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Australia's aid program

The Australian Government’s new development policy Australian aid: promoting prosperity, reducing poverty, enhancing stability and new performance framework Making Performance Count: enhancing the accountability and effectiveness of Australian aid introduce key shifts in our aid program.

Message from the Minister


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Documents

Australia's new development policy and performance framework are available in PDF and Word formats.

The need for change

The world has changed—and our aid program must change too. Today, many developing countries are growing rapidly, with aid representing an increasingly small proportion of development finance. To be effective in this new context, our aid needs to be more innovative and catalytic, leveraging other drivers for development, such as private sector investment and domestic finance. We need to recast our aid program in light of this new development paradigm.

Changing where we work

The Australian aid program will focus on our Indo-Pacific region. We will have a sharper focus on our immediate neighbourhood—this is where we can make the most difference.

Changing what we do: re-shaping the aid program

The purpose of the aid program is to promote Australia’s national interests by contributing to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction. We will pursue this purpose by focusing on two development outcomes: supporting private sector development and strengthening human development.

A new strategic framework will guide the re-shaping of Australia’s aid program over coming years.

Figure 1: A new strategic framework for the aid program: promoting prosperity, reducing poverty, enhancing stability

For each country, the balance of investments will be tailored to country context and reflect Australia's national interest. We will invest in infrastructure, trade facilitation and international competitiveness; agriculture, fisheries and water; Effective governance - policies, institutions and functioning economies; education and health; building resilience - humanitarian assistance, disaster risk reduction and social protection; and gender equality and empowering women and girls. We maximise impact by being innovative and leveraging knowledge and finance, supporting both private sector development and human development (which relate to each other). All this will promote Australia's national interests by contributing to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction.  

More details on the priority areas:

2014/15 estimated allocation by sector


2014/15 estimated allocation by sector  






Sector 2014/15 Budget Estimate
Infrastructure, trade facilitation and international competitiveness 13 per cent
Agriculture, fisheries and water 7 per cent
Effective governance: policies, institutions and functioning economies 18 per cent
Education 23 per cent
Health 16 per cent
Building resilience: humanitarian assistance, disaster risk reduction and social protection 14 per cent
General development support 9 per cent
 

Gender equality and women and girls' empowerment will be addressed across the aid program. Aid for trade will be increased to 20 per cent of overseas development assistance (ODA) by 2020 and will include investments in economic infrastructure, agriculture, fisheries and other productive capacity.1

Changing how we deliver aid

Four tests will guide strategic choices across the aid program, translating this new strategic framework into practice. They will ensure that Australian aid:

  1. pursues our national interest and extends Australia’s influence
  2. impacts on promoting growth and reducing poverty
  3. reflects Australia’s value-add and leverage
  4. makes performance count.

There will be significant improvements in the way we deliver aid, through:

Making performance count

To reinforce efforts to re-shape the aid program, a new performance framework, Making Performance Count: enhancing the accountability and effectiveness of Australian aid, will operate at all levels of the aid program, with ten high level targets to assess the aid program against key goals. This new performance framework will ensure that funding is linked to performance at all levels of the aid program. This will ensure that taxpayers’ money spent through Australia’s aid program is achieving the greatest possible development impact.

Related links

 

1. Estimated aid for trade expenditure is based on the World Trade Organization (WTO) definition. Aid for trade largely overlaps with the investment priorities of infrastructure, trade facilitation and agriculture, fisheries and water from DFAT’s new development policy. A small proportion of Australia’s effective governance expenditure is also covered. However, these priorities are broader in scope, noting urban development, large water supply infrastructure, rural development and law and justice investments are not covered in the WTO definition.

 

Last reviewed: 18 June, 2014