DATE: 06 February 2009
OECD praises Australia's overseas aid program
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in a recent review has praised the targeting and effectiveness of Australia’s overseas aid program. In 2009/10, Australia will provide an estimated AUD 104 million in overseas aid to Viet Nam.
The OECD review was presented to Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Stephen Smith, this week by the Chair of the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC), Eckhard Deutscher.
The OECD review welcomes Australian Government’s renewed commitment to reducing poverty, its promotion of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and its support for international agencies like the United Nations.
In particular, the OECD acknowledges Australia’s:
• Strategic focus on the Asia Pacific;
• Pacific Partnerships for Development as a key feature of the aid program;
• Commitment to a targeted engagement with Africa; and
• Integration of gender equity into the aid program.
Australia’s Agency for International Development, AusAID, was also commended for its efforts to promote aid effectiveness including by opening up contracting arrangements to global competition.
The establishment of the independent Office of Development Effectiveness, to report on the effectiveness of Australian aid and identify areas of improvement, was also highlighted as an important step in improving the aid program’s efficiency.
The review also welcomed Australia’s commitment to increase its support for developing countries to 0.5 per cent of Gross National Income by 2015.