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EU confirms position as the world's largest aid donor with €53 billion of development aid in 2011

With €53 billion of development aid in 2011, the European Union and its 27 Member States remains the world biggest donor, providing more than half of global official aid, preliminary figures on official development aid published by the OECD reveal today.
 
At a time of heavy budgetary constraints, 16 Member States managed to increase their aid – three of them are ranked among the five largest donors worldwide and four of them have already reached the target of spending 0.7% of their Gross National Income (GNI) on aid. EU official development aid reached 0.42% of EU GNI, which exceeds the efforts of other major donors. However, efforts are still needed to reach the agreed target of 0.7% EU GNI by 2015.
 
European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs commented: "Despite the crisis, Europe reaffirms its solidarity with the poorest across the world. EU aid has pulled millions of people out of poverty and saved countless lives over the last ten years. Development aid is both solidarity and an investment to make the world safer and more prosperous."
 
After growing for three consecutive years despite the financial and economic crisis, EU official aid declined by about €500 million compared to 2010, a drop from 0.44% of GNI in 2010 to 0.42% in 2011. This has been based on mixed results in Member States.
 
Four EU Member States (Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) continue to exceed the 0.7% target, with Denmark, Luxembourg and Sweden aiming to reach 1% of GNI. Other Member States are moving towards achieving the 0.7% target, such as the UK, or keeping aid levels above the 2010 target of 0.51% of GNI (Belgium, Finland, Ireland). Germany and Italy have made considerable increases to their aid budgets in 2011.
 
In 2005, EU Member States pledged to increase Official Development Assistance (ODA) to 0.7% of Gross National Income (GNI) by 2015. No other donors have made such a significant commitment to increasing aid.
 
The data presented today comes from two sources: For a majority of EU Member States, the information is provided by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which collects aid data of the members of its Development Assistance Committee (DAC) as well as of other countries that report figures to it. For the remaining EU Member States, the Commission has gathered the information for its 2012 EU Accountability Report on Financing for Development, which will be presented in June 2012. (ENPI Info Centre)
 
Read more
 
Press release
 
MEMO – Publication of preliminary data on Official Development Assistance, 2011
 
Commissioner Piebalgs website
 
EuropeAid Development and Cooperation DG website
 

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