I had the opportunity to meet USAID Mali Mission Director Gary Juste and David Yanggen, Leader Economic Division today.
They were very optimistic about their work in Mali. We discussed USAID-funded ICRISAT projects in Mali – which roughly translates to US$7million per year.
They are really keen on the opportunities that mobile technology can offer such as the potential of mobile money to support economic development in rural areas. They believe this technology can help leapfrog over many of the current constraints.
It was good to hear of their strong support for ICRISAT and their enthusiasm for our plans to include seed adoption roadmaps in our country strategy.
USAID is also very interested in promoting public-private partnerships and has been supporting ICRISAT in realizing these partnerships through bilateral funding in Mali.
They are increasing funding for the scaling up of sorghum and millet technologies by providing an additional US$1million – 70% of which goes to private sector partners for scaling up.