The Congress finds that the efforts of developing countries to build and maintain the social and economic institutions necessary to achieve self-sustaining growth and to provide opportunities to improve the quality of life for their people depend primarily upon successfully marshalling their own economic and human resources. The Congress recognizes that the magnitude of these efforts exceeds the resources of developing countries and therefore accepts that there will be a long-term need for wealthy countries to contribute additional resources for development purposes. The United States should take the lead in concert with other nations to mobilize such resources from public and private sources.
Provision of development resources must be adapted to the needs and capabilities of specific developing countries. United States assistance to countries with low per capita incomes which have limited access to private external resources should primarily be provided on concessional terms. Assistance to other developing countries should generally consist of programs which facilitate their access to private capital markets, investment, and technical skills, whether directly through guarantee or reimbursable programs by the United States Government or indirectly through callable capital provided to the international financial institutions.
Bilateral assistance and United States participation in multilateral institutions shall emphasize programs in support of countries which pursue development strategies designed to meet basic human needs and achieve self-sustaining growth with equity.
The Congress declares that the principal purpose of United States bilateral development assistance is to help the poor majority of people in developing countries to participate in a process of equitable growth through productive work and to influence decisions that shape their lives, with the goal of increasing their incomes and their access to public services which will enable them to satisfy their basic needs and lead lives of decency, dignity, and hope. Activities shall be emphasized that effectively involve the poor in development by expanding their access to the economy through services and institutions at the local level, increasing their participation in the making of decisions that affect their lives, increasing labor-intensive production and the use of appropriate technology, expanding productive investment and services out from major cities to small towns and rural areas, and otherwise providing opportunities for the poor to improve their lives through their own efforts. Participation of the United States in multilateral institutions shall also place appropriate emphasis on these principles.
The Congress, recognizing the desirability of overcoming the worst aspects of absolute poverty by the end of this century by, among other measures, substantially lowering infant mortality and birth rates, and increasing life expectancy, food production, literacy, and employment, encourages the President to explore with other countries, through all appropriate channels, the feasibility of a worldwide cooperative effort to overcome the worst aspects of absolute poverty and to assure self-reliant growth in the developing countries by the year 2000.