Notes From Hairenik
This is good news. The money is being sent as part of the Millennium Challenge program, which is aimed to help promote democracy and economic stabilization in impoverished countries. Most of the funding, which will arrive in Armenia next year, will go to infrasturcture projects in the regions of Armenia, namely rebuilding devastated roads and rehabilitating irrigation systems. About $23 million will go towards administrating the program, which hopefully will not be abused very much. This sum does not include the annual financial assistance that Armenia receives from the US every year--Armenia is expected to receive about $75 million in such assistance in 2006.

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Blogger nazarian said...
What a waste of money. Millions of dollars have been given to the Armenian government over the years. Where has all that money gone to? Probably to NGO-s that have conferences and studies all the time, administrative expenses for the American consultants and only what remains after that is put to a good use.

One wonders whether this money is given so that the young educated people have a job at some NGO.

Blogger Christian Garbis said...
You have a good point. However, the Millennium Challenge program insists that most of the money is going to rural infrastructure projects. Most certainly there is a chance that some of the money, although completely accounted for on paper, may wind up in somebody's pocket, but by now that goes without saying. In any case, we will just have to wait and see....

Blogger nazarian said...
The best way to spend the money would be low interest micro loans to the farmers. That money could be used for seeds and chemicals.

Then the interest paid on these loans could go to buy insurance for the harvest. Basically, although interest would be accrueing on the paper, and the farmer would be paying it, it would eventually benefit him/her. All the aid program would recover would be the principal amount.

It's a quite low risk venture and is better than giving the money away.

Blogger Zara said...
i fully agree with Nazarian and i have been debating this for years: financial help must help the growth of the economy, not to build roads and hospitals. that's Armenian government and taxpayers' duty.