Half of US assistance given directly to Pak Govt in 2010: USAID

Washington, August 17(ANI): As much as fifty per cent of the estimated one-billion-dollar US aid was given directly to the Pakistan Government last year, USAID's Deputy Director for the Office of Afghanistan and Pakistan Affairs, David McCloud, has said.

Considering the lack of public information available about how USAID and the Pakistan Government decide on projects, much curiosity surrounds the subject.

"We recently had a strategy session with the Pakistani representatives and civil leaders, and we've decided on our priorities. We'll be funding programs in the areas of energy, economic development and agriculture, stabilization works in border areas, education and health," McCloud elaborated in an exclusive interview with The Express Tribune.

When asked whether it was easy to work with the Pakistan Government, the USAID aid representative replied: "Our jobs are somewhat complicated by the various interests we have to meet and we have to kind of adjust how we do things. These are interests on both the US side and the Pakistan side."

"We always have a complex relationship with any government when it comes to development planning and allocation of resources, and here we're talking about a significant amount of resources," he added.

McCloud, however, said that they had found sincerity, technical capability and political interest on the Pakistani side for the USAID to carry out its programs. (ANI)