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LEAP III Egypt Tourism Pre-Feasibility Study

This report, which was prepared at the request of USAID/Egypt, details the findings of a pre-feasibility study of three potential heritage projects under consideration by USAID/Egypt. Each proposed potential project involves the adaptive reuse of the following historical assets, all of which are located in Historic Cairo.

LEAP III Egypt Private Sector Landscape Assessment

Egypt’s private sector is highly developed, employing approximately 70 percent of the country’s labor force. A dynamic and young population, large market size, and access to important foreign markets drive Egypt’s enormous economic potential. Despite this progress, significant obstacles dampen the country’s ability to recognize its potential for economic growth. Most micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) operate informally, and they contribute less than 30 percent to gross domestic product (GDP). The country has a complex and burdensome legal and regulatory system.

Analysis of the North American Jewelry Market

USAID’s Commercially Viable Conflict-Free Gold Project, known locally as “Zahabu Safi” (Clean Gold), is a five-year program, implemented in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) by Global Communities and Levin Sources. The project aims to establish a responsible, commercially viable and conflict-free ASM gold supply chain from eastern DRC. A key objective for achieving the project’s vision is to increase demand for and co-investment in responsibly sourced ASM gold from eastern DRC.

Assessing the Impact of Digitally-Enabled Microcredit for Smallholder Farmers: Findings from the A-Card pilot initiative

mSTAR/Bangladesh, working with the Agriculture Extension Support Activity (AESA) led by Dhaka Ahsania Mission (DAM), conducted pre- and post-assessments in Faridpur district to understand the impact that a micro-credit product (called A-Card) delivered to smallholder farmers through Bank Asia’s agent banking had on participating farmers, associated ag-input retailers, and other relevant stakeholders, as well as to understand what further action can be taken to improve uptake of these services.

Understanding Mobile-Enabled Agri-Credit Adoption Among Rice Farmers

The mSTAR/Bangladesh project, working with the Rice Value Chain (RVC) Project led by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), conducted pre- and post-assessments in Jessore and Satkhira to understand the benefits, challenges and overall experience of farmers who adopted an agri-credit product delivered via IFIC Mobile Banking. This product provided loans for agricultural inputs to smallholder farmers amounting to BDT 10,000 (US $125) with a six-month repayment period.

Opportunities for Digital Financial Services for Agricultural Mechanization in Bangladesh: A Market Landscape Assessment

The mSTAR/Bangladesh project, working with the Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia - Mechanization and Irrigation (CSISA-MI) project, conducted an assessment in six districts of southwest Bangladesh to look at opportunities for digital financial services integration in agricultural mechanization services. This included an examination of potential financial products that could be proposed to financial institutions for creating opportunities for mechanization service providers and users to access financial support through digital channels.

Dispute Landscape & Market Governance

This report investigates how frequently disputes occur, their underlying causes, and avenues for recourse function vis-a-vis a market's governance structure.

Workshop on Digital Payments for AIRN Members through Agent Banking

mSTAR/Bangladesh received a technical assistance request from the Agro-Inputs Retailers Network (AIRN), which is supported by USAID’s Agro-Inputs Project, in February 2017 to support them to explore DFS adoption among AIRN members. In connection with that request, mSTAR/B conducted two technical workshops for AIRN members in March 2017 about using agent banking for digital payments. Md. Ataur Rahman, mSTAR/B Team Lead, facilitated the workshop sessions.

Youth Engagement in Agricultural Value Chains Across Feed the Future: A Synthesis Report

This report aims to inform Feed the Future (FTF) efforts moving forward to more strategically and deliberately engage youth in market systems by providing insights from current FTF country programs. Commissioned by USAID’s Bureau for Food Security/Office of Country Strategy and Implementation, a research team with the Leveraging Economic Opportunities (LEO) activity scanned all 19 FTF countries and analyzed four FTF country programs in more depth through site visits to Guatemala, Liberia, Nepal, and Uganda.