Speeches

Wednesday, August 26, 2020 - 12:15pm

The U.S. alliance with Guatemala is an important one that spans decades. To see participation from the highest levels of the Guatemalan government here highlights the importance of this partnership. Whether it’s addressing the COVID-19 pandemic....giving youth the skills they succeed in the workforce…strengthening the justice system....or making sure families can feed their children...the United States is committed to helping the Government build a bright future for all Guatemalans.

Thursday, August 20, 2020 - 3:00pm

The state of faith-based activism in Latin America — particularly in Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela — ties together two important topics that are high on the Administration’s, and therefore USAID’s, priority list. First, the preservation of religious freedom. And second, defeating the tyranny that exists in these three countries.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020 - 5:00pm

Seventeen years ago today, 22 humanitarians died in a bombing in Baghdad. World Humanitarian Day commemorates their sacrifice and recognizes the courage of all humanitarians who risk their lives every day to help others. Unfortunately, attacks on humanitarians have only increased since last – since then. Last year was the most violent year on record with at least 483 aid workers that were killed, injured, or kidnapped. And in the last month alone, humanitarian staff working with USAID partners in Niger, South Sudan, Cameroon, and Nigeria lost their lives while helping people in need.

Monday, August 17, 2020 - 1:45pm

Support for faith-based organizations has long been one of USAID's policy priorities, not only in the Middle East region but around the world. Working with these types of organizations with extensive on-the-ground contacts and expertise is part of a new strategy that USAID is undertaking. In 2019, we launched our new partnership initiative, what we call NPI, in Northern Iraq. It was the first time USAID has worked directly with local groups in nearly 20 years. We were looking for ways to expand similar programming and grow our partnerships with civil society groups and faith-based organizations across the region, including Lebanon.

Monday, August 17, 2020 - 8:45am

Women’s economic empowerment has long been a priority at USAID. We believe that in order for societies to be more peaceful and prosperous, women must be able to fully participate in the global economy. Some of the biggest returns on investment on behalf of the American people result from investments in women’s economic empowerment. Empowering women spurs broader economic growth, stymies extreme poverty, and ultimately contributes to global peace and stability.

Similarly, USAID recognizes that private enterprise is the most powerful engine for lifting people out of poverty. That’s why engaging the private sector is so important. Bringing private capital to the table is the best solution to achieve sustained impact long after USAID’s support has ended.

Thursday, August 13, 2020 - 12:30pm

As you may have heard, the United States Government so far has provided more than $18 million in humanitarian assistance from USAID and the U.S. Department of Defense to aid the people of Lebanon. This funding brings the total humanitarian assistance provided by the American people in Lebanon to nearly $594 million over the last year and a half. While in Beirut, I got an initial assessment from our disaster assistance response team, who is leading the U.S. Government’s humanitarian response in this case on the critical needs. Priority needs include food, health, and shelter. The explosions left approximately 2,500 homes uninhabitable, damaged or destroyed more than a dozen hospitals and health centers, disrupted food imports at the port, and destroyed shops and businesses that families have relied on for generations for their livelihoods. I had the honor of speaking with some of the people affected when I visited the Port of Beirut, the site of destruction. I met first responders who lost colleagues who were on the site when the second explosion occurred.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020 - 3:15pm

I started today by talking about shared principles. Digital technology and security is one of the areas where principles of freedom and transparency matter most. I know that Ambassador Haskel and I are on the same page about this, and we see this as a ripe opportunity for advancing the USAID-MASHAV partnership, from both a government and private sector perspective. I have a background in business, and I’ve dedicated my time at USAID to deepening engagement between the development community and the private sector. Seeing both of these communities come together brings me great joy.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020 - 11:00am

At USAID, we believe that the contributions of women are critical to a country’s political, economic, and social development. That’s why women’s empowerment is an integral part of USAID’s work.  Investing in women is not only the smart thing to do; it’s a priority for countries around the world, because engaging with women can unlock human potential on a transformational scale. Our mission at AID is to build a more free, stable, and prosperous world.  Our assistance lifts lives, bolsters communities, and advances women as integral members of their communities along those countries’ journeys to self-reliance.

Friday, July 31, 2020 - 5:30pm

Yesterday we marked World Day Against Trafficking in Persons. It is an annual event designated to shine a light on victims of human trafficking and promote their rights. This is a global goal to which the U.S. government is deeply committed.  While we work on this issue around the world, Cambodia is one of the few countries where USAID has a robust, standalone anti-human trafficking project.

Monday, July 20, 2020 - 9:00am

In 2019, the Deal Room helped originate more than $200 million in investment commitments for African businesses. We are excited to see even more deals done in 2020 and together, drive agricultural growth in Africa. Many people don’t know this, but I am a smallholder farmer myself. So I understand the challenges of being part of the agriculture sector and the roles that farmers and agribusiness play in the economy -- whether in local communities or around the world.

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Last updated: September 28, 2020

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