectors through public-private partnerships;
• Engages stakeholders to improve public service delivery and the business enabling environment reforms;
• Promotes new direct investment and supports competitive supply chains that will create new jobs. To create jobs for youth, the project supports entrepreneurship and works with the private and public sectors to implement vocational education programs that will train youth in skills suitable to the local economy.
Implementation and Results
The GOLD Project uses the Business Friendly Certification (BFC) process as the framework for providing technical assistance to its 47 partner municipalities. The BFC process identifies 80 elements for municipal economic preparedness. The project works directly with citizens, leaders in the private sector, academia, NGOs, and the donor community in a business-led effort to generate transformational economic growth. The resulting sustainable and replicable LED platforms will enable localities to maintain the momentum in economic growth into the future.
Results as of June 2015:
Job creation: 1,538 (5-year target: 6,020)
Increase in investment: $62 million (5-year target: $90 million)
Increase in exports: $14 million (5-year target: $70 million)
Increase in sales: $18 million (5-year target: $130 million)
GOLD Project communities:
Banja Luka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7PsZdWftr5o
Drazena Peranic, USAID/BiH Development Outreach and Communications Specialist
Last updated: January 12, 2016