Congressman Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) will be traveling to Honduras January 10th – 15th, 2004 to study the impact of sustainable development on Honduras and Central America. During his trip, sponsored by Global Partnerships and the Seattle Initiative for Global Development, Smith will meet with several groups, public officials, and NGO leaders to examine the range of issues, opportunities and challenges facing America’s relationship with Honduras and this critical region. Highlights of the trip include a visit to the Mixed Cooperative of United Women (COMIXUL), which is a microfinance institution that focuses on microcredit and its impact; a visit to microcredit programs where Smith can see firsthand the impact of solidarity groups and village banking methods and he will visit local people who have participated in microcredit lending. Smith will also receive briefings from the U.S. Embassy in Honduras on the impact of the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) and will conduct field visits to small and micro enterprise development programs to see, first hand, rural development programs at work.
“This trip is critical to my understanding of the economic and social situation in Honduras and Central America as a whole,” said Smith. “It is important to see first hand the impact of good, sustainable development programs in this growing economy.”