Forum Institutional

Samantha Power, head of USAID, announces new development fund at Davos 2023

Samantha Power, Administrator, US Agency for International Development speaking in the Democracy: The Way Forward session at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2023 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 17 January. Congress Centre - Sanada Room.  Copyright: World Economic Forum/Sikarin Fon Thanachaiary

“The idea is that these resources exist,” Power stated.

Spencer Feingold
Digital Editor, Public Engagement, World Economic Forum
Our Impact
What's the World Economic Forum doing to accelerate action on Forum Institutional?
The Big Picture
Explore and monitor how Development Finance is affecting economies, industries and global issues
A hand holding a looking glass by a lake
Crowdsource Innovation
Get involved with our crowdsourced digital platform to deliver impact at scale
Stay up to date:

Davos Agenda

This article is part of: World Economic Forum Annual Meeting

Listen to the article

  • The need for humanitarian aid has increased significantly around the world.
  • At the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting 2023, the US Agency for International Development announced a new $50 million development fund.
  • The fund is designed to facilitate private sector involvement in global development.

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) is launching a new development fund aimed at boosting the private sector's contribution to global development. Samantha Power, the USAID Administrator, announced the fund while speaking at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting 2023 in Davos, Switzerland.

“We want to get the word out that this new fund exists,” Power said. “We hope that companies will take the opportunity to act in partnership with us.”

The fund — titled the Enterprises for Development, Growth, and Empowerment (EDGE) Fund — is designed to create new private sector partnerships that advance development objectives. The fund is being established with an initial $50 million from the US government.


The EDGE fund is being launched as the need for humanitarian aid is increasing significantly worldwide. Last month, the United Nations appealed for a record $51.5 billion in aid for 230 million people in nearly 70 countries for 2023. The appeal constitutes a 25% increase from the ask in 2022.

“The needs are going up because we’ve been by smitten by the war in Ukraine, by COVID-19, by climate,” Martin Griffiths, the UN’s Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, said in a statement. “I fear that 2023 is going to be an acceleration of all those trends.”

Unlocking private sector contributions has long been a challenge for development agencies and non-government organizations. One of the main issues, experts say, is the perceived risk of investing in distressed regions of the world.

“The problem is not financial resources, the problem is where we house them and how we invest in them," Vera Songwe, the Chair of the Board of the Liquidity and Sustainability Facility, said during the Annual Meeting. “On the [African] continent we have quite a number of countries that have the right policy environment and need liquidity.”

Private businesses whose commercial operations positively contribute to development needs are invited to apply to receive support from the EDGE fund. Several organizations are already set to receive support from the EDGE, USAID announced.

In Barbados, for example, the Blue-Green Bank in Barbados is slated to receive EDGE funding — along with co-funding from other sources — to support climate mitigation efforts such as resilient housing and water conservation. Meanwhile, the EDGE fund is set to support the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation, which facilitates trade in burgeoning democracies like Zambia, Malawi and the Dominican Republic.

“The idea is that these resources exist,” Power stated, adding that the fund can help show business executives that “the barrier to entry is lower than you otherwise might have seen it.”

Have you read?
Don't miss any update on this topic

Create a free account and access your personalized content collection with our latest publications and analyses.

Sign up for free

License and Republishing

World Economic Forum articles may be republished in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Public License, and in accordance with our Terms of Use.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.

Related topics:
Forum InstitutionalGlobal CooperationTrade and Investment
World Economic Forum logo
Global Agenda

The Agenda Weekly

A weekly update of the most important issues driving the global agenda

Subscribe today

You can unsubscribe at any time using the link in our emails. For more details, review our privacy policy.

Institutional update

World Economic Forum

May 21, 2024

About Us



Partners & Members

  • Join Us

Language Editions

Privacy Policy & Terms of Service

© 2024 World Economic Forum