This profile has been updated in March 2018.
Strategic priorities
  • According to the latest CICID conclusions, France has five key priority areas: 1) international stability, 2) climate change, 3) education, 4) gender equality, and 5) global health. Specifically, French President Macron has made global education and the fight against climate change key priorities of his government. In overall foreign policy, internal security and terrorism-related threats are strategic priorities, with a strong focus on the Sahel region of Africa, where development projects accompany France’s military and political interventions.
  • Geographically, France takes a differentiated approach to allocating its ODA. It provides grants mainly to 19 countries, almost all in sub-Saharan Africa, while relying on ODA loans in emerging economies, with a particular focus on the Sahel region.
Key opportunities
  • President Macron committed to reaching ODA levels at 0.55% of GNI by 2022, up from 0.43% in 2017. If implemented, this increase will add considerable funding to France’s development budget. This may provide an opportunity to shape the allocation and access some of this additional funding, particularly for organizations working in France’s priority areas, such as climate and education. 
  • Since 2014, France has increasingly directed the proceeds generated from its financial transaction tax (FTT) to development and climate funding, from €100 million in 2014 to almost €800 million (US$885 million) in 2017 and 2018. The current French government pushes for the establishment of a EU-level FTT to finance international solidarity programs and the fight against climate change.
  • In 2019, France will hold the G7 presidency. This is a crucial moment to ensure that international development issues remain high on the agenda and to advocate for strong commitments to the sector by member-countries.

Key Questions

the big six

France supports sustainable management of forests in the Democratic Republic of Congo, including 4 million hectares in southern DRC. France  is focusing its ODA increasingly on tackling climate change.



How will France's ODA develop? — What will France’s ODA focus on? —What are key opportunities for shaping France’s development policy? read more

How will French ODA develop?

  • French President Emmanuel Macron has committed to reaching 0.55% of GNI by 2022, with gradual increases from 2020 onwards: 0.47% in 2020, 0.51% in 2021, and 0.55% in 2022. According to the CICID, two-thirds of the ODA increase will happen via the bilateral channel, with the French Development Agency (AFD) increasing its grants budget from the current €200 million (US$221 million) to €1 billion (US$1.1 billion) in 2022. The trajectory for this increase will be monitored on a yearly basis by a Steering Committee on International Solidarity and Development under the supervision of the MAE and the Ministry of Economy and Finance. The 2018 ODA budget is set at 0.44% of GNI, up from 0.43% in 2017.

What will France’s ODA focus on?

  • Tackling climate change and its impacts will remain a major focus of France’s development policy in the coming years. The French government will increase funding for development programs related to climate change, including for related areas such as agriculture and sanitation. By 2020, €1.5 billion (US$1.7 billion) will go to adaptation projects, including within agriculture. Further, €3 billion (US$3.3 billion) between 2016 and 2020 will benefit renewable-energy projects in Africa.
  • French President Macron has made education a key priority. This strong focus will likely lead to funding increases in this sector over the coming years. In February 2018, France showed international leadership on this by co-hosting the GPE Financing Conference. In its February meeting, the Committee for International Cooperation and Development (CICID) confirmed the ‘promotion of global education’ as one of France’s priority sectors.
  • Health will remain a key focus of France’s multilateral engagement, reaffirmed in its ‘Strategy for multilateral aid’ for 2017 to 2021. Major partner organizations quoted in the strategy are the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund), to which it will maintain a high level of contributions from 2017 to 2019 (€1.1 billion), UNITAID, and IFFIm.

What are key opportunities for shaping France’s development policy?

  • The French President’s commitment to global development and to reaching ODA levels of 0.55% of GNI by 2022 presents an opportunity for shaping the government’s funding allocations, as much of this additional funding has not been firmly allocated yet.
  • Global education has gained momentum as a policy area since French President Macron’s election in 2017: this provides opportunities to take part in public dialogue around allocations and funding to the area.
  • France will hold the G7 presidency in 2019. This presents an opportunity to push development issues high on the agenda, and to advocate for strong commitments from member states.