German government releases 2022 draft budget; ODA remains at 0.7% GNI

On March 16, 2022, the German government adopted the second government draft for the 2022 federal budget, worth €457.6 billion (US$517.2 billion). This marks an increase of 14.6% compared to the first draft by the former government (in place before the federal elections in September of 2021), but a decrease of 20.1% compared to the federal budget in 2021.

The German government plans to invest around €23 billion (US$26 billion) in official development assistance (ODA) and maintain the 0.7% ODA/GNI commitment. Germany will be able to meet the commitment mainly through additional funding for the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A) to fight COVID-19 globally as well as spending related to the Ukraine crisis.

Despite the commitment to 0.7% ODA/GNI, the Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (BMZ’s) budget is set to stand at €10.8 billion (US$12.2 billion), which marks a €1.6 billion (US$1.8 billion, or 13%) drop from 2021 levels. However, in addition to its core budget, BMZ has €784 million (US$886 million) from the budget plan for ‘general financial management' at its disposal, to be used for ACT-A-designated expenditures. Together, BMZ’s spending in 2022 is planned to stand at €11.6 billion (US$13.1 billion).

Last week, a group of eight German NGOs called on the German government not to neglect the fight against poverty and hunger in face of an increased focus on defense, and to spend 0.7% of Germany's GNI on ODA. They welcomed that the 0.7% commitment will be met according to the budget draft, but critized the cuts in the BMZ budget.

The first reading of the budget draft in the German parliament will take place at the end of March of 2022. The second and third reading, as well as the finalization and approval of the budget, is expected to occur between the end of May and the beginning of June of 2022.

Federal Budget 2022, second draft - Federal Ministry of Finance (in German)

News article - Handelsblatt (in German)

News article - Evangelische.de (in German)