USAID Administrator Mark Green's Remarks at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit Press Conference

Remarks

For Immediate Release

Thursday, November 30, 2017
Office of Press Relations
Telephone: +1.202.712.4320 | Email: press@usaid.gov

 
Hyderabad International Convention Center
Hyderabad, India

 
SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Good afternoon, everybody.  I'm Clayton McCleskey.  I'm the spokesperson for USAID.  Thank you so much for being here today and for coming to GES for the week, and for joining for our concluding press conference here.  We've got three speakers this afternoon.  First, we'll have Jennifer Arangio, who is the Senior Director for International Organizations at the National Security Council.  Then we have the Consul General from Hyderabad, Kathy Hadda, and then Mark Green, who is the Administrator of USAID.  So, we will start with some opening statements and then go to Q&A.   I would remind everybody this is on the record, but we will embargo it until the end of the briefing. And with that, I'll turn it over to Jennifer.

MS. ARANGIO:  Hello.  Can you hear me?

CONSUL GENERAL HADDA:  Yes.

MS. ARANGIO:  Okay.  Great.  Hi, everyone.  So, we're just a few hours away from the closing of GES.  It's been already a very good first day-and-a-half, in the throes of our second day.  And I'm joined here by Administrator Mark Green from USAID, and Kathy Hadda, the Consul General in Hyderabad.  So, first I'd just like to thank the city of Hyderabad and the Government of Telangana, who have been tremendous hosts -- very hospitable, have put on a tremendous show.  Many of you attended the opening inaugural, where of course we had Prime Minister Modi and Ivanka Trump and Chief Minister Rao.  And we went to Falaknuma Palace that evening for a phenomenal dinner and reception, and then Gol Konda Fort last night.  That was really also a tremendous show.  So, it's been a terrific day-and-a-half and we're looking forward to our U.S.-hosted reception tonight  that will be hosted by Consul General Kathy Hadda and also Administrator Green.

So, I'd like to also give some thanks to the Government of India, obviously, and NITI Aayog, who were our partners, the U.S. partners with the State Department and the White House in this collaboration that you've seen over the last day-and-a-half on GES.  It was a true collaboration.  Lots of visits here to India, lots of telephone calls, lots of late nights, early mornings with our Embassy in Delhi, and of course, the Consulate in Hyderabad.  So, they've been tremendous hosts, particularly Mr. Amithab Kant, the CEO, and Dr. Kamar, and also Anna Roy, who has been tremendous.

It's been gratifying to finally meet with the entrepreneurs.  We've had this planning on since July.  And to see the dynamic 1,500 participants here today -- and I'm sure all of you have met, I hope -- go to that networking lounge just down the hall.  That's where the connections are happening.  That's where the investors are meeting up with our entrepreneurs and our ecosystem supporters.  And that's what this conference was supposed to be about and is about.

And we are very, very proud that, for the first time, this is the eighth iteration of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit.  It is a White House initiative, collaborated on with the State Department -- that is mostly our team and our resources, and when we co-host, with a country.  But for the first time, we had a theme, and that was "Women First, Prosperity for All."  And we're very proud of that theme -- and to also note that 52.5 percent of the participants here at GES, are women.  And Ivanka Trump was especially delighted by that.  And as we know, she led our U.S. delegation and noted in her remarks that first night:  "only when women are in power to thrive will our families, our economies, and our societies reach our fullest potential."  She led the U.S. contingent.  We still have Administrator Green here with us.  And as you all know -- and I'm sure, noted in her remarks -- she is a true leader, a strong advocate for women's economic empowerment, STEM, and workforce development.

We also had the CEO of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation here, Ray Washburn, who spoke on a panel, "Attracting Private Equity."  Our U.S. Treasurer was here, Javita Kanza, who ran a master class on entrepreneurship in the public sector.  And then Administrative Green will be running the closing plenary session tonight, and then hosting the reception with Kathy Hadda.

And we've heard some new initiatives launched right here in this Global Launch Lounge from the private sector, some NGOs, and from governments, and we'll hear some more about that.  But as I'm sure you've noted, the real stars of the show have been the entrepreneurs.  So, if you haven't had lunch, the lunch is still going on.  That's where they all are.  And I've heard tremendous stories over the last day-and-a-half.  And many have noted that the theme of "Women First" has really been special for them.  I've heard that from women, of course, and from men as well.  And we've heard, "It's about time that the focus be on women, as we're seeking opportunities to drive economic growth and innovation, and women are a large part of that."

And lastly, I'll just talk about the road forward after GES.  It's not just about bringing 1,500 people together, have some good conversations, and be done with it.  It's about continuing to connect and to foster that relationship, because really, at the end of the day, it's about growing the global economy.  And as we talk about the U.S.-India relationship, to the greatest and largest democracy of the world, we have a lot of shared values to the fastest growing major economies -- and it's only natural that we should continue to work together on the next generation of entrepreneurs and businesses.  And as I believe Prime Minister Modi said back in 2016, when he addressed the U.S. Congress:  "It's not so much about what the U.S. and India can do for each other, but it's about what U.S.-India can do together to foster peace and prosperity globally" and entrepreneurship is a key to that.

So, with that, I think I'll turn it over to Administrator Green and then take -- oh, I'm sorry.

It's Kathy, and then we'll go to Administrator Green.

CONSUL GENERAL HADDA:  Thanks, okay.  Well, thank you, Jennifer.  You've underscored very well the importance of the last three days for Hyderabad, for India, for the United States, and for the world.  And our contingent, the United States contingent, was really honored to be part of the event.  I also want to note, in keeping with the theme that -- I'm an economist by training, so 66 and two-thirds percent of the briefers today are women.

So, anyway.  The -- you know, you really only have to go out into the lobby to feel the palpable excitement here.  You know, this really -- we always say, this isn't really a government event, even though our two governments had such a heavy hand in it.  It's really an event for the entrepreneurs.  So, but we owe a lot of thanks both to our Indian partners and to all the U.S. contingent, who came here to help organize the event -- and mostly for the participants, the entrepreneurs themselves, for helping to make this such a successful, high-energy event.

You know, a summit like this -- and really, this is the marquee event of a very significant year in U.S.-India relations.  It's our 70th anniversary of U.S.-India relations.  And it's really the best possible example of the richness and the fruits that are borne out by this growing relationship.  There's really not an issue in the world today that the United States and India are working on -- an issue of any importance, anyway.

I am the -- we are very grateful, as I said, and as Jennifer noted, for the strong partnership from Prime Minister Modi on down, with the Indian Government.  But because I'm the Consul General in Hyderabad, I want to give a special shout-out to the strong commitment and high level of organization of the Telangana Government and the City of Hyderabad that were on display here the last few days.  I think it's proved to everyone what we at the Consulate have long known, which is that Hyderabad is a world-class city, and it can successfully host a significant event of this size.  And that's a testament to the strong cooperation that there is also, between the U.S. Consulate, and the Embassy, and the rest of Mission India, the Telangana and the central government.  And also, I have to say, we have 130 U.S. companies here in Hyderabad who are [inaudible] throughout the three states of our district.  And they are often big promoters of entrepreneurship.  So, I'm just going to highlight a couple of examples of the way all these partnerships are working in our area.

[Inaudible] a T-Hub, which is the largest incubator in India.  And it actually led by an American serial entrepreneur, Jay Krishnan, who has a British partner, Srinivas Kollipara

-- very good friends and partners.  And T-Hub has partnerships with American incubators where you would expect to find it, like Silicon Valley, but also maybe where you wouldn't -- St. Louis they have an MOU with, for example.

The Indian School of Business is arguably the best business school in India, and it was founded by American universities.  And it too strongly supports entrepreneurship, including through a new incubator, called D-Labs, on their campus.  And there are many other similar examples.  And we as a Mission also are very proud to help support entrepreneurship and partnership with these institutions -- in some cases with our U.S. companies, and we really try to provide them working opportunities, as does the entire U.S. Government.  And this is just probably the biggest evidence of that.

So, I really just want to add -- like Jennifer -- I've been very humbled to meet a lot of the female entrepreneurs, especially, who are here.  You can always learn so much for them, and learn that -- I think a theme that's also come out is how they also are here to support other female entrepreneurs.  So, I think if you look at this event as a start-up in itself, I think that we will see, you know, a continued interest in hosting events by, you know, by other hosts.  And that's part of our goal, so we're very happy with the outcome.

And with that, I'd like to hand it over to the Administrator.

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  Great, thank you.  Thank you, Jennifer and Kathy.  More importantly, thanks, of course, to the people of Hyderabad, and the people of India for a fantastic week.  What a great place, what a magnificent place to host the GES.  This is my first time to India.  I don't know what I was expecting, but all my expectations have been exceeded.  The generosity and warmth of the Indian people, but also the spirit, and the vibrancy, and the entrepreneurial strength that's here -- it's a very, very impressive place and a perfect place, perfect site for the GES.

You know, I often say, as Administrator at USAID, that the purpose of foreign assistance must be to end the need for its existence.  And so, our goal, as an Agency, is to work to foster self-reliance and help host countries on their own journey to both self-reliance and prosperity.  In this, we have a wonderful strong partner in India.  Together, as we have seen here at GES, we are lifting lives.  We are creating opportunities.  But as you've heard from both Jennifer and Kathy, I think the important thing is doing so, not only here, but jointly, we are doing so in the region and around the world.

And so, as you hear a little about the history, the 70th anniversary, it's really remarkable to realize how far that relationship has come.  Just over 60 years ago, India was a food aid recipient from the United States.  So, that was our relationship, a donor-donee relationship.  These days, it is a true partnership.  We're working together as equals to provide assistance throughout the region and throughout the world.  And that's a truly remarkable transformation in a relatively short period of time.  

From water and sanitation, to tackling the terrible scourge of tuberculosis here in India, to tapping into the potential of private enterprise to drive innovation and development, together, Government of India, the Government of the United States are working to advance prosperity in India, in Asia, and beyond.  This morning, in fact, right before I came here, I visited a tuberculosis clinic and saw firsthand how American businesses -- in particular, California-based GeneXpert -- are working with Indian partners to save lives.  In this new technology, GeneXpert is making it possible to rapidly diagnose multi-drug resistant tuberculosis.  And this innovation is helping India on its road to fulfilling Prime Minister Modi's vision of a TB-free India by 2025.  And this is just one of the many success stories that I have seen from our partnership.

We also realized that we have our work cut out for us.  As India and the United States work together to advance well-being and prosperity, we also recognize that there are challenges that we need to take on together, like the gender divide.  Gender should never be a barrier to success, and I think we recognize that, all too often, it remains so.  Nearly 1 in 2 women in the world lack access to the Internet.  They're denied the chance to share in the economic prosperity of their communities and their countries.  Medical care remains out of reach for too many women and their children, in birth.  The survivors of TB, particularly women, still suffer the invisible wounds of stigma, wounds that stay with them, long, after being cured of TB.

And we have seen here at this summit how, working together, we can launch initiatives to take on these challenges that remain.  Here at GES, USAID has been pleased to announce several new initiatives that we believe will help women, their families, and communities.  We just announced the WomenConnect Challenge, which will help women bridge obstacles, such as access and skills, that are behind the digital gender divide.  This morning, I launched a new effort to bring awareness to TB-related stigma in India so that no man, no woman, should be burdened by economic and social exclusion that all too often follows a diagnosis of TB.

And lastly, today, I am pleased to announce the launch of USAID's first-ever health impact bond, the Rajasthan Development Impact Bond.  And this is an innovative mechanism through which we pay for results.  USAID will pay back an initial private sector investment only if concrete benchmarks are achieved in maternal and child health.  And we anticipate saving the lives of as many as 10,000 women and newborns here in India, over five years, by providing life-saving supplies and trained staff for private health facilities in Rajasthan.

With projects like this, what we are trying to do, is to replace that old traditional donor-recipient model from half a century ago with one in which we recognize and seize upon the value that USAID can bring to this partnership.  At USAID, we are a convener.  We are an accelerator.  We are a development catalyst.  We are the spark that fuels the Indian Government, private, for-profit, and non-profits, Indian philanthropists, and civil societies, and other partners who look forward to accelerating the Indian journey to prosperity.  We will build on the spirit of GES to continue to unlock opportunities for women -- indeed, for all citizens.  These are exciting times for USAID, exciting times for the United States and India, and for the innovators and partners that we have met here in GES.

Before handing it back to Clayton, let me add my thanks to all the entrepreneurs who made the journey here to Hyderabad, some from many, many thousands of miles away.  They are the ones that have made this truly successful and truly memorable.  But I also want to close by giving a particular thanks to the Government of India and the people of Hyderabad for co-hosting what I think is an incredible week.  But most importantly let me say that the success of this week is not was has taken place already.  This is an event.  These are conversations.  It's what we all do with what we've learned here, the partnerships that we have forged here, the friendships that we have energized here, and I think the plans that we are launching together.

So, as successful as I believe this summit has been, I believe that you will be able to call it truly the greatest ever GES in the months ahead as you see us take these plans and these partnerships and really mobilize them in ways that will lift the fortunes, not just of the people of India and the people of the United States, but I would argue the entire region and, in fact, the world.  So, I think this has been a truly great event and I am honored to represent USAID in taking part.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Thank you for that.  And with that we're happy to take some of your questions.  If you could please identify your name and your outlet, that would be great.  And it would be fitting that we go first to a woman in the theme of GES, so we'll call on Kelli Rogers from Devex. 

QUESTION:  Hi there.  Kelli Rogers.  My question is for Administrator Green.  You said that the Development Impact Bond is really results based and business-minded approach to development.  So, I'm wondering how you would say it fits into USAID's overall approach to business-minded approach to investing in women and perhaps whether it signals, you know, other innovative finance mechanisms to help empower women in the future.  Thanks.  

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  Thank you, and great question and delighted to respond.  So, what we are trying to do at USAID is to tap into the strength, the innovation, and the creativity of the private sector to take on development challenges.  We're trying to move away from the traditional relationship, which was often a contracting relationship with the private sector, and there's nothing wrong with contracting -- we will continue to do contracting -- to move to a model of true collaboration in which we work with the private sector to co-finance programs, to co-design programs, to take on challenges jointly so we don't want to craft a traditional bureaucratic program and then say to the private sector please come help us do this.  Instead what we want to do is to lay out a challenge that we see as a development agency, maternal and child health, and say, you know, look, help us get to the goal of achievement in maternal and child health.  We want your best ideas.  We want you to take on this risk with us and we will pay if you achieve.  And so, I think the model's a very good one because it truly harnesses the strength and creativity of the private sector and while this is the first, I don't believe it will be the last.  In fact, there are a number of innovative financing techniques that we are taking up in many places.  It just seemed natural to do the first one here in India, with the vibrancy of the private sector here and around this theme of empowering women, because that's what I believe this will ultimately achieve.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Okay.  Next question.  Here in the second row in the blue jacket.  

QUESTION:  Good afternoon, Administrator Green.  I'm [inaudible] from [inaudible].  My question to you is in the context of the GES.  Do you think that the social sector where you are privately working and start-ups can relate so that you know -- the schemes that you're working on, such as poverty or education, water, sanitation, protecting women and newborns, can they be taken forward by linking them up with start-ups?  

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  Short answer yes.  Longer answer is I've seen that already at work here in my brief time.  So, one of the first events I participated in here, was cutting the ribbon on a water kiosk here in Hyderabad.  And the water kiosk works so well because it is linking together all of those sectors.  It is community led and the mayor here in Hyderabad has very ambitiously not only launched, helped to launch, this water -- clean water kiosk, but has pledged to create thousands more in the next few years, which will provide safe, reliable, affordable water for thousands and thousands of families, but it only works when you tie it to civil society to get the word out.

It only works where you have the technology that is at play in the kiosk, which allows women to access clean water by a smart card or through coins 24 hours a day.  All of those come together are taking on the challenge.  So, I think what we see here at the GES, but what we see in the development field, the only way that you can provide sustainable results is if you move beyond simply putting money into things and instead involve every part of the community, public sector, private sector, civil society, government.  It's only when all come together and communicate and are in constant conversation, that's the only way that you can produce results that are likely to last.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Here in the front row.  

QUESTION:  Yes.  My name is [inaudible] from Tanzania.  

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  My old stomping grounds.  

QUESTION:  Thank you.  I want to know if they -- if the bond is going to be specifically for India and secondly, I'm kind of curious, or I just need to understand more, when you say you're going to pay while it's achieving.  What if it is not going to achieve?  

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  Then we're not going to pay [inaudible].  Thank you for the question.  Yes, this particular impact bond, this first one is for India, but this is a global summit that has come together here, and this is a community and a country that I think is hungry for innovative approaches to development challenges and so this is the perfect place to launch it.  But with success, and I believe we will see success, I think that we will use it more and more often.  The important thing here is that it involves the private sector from the word go, that it is not government solutions to problems, but instead the government identifying a problem, identifying a challenge, and instead reaching out to the private sector and making them -- and with them -- sharing the risk of achieving results.

So, yes, this is a -- this one is for India, but we are very hopeful that we will see this financing technique in more and more places and based on conversations that I had -- I was in Delhi yesterday meeting with a number of private sector leaders -- I think there is a great interest in these types of mechanisms.  The private sector wants to be helpful.  It's not sure how.  I think through mechanisms like this and some of the other programs that we are launching, initiatives that we are launching, we will tap into that power and creativity more and more often.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Okay, great.  The second row.  

QUESTION:  This is [inaudible] from the Economic Times.  This is in correlation to the question that she has asked just now.  What is the size of this bond and how long will it continue until [inaudible] -- duration of this bond and the size of the bond?   

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  So, we will distribute a fact sheet that gives you more of the details of the bond, but the -- on the low end the initial amount is $2.25 million U.S. dollars.  But we are hoping with other investors to make it greater, but that is the initial amount.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  And our facts sheets are at the back that you can get. 

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  He's ahead of me.  The fact sheets are in the back.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  And your next door neighbor.  

QUESTION:  I'm [inaudible] from [inaudible].  This question is to Ms. Hadda.  Can you give us a summary of what happened during the three days?  And also, when are you going to -- are you -- where is the location for GES 2018?  

CONSUL GENERAL HADDA:  I'm actually going to turn at least the first half of the question over to Jennifer.  

MS. ARANGIO:  So, I'll go to the last part of that question first.  No, we have not chosen our co-host yet for GES 2018, but we hope to do so soon, but I think the last I guess two days now, that first half day, yesterday and part of today we've accomplished our two plenaries, that wonderful inaugural ceremony where we were so honored to have Prime Minister Modi attend, as well as Ivanka Trump, and many, many master classes.  I hope some of you have been to some of these classes, because we have had some dynamic speakers that we've brought from all over the world, U.S. leaders, global leaders, Indian leaders.  They've been tremendous.  So master classes, breakout sessions, but probably one of the best parts of GES 2017 has been the networking lounge.  It's tremendous.

The -- just pitch competition is also going on over there.  Ivanka Trump had a chance to see I think three or four contestants and it's really lively and engaging and a really dramatic space and there are a lot of connections going on over there.  I don't know if we mentioned, but there are over 100 -- I think 150 countries -- represented here at GES, about 38 U.S. states, and I think we have women from at least 137 countries.  And there are few delegations that are entirely female and those include Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan.  We're particularly proud of that.  So, we've accomplished quite a lot.  We still have a little bit to go, but would encourage all of you to really meet the entrepreneurs, the investors, the supporters, and just visit that networking lounge.  Thank you.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Okay, great.  We'll have time for one more question.  There over on the left side.  Okay.  We'll do two.  

QUESTION:  I'm [inaudible] from [inaudible] newspaper.  Mr. Green, you were saying you [inaudible] recently.  Can you elaborate on that?  What is the initiatives?  

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  I'm sorry --

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Sir, could you repeat the question?  

QUESTION:  [inaudible] 

CONSUL GENERAL HADDA:  Seven initiatives.  

ADMINISTRATOR GREEN:  Okay, yes.  Again, we -- sure, I'm sorry.  We have fact sheets at the back for you, but for the program that we have launched today and announced today to combat stigma, particularly TB stigma affecting women is $1 million.  The WomenConnect Challenge taking on the digital divide is $1.5 million, and then as we mentioned, the minimum amount for the Development Impact Bond is $2.25 million.  But again, let me emphasize that it's not the dollar amounts that really matter here.  

What matters with these announcements and these initiatives is everything that we are doing is powered by the private sector, by private enterprise.  What I would hope you take away from the USAID participation here is that we believe a global entrepreneurship summit is the perfect place for USAID to be, that we believe we are successful not simply by going to development think tanks and talking to other development people.  Those are important.  We think we need to come to places like this fantastic gathering with all of these really smart, creative, energetic entrepreneurs.  We'll get more ideas, get more strength from meeting with the entrepreneurs that you all have seen here than anything else that we could do.

So, we believe that the global entrepreneurship summit is the very place that USAID needs to come to get the ideas and the innovations that will help us all, U.S., India, and others take on these great champions.  Let me just give you one more quick example.  So, I met recently with a wonderful Indian cooperative, SEWA.  Women who make arts, crafts, beautiful cloths, for example.  With our help these women are training women who -- training Afghan women -- who will go back to Afghanistan and train other women on how to market their goods and create small businesses, which will provide income, provide status, and hold their communities together and build a brighter future in Afghanistan.  That achievement is greater than anything a government program could do, and it works because the women here in India of the SEWA Cooperative are enterprising, innovative, hardworking, creative.  All of those things are what we are trying to help harness and apply to development challenges.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEY:  Great, and final question.  

QUESTION:  Hi.  This is [inaudible] from TV-9.  My question is to you.  My question is since the topic was women so you as a women, tell me what were the challenges you faced for this GES and how did you overcome it?  

CONSUL GENERAL HADDA:  First of all, there are two of us on the podium.

So, I think what you will find if you look at the organizers of this event, a lot of us are women.  I guess what I would say it wasn't a challenge but an opportunity.  I mean, I think the fact that the senior, you know, representative for the United States was Ivanka Trump, who is a very powerful advocate not only for women and -- but also for entrepreneurship and I always say, you know, in many ways when you're a woman operating in a field like this, I as Consul General -- to some extent -- I am the message.  You know, she is the message.  You are the message and the reason for that is just seeing someone out in the world, you know, sends its own kind of signal.

So I have to say it's been tremendously powerful to see women, you know, entrepreneurs getting together and I really have every confidence that they will be building bridges, you know, internationally now after this event and I'm really hopeful that any, you know, future event, be it one, you know, that we're hosting or someone else takes up a baton and hosts another event, that they will be thinking that.  The last image I will leave with you is in my mind this is -- because I am an economist by training, you don't compound interest in the savings [inaudible].  You get the initial deposit and then it builds on itself and I think that's what we're going to see after this event.  So best of luck to you and thank you for the question.  Thank you.  

SPOKESPERSON MCCLESKEYWonderful.  Thank you all for coming.  

Last updated: November 30, 2017

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