YEREVAN (Armenpress)–The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has approved a new strategic plan to guide USAID programs in Armenia. Central themes of the 2004-08 strategy emphasize employment generation–improved democratic and economic governance–and an expanded social safety system. In order to achieve the overarching goals–USAID will concentrate on developing human and institutional capacity to ensure its efforts promote sustainable change–by improving the skills of those implementing reforms and the ability of key institutions to serve society.
The new strategy highlights USAID’s shift from direct humanitarian assistance to longer term development assistance. Since Armenia has enacted many of the laws necessary for a market-oriented economy and an open democracy–the new strategy will address implementation of reforms focusing on: increased employment in a more competitive economy; responsible stewardship of natural resources and energy; the creation of more transparent and accountable public and private institutions that respond to the needs of society; and improved access to health and social services.
The strategy has been developed and coordinated–with the cooperation of the Government of Armenia–private sector counterparts–representatives of civil society–and other donors.