ANTANANARIVO – The American people, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), are helping Madagascar strengthen its business climate and protect its unique ecosystems through a new public-private partnership known as Mitsiry, or “sprout” in Malagasy.
At a ceremony here today, the Cabinet Director from the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development Mamitiana Andriamanjato and the Conseiller technique chargé du secteur privé of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Consumption Christian Rasoamanana, joined USAID/Madagascar Mission Director, John Dunlop to launch the new five-year, $12.5 million project that will be led by local impact investment firm Miarakap.
“Mitsiry builds on what we know: that conservation succeeds when local people benefit,” John Dunlop said during the launch ceremony. “This is especially true in Madagascar, where so many livelihoods are linked to natural resources,” he added.
The project will support emerging small and medium-sized companies that have a strong commitment to environmental preservation and will assist the local communities therein through economic empowerment and incentivization of land preservation. Under the alliance, USAID’s funding of $5 million will leverage another $7.4 million from the private sector.
Entrepreneurs participating in the alliance and other private firms are crucial drivers of development and employment by helping rural populations become aware of the importance of conserving Madagascar’s environment. USAID’s effort underscores the American peoples’ commitment to bolstering critical economic sectors while improving local economies and conserving biodiversity.
For nearly 40 years, the United States has worked side-by-side with the Malagasy people to advance health care, improve conservation and agricultural practices, grow the economy, strengthen democracy and governance, and provide critical humanitarian assistance in response to drought, disease, and cyclones.
The U.S. government recognizes the global significance of Madagascar’s unparalleled biodiversity as well as the critical role natural resources play in the nation’s economic and human development.
Since 2013, the U.S. government has committed more than $60 million in programs that promote sustainability, improve livelihoods for local communities, bolster governance of natural resources, strengthen actions to stop international wildlife trafficking, and protect thousands of hectares from illegal and unsustainable exploitation.