Norway is the 8th-largest donor country, spending US$4.3 billion on net official development assistance (ODA) in 2015 (in current prices). This corresponds to 1.05% of its gross national income (GNI), making Norway the 2nd-largest donor in proportion to its economic size. Norway has exceeded the 0.7% target since 1976, and has spent at least 1% of its GNI on ODA since 2013. There is a cross-party consensus to maintain this share.
Prime Minister Erna Solberg has defined education, and particularly girls’ education, as a top thematic priority. According to the 2017 budget, ODA spending on education is projected to increase to NOK3.4 billion (US$540 million) in 2017, double the amount spent in 2013 (NOK1.7 billion or US$270 million).
The approved 2017 budget highlights education, humanitarian assistance, private sector development and job creation, global health, and climate, environment, and sustainable energy as priorities of Norway’s development policy in 2017.
Parliamentary elections will take place on September 11, 2017. While ODA is likely to remain at high levels, the outcome of the elections may lead to shifts in priority setting, and may provide opportunities to shape the future direction of Norway’s development policy.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is currently drafting a new ‘white paper’ to lay out the priorities of Norwegian ODA policy. Is it expected to be published in March or April 2017. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a ‘North Star’ for the government’s narrative on development, and will be at the heart of the new policy document. To engage effectively with the Norwegian government and other stakeholders, it is thus important to frame new initiatives and suggestions within the SDG context and emphasize the links between the individual goals.
How much ODA does Norway provide?
What are Norway’s strategic priorities for development?
Who are the main actors in Norwegian development cooperation?
How is the Norwegian ODA budget structured?
What are important decision-making opportunities in Norway’s annual budget process?
How is Norway’s ODA spent?
Germany, Norway, Nigeria, and the UN jointly organized an international donors conference in Oslo on February 23, with the view to raise US$1.5 billion for humanitarian aid and emergency response in the Lake Chad region. A spokesman for the German Foreign Ministry said the aim of the conference was to draw up a package of measures for the region involving "a broad alliance of backers for the humanitarian effort." The Ministry further emphasized that the underlying causes of the misery and distress, including climate change and poverty, need to be tackled.
Norway has announced NOK85 million (US$11 million) in increases in ODA for family planning and safe abortions for 2017. These increases are to help ensure that organizations working for safe abortion and reproductive health can continue their work internationally in the wake of the reinstated US policy that cuts US global health assistance to organizations promoting abortion globally. The Norwegian Government has outlined several channels for this funding: NGOs, after a selection process certifying they are “effective and show good results”; the Dutch-led initiative ‘She Decides’; and the UN Population Fund (UNFPA). The exact origin of the funds is yet unclear.
Norway has also initiated dialogue with other Nordic countries to strengthen joint-efforts to counter funding cuts induced by the American policy.
The 58th Annual Meeting of the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and the 32nd Annual Meeting of the Inter-American Investment Corporation takes place in Ascunción, Paraguay. This official gathering is a forum for discussion among the institutions' Governors, many of whom are finance ministers of the regional and non-regional member countries, central bank presidents, and advisors. Representatives from multilateral financial institutions, development agencies, and commercial and investment banks are also invited to attend.
Location: Asunción, Paraguay
The EU, Germany, Norway, UK, and other donor countries will host a major international conference on Syria on April 5, 2017 in Brussels. The title of the conference is “Syria and the region: supporting the future of Syria and the region”, and the conference aims to strengthen the UN, to establish regional and international frameworks to support the humanitarian work, and to support the future of Syria and its neighboring countries.
Location: Brussels, Belgium