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Norway to strengthen development cooperation with 16 countries

To more effectively use Norway's development assistance, Norway’s Development Minister, Nikolai Astrup, has announced a re-grouping of Norway's development partner countries into two categories:

  1. Long-term development partnerships, which encompass support on economic growth, job creation, and tax system advisory. This group includes Colombia, Ethiopia, Ghana, Indonesia, Malawi, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Tanzania, and Uganda.
  2. Stabilization partnerships, which comprise of conflict resolution assistance. This group includes Afghanistan, Mali, Niger, Palestine, Somalia and South Sudan.

According to Astrup, this grouping will better support knowledge sharing and resource management in partner countries, as well as progress towards the sustainable development goals (SDGs).

Press release - Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

Policy document - Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in Norwegian)

France and Canada sign joint action plan for international development

French President Emmanuel Macron and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have signed a joint action plan for cooperation in international development activities. The action plan determines that both countries will develop joint projects and instate an annual dialogue between both Ministries of Foreign Affairs, as well as the French Development Agency (AFD). They will also pursue common positions within multilateral organizations and meetings, such as the United Nations, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Francophonie, the G7, and the G20.

The plan prioritizes the following issues: climate change, education (with a focus on girls' education and in crisis contexts), innovation (in projects and financing mechanisms), and gender equality, including women's economic empowerment, peace and security, nutrition, and sexual and reproductive health and rights, noting that France will host the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria replenishment conference in 2019. 

Action plan - Ministry of Foreign Affairs (in French)

Norwegian Development Agency to provide NOK1.8 billion in support to civil society organizations

The Norwegian Development Agency (Norad) will provide large-scale support to seven Norwegian civil organizations with NOK1.8 billion (US$222 million) over the next five years. Norad is responsible for around 40% of Norway’s civil society assistance and is soon launching its new set of benchmark principles for development initiatives and partners. These principles are sustainability, inclusion, partnerships, legitimacy, accountability, cost effectiveness, and context sensitivity.

This time, recipients of Norad’s support include Caritas, the Rainforest Fund, the Students and Academics’ International Aid Fund, Digni, the LHL International Tuberculosis Foundation, Hello World, and Capacare. 

News article - Bistands Aktuelt (in Norwegian)

Action Against Hunger analyzes ODA in Sahel region

French NGO Action Against Hunger published the policy paper entitled 'The Sahel - for a new approach to development', which analyzes French official development assistance (ODA) in the region. The paper notes that no Sahelian states are among the top 10 recipients of French ODA, despite a critical need. It highlights opportunities for increased donor cooperation in the region and improved monitoring and evaluation frameworks. 

Policy paper - Action Against Hunger (in French)

The Netherlands launches SDG Facility for public-private partnerships

Sigrid Kaag, the Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development, has launched the Sustainable Development Goals Partnership Facility (SDGP). The facility will fund projects by public authorities, businesses, NGOs, and knowledge institutions aimed at sustainable food production and private-sector development.

The total budget of the facility is €70 million, half of which will be made available at the end of this year and the other half in 2019. The SDGP is the successor of the Sustainable Enterprise and Food Security Facility (FDOV), which supported more than 50 projects in various developing countries, including Ethiopia and Kenya. The SDGP requires 50% co-financing. The maximum funding provided by the Ministry is €3 million per project.

Press release - government of the Netherlands

Netherlands Nutrition

Dutch NGOs concerned about strength of business interests in new Dutch development cooperation policy

Partos, the Dutch umbrella organization for non-governmental organizations (NGOs), has published a reaction to the country's new development policy, released by Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Sigrid Kaag.

While generally positive, Partos raises concerns that the interests of the Dutch business community seem to trump the interests of civil society. While the policy document recognizes the shrinking space of civil society organizations (CSOs), it fails to articulate in detail the importance of CSOs to development in the coming years. Partos is also critical that the goal of achieving 0.7% official development assistance (ODA) to gross national income (GNI) target is relegated to 2030, the year by which all sustainable development goals (SDGs) must be achieved. 

News article - Partos (in Dutch)

Policy document - Government of the Netherlands (in Dutch) 

The Netherlands releases new development policy

The Netherlands has released its new development policy, titled ‘Investing in Perspective: Good for the World, Good for The Netherlands’. The policy was spearheaded by Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Sigrid Kaag, and approved by the Cabinet and the Parliament. 

The policy stresses that development cooperation, as an integral part of foreign policy, is aimed at combating root causes of poverty, migration, terrorism and climate change. According to the strategy, sectors to receive additional funding include education, climate change, and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), with new contributions to the Global Financing Facility (GFF). 

With the new policy, the government is working on four closely linked main objectives: 1) preventing conflict and instability, 2) reducing poverty and social inequality, 3) promoting sustainable inclusive growth and climate action worldwide, and 4) strengthening the international earning capacity of the Netherlands.

Policy document - Government of the Netherlands (in Dutch) 

France announces €10 million in support for WFP

France renewed its support for the World Food Programme (WFP), announcing a contribution of nearly €10 million (US$9 million), in line with the conclusions taken by the Interministerial Committee for International Cooperation and Development (CICID). The contribution reflects a desire by the French government to increase efforts to support food security and nutrition, particularly in the Sahel region.

45% of the funding will go to Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, and Senegal. These countries have been particularly affected by food insecurity and malnutrition, and this has been aggravated by conflict and climate shocks. In addition, a significant portion of funding will be allocated to refugees and displaced people escaping the Syrian conflict in Iraq, Jordan, and Lebanon.

Press release - WFP (in French)

France Nutrition

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 (US$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 (in Norwegian)

Norway Nutrition

AdFarm and Foodgrains Bank urge Canadian farmers to get involved with fight against global hunger

Canadian Foodgrains Bank and AdFarm have joined forces to encourage Canadian farmers and agribusinesses to take part in the movement to end global hunger via the Farmers Helping Farmers campaign.  The effort aims to help end world hunger by empowering Canadian farmers and the agriculture sector to respond to food emergencies caused by crises such as drought, hurricanes, and conflict, as well as longer-term hunger.

Press release - Canadian Foodgrains Bank

Canada Agriculture Nutrition