kiwi aid “static” say funding partners


Aid from New Zealand remains static nearly two years after a peer review called on the government to “back up” its “ambitions” to be a “global citizen” by increasing funding. New Zealand saw no change (0.0%),” states OECD, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, in a press release today on aid levels for the years 2005 to 2006.

Australian aid increased but only because of debt relief to Iraq, in line with its closest partner, the United States.


New Zealand currently spends just on quarter of a percent of its Gross National Income.

This falls well behind averages for OECD members of .42 per cent, approaching half a percent.

NZAID funding is even further behind global targets of 0.7 per cent, about two thirds of one percent, with “no change” in 2006 putting additional pressure on government to meet the 2010 target.


Part of the problem is that New Zealand insists on sprinkling small amounts across the planet, rather than in its own backyard.

NZAID appears to have forgotten or is ignoring an OECD review from 2005 that suggests New Zealand concentrate on Pacific Islands. On 15th April 2005, OECD Development Assistance Committee chair Richard Manning laid down a clear challenge to New Zealand aid officials.

New Zealand sees itself as a good global citizen and its work in development, particularly in the Pacific region, is evidence of that.”


“But we believe that New Zealand should back up those ambitions with a clear programme of medium term increases in aid. The logic for an increase in ODA volume has become inescapable,” said OECD DAC Chair, Richard Manning.

NZAID was encouraged to reduce the number of its core bilateral partner countries, particularly in Asia where “New Zealand’s resources are spread thinly.”

DAC recommended New Zealand maintain focus on the Pacific where it has an “especially important role and impact,” said Manning, noting its input to Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands was of “particular interest,” with the Kiwi role in RAMSI mission being “successful and innovative.”


Two years later, and New Zealand is heading in the opposite direction suggested by DAC.

NZAID just last month released a draft strategy for spending in Vietnam, anticipating aid doubling to more than $10 million by 2008.

Earlier, in late February, Foreign Affairs minister Winston Peters announced the “disestablishment” of IDAC, the International Development Advisory Committee.


“Government has not adopted a medium-term expenditure framework that would enable progress,” towards 2010 funding goals, notes the 2005 report, linked to on the NZAID site.

The same site makes no mention of DAC criticisms, nor any long term plans for increasing funding.

As close as NZAID comes is by referring to DAC “Principles for the Evaluation of Development Assistance” as being used as the “foundation” for developing new NZAID “evaluation policy and guidelines.”