At a glance
Strategic priorities
  • The UK’s development strategy, ‘UK aid: tackling global challenges in the national interest’, outlines four priorities: 1) strengthening global security; 2) resilience and response to crisis; 3) promoting global prosperity; and 4) tackling extreme poverty.
  • The strategy explicitly links “promoting global prosperity” with strengthening UK trade and investment opportunities and promoting global security with strengthening UK security, committing DFID to allocating at least half its budget to fragile states and regions.
  • The UK government committed in June 2019 to ensuring that all of its development assistance is spent in ways that align with the Paris Climate Agreement, as part of a wider government commitment to ensure that the UK delivers net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

For further details on methodology, see our Donor Tracker Codebook.

  • In 2020, the UK Treasury will conduct a multi-year Comprehensive Spending Review, which will set medium-term spending limits of all government departments for three to five years, starting in 2021. The Spending Review offers an opportunity to shape policy objectives that DFID and other UK ODA-spending departments will commit to delivering with their budgetary allocations. 
  • Given the UK’s emphasis on greater cross-government allocation of ODA, there may be increasing avenues to shape UK development efforts through engagement with actors outside of DFID, such as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
  • The UK is scheduled to leave the European Union (EU) on October 31, 2019. At present there is a high degree of uncertainty over the exact terms on which the UK will depart the EU.