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Assessment on Local Economic Development and Governance

Economic development and opportunity at the local level is essential to BiH’s overall economic stability and progress. A development hypothesis for BiH’ is that local level governance – institutions, actors and processes – have a key role to play creating the enabling environment for economic development and catalysing new entrepreneurial activity, job growth and increased investment in BiH. More effective and accountable local governance will help private sector expansion and investment at the local level; critical building blocks for the country's economic sustainability and political stability.

Due to the introduction of direct election of mayors, municipal-level government represents a great opportunity for improving the consultative process between private sector and their leaders, advocating for and addressing their issues and demands and resulting in a more conducive environment for economic growth and stability. A more efficient business climate at the local level (that is developed through and improving the enabling environment for enterprises and strengthening governance) will lead to economic development with more job opportunities for citizens and especially the youth population.

Over the last five years, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in partnership with Sida has funded a range of programs that span across governance and economic development in BiH. In this assignment the Consultant was to look at these projects; assess local governance’s role in local development and make recommendations for future program interventions.

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