USAID Re-Designates 18 High-Priority Countries Under the Water for the World Act

Press Release Shim

Speeches Shim

For Immediate Release

Friday, November 6, 2020
Office of Press Relations

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has announced its annual list of high-priority countries for assistance in safe water, sanitation, and hygiene and the launch of corresponding country plans for each. Aligned with the requirements in the Water for the World Act of 2014, these partner countries will be the primary focus of the U.S. Government’s investments to build a more water-secure world.

Following a data-driven process outlined in the Act that considered lack of access to water and sanitation, along with opportunities to make significant progress in meeting these challenges, USAID has re-designated all 18 current high-priority countries. The high-priority countries for Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 are the Democratic Republic of Congo; the Federal Republic of Nigeria; the Federal Democratic Republics of Ethiopia and Nepal; the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan; the Republics of Ghana, Haïti, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique, Sénégal, South Sudan, and Uganda; and the United Republic of Tanzania. Along with this announcement, USAID also is launching a suite of Water for the World Country Plans for the high-priority countries added in FY 2020, available at The plans outline how USAID will invest in each country over the next five years to improve water security, sanitation, and hygiene.

For FY 2021, USAID also re-designated the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the Lebanese Republic as strategic-priority countries because of a combination of national-security considerations and development needs.

Globally, billions of people struggle on a daily basis because they lack access to safe water and hygienic sanitation services. The majority of those without access to even basic water service live in the countries designated as high-priorities for FY 2021, which ensures that USAID’s investments on behalf of the American taxpayer will have significant, measurable impact. The pandemic of COVID-19 lays bare the importance of accelerating progress on access to clean water, sanitation, and hygiene to prevent the transmission of the virus and safely reopen economies. USAID will work with governments, civil society, faith-based organizations, and the private sector in these high-priority countries to keep water flowing and improve hygiene, so critical to preventing and recovering from the pandemic.

Since the launch of the U.S. Government’s Global Water Strategy in 2017, USAID’s financial assistance already has helped 11.6 million people around the world gain access to sustainable drinking water and 10.6 million people gain access to sustainable sanitation. To find more information on USAID’s investments in water and sanitation, please follow these links: