Donor Profiles


In 2012, 69% (US$3.6 billion or SEK 24.7 billion) of Swedish ODA was channeled bilaterally, compared to 65% in 2011 - the highest proportion of bilateral spending in the past five years, despite the government's strategy to gradually scale up multilateral spending. All ODA was channeled as grants. Unlike in recent years, no ODA was channeled through equity investment in 2012. The main sectors of Sweden's bilateral spending in 2012 were government and civil society (20.1%), costs for refugees in Sweden (15.7%; see figure below) and humanitarian aid (12.0%). In 2012, 74.4% of all bilateral spending was handled by Sida; the rest was primarily administered by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs (22.7%). Sweden channeled much of its bilateral ODA in 2012 through NGOs (28.4%; OECD DAC average: 16.8%) and multilateral organizations (29.0%; OECD DAC average: 19.0%).

In line with Sweden's strategic focus on Africa, the region receiving the largest share of Swedish bilateral ODA in 2012 was Sub-Saharan Africa (29.6%). 15.2% of bilateral funding was allocated to Asia, with the highest contributions allocated to Tanzania, Afghanistan and Mozambique (see figure below). However, 41% of Swedish bilateral ODA in 2012 was unspecified by region, in part due to the growing share of refugee costs, and funds channeled through multilateral organizations and NGOs.

Spending for bilateral cooperation is primarily managed by Sida. Based on the Swedish global development policy, Sida has identified five focus areas for its bilateral development cooperation: 1) democracy, equality and human rights, 2) economic development, 3) knowledge, health and social development, 4) sustainable development, 5) human security.

In 2012, Sweden’s multilateral ODA amounted to US$1.6 billion (SEK 10.8 billion), accounting for 31% of all funds disbursed. Key recipients in 2012 included the UN (35%), the EU Institutions (22%), the World Bank (16%) and regional development banks (9%).

Swedish multilateral cooperation is managed by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, although some funds are also channeled through multilateral mechanisms under Sida’s global programs. The government’s Multilateral Strategy (2007) emphasized the importance of scaling up Swedish funds channeled through multilateral organizations, and contributions increased by 24.4% between 2007 and 2011 (bilateral ODA increased by 10.9% in the same period). A 2010 evaluation by the former Swedish Agency for Development Evaluation (Sadev) found that the Multilateral Strategy was not implemented and recommended to assess funding for multilateral organizations and to develop a strategy to overcome limited representation of Swedish staff in multilateral organizations. An in-depth evaluation of the Strategy will be carried out in 2014.

Back to: Approach and funding flows