Obama proposes $3.1 billion in 2012 budget to spend on Pakistan


WASHINGTON – The Obama administration has proposed to Congress a total of $3.1 billion in the 2012 budget for US economic and security assistance and diplomatic operations in Pakistan, according to a senior US official.
The administration’s spending for Pakistan was divided into two parts, the “enduring core part” – meaning long-term assistance programmes, and the overseas contingency operations (OCO), an administration official said at a briefing on President Barack Obama’s budget proposals for the fiscal year 2012, beginning October 1, 2011. As part of the long-term economic and security assistance, President Obama is seeking $1.9 billion in the year 2012. The amount will also cover the cost of US aid operations and diplomatic presence.
Of the $1.9 billion, about $1.5 billion is annual money to be allocated under the Kerry-Lugar-Berman five-year aid measure. It also includes $ 350 million in foreign military financing programmes, which is part of the five-year agreement between the two countries. Some USAID operating expenses are also included in that number. Under the Kerry-Lugar-Berman initiative, the US spends money on a variety of programmes, including development of democracy and wide-ranging infrastructure projects to assist Pakistan’s economic progress.
On the extraordinary (OCO) side of the budget, the administration has proposed $1.2 billion, which includes some money for the American operational expenditures, about $146 million.Under the OCO, $1.1 billion is to be devoted to the Pakistan Counterinsurgency Capability Fund, which is a programme that the two countries have worked jointly with the departments of Defence and the State.
The PCCF seeks to train Pakistani forces for a more effective fight against insurgents along the country’s western border with Afghanistan. “So the unique part of the budget, the extraordinary part of the budget is the PCCF. The enduring part of the budget is more of our economic and military assistance that is going to be sustainable over the long term,” the administration official said.