The Department of State’s Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI), a program within the Bureau of Near East Affairs Office of Assistance Coordination (NEA/AC), announces a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for projects designed to assist entrepreneurs seeking to expand and grow their businesses and activities. The NOFO will close on June 6, 2017. For more information on how to apply, please visit: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=293350
The lack of economic diversification in the region continues to limit economic, political and social stability. Research suggests approximately 60-80 percent of formal employment in the region comes from the public sector, while 80-90 percent of businesses in the private sector are small and medium enterprise. To promote regional political, social, and economic stability, private sector growth and job creation, in particular by expanding start-ups, will be critical. Funds will support projects help build the entrepreneurial ecosystem, including by assisting existing start-ups/businesses and entrepreneurs to move beyond the initial start-up phase to the next, critical middle stages of the lifecycle. Assistance at these middle stages will help grow and expand businesses, spurring increased employment in the region. Projects will be encouraged to seek out partnerships with U.S. and global business to leverage private sector expertise in entrepreneurship and innovation.
Eligible Countries and Territories:
In this announcement, we seek to support projects in Algeria, Bahrain, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, West Bank and Gaza, and Saudi Arabia. Please note: Applications that focus on activities in countries and territories other than those discussed will not be considered.
All applications must be submitted in English. Applicants may submit only one application per country, but can submit applications for more than one country.