Author(s): Barron T
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Abstract PIP: The Pressler Amendment, a law prohibiting US assistance to any country that does not sign the UN Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, is forcing USAID to shut down its highly successful Social Marketing of Contraceptives (SMC) program in Pakistan. Adopted in 1985, the amendment calls for an end of funding for projects in Pakistan as of fiscal year 1991, since the country has refused to sign the treaty. Only previously committed funds have kept SMC running, but it may soon have a close shop. The cutoff comes at an especially inopportune time--just when SMC had begun to make an impact. Introduced 5 years ago, Sathi condoms (the project's main product) account for 2/3 of all condoms used in Pakistan. Sales jumped from 30 million in 1978 to 74 million last year. SMC administrators explain that the country has a vast potential for social marketing. But because of the cutoff in aid, the program will exhaust its supply of condoms by March 1992. The end of the SMC program will mean a serious setback for Pakistan, which already has the 2nd largest population in southern Asia, and which has double the fertility of the most populous country in the region, India. Only 7\% of the women in Pakistan rely on a modern method of contraception, compared to 42\% in India and 26\% in Bangladesh. USAID officials explain that the organization is working with the Pakistani government to find ways to continue funding the program after US funds run out. They add that this development will provide Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif an opportunity to demonstrate his stated commitment to curb population growth.
This article was published in Family Plan World
and referenced in Arabian Journal of Business and Management Review