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CUNA wrote to members of House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs members in strong support of FY2024 funding levels for several international credit union priorities. Both subcommittees will conduct hearings with Secretary of State Anthony Blinken this week on the State Department’s FY24 budget request.
“Considering today’s hearing and the Committee’s role in appropriating funds for international aid programs, we are writing in strong support of fiscal year 2024 funding levels of $50 million for the Cooperative Development Program (CDP); $30 million to expand for the Credit for Agriculture producers' (CAP) Technical Assistance Project; and $50 million to support the efforts of the countries surrounding Ukraine to support reintegration of Ukrainian displaced persons and refugees,” the letter reads.
The CDP is a global initiative that focuses on building capacity of cooperative businesses and cooperative systems for self-reliance, local ownership, and sustainability. It was funded at $18.5 million in FY23.
The CAP Technical Assistance Project allows credit unions of Ukraine to ensure the liquidity of credit unions, access to savings and agricultural loans to support local food security, and other community needs.
CAP should be fully funded and expanded to continue when its current authorization expires at the end of fiscal year 2024,” CUNA wrote.
The additional $50 million CUNA requests would support World Council of Credit Union efforts to ensure communities affected by the war can receive funding.
“In Ukraine, credit unions are currently one of the only viable options for Ukrainians living in rural communities to access affordable financial services,” the letter reads “In addition to supporting Ukrainians in the immediate term, credit unions will have a critical role to play in supporting post-war recovery. WOCCU is uniquely situated to assist with this issue through its existing project working with credit unions in Ukraine.”