USAID Aiming to Be a Strong Partner for Bangladesh
The US Agency for International Development (USAID) is actively working to be a supportive development ally for Bangladesh as it progresses towards achieving an advanced economy. Reed J Aeschliman, the Mission Director of USAID, made these remarks during the monthly luncheon of the American Chamber of Commerce in Bangladesh (AmCham) held at The Westin Dhaka. Aeschliman, serving as the guest of honour in a discussion titled 'The Transforming Bangladesh: USAID Partners in Progress,' highlighted that Bangladesh is on track to transition from a least developed country to a lower-middle-income status by 2026.
"Congratulations. However, looking at the long-term development perspective, we assume your aim is not to remain on the middle-income trajectory", he mentioned. "The goal is to progress towards an advanced economy, and that's where USAID comes in for Bangladesh. USAID is actively working to be a reliable development partner for the host country, Bangladesh, supporting its journey towards an advanced economy. This vision will be driven by fostering private sector growth, economic development, private sector financing, and the promotion of public-private partnerships", stated Aeschliman.
AmCham President Syed Ershad Ahmed acknowledged Bangladesh's robust trajectory in terms of economic growth and prosperity over the last decade. "Our country has established itself as a rising global force by prioritizing infrastructure development, investing in human capital, and diversifying the economy. Despite challenges, we have managed to sustain economic growth by diversifying trade partners and implementing sound policies", he expressed.
He highlighted that the USAID program in Bangladesh is the largest in Asia, conducting some of the world's most critical food security and health initiatives. "As a longstanding partner, USAID remains dedicated to supporting our goal of becoming an upper-middle-income country by 2031", he affirmed. Ahmed also noted USAID's significant efforts to boost trade and create a favorable business environment in Bangladesh. Additionally, he mentioned that in 2023, USAID invested $35 million in a new climate-smart agriculture project in Bangladesh.