Governments from Myanmar to Zambia are pushing for international aid organizations to work with local companies as they pour in billions in aid and investment. It’s a phenomenon hardly limited to Myanmar. With billions of dollars in aid and development money pouring into emerging economies from Southeast Asia to sub-Saharan Africa, host governments are pushing organizations to source vegetables, mining equipment, and other products from local firms. It’s a way to ensure that local entrepreneurs – not just foreigners – benefit from investment. Local businesses create jobs and spread knowledge in poor countries that often lack both.
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