Development Co-operation Reviews: Portugal 1997

Portugal's development co-operation programme is characterised by concentration bilaterally on the Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa, reflecting close links of history, language and culture. Those countries are now among the least developed countries.

Recently, Portugal has emphasized two new areas of development co-operation. First, private sector development, based on economic policy reforms supported by the international institutions, and on instruments which encourage the involvement of the Portuguese private sector. The second new area of emphasis is the strengthening of the governance systems in the PALOPs, the Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa, focusing particularly on legal systems and the judiciary, but also extending to parliamentary institutions, electoral systems, local governments and constitutional advice.

In its review of Portugal's programme the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) noted that Portugal has the potential to play a larger role, particularly in Mozambique and Angola, where critical post-conflict development needs have to be met. It noted that a new Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (the CPLP), including Brazil, has recently been formed to enhance dialogue and mutual development efforts.

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