Official development aid


Official development assistance is the financial funds that developing countries receive in order to boost their growth and economic well-being. These funds come from international organizations, which they in turn receive from developed countries.

Developed countries generated a financial commitment in a binding wish, in which they agree that a percentage of their gross national product (GNP) be used for official development assistance.

This initiative originated in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), with the intention of promoting the quality of life of countries with less growth and less economic development.

Types of official development aid

Official development assistance funds can be delivered to beneficiary countries under the following conditions:

  • Loan, granted in privileged financial situations. (from the World Bank, International Fund for Agricultural Development, or the International Monetary Fund.)
  • Financial donations.
  • Technical donations, that is, they share knowledge.
  • Usually to the member countries of the Development Assistance Committee.

Main characteristics of official development aid

In order that the beneficiary countries of these funds continue to receive the aid, it is conditional, that is, a commitment is sought on their part to improve their economic and social situation, for example, to make sure to reduce their public deficit, improve management of the environment, care for the most disadvantaged population, increase democratization schemes, etc.

The criteria for determining which nation is eligible to receive official development assistance are the real income per inhabitant, that is, giving priority to the countries with lower levels of GDP per capita.

Official development aid is primarily intended for the countries that receive it to progress over time. The programs considered as priorities are the subject of international agreements.

  • There are needs that are sought to be addressed as a priority, such as:
  • Reduction of infant mortality (children under 5 years of age).
  • Water and basic sanitary facilities for the entire population.
  • Primary education for the entire population.
  • Sustainable development, among others.

Examples of official development assistance

  • Multilateral aid: These are contributions from different countries, whether mandatory or voluntary, and the exact amount that each country will contribute is generally unknown.
  • Bilateral aid: Which is direct, that is, the donor country provides aid to the country it wishes to benefit or through cooperation institutions. Or the one that is not direct because it is channeled through funds or programs with sectoral or geographic allocation, also known as multibilateral.
  • Delegated cooperation: In this type, resources are assigned to a third agency, whose function is to manage the application of the aid.
  • Triangular cooperation: This is given in order to generate greater efficiency in the allocation of resources, so there are two agencies that intervene in the allocation process.
  • South-South Cooperation: In which two developing countries come together, in order to share and exchange technology, knowledge and even resources.

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