Economic Growth

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Economic Growth

Pacific economies are extremely vulnerable to economic shocks. USAID advances resilient economic growth by helping Pacific Island countries strengthen their economic systems to withstand and recover from shocks. In the Solomon Islands, USAID is advancing the country’s economic competitiveness and inclusiveness with specific emphasis on the development of the agribusiness sector and improved management of the forestry sector. In Palau, USAID is improving digital connectivity by reducing disruptions to internet access, thereby allowing businesses to grow without continuity concerns.

PROJECTS

American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in Papua New Guinea (PNG), Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu
With technical support through the U.S.-Supporting Economic Growth in Asia (SEGA) activity, the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in PNG, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu will promote economic growth and greater opportunities for U.S. and Pacific companies. The AmCham will foster better business information for partners to deepen trade and investment between the United States and Pacific Islands. This AmCham branch will also act as a platform to advance the economic empowerment of women and communities, and further attract women and minority-owned businesses via dialogue and advocacy to support political and economic participation across PNG, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu. Activities will begin in PNG with a main office established in Port Moresby by the end of 2022. U.S.-SEGA will work with local and international partners to develop strategy and overall vision for AmCham, conduct surveys on business challenges, and develop a financial sustainability plan for the chamber. The project will lay the groundwork for PNG registration of the AmCham and for its accreditation by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, DC.

USAID - U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) partnership
To stimulate inclusive economic growth during the pandemic in PNG, the U.S. is providing an investment guaranty to Nationwide Microbank (MiBank) Limited. The guaranty will share risk on up to $5,000,000 in lending on a portfolio of loans provided by MiBank to its customers, with a focus on women borrowers. This is what President Biden means by “building back better” - to combat the pandemic to secure a better future. The investment guaranty is intended to strengthen MiBank’s ability to provide loans to micro, small, and medium enterprises across PNG for working capital and investment purposes, with the ultimate goal of promoting economic stabilization. This is the first DFC transaction in PNG.

Palau Submarine Cable
The Palau Submarine Cable project will support the development of a submarine cable branch system off a proposed new Southeast Asia to United States submarine information and communication technology cable, called the ECHO Cable. This will increase redundancy of internet access in Palau. The Belau Submarine Cable Corporation, a wholly owned Palauan state owned enterprise, proposes to develop the project. USAID’s $3 million contribution is an important component of a larger $30 million multi-donor effort, which includes the U.S. Department of Interior; the Australian government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific; and the Japanese government’s Japan Bank for International Cooperation, in cooperation with the Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.

Strengthening Competitiveness, Agriculture, Livelihoods, and Environment (SCALE) in the Solomon Islands

U.S. Support for Economic Growth in Asia (U.S.-SEGA)
U.S.-SEGA improves the trade and investment environment in light of COVID-19’s economic impacts by promoting transparent, and inclusive economic growth policies and best practices in a range of technical areas, including trade and investment, market systems development, business enabling environment, and access to finance.

Market Systems and Partnerships (MSP)
MSP strengthens and expands the agribusiness sector with advisory services and increases income productivity across the agriculture value-chain in selected commodities. It will leverage USAID investments with private sector resources, strengthen the capacity of local cooperatives and industry associations, and link agribusiness companies and cooperatives to regional and international markets for high value agriculture exports.

Architecture and Engineering (A&E)
A&E provides technical assistance for the planning and design, feasibility analysis, and transaction advising for infrastructure projects. The project will also design and help with oversight of small-scale infrastructure activities that the Pacific American Fund will implement in the Solomon Islands. USAID will also deliver feasibility studies for larger infrastructure projects in the Solomon Islands that the U.S. government may support in the future and support a pipeline of projects for financing under the U.S. Development Finance Corporation.

 

Last updated: July 26, 2022

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