The President’s FY2016 budget request is out with the biggest ask—$1.25 billion—MCC has seen in five years. This is a nice vote of confidence for MCC, and it suggests that the administration is eager to see the agency strengthen its position now that it’s in its second decade of operations. In the agency’s Congressional Budget Justification (CBJ), I was happy to see that MCC flags a number of important priorities for the coming year. On t
Let’s talk about second compacts. Increasingly, MCC seems to be moving in this direction. In the last five years, of the eleven countries selected as eligible to develop an MCC compact, eight had already completed (or were close to completing) an initial MCC compact.
Yesterday, the Senate confirmed the nomination of MCC CEO Daniel Yohannes to represent the United States in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Yohannes’ impending departure from MCC leaves a big gap in the agency’s top leadership until the Senate confirms the White House nominee, Dana Hyde, as new CEO.
The President’s FY2015 budget request is out and it looks good for MCC. With a base budget ask of $1 billion, this is the highest request the Millennium Challenge Corporation has seen since FY2012. Of course, the request is just the first step of the budget process, so MCC may or may not receive the full amount. But if it does, it would be the largest appropriation for the agency since FY2010.
Congress recently passed an omnibus appropriations bill providing funding for the remainder of Fiscal Year (FY) 2014. MCC received $898 million and a finger-shaking from Congress about the agency’s threshold program, communicating to MCC through a couple of different provisions, “we don’t like the countries you’ve picked.” While I also disagree with some of MCC’s recent choices for the threshold program, it’s too bad for the MCC to lose some of its flexibility, and I’m rather troubled by the precedent of Congress using legislation
Last week I predicted that the MCC board of directors would not select any new countries for compact eligibility, and that they would re-select all seven countries currently in the compact development stage. I was wrong on three counts.
MCC’s board of directors will meet on December 10 to decide which countries will be eligible for compact and/or threshold program assistance for FY2014. CGD’s Rethink offers a preview of the issues the board will grapple with, as well as a prediction of which countries they will select.
On Tuesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing on the nomination of Dana Hyde to be the new CEO of MCC, as well as Mark Lopes to be the US executive director of the Inter-American Development Bank. The short hearing (attended by Senators Markey and Barrasso, chair and ranking of the International Development Subcommittee) was largely positive toward both MCC and Hyde.