Washington, Jun 20 (PTI) India has emerged as the fifth largest donor to development and reconstruction in Afghanistan under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership, a top Trump administration official told lawmakers here today.

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Mark Green said India, which not so long ago was itself a major recipient of traditional assistance like food aid, was boosting its contributions to key initiatives.

“Under Prime Minister Modi, India has become the fifth-largest donor to development and reconstruction in Afghanistan,” Green said during ‘USAID Resources and Redesign’ event convened by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Green said he had met with partners from both the public and private sectors during his travels to India and Mexico.

“It was there that I saw glimpses of an exciting future for international development, where programmes are more private-enterprise driven and our role is increasingly to use our skills, experience and innovative know-how to help countries chart their own journeys to self-reliance and prosperity,” he said.

Green told lawmakers that USAID was committed to taking every prudent step to extend the reach and effectiveness of the taxpayer resources.

“We are working closely with the Department of State to encourage other donor nations and recipient countries themselves to increase their own contributions to the overall humanitarian and development effort,” he said.

This includes efforts at strengthening domestic resource mobilisation programmes so that partners can more effectively finance their own development in the future, he added.

“We are rethinking and streamlining our humanitarian assistance. We are taking steps to ensure our programmes and procedures are more private enterprise-friendly so we can better leverage our resources, bring new ideas and partners to our work, and increase opportunities for American businesses,” Green said.

In 2016, the US provided nearly USD 34.5 billion in Official Development Assistance (ODA), almost one quarter of all ODA. In terms of humanitarian assistance, the US continues to be the largest single donor.

“Our leadership role as a donor is a point of pride. It is part of our national character – our readiness to stand with other countries and peoples when crisis strikes,” he said.

“But leadership also means leading others to do more and setting the expectation that other donors will do their fair share to advance shared priorities, while also expecting improved performance by implementing partners, including the UN, to maximise the benefit for recipients of assistance,” Green said.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.