Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs
Seal of the United States Department of State
|Jurisdiction||Executive branch of the United States|
|Headquarters||Harry S. Truman Building, Washington, D.C., United States|
|Employees||1,747 (as of FY 2017)|
|Annual budget||$820 million (FY 2017)|
|Parent department||U.S. Department of State|
The Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs (SCA) is an agency within the United States Department of State that is responsible for the U.S. government's relations with countries in the South and Central Asian region. The bureau is headed by the Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, who reports to the Secretary of State through the Under Secretary for Political Affairs. The current Acting Assistant Secretary is Alice G. Wells, incumbent since June 26, 2017.
After six years of trying, Congress allocated the funds to create an independent Bureau of South Asian Affairs in 1991. Pursuant to the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993, the Bureau of South Asian Affairs was established on August 24, 1992 after having been a part of the Bureau of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs since 1958. In February 2006 the bureau absorbed the Office of Central Asian Affairs from the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs.
The offices of the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs direct, coordinate, and supervise U.S. government activities within the region, including political, economic, consular, public diplomacy, and administrative management issues.
- SCA Front Office – The office of the Assistant Secretary and other principals in the bureau
- Office of Central Asia – Informs policy and coordinates with U.S. Missions in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan
- Office of Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Maldives Affairs – Informs policy and coordinates with U.S. Missions in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Maldives
- Afghanistan Desk – Oversees Afghanistan–United States relations, and liaises with the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan.
- India Desk – Oversees India–United States relations, and liaises with the U.S. Embassy in India
- Pakistan Desk – Oversees Pakistan–United States relations, and liaises with the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan
- Office of Press and Public Diplomacy – Coordinates public outreach and digital engagement, and prepares press guidance for the Department Spokesperson in the Bureau of Public Affairs
- Office of Regional Affairs
- "Inspection of the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs". Inspector General of the Department of State. February 23, 2018. Retrieved February 23, 2018.
- Office of the Historian, U.S. Department of State .
- U.S. Congress. Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993. The Library of Congress, 1992, Sec. 122. 
- Crossette, Barbara. "Congress Is Impatient for South Asia Bureau". New York Times, December 26, 1991. .
- "State Department Student Internship Brochure" (PDF). U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Human Resources. September 2014. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
- "1 FAM 170 Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs (SCA)". Foreign Affairs Manual. U.S. Department of State. August 27, 2014. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
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