Today, the Danish government has presented the draft Finance Act for 2016. In the draft Finance Act, the government plans to focus Danish development cooperation on 14 priority countries.
“In the future, we want to prioritise countries and regions from where people leave in search of a better future in Europe. We want to focus on combating the root causes of migration, and especially contribute to efforts in areas affected by conflict and displacement in the Middle East and Africa. This will also entail maintaining the historically high Danish contribution dedicated to humanitarian efforts and the world’s refugees. In fact we will increase our humanitarian contribution with DKK 50 million in 2016”, says Minister of Foreign Affairs Kristian Jensen.
Denmark’s 14 priority countries will be: Kenya, South Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda, Mali, Niger, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Afghanistan, Palestine, Burma and Bangladesh. The reprioritization of Danish development cooperation will entail that the large majority of priority countries, 10 out of 14, in the future will be located in Africa.
“We are increasing our focus on Africa, and thereby on the poorest countries in the world. This is where the needs are biggest, and where we can make the greatest difference with public development investments. Key focal areas are to prevent migration and alleviate the consequences of wars and conflicts. We want to invest in peace and security and improve the possibilities for sustainable growth and trade”, says Kristian Jensen.
According to the minister, Denmark’s efforts should make a difference for the world’s poor, make the best possible use of Danish competencies and promote Danish interests.
In 2016, DKK 14.8 billion has been allocated to development cooperation. Thereby, Denmark remains one of only five countries worldwide to meet UN’s target of spending 0.7% of the Gross National Income on the world’s poorest. In light of the extraordinary refugee situation, and to ensure, as previously stated, a gradual adjustment to a level of 0.7%, the government will attribute 0.73% of the GNI to development cooperation in 2015.
With the government’s draft Finance Act, Danish development cooperation with Latin America – Bolivia and Central America – will be phased out. In Asia, Vietnam will be phased out as planned. Moreover the classic development cooperation with Indonesia, Pakistan and Nepal will be gradually phased out. Finally, Denmark will pull out of two African countries, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
Besides reducing the number of priority countries, the contributions to Danish civil society organizations will be reduced, and less money will be attributed to research, information efforts, culture and exchange with development countries. The government will also prioritise multilateral development assistance through the UN, EU and the World Bank. The Danish assistance will be maintained for some organizations working with particular Danish key issues, while it will be reduced and phased out for other organizations. In 2016, Denmark’s core contributions to multilateral organizations add up to app. DKK 3.3 billion.
The humanitarian aid will not be reduced, and will amount to DKK 1.825 billion in 2016. In 2015 it is DKK 1.775 billion.
The government’s priorities for the Danish development assistance
For further information please contact: Poul Kjar, press advisor, phone: 41865975Dorte Mikkelsen, press advisor, phone: 50778698