Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic – Jonathan Stivers, Assistant Administrator of the Asia Bureau of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), is visiting the Kyrgyz Republic April 4-7, 2015. Stivers oversees USAID assistance in 32 countries in Central Asia, South Asia, East Asia, and the Pacific Islands, and manages a bureau and overseas staff of approximately 1,200 development professionals. This is Assistant Administrator Stivers’ first visit to the Kyrgyz Republic.
On April 4, Stivers visited a new USAID-supported Tax Service Center at Dordoi Market (PDF 2 MB), which serves over 7,000 businesses and entrepreneurs. During the visit, Deputy Chairperson Lubov Ardamina of the Bishkek City Parliament and former President of the Souztekstil Textile Manufacturer’s Association remarked, “The USAID-funded trip of textile manufacturers from the Kyrgyz Republic to Moscow helped them discover new potential business partners and better adjust and respond to the pricing crisis in the textile industry.”
During his trip to Jalalabad on April 5, Stivers met farmers and agriculture advisory service providers to discuss new opportunities provided by the USAID Agro Horizon project, which will assist over 40,000 farmers. Stivers also visited the Jalalabad Oblast Consolidated Hospital Maternity Department to learn about the major nutritional challenges facing women and children in the Kyrgyz Republic, and how USAID’s SPRING project is addressing these challenges in the Jalal-Abad and Naryn regions. “We are very pleased to have USAID’s SPRING project working in districts of Jalalabad that are facing challenges with nutrition for women and children. We look forward to this good partnership,” said Jalalabad Oblast Deputy Governor Baktybek Anarkulov.
On April 6-7, Stivers will meet Prime Minister Joomart Otorbaev to discuss USAID’s current and prospective development partnerships with the government. At a meeting with local entrepreneurs, Stivers will review challenges and opportunities for local businesses, and resources available to them through USAID’s Business Growth Initiative. At the end of his trip, Stivers will visit Alternative to Narcology, a local non-profit organization that, with the help of USAID Quality Health Care Program, provides much needed social and medical support to people rebuilding their lives after struggling with drug use.
Based on his impressions so far, Stivers remarked, “The work you all are doing is central to everything we are doing in Central Asia. It’s at the heart of it in my opinion….The Kyrgyz Republic cannot fail, it cannot step back – it has made too much progress….They have their challenges as a region… but the justification for being here with a very robust development package is very easy. The work that has been done supporting this country is first-grade and I am proud of it.”
Jonathan Stivers currently serves as the USAID Assistant Administrator of the Asia Bureau. Prior to joining USAID, Stivers served as Senior Advisor to the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and Democratic Leader, Nancy Pelosi. During his 18 years in the Legislative Branch, he played a leadership role on numerous foreign policy initiatives related to global health, development, trade, and human rights – from advancing legislation that provided historic increases in global health funding to securing emergency relief appropriations in the aftermath of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Stivers has extensive background in Asian affairs.
Stivers earned a Masters of International Policy and Practice from The Elliott School of International Affairs at The George Washington University in Asian Affairs and a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from James Madison College at Michigan State University. Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Stivers currently resides in Washington, D.C. with his wife and two daughters.