Obama Seeks $47.8 Billion for Fiscal Year 2014 Foreign Operations

The president’s 2014 budget would continue funding for maternal and child health programs.
The president’s 2014 budget would continue funding for maternal and child health programs.

By Kathryn McConnell
IIP Staff Writer
Washington,
April 10, 2013

President Obama has asked Congress to approve $47.8 billion to fund the State Department, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and other international programs for the fiscal year starting October 1.

The president’s request, submitted April 10, is 6 percent less than the amount requested for the current fiscal year. It is part of the president’s overall $3.77 trillion request to fund the U.S. government during fiscal year 2014 (FY14).

The budget request next will go to the Senate and House of Representatives for a series of committee debates. Leaders of both chambers then will negotiate a final budget agreement that will go to the president for signature or veto. The process could take as long as a year.

The budget proposal reflects the administration’s continued focus on working to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. The goals set by world leaders at the United Nations in 2000 aim to achieve significant progress toward reducing extreme hunger and poverty, boosting universal primary education, improving child and maternal health, fighting HIV/AIDS and other diseases, promoting gender equality, and ensuring environmental sustainability.

The president’s budget would continue, with $1.1 billion, the multiyear Feed the Future program that makes strategic investments to address the root causes of hunger and helps prevent food insecurity. The request includes proposed reforms to food aid programs to make them more cost-effective while having greater impact.

The budget would shift funds from the program that provides U.S. agricultural commodities to meet emergency food needs to two accounts. One would be for the purchase of food from markets near crises. The other account would fund development programs directly rather than through proceeds from selling U.S. food abroad.

The president’s budget would increase funding for agricultural development and nutrition programs and provide more than $4 billion to help internally displaced persons, refugees and victims of armed conflict and natural disasters.The requested funding would support, with $8.3 billion, aggressive HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment targets and continue progress toward eliminating AIDS in children. It would maintain the $1.65 billion U.S. contribution to the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; fully fund the U.S. $175 million pledge to the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, and increase spending on proven child survival interventions that address malaria, pneumonia and complications in childbirth.

The proposed budget would direct $909 million to combat climate change by promoting low-emission, climate resilient economic growth. That funding would be directed to multilateral institutions and to national and local governments and would focus on energy efficiency, renewable energy, low carbon infrastructure, sustainable land use and programs to build resilience in communities and countries vulnerable to climate change.

The request would continue to support a focus on promoting gender equality and women and girls’ empowerment. It also would continue to support innovation and partnerships by USAID and continue to increase the efficiency of USAID’s contract procurement procedures.

It would spend $1.1 billion to deploy information resources in line with foreign policy priorities, and to support academic programs and professional and cultural exchanges.

The proposed budget would provide $580 million to help countries in transition in the Middle East and North Africa. It would provide $3.1 billion for Afghanistan, $1.7 billion for Iraq and $1.3 billion for Pakistan. And it would direct $1.2 billion to tap into Asia’s growing markets, and support democratic reform and security in the region.

The president’s budget would provide $2.9 billion to fund the international development banks and international technical assistance programs. It would increase the U.S. quota in the International Monetary Fund by $63 billion.