NORWAY - APPROACH AND FUNDING FLOWS
Norwegian development policy is strongly aligned with the country’s foreign policy and national interest in international stability and in “safeguarding global public goods”. The human-rights-approach and the focus on poverty reduction lost some importance in Norwegian cooperation in the last years, while the orientation to growth became more important. Bilateral cooperation is increasingly focused on areas where Norway sees a demand for expertise from its partner countries.
According to the government’s latest White Paper on Development Policy, these areas are (1) climate, environment and sustainable development, (2) peace building, human rights and humanitarian assistance, (3) clean energy and the sustainable management of oil, (4) women and gender equality and (5) good governance and the fight against corruption. Within these bilateral priority sectors, Norway places a special emphasis on climate change and deforestation. In other sectors, such as health, Norway aims at channeling a higher share of funds through multilateral institutions, as core and earmarked contributions for sectors or countries of special importance. The Norwegian government considers multilateral organizations as the best platforms to advocate policy issues of its interest, such as gender equality, the regulation of illicit financial flows and debt relief. With the increase in ODA over the last few years, new areas of engagement have been added (e.g. forest preservation). In its latest peer review, the Development Assistance Committee of the OECD (OECD DAC) has warned that this has led to a lack of a clear focus and management challenges within the administration.
According to preliminary OECD DAC figures, Norway was the 6th largest European government donor in 2012, spending US$4.8 billion (NOK 27.6 billion) on net ODA (in current prices). This is a real-term increase of 0.4% compared to 2011. In relative terms, Norway ranked third (after Luxembourg and Sweden) among all DAC countries in 2012, reaching an ODA share of 0.93% of GNI, a slight decline from 0.96% in 2011. Costs for administration, refugees in Norway, development awareness and debt relief together accounted for 12.1% of net ODA disbursements in 2011. The share of refugee costs decreased from a peak of 9.9% of total net ODA in 2009 to 5.3% in 2011, but still remains above the European DAC country average (4.2%). Norwegian ODA does not include any imputed tuition costs for foreign students studying in Norway.
Norway is a frontrunner in the development and implementation of innovative financing instruments. It allocates parts of its CO2 emissions tax revenues to UNITAID, of which it was a founding member. Norway also invests in the International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm) and the Advance Market Commitment (AMC) for new vaccines. Besides, the government submitted an innovative financing proposal to raise funds for climate-related activities in developing countries by auctioning emission allowances between states and allocating the revenues to a fund for climate change-related investments in developing countries. Finally, results-based financing has been on the Norwegian development agenda for several years. Programs have been implemented e.g. through the Health Results Innovation Trust Fund managed by the World Bank and in forestry projects in Guyana and Brazil (through Brazil’s Amazon Fund, see section on agriculture).
More information on: Bilateral and multilateral funding
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