Rajiv Shah, administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Shah said that USAID is being more transparent now with their spending, and that they have improved at tracking their progress. The discussion covers a broad range of regions, including Afghanistan, Haiti, Latin America and Africa.
The combined State Dept. and USAID budget request totals $51.6 billion, or 1 percent of the federal budget. This breaks down to $43.4 billion for the core budget and $8.2 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO), representing civilian-led programs and missions in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The request reduces funding for Europe and Eurasia while proposing a new Middle East and North Africa Incentive Fund, in recognition of the changing political dynamic in those regions.