Office of the Spokesman
December 6, 2002
U.S. Assistance to Tajikistan
Tajikistan's President Emomali Rahmonov is visiting Washington, D.C. December 8-10 at the invitation of President George W. Bush. In addition to meeting President Bush, President Rahmonov will hold discussions with Vice President Richard Cheney, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, USAID Administrator Andrew Natsios, and Drug Enforcement Agency Administrator Asa Hutchinson.
The purpose of the visit is to further the United States-Tajikistan partnership to promote security, economic development and political openness in Central Asia and to combat the threat of terrorism worldwide. In addition, President Rahmonov will hold detailed discussions on bilateral cooperation to further economic and political reform and poverty reduction in Tajikistan.
The U.S. Government budgeted approximately $490 million to fund assistance programs in Tajikistan, plus $73 million in surplus Department of Defense and privately donated humanitarian commodities from Fiscal Year 1992 through Fiscal year 2002. The $141.5 million budgeted by all U.S. Government agencies for assistance programs in Tajikistan in Fiscal Year 2002 is allocated roughly as follows:
Democracy programs support independent media, strengthen political parties, aid the growth of local non-governmental organizations, and promote long-term change through academic and professional exchange programs. Since 1993 over 1,000 citizens of Tajikistan have traveled to the United States on U.S. Government-sponsored exchanges. Increased funding is slated for expansion of the Internet Access and Training program. The Eurasia Foundation continues to provide grants to non-governmental organizations.
- Democracy Programs: $12.4 million
The new Basic Education Sector Strengthening program will help counteract the decline in basic education and better equip students with civic and labor-force skills. The program will train teachers in more interactive teaching methods, focused on integrating critical thinking and learning skills into curricula and teaching materials. Other program goals include increasing parent and community involvement in schools, strengthening the capacity of school administration, and improving school infrastructure. The Quality Primary Health Care program is working with the Ministry of Health to create a more cost-effective health care system that improves familiesí access to equitable, efficient, and quality primary health care services.
- Social Services: $12.2 million
Market reform efforts include agricultural programs to improve farming practices, increase farmersí income, and support farm privatization efforts. USAIDís small and medium-sized enterprise program provides training and technical assistance focusing on accounting, management, marketing, and tax issues, and development of professional associations. USAID supports a local legally registered microfinance institution, and is planning a major expansion in the microfinance sector. USAID and the US Department of Agriculture support micro-credit programs for women. USAID also provides commercial law training to Tajik judges and attorneys.
- Market Reform: $ 9.4 million
The Community Action Investment Program initiated in FY 2002 is directed at mitigating sources of conflict in conflict-prone areas. This program aims to improve social conditions and mobilize local communities to help them identify and solve local issues. The water management program is helping to improve the tools, knowledge, and skills of water and energy specialists and policymakers so they can better manage these two critical resources.
- Community Development: $10.4 million
In addition to the FY 2001 $7.5 million from the Emergency Response Fund for increased Export Control and Related Border Security (EXBS) assistance for Tajikistan, the State Department has allocated an additional $500,000 in FY 2002 for assistance to enhance border-control capabilities of the Customs, Border Guards and other security forces. The State Department also is providing $259,000 in International Military Education and Training and $3.7 million in Foreign Military Financing in FY 2002 to help strengthen Tajikistanís territory from terrorists, weapons of mass destruction, narcotics traffickers, and enhance interoperability with U.S. forces.
- Security & Law Enforcement: $21.5 million
Anti-crime training and technical assistance includes further support for the two-year old Drug Control Agency, co-funded by the United Nations Drug Control Program (UNDCP). Drug Control Agency personnel are now specially vetted, continually monitored, and paid salaries intended to protect against corruption. The agency coordinates all Government of Tajikistan efforts at drug interdiction, drug abuse, and treatment.
Current humanitarian programs for Tajikistan include the provision of commodities through the Department of State Humanitarian Transport Program. The main commodities being shipped are medicines, pharmaceuticals, medical supplies, clothing, food, and emergency shelter. Local private voluntary organizations distribute the commodities. The value of the Department of State humanitarian commodities provided in Fiscal Year 2002 exceeded $20 million. Both the Department of Agriculture and USAID have significant food aid programs in Tajikistan. In Fiscal Year 01, these programs had a combined value of $28.5 million. The total amount of food aid for Tajikistan in Fiscal Year 2002 exceeds $50 million. The combined Food for Progress Program, Agricultureís Section 416(b) Program, and USAID Title II Program will provide over 100,000 metric tons of food aid this year.
- Humanitarian Assistance: $75.6 million
Released on December 6, 2002