Madagascar–United States relations
Relations between the United States and Madagascar date to the middle 19th century. The two countries concluded a commercial convention in 1867 and a treaty of peace, friendship, and commerce in 1881. Traditionally warm relations suffered considerably during the 1970s, when Madagascar expelled the U.S. ambassador, closed a NASA tracking station, allied with the USSR, and nationalized two U.S. oil companies. In 1980, relations at the ambassadorial level were restored.
Throughout the troubled period, commercial and cultural relations remained active. In 1990, Madagascar was designated as a priority aid recipient, and assistance increased from $15 million in 1989 to $40 million in 1993. Recent U.S. assistance has contributed to a population census and family planning programs; conservation of Madagascar's remarkable biodiversity, private sector development, agriculture, democracy and governance initiatives; and media training. Madagascar became the first country with a Millennium Challenge Account compact when it signed an agreement worth $110 million in April 2006. The Ravalomanana government is especially positive about ties with the United States.
U.S. Officials include:
- Ambassador--R. Niels Marquardt
- Deputy Chief of Mission—George Sibley
- USAID Director—vacant
- Defense Attache—Cecil Bridges
- Public Affairs Officer—Rodney Ford
- Consular Officer—Jay Epping
- Economic/Commercial Section Chief—Brian Neubert
- Political—Silvana Rodriguez
- Management Officer—Keith Heffern
- Peace Corps Director—vacant