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first_imgThe Board of Directors of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) has approved US$256.7 million grant to Liberia under the Millennium Challenge Compact program.The grant was approved during the MCC Board’s annual meeting held on September 7, in Washington D.C and chaired by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.The Board’s approval now paves the way for the formal signing of a bi-lateral agreement (to be known as the Liberia Compact) between the Liberian and U.S. governments to be held in the United States by October.It will fund projects in electricity, road maintenance, reforms and capacities building and also replace the damaged water supply line from Mt. Coffee Hydro Plant to the White Plains Water Treatment Plant.Finance and Development Planning Minister Amara M. Konneh will sign on behalf of the Government of Liberia, while Ms. Dana Hyde, CEO of the Millennium Challenge Corporation, will sign on behalf of the US Government.Upon signing, the Compact will be submitted to the Liberian National Legislature for ratification.The Liberian government, through the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, has welcomed the news and praised the U.S. Government for the Compact Grant, noting that it will significantly impact the lives of ordinary Liberians through poverty reduction, job creation and economic growth.The Finance Ministry noted that Liberia’s road to the Compact began in 2008 with the Threshold Country Program through which the U.S. Government provided US$15 million grant to support the Liberian government’s interventions to increase girls’ primary education completion, land rights and access, and to improve Liberia’s trade policy, all of which have contributed to Liberia’s recovery.The Compact program is competitive, and requires countries to meet key indicators relevant to economic and political governance. These include ‘Governing Justly’, which measures the protection of civil rights including the right to free speech; and ‘Control of Corruption’, measuring government’s transparency and accountability in public financial management. Liberia continues to make progress on those and other key indicators, in spite of the many challenges.Meanwhile MFDP has disclosed that MCC CEO Hyde has telephoned President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to inform her of the MCC Board’s decision and congratulated her for Liberia’s success in securing the MCC Compact Grant.The MCC Board has also approved a Compact Grant with Morocco and a Threshold Program with Sierra Leone. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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first_imgDonegal North East TD Charlie McConalogue has called on the Minister for Finance Michael Noonan to adopt a common sense approach to the use of commercially registered vehicles for private purposes.Deputy McConalogue said today: “There is real concern among the public following recent reports of a clampdown on people using commercially registered vehicles outside of work hours.“Self-employed people who are finding things tight at the moment don’t need the added stress of constantly worrying that their vehicles may be seized. I have written to the Minister asking that he clarify the position and ensure that a common sense approach is adopted. “When this first became an issue last year, a public commitment was secured from then Minister for Environment John Gormley who stated that the occasional use of commercially registered vehicles, to bring children to school, travel to church or transport groceries should not bring motorists into conflict with the law.“However we now seem to be in a position where there is once again confusion over this and it is vital that the Minister for Finance makes the position clear.“Many people who have commercially registered vehicles for their business are understandably concerned that they may soon be forced to register their vehicles as private, in order to use them for any task outside of work. This could see many already financially stretched people having to consider selling their vehicle due to the high cost of registering it as private. If people are forced to do this in the current market, they would inevitably have to accept a knock down price.“This is not an acceptable scenario. Putting people in a position where they may be forced to make a call between taxing their commercial vehicle as private or selling it simply doesn’t make sense,” concluded Deputy McConalogue. Also hit in the clampdown have been a number of van drivers with Northern-registered vehicles which they use for work – and then to travel home to Donegal after work.They have had them seized by Customs.endsTD CHARLIE: VAN CLAMPDOWN WILL LEAD TO JOB LOSSES was last modified: April 13th, 2011 by gregShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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