Business Environment Reform

We have deep experience in reforming business environments to improve competitiveness of companies, industries, and countries in domestic and global markets.

Using top-down and bottom-up approaches, we lower transaction costs, simplify regulations, and develop necessary laws and regulations to reduce informality, increase employment and investment, and access markets. We work with governments to strengthen their ability to develop and implement laws and regulations that support competitiveness, and streamline regulations already on the books. In the private sector, we support firms and other industry stakeholders to be effective partners in promoting systemic change.

Our Experts


As Regional Managing Director for Asia, Jenny oversees DAI operations from Central Asia to the Pacific Islands. DAI’s current portfolio of 18 long-term field projects in the region tackle development challenges in sectors as diverse as economic growth, governance, and environment.

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Edwin Berk has made a career of building the businesses of professional services companies where public and private sectors intersect. After a brief stint teaching at Yale University, he joined a public policy consulting firm.

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Arsalan Faheem works with our London-based Private Sector Development practice, where he is responsible for advising DAI’s portfolio of economic development programmes, as well as growing the practice through client development.

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Marika Kanatova is the director responsible for bids for the European Commission (EC), Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (formerly AusAID), New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (formerly NZ Aid), and other donors.

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Matthew Roberts is Monitoring and Evaluation Manager on DAI’s Land Investment for Transformation programme (LIFT), a six-year project to improve the incomes of the rural poor in Ethiopia.

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Kongkona Sarma is an experienced economic development specialist who started her career in the capital markets, gaining skills in financial valuation, corporate restructuring, and quantitative research.

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Our Projects


Burma—DaNa Facility

The DaNa Facility seeks to reduce poverty and increase incomes by fostering a strong business environment conducive to the creation of jobs and economic opportunities for SMEs and poor people.

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East Africa—Trade and Investment Hub

The East Africa Trade and Investment Hub is the U.S. Government’s flagship project under the presidential Trade Africa initiative, which works to increase U.S.-Africa trade and investment, regional integration, and competitiveness.

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Jordan—Competitiveness Program (JCP)

The Jordan Competitiveness Program (JCP), funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), assists Jordanian private and public sector leaders to achieve competitiveness and job creation goals, equitably and sustainably.

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Jordan—Workforce Development (WFD) Project

In 2014, the Government of Jordan responded to the King’s call for a 10-year economic blueprint for meeting a set of challenging objectives. Key among the objectives was “to enhance policies related to human resources, link education policies to labor market demands, focus on building a labor force through vocational training, especially youth, so that they gradually replace guest labor, and encourage women to join the labor market.”

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Lebanon—Industry Value Chain Development (LIVCD)

Lebanese agricultural products have the potential to compete well in regional and international markets; however many products require improvements in terms of quality and specifications to meet customer demand, leveraging the country’s significant assets and abundant talented human resources.

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Mozambique—Supporting the Policy Environment for Economic Development (SPEED, SPEED+)

Mozambique has been engaged in economic policy reform since its first democratic elections in 1994. With a pressing need to reform the country’s business policies and strengthen private sector participation, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) initiated the Support Program for Economic and Enterprise Development (SPEED), a five-year, $19.4 million project implemented by DAI.

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Somalia—Promoting Inclusive Markets in Somalia

The Promoting Inclusive Markets in Somalia (PIMS) programme takes a market development approach, using the Making Markets Work for the Poor (M4P) methodology to stimulate inclusive economic growth. PIMS works through the private sector to support the functioning of markets in key sectors by addressing weaknesses in small-scale productive infrastructure, a chronic lack of market information, and limited access to finance.

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Worldwide—Business Environment Reform Facility (BERF)

The U.K. Department for International Development (DFID) leads a growing number of business environment reform programmes around the world to help small firms start, grow, and create jobs in their communities.

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Southern Africa—Trade and Investment Hub

The Southern Africa Trade and Investment Hub supports Southern Africa to create a well-integrated regional economy that delivers tangible economic benefits and improved food security for the people of the region through increased global competitiveness, trade, and investment.

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Worldwide—Trade, Private Sector Development and Engagement, and Regional Integration (TPSD/E) Facility

The Trade, Private Sector Development and Engagement, and Regional Integration Facility helps shape and implement new policies related to Aid for Trade and regional integration programmes.

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