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USAID to support Bangladesh to remove barriers to progress

  • Published at 12:37 am August 21st, 2018
USAID Bangladesh Mission Director Derrick S Brown Courtesy

It favours investment in innovation

United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission Director in Bangladesh Derrick Brown has emphasized on working together, removing barriers to progress with investment in the innovative people of Bangladesh.

"We must all work together to strengthen systems and remove barriers to progress, and continue to invest in the innovative people of Bangladesh," he said.

In his recent op-ed titled "American Ally in Development," Brown also highlighted on a global challenge - trafficking in persons.

“An estimated 1.5 million Bangladeshis are thought to be living in this modern-day slavery as a result of being trafficked,” he said.

"Trafficking in persons is an issue that touches us all, both in the United States and Bangladesh, and it will take a commitment from all of us to protect potential victims from the criminals that traffic people," Brown added.

USAID has programmes that work with Bangladeshi citizens, the government of Bangladesh, non-governmental organizations, US and international organizations to prevent this crime and protect its victims, but also prosecute the perpetrators of those that take advantage of the most vulnerable.

"Because that's what it will take - all of us focusing on what we can do together," Brown said.

Brown spent 28 years working across the world in developing countries; he recently arrived in Dhaka as the new Director of the USAID Mission.

He said even in these first two short weeks he can already feel the vibrancy of the city of Dhaka and the friendliness and warmth of the Bangladeshi people, reports UNB.

Just before arriving in Bangladesh, he spent time in Angola where he worked with the government and citizens to deepen democracy, improve economic growth and trade, expand access to health care and clean water, and invest in programs that reduce the impact of disasters.

"Now in Bangladesh, I am excited by the prospects of advancing USAID's long-standing and productive relationship with the government of Bangladesh and all Bangladeshis to achieve the impressive goal of graduating to a middle-income country in the near future," Brown said.

Although Bangladesh is well on its way, there remains much to be done to ensure this positive trajectory continues, he said.

"Thank you for the warm welcome in your country, and I look forward to working with the people of Bangladesh on their journeys toward ever brighter futures," Brown said.

The US government, through USAID, has provided more than $7 billion in development assistance to Bangladesh since 1971.

In 2017, USAID provided over $212 million to improve the lives of people in Bangladesh through programs that expand food security and economic opportunity, improve health and education, promote democratic institutions and practices, protect the environment, and increase resiliency to climate change.