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In a recent CGD Note, Sarah Rose and I argued that the U.S. government should support the Investment Climate Facility for Africa (ICF), but only after several questions about the initiative were answered. I am pleased indeed that our comments reached the right audiences, including ICF Co-Chair Niall FitzGerald who responded to our questions with new information and clarifications about the ICF's activities, processes, and relationships with other organizations (Read his full response).

Mr. FitzGerald's endorsement of independent evaluation is of particular interest to me and my colleagues at the Center, because of our ongoing initiative to encourage more and better independent impact evaluations. Mr. FitzGerald writes:

We concur absolutely with the CGD that independent external evaluation is essential. Arrangements are in place for ICF investors as a group to commission an independent assessment of the ICF's performance and impacts every two years against objective investment climate indicators.

Whether the other answers will be sufficient to convince U.S. policymakers to support the ICF can only be answered in time, and by them. But the vigorous and energetic engagement of the ICF's leadership is surely a positive sign.

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CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.