NOK500 million allocated to the World Food Programme in first four months of 2018

In the first four months of 2018, Norway allocated NOK500 million (USD 59.5 million) to the World Food Programme. Norway and the World Food Programme are working closely together to eliminate hunger by 2030, and the Foreign Minister of Norway, Ine Eriksen Søreide, welcomed the head of the World Food Programme, David Beasley, to Oslo April 12-13, 2018. 

Press release - Norwegian government

Norway Nutrition

Breakdown of Norway's NOK34.1 billion ODA in 2017

Norway's Official Development Assistant (ODA) budget for 2017 was NOK34.1 billion, which  corresponds to 0.99 per cent of GNI. In dollars terms, according to the OECD, this was US$4.1 billion, a 10% decrease from 2016 attributable to lower costs of hosting refugees within Norway. NOK5.12 billion (US$602 million) went to global health and 54% of Norwegian ODA was channeled through multilateral organizations, an increase from 43% in 2016. 

Press release - Norad (in Norwegian)

Detailed summary - OECD

Norway Global health

Norway allocates NOK170 million to Yemen

Nikolai Astrup, Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, participated in the donor conference for Yemen in Geneva on April 3, 2018, when Norway announced NOK170 million (US$20 million) in additional assistance to Yemen. This comes in addition to the NOK40 million (US$7.76 million) allocated through the UN's Central Emergency Respond Fund. Norway also supports Yemen through non-earmarked funding through the World Bank and other humanitarian organizations. 

Press release - Norwegian MFA (in Norwegian)


Norwegian civil society argues country's ODA must focus more on agriculture, nutrition, and food security

Norway must increase their focus on agriculture and channel more funding to food security and nutrition, according to Kari Helene Partapuoli from the Development Fund and Dan Banik from the Centre for Development and Environment. They argue that malnutrition affects one in three people worldwide. 815 million people are experiencing hunger, and more than two billion people lack crucial micronutrients, affecting health and life expectancy. In Africa and Asia, malnutrition results in an 11% loss of GDP each year. They say developing agriculture and ensuring food security in developing countries is the key to reaching the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), because those for food, health, and education are interdependent.

Op-ed - Vårt Land (in Norwegian)

Norway Agriculture Nutrition

Norwegian ministers participate in CSW at UN headquarters

Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ine Eriksen Søreide, and Minister of Children and Equality, Linda Hofstad Helleland, participated in the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) at the UN. Eriksen highlighted her worries about women’s rights and how development seems to be going in the wrong direction. Cultural and religious customs must never dictate women’s rights or be an excuse for limiting women’s rights or gender equality, Helleland highlighted, during her opening speech.

They continued to express their concern that political differences and cultural and religious custom makes the process of manifesting an agreed conclusion challenging.

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)


Rights and Resources Initiative warns against investments to preserve DRC forest programs

The Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), a global coalition of partner organizations and networks working for the rights of forest peoples, warns Norway and the World Bank against channeling funds to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the preservation programs of its rain forests. The RRI published a report arguing these programs are not benefiting local populations.

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)

Norway Agriculture

Director of Norfund, Kjell Roland, resigns after 12 years

Kjell Roland, the director of Norfund, the Norwegian investment fund for developing countries, has resigned. During his time at the fund, he increased Norfund’s investment from NOK3.7 billion (US$440 million) to NOK21 billion (US$2.5 billion) in 2017 and ensured a bipartisan agreement for the support of Norfund’s mission: to create jobs and economic development in developing countries. Roland stated that in recent years partnerships with private-sector companies have become more difficult, leading to fewer private- sector investments from Norway into developing markets, particularly in clean energy. 

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)


Norwegian report argues project evaluations have little influence on future allocations of ODA

A Norwegian report from the Christian Michelsens Institute (CMI) argues that ex-post evaluations of development projects have little effect on how future ODA allocations are made. In response, the Minister of International Development, Nikolai Astrup, is launching an electronic portal on which the results from ODA allocations are available to the public to make Norwegian development policy more transparent. Astrup also claims that the MFA will, going forward, utilize the lessons from the evaluation reports when allocating ODA funding.

Press release - The Norwegian Government website (in Norwegian)


Norwegian organizations demand full stop of payments from the Central African Forest Initiative to DRC

The Norwegian branches of Greenpeace, Global Witness, and the Rainforest Foundation have called on the Norwegian government to suspend payments  to the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI), which they claim is contributing to deforestation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The organizations say the Minister of Environment in the DRC granted Chinese companies illegal logging permits, contributing to large-scale deforestation. Norway is the largest donor to CAFI, which in turn provides funding to Central African high-forest cover countries to preserve the forests in the region, to mitigate climate change, and to reduce poverty. 

Greenpeace, Global Witness, and the Rainforest Foundation claim that 75 million hectares of forest is in danger and that CAFI as an actor will contribute to deforestation in the DRC. Norwegian State secretary, Atle Hamar, in response confirmed that further payments to CAFI have been put on hold, until permits are withdrawn.

News article - Bistandsaktuelt (in Norwegian)


Save the Children pushes for Norwegian divestment from companies aggressively pushing infant formula in developing world

The Norwegian Secretary-General of Save the Children, Tove Wang, has pushed for the Norwegian Government Petroleum Fund’s withdrawal from investments in companies aggressively pushing infant formula in developing countries.

Wang refers to reports published by Save the Children, which show that all the large producers of infant formula are in breach of the World Health Organization’s marketing guidelines from 1981. The Norwegian Government Petroleum Fund has invested heavily in five of the six largest producers of infant formula. This is in stark contrast to one of the three focus areas of the fund, children’s rights.

Op-ed - Dagbladet (in Norwegian)

Norway Global health