ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
US gives Philippines poverty-fighting grant
The money was awarded under the US-run Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) that helps developing countries reduce their levels of poverty as long as they meet performance criteria on the rule of law and democratic principles.
"This compact we are signing today was created by and for the people of the Philippines," said MCC chief executive officer Daniel Yohannes, speaking on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.
Present for the signing was US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Philippines President Benigno Aquino 3rd.
About US$214.4 million will be used to build and repair 220 kilometres of Samar Road, which will "improve access to markets and services for farmers, fishers, and small businesses in some of the poorest provinces in the Philippines," an MCC statement said.
Another US$120 million will go be used for grants to support the building of critical infrastructure such as water systems, clinics, and schools.
The remaining US$ 54.3 million will help computerise and streamline business processes in the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
"This project will bolster the effectiveness of revenue collection and reduce opportunities for corruption," the MCC statement said.
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