Total aid in 2011: €10,453m
About Germany's aid commitments:
Changes in 2011
At the beginning of 2011 the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (German Organization for International Cooperation, GIZ) was formed through the merger of the three former implementing organizations (GTZ, DED, InWEnt). At the beginning of 2012 a new implementing agency responsible for development education and cooperation with civil society organizations, the so-called “Engagement Global – Services for development initiatives” was founded. At the same time, a new institute for development evaluation was set up. Besides the restructuring of the governmental implementing organizations, the German Ministry of Development Cooperation and Development (BMZ) came up with more than 12 new strategy papers on development. In particular was a new political strategy paper on development cooperation called “Minds for Change – Enhancing Opportunities”. This paper was drafted by a small group of political officials working with the Minister and was released for public comments. . However, the possibility for the public to openly comment on the paper was cancelled only a few weeks after the paper’s release. Some of the strategy papers may have an influence on the future of development policy. However, the results of this consultation were never made public, and the paper appears to have been more of a sound bite than a real strategy document.
In 2011 German ODA increased by 5.9 % to € 10.452 billion compared to 2010. Though Germany is now the largest EU donor in absolute numbers, German ODA-reaches only 0.4 % of GNI. Based on the 2015 predictions, the German government will not reach the 0.7% target by 2015. This is especially regrettable as in 2011 a group of German parliamentarians coming from all parties launched a “Call for a development consensus to achieve the 0.7% – target”. More than half of all German parliamentarians signed the call – though with a minimal impact.
Germany has a complex and decentralized aid governance structure. The most important shareholder is the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The BMZ is responsible for around 60 percent of Germany’s ODA. Another large part is the German contribution EU budget. Besides that, there are several other actors that have ODA relevant expenditures, notably the Foreign Ministry, the Federal States or the Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. The Ministries rarely implement the programs as the main part of the aid is managed through three implementing agencies: the KfW development bank, the German Organization for International Cooperation (GIZ) and Engagement Global (see also above).
Countries and sectors
China, India and Afghanistan have been high on the German aid agenda for years. The German government ceased bilateral development cooperation with China in 2010. The top recipient countries in 2011 were Afghanistan, Vietnam, Peru, Brazil and Serbia. General sectoral priorities of German development policies show that Democracy and public administration, energy and environmental issues are among the top priorities while education and food security still lack sufficient financial resources.
Challenges in 2012 and beyond
To reach the 0.7% target Germany will have to add an extra €2billion to the existing resources per annum. Current developments suggest that the Ministry responsible is trying to increase this number by whatever ploys possible, without means coming from the general budget. Germany is trying to push forward the debate on development related finance and the increased use of loans at market conditions.
Raise German ODA as a percentage of GNI in line with EU and national aid targets, starting with a significant budgetary increase of the Ministry for economic cooperation and development (BMZ) in 2012, followed by a corresponding adaption of the med-term financial planning to 2015;
Include strong and meaningful CSO participation in all areas concerning civil society, especially with regard to Engagement Global and the Ministry´s general strategy of working with civil society; Agree to deliver climate finance on top of the 0.7 % target;
Implement, in addition to existing commitments, innovative financing instruments – such as a financial transaction tax (FTT). At least a significant part of the revenues from such a tax should be used towards climate and development financing;
Implement the national “Gender Action Plan” for development cooperation to its full extent and provide sufficient financial resources for activities related to gender equality;
Increase transparency, especially on the aid budget cycle, aid flows and evaluation of aid projects and programmes and implement the agreed standards of the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) to its full extent.