The world is facing dramatic and growing humanitarian crises, from protracted conflicts in Yemen, Syria, Venezuela, and South Sudan to emerging challenges in Burkina Faso and the Central African Republic – all fragile states that lack the ability and resources to effectively govern their own territory. By 2030, an estimated 80% of the world’s poor will live in fragile states which suffer from greater poverty andfood insecurity and a lack of economic opportunity that can multiply the risks of violent extremism, pandemics and infectious disease. Fragile states are also often the arena for great power competition from countries like Russia and China.
For every $1 the United States spends to prevent conflict, it is estimated that we save $16 in response costs. The U.S. was the largest donor to fragile states in 2016, and more than 78% of American foreign assistance in the most fragile states is spent on development or humanitarian programs, more than half of which addresses global health and hunger.