Discussion Points by MCC CEO Daniel Yohannes at Roundtable on Cape Verde's New MCC Compact Post-Signing Discussion on Saturday, February 11, 2012

I am glad to be here this morning for this roundtable discussion.

Cape Verde has been a model MCC partner country. This country successfully completed its first MCC compact, and just yesterday I had the pleasure of participating in the signing ceremony for a second compact, focused on water and sanitation and land management.

This promises to be a very thoughtful and interesting conversation, and I want to share some brief thoughts on two topics: the MCC model and donor coordination.

First: the MCC model.

MCC pursues a reform-grounded, country-driven, results-focused, and accountability-centered way of delivering development assistance.

The MCC approach is distinct. Cape Verdeans have certainly risen to the challenge of working with us, and MCC has learned much from our partnership.

Our approach requires our partners to reform their policies to create the right conditions for sustainability.Cape Verdeans understand that the key to sustainable economic development starts with the right policies and institutional reforms and have taken important steps toward this. Cape Verde identified national institutional, regulatory and utility reform in the water and sanitation sector, for example, as a key part of its second MCC compact. It is making ambitious reforms in the land sector too. In fact, second compacts fully integrate policy and institutional reform into compact design.

MCC’s approach also demands that our partners determine and implement their own solutions for economic growth. Cape Verdeans conducted a rigorous Constraints Analysis to identify constraints to growth. Then, they made some difficult decisions about how to focus the program.

And our approach holds our partners mutually accountable with us to deliver results. Together, we seek complete transparency in assessing the long-term impact of our investments.

So, the MCC model at work in Cape Verde will leverage other donor and private sector investment. That is why coordination with those of you sitting around this table—other donors, private businesses, NGOs, civil society—is key to the success of Cape Verde’s second compact.

A great example of donor coordination from the first compact is the Port of Praia that I visited yesterday. As you know, when the first compact was designed, MCC was supposed to finance the expansion and rehabilitation of the port. However, when design work was completed, the analysis showed that MCC could only finance the first phase, which was completed in October of 2010. Your government, through wise donor coordination, secured additional funding for phase two works that I see are well underway.

MCC’s work in Cape Verde builds on important work by other donors, such as Luxemburg Development, the European Union and AfD. It will work to complement other donor support. MCC is committed to effective coordination with other donors and the private sector to build on current accomplishments, scale up projects, leverage efficiencies, and maximize long-term impact and sustainability.

MCC is a learning institution. We are still a young institution; we just celebrated our eighth anniversary. We are learning continually from our partner countries, and all of you.

I welcome your ideas and insights into how we can coordinate even better as we pursue opportunities for poverty reduction and economic growth here in Cape Verde.

Thank you, and I look forward to the discussion.