Issue Deep Dive


Last updated: January 9, 2023

ODA Spending 

ODA In Context 

Japan was the third-largest DAC donor to agriculture in 2020.    

Funding for agriculture and rural development represented 6% of Japan’s total ODA in 2020, in line with the DAC average of 6%. 

Japanese agricultural ODA decreased by 4% in 2020, compared to 2019 levels.

In line with its overall ODA, Japan channeled most of its ODA for agriculture projects bilaterally, including a small share as earmarked funding through multilaterals. 

ODA Breakdown 

Bilateral Spending 

Japan’s bilateral agricultural ODA amounted to US$892 million in 2020, an increase of 4% from 2019 levels. Agricultural financial services received the largest share of bilateral funding (24% in 2020), followed by agricultural water resources (22%), agricultural development (8%), fishery development (7%), and rural development (7%).

Multilateral Spending and Commitments 

Multilateral ODA to agriculture stood at US$306 million in 2020, representing 26% of total agricultural ODA. The main recipient was the World Bank’s IDA; assessed contributions to IDA made up 43% of Japan’s multilateral ODA to agriculture (US$130 million, or 11% of total agriculture ODA). Other recipients included the GCF, ADB, and FAO. Japan joined the GAFSP in 2012 and pledged US$30 million to GAFSP’s private sector window. By the end of 2016, Japan had disbursed the full amount. No further pledges or disbursements have been made to GAFSP since that time.

The table below summarizes Japan’s more recent commitments to multilaterals working on agricultural development. Some of these commitments are considered core funding to multilaterals while others will be earmarked (bilateral) funding from Japan. 

Funding and Policy Outlook 

Agriculture is a key focus for achieving “quality growth:” Japan mentions agriculture, forestry, and fisheries as part of its assistance towards “quality growth” in its development cooperation framework, the ‘Development Cooperation Charter.’ Most of the country’s bilateral ODA for agriculture and rural development is channeled through JICA. JICA focuses particularly on promoting sustainable agriculture production, stable food supply, and dynamic rural communities. Japan has historically supported small-scale farming and is likely to continue to do so.

Emphasis on improving agricultural outcomes in Africa: Japan emphasizes agriculture in Africa and has included agriculture as a recurring theme of its TICAD. One notable output of TICAD was the ‘:abbrCoalition for African Rice Development’ initiative, which was launched by JICA, the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, and the New Partnership for African Development following TICAD IV in 2008. Organized as a consultative group of bilateral and multilateral donors as well as African and international institutions, CARD works to double rice production in Africa. JICA implements numerous bilateral projects on the development of rice production capabilities with CARD participant countries. This focus is set to continue as CARD enters its second phase of programming (2019-2030).

Key bodies 

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Qi Liu

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