Hiqmet Demiraj is the chief of party of our USAID-funded Employment and Enterprise Development Activity in Tajikistan. Prior to working on EEDA, Hiqmet was the chief of party of the USAID Enterprise Competitiveness Project in the Kyrgyz Republic. Before joining ACDI/VOCA in 2019, Hiqmet served as the chief of party of the USAID-funded Kyrgyz Input Enterprise Development II Project from 2007 to 2014. He engaged with various government agencies and disbursed $20 million in loans, which led to improved incomes for farmers and the first export of Kyrgyz seeds in more than 20 years. In 2018, he worked with the World Bank in Washington, D.C., and Iraq, where he helped design a program to improve access to agricultural inputs in provinces newly liberated from ISIS occupation. Prior to this, he led a program supporting the adoption of European Union standards among agricultural enterprises in Cyprus and managed a loan portfolio of EUR 25 million from the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development. He has worked on donor-funded activities in Cyprus, Georgia, Tajikistan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, and East Timor. Hiqmet holds a master’s degree in quantitative genetics from the Mediterranean University of Antalya (Turkey) and a doctoral degree in plant breeding from the University of Tirana (Albania). He has earned several post-graduate certificates as well as an award from the USAID Regional Office in Central Asia for his leadership in public-private initiatives. He is fluent in Russian, English, French, and Italian and proficient in Turkic languages.