Removing Barriers Blog

CUNA & WOCCU Write to House Appropriations Subcommittee Prior to Hearing on USAID Programs
Posted March 01, 2019 by CUNA Advocacy

CUNA and the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) wrote to Chairwoman Nita Lowey and Ranking Member Hal Rogers prior to the Appropriations Subcommittee’s hearing entitled, “Oversight of U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Programs and Policies.” 

In the letter, CUNA and WOCCU called for a level playing field for smaller contractors, such as credit unions, when it comes to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) prioritizing procurement reforms.

“CUNA urges Congress to encourage the Administrator of the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to prioritize procurement reforms that level the playing field for smaller development contractors, such as those credit unions and other cooperatives that helped achieve successful rural development in the United States in the 20th Century and which today have ties to organizations overseas that can help promote local self-reliance,” reads the letter, signed by CUNA President/CEO Jim Nussle and World Council President/CEO Brian Branch.

The letter notes that, with U.S. government and private U.S. foundation support, the World Council is working to promote economic freedom and growth, increase financial inclusion, expand rapidly financial access using mobile technology, help farmers and artisans obtain better prices for their goods and fill the agricultural lending gap to improve food security.

Current World Council projects include:

  • Promoting a stable and economically viable Haiti through the Haiti Home Ownership and Mortgage Expansion program;
  • Strengthening the credit union sector in Ukraine to improve the quality of financial services products offered to farmers and agribusinesses in rural areas through the credit for Agriculture Producers Project;
  • Expanding agricultural finance in Colombia to micro and small- and medium-sized enterprises in rural and remote areas through the Colombia Banca de las Oportunidades Project supporting financial literacy and improving savings mobilization; and
  • Improving small rural producers’ income in Kenya and Guatemala though integrated access to financial services and agricultural markets.