The new United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Country Representative to Botswana Ms. Alyson McFarland on 6th February, 2018 paid a courtesy call on the Executive Secretary of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Her Excellency Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax.
The purpose of the meeting was to formally introduce the new USAID Country Representative as she embarks on her job as a primary point of contact between SADC and USAID.
Dr. Tax congratulated and welcomed the new USAID Country Representative to the SADC Secretariat. She commended USAID for its commitment to support the SADC at the regional level and at national level through bilateral agreements with SADC Member States.
The Deputy Chief of Mission in the US Embassy in Botswana, Mr. Timothy Smith who accompanied the new USAID Country Representative assured the SADC Secretariat that USAID looks forward to the continued close relationship with SADC and is working towards formalizing the second development assistance agreement between SADC and USAID. The current development assistance agreement between the two parties comes to an end in September 2018. Both partners agreed that the second agreement will be aligned to the priorities, governance and accountability requirements of both parties.
Mr. Smith informed the SADC Executive Secretary that SADC has recently been designated as a Public International Organization (PIO), recognizing that it is one of the international organizations that share mutual development objectives with USAID. He explained that the benefits of PIO designation include the easing of administrative burden of the host country in managing assistance, reduction of duplicative efforts, and in helping to exploit the comparative advantages of other donors where they possess sectoral expertise or experience or share strong ties or special relationships in the partner country.
The Executive Secretary of SADC, Her Excellency Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Tax welcomed the designation and committed to learn and understand how to utilize and benefit from the PIO designation.