Portugal furthest from commitment to 2030 in development aid

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 23-11-2019 10:00:00 · 0 Comments

In 2018, Portugal allocated 0.17% of its Gross National Income to public development aid, figures that continue to distance the country from the commitment of 0.7% assumed for 2030

The document pointed out what it considers to be a growing trend in multilateral public aid, particularly with the involvement of the European Union, with disinvestment in bilateral aid.

The report "Portuguese and European Official Development Assistance: a commitment for the future?", by the Portuguese Platform of Non-Governmental Organisations for Development (NGDO), analysed Portuguese and European cooperation policies and assesses the evolution of Official Development Assistance (ODA).

According to the report, which is based on preliminary data from the Development Assistance Committee of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), in 2018, total Portuguese official development assistance represented 0.17% of GNI, which shows a decrease compared to 0.18% in 2017.

"Portugal is thus further away from the responsibilities established in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to allocate 0.7% of Gross National Income (GNI) to ODA," the document said.

In 2017, ODA represented around €337.8 million, while in 2018, approximately €315.6 million were channelled, placing the country in 21st place among 29 countries in the percentage of GNI for development aid, the report added.

The report embraced a gradual drop in aid levels in recent years linked to Portuguese economic interests but stressed that Portugal remains one of the countries with the highest levels of this type of aid.

In 2017, Portugal recorded 69% of untied public aid flows, rising to 75% in 2018.

Even so, when comparing the degree of decoupling of Portuguese aid with other countries, Portugal is the 7th country whose development aid is most linked to the purchase of Portuguese goods and services.

It highlighted the growing investment in public aid through multilateral organisations, such as European institutions, United Nations agencies or development banks, which, in 2018, accounted for 68% of total Portuguese ODA compared to 32% in bilateral aid.

In 2018, Portugal channelled almost €217 million to multilateral organisations, compared to around €104 million recorded as bilateral aid.

Even so, these figures represent a decrease compared to 2017, the year in which, according to the report, there was the largest contribution ever of Portuguese cooperation to multilateral ODA, around €236 million.

The lion’s share of this funding went to the European Commission, €172.5 million, or 79.6% of all multilateral ODA.

This was followed by the Development Banks, the African Development Fund (€10.4 million) and the Asian Development Bank (with €9.8 million), as well as the World Bank Group, which was one of the main recipients of Portuguese multilateral ODA last year.

The three main countries receiving Portuguese bilateral aid continue to be Mozambique (€40 million in 2017 and €25 million in 2018), Cabo Verde (€24 million in 2017 and €16 million in 2018) and East Timor (€13.7 million in 2017 and around €13.5 million in 2018).

In 2018, Angola appears with negative values, referring to the repayment of almost €20 million of loans granted by Portugal.

The type of projects concentrates 71% of bilateral aid, representing €73.5 million last year.

This is followed by student costs, estimated at around €14.2 million (14%), and contributions to specific programmes and funds managed by budgeted partners of €11.6 million (11%).

Support to the general budgets or sectors of the countries did not go beyond €500,000 and €250,000 respectively.

Preliminary data indicated that 75% of the aid was made available through the Portuguese Government, followed by the European Union institutions (8%) and national NGOs (7%).

United Nations agencies were the fourth most-used channel for Portuguese cooperation, followed by NGOs from beneficiary countries and other multilateral institutions.

Education continues to be the most financed sector, representing around 47% of bilateral ODA, followed by credit lines made available to partner countries, which represent around 10% of total bilateral ODA.


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