(09 April 2014) – Development aid rose by 6.1% in real terms in 2013 to reach the highest level ever recorded, despite continued pressure on budgets in OECD countries since the global economic crisis.
Donors provided a total of USD 134.8 billion in net official development assistance (ODA), marking a rebound after two years of falling volumes, as a number of governments stepped up their spending on foreign aid.
In all, 17 of the 28 member countries of the Development Aid Committee (DAC) increased their ODA in 2013, while 11 reported a decrease. Net ODA from DAC countries stood at 0.3% of gross national income (GNI.) Five countries met a longstanding UN target for an ODA/GNI ratio of 0.7%.
The largest donors by volume were the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and France. Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway and Sweden continued to exceed the 0.7% ODA/GNI target and the UK met it for the first time. The Netherlands fell below 0.7% for the first time since 1974.
Aid to developing countries grew steadily from 1997 to a first peak in 2010. It fell in 2011 and 2012 as many governments took austerity measures and trimmed aid budgets. The rebound in aid budgets in 2013 meant that even excluding the five countries that joined the DAC in 2013 (Czech Republic, Iceland, Poland, Slovak Republic and Slovenia), 2013 DAC ODA was still at an all-time high.