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CGD Blog Post Discusses President Trump’s Budget Proposal, Approach To Foreign Assistance

Center for Global Development Blog: There is an Emerging Trump Philosophy for Foreign Assistance
Scott Morris, senior fellow and director of the U.S. Development Policy Initiative at CGD, discusses insights gleaned from President Trump’s FY 2018 budget request on foreign assistance priorities. Morris writes, “Emerging from the president’s budget proposal is an approach that sees foreign aid overwhelmingly as an instrument of geostrategic interests. Protecting military aid to Israel and Egypt amidst deep cuts elsewhere is one striking element of this approach. But it’s also reflected in the elimination of the USAID-based ‘development assistance’ account, which has had clearly defined development-related objectives, in favor of a more strategically-oriented ‘economic support and development fund’ based at the State Department. This is a troubling path to be starting down, both for the opportunities lost if we abandon the priorities that have guided foreign assistance in recent years and for the risks that arise as we expose more of our aid budget to the loose objectives of ‘geostrategic’ interests…” (5/23).