Portugal

Portugal’s development co-operation aims to strengthen institutional capacity in Portuguese-speaking countries and this is reflected in its allocation of official development assistance (ODA). Under the overall steering of the agency Camões, I.P., many public institutions engage in development co-operation. Portugal provides the majority of its ODA as core contributions to multilateral organisations, with the largest share going to European Union (EU) institutions. Through its development finance institution SOFID, Portugal also aims to mobilise greater private sector funding.

The 2018 OECD-DAC mid-term review praised Portugal for its global leadership in trilateral co-operation. Portugal had also made progress in untying its ODA and was taking steps to enhance private sector engagement, including in partnership with the African Development Bank. The mid-term review highlighted the need for Portugal to define clear priorities and to increase ODA levels. The review also stressed the need to improve co-ordination within the Portuguese system and capacity for reporting ODA. Learn more about Portugal’s 2018 OECD-DAC mid-term review.

The 2014-2020 Strategic Concept for Portuguese Development Cooperation focuses on co-operation with Portuguese-speaking countries, building on the particular links between Portugal and these countries. Under the overall goal of poverty eradication and sustainable development, Portugal concentrates on governance, the rule of law and human rights, as well as human development and global public goods. Mobilising a broad range of Portuguese institutions, Portugal’s bilateral co-operation mainly aims to strengthen institutional capacity in its partner countries. Portugal is currently developing a new strategy for 2021-30.

Portugal provided less ODA in 2019 than in the previous year, with a fall of 5.4% in real terms from 2018. Total ODA on a grant-equivalent basis stood at USD 373 million (preliminary data), representing 0.16% of Portugal’s gross national income (GNI) in 2019.1 Over the last five years, Portugal’s ODA has remained low relative to GNI: its ODA/GNI ratio ranked 24th among DAC member countries in 2019. Portugal has committed, at the European level, to collectively achieve a 0.7% ODA/GNI ratio by 2030. The government has no intermediate objective for reaching the 0.7% ODA/GNI ratio by 2030. Under the cash-flow methodology used in the past, net ODA was USD 344 million in 2019. Within Portugal’s gross ODA portfolio in 2019 (USD 404 million), 97.2% was provided in the form of grants and 2.8% in the form of non-grants.2

In line with its policy, Portugal’s ODA allocations are highly concentrated in Portuguese-speaking countries, notably in Africa. Among DAC countries, Portugal has the highest share of bilateral ODA allocated to least developed countries (LDCs). Portugal has also steadily increased its share of untied bilateral ODA, although it is still significantly below the DAC country average. See the methodological notes for details on the definitions and statistical methodologies applied.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!
Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, the largest proportion of Portugal’s ODA (58%) was provided as core contributions to multilateral organisations, including the EU institutions. Gross bilateral ODA was 42% of total ODA, of which 11% was channelled through multilateral organisations (earmarked contributions).

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, Portugal decreased its total support (core and earmarked contributions) to multilateral organisations. It provided USD 276 million of gross ODA to the multilateral system, a fall of 8.9% in real terms from 2017. Of this, USD 256 million was core multilateral ODA and the rest was earmarked for a specific country, region, theme or purpose. Project aid earmarked for a specific project or purpose (tight earmarking) accounted for 33% of Portugal’s non-core contributions, while the remaining 67% was softly earmarked (to pooled funds and specific-purpose programmes and funds).

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, Portugal’s total contribution to multilateral organisations was mainly allocated to the EU institutions, regional development banks and the United Nations (UN). These contributions together accounted for more than 94% of Portugal’s total support to the multilateral system. The UN system received 6%, mainly through core contributions. Out of a total gross volume of USD 16 million to the UN system, the top three UN recipients of Portugal’s support (core and earmarked contributions) were: the UN Department of Peace Operations (USD 5 million), the UN Secretariat (USD 4 million) and the International Labour Organization (USD 2 million).

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!
Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: See the list of UN acronyms.

See the section on “Geographic and thematic focus of ODA” for the geographical and thematic breakdown of bilateral allocations earmarked through the multilateral development system. Learn more about multilateral development finance.

In 2018, Portugal increased its bilateral spend compared to the previous year. It provided USD 188 million as gross bilateral ODA (including earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations), which represented an increase of 6.0% in real terms from 2017.

In 2019, providers of development co-operation started voluntarily reporting to the OECD data on how ODA focuses on the Sustainable Development Goals for 2018 activities. In 2018, Portugal focused most of its bilateral ODA on addressing the goals of the UN 2030 Agenda on poverty eradication, education and partnerships.

In 2018, country programmable aid was 54% of Portugal’s gross bilateral ODA, compared to a DAC country average of 49%.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: NGO: non-governmental organisation.

In 2018, Portugal channelled its bilateral ODA mainly through the public sector.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: PPP: public-private partnership.

In 2018, civil society organisations (CSOs) received USD 13 million (7% of gross bilateral ODA). This was entirely channelled through CSOs to implement projects initiated by Portugal (earmarked funding). Between 2017 and 2018, core and earmarked contributions to CSOs decreased as a share of bilateral ODA, from 8% to 7%. Learn more about ODA allocations to and through CSOs and civil society engagement in development co-operation.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, Portugal’s bilateral ODA was primarily focused on Africa. USD 124 million was allocated to Africa, accounting for 66% of gross bilateral ODA. USD 26 million was allocated to Asia and USD 7 million to Latin America and the Caribbean. Asia and Africa were the main regional recipients of Portugal’s earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations. Seventeen per cent of gross bilateral ODA was unspecified by region in 2018.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!
Bilateral ODA by recipient country

In 2018, 74% of gross bilateral ODA went to Portugal’s top 10 recipients. Its top 10 recipients are mainly Portuguese-speaking countries, in line with its policy priorities. The share of gross bilateral ODA that was not allocated by country was 21%.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!
Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, the LDCs received 57.1% of Portugal’s gross bilateral ODA (USD 107 million). This is far above the DAC country average of 23.8%. Portugal allocated the second-highest share of gross bilateral ODA (17%) to lower middle-income countries in 2018, noting that 21% was unallocated by income group. Portugal allocated 35.2% of gross bilateral ODA to small island developing states in 2018, equal to USD 66 million.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: LDC: least developed country; LIC: low-income country; LMIC: lower middle-income country; UMIC: upper middle-income country; MADCTs: more advanced developing countries and territories.

Support to fragile contexts reached USD 99 million of gross bilateral ODA in 2018 (52.6% of gross bilateral ODA). Extremely fragile contexts received 9.6% of this amount. Learn more about support to fragile contexts on the States of Fragility platform.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: The chart represents only gross bilateral ODA that is allocated by country.

In 2018, most bilateral ODA commitments were allocated to social infrastructure and services. Investments in this area accounted for 61% of bilateral ODA commitments (USD 101 million), with a strong focus on support to education (USD 57 million), other social infrastructure and services (USD 15 million), and government and civil society (USD 12 million). ODA for other commodity assistance totalled USD 13 million. Bilateral humanitarian aid amounted to USD 7 million (4% of bilateral ODA). Earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations also focused on social infrastructure and services and humanitarian aid in 2018.

Portugal committed USD 17.0 million (13.1% of bilateral allocable aid) to promote aid for trade and improve developing countries’ trade performance and integration into the world economy in 2018.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!
Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, 28% of Portugal’s bilateral allocable ODA commitments addressed gender equality and women’s empowerment as either a principal or significant objective (down from 31% in 2017),3 compared with the DAC country average of 42%. This is equal to USD 37 million of bilateral ODA commitments in support of gender equality. Out of this, the share of bilateral allocable aid committed to gender equality and women’s empowerment as a principal objective was 1%, compared with the DAC country average of 4%. Among interventions on social infrastructure and services, almost all interventions on population and reproductive health address gender equality, while the share is lower on education or health. Portugal screens all activities against the gender marker (100% in 2018). Learn more about ODA focused on gender equality and the DAC Network on Gender Equality.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, 10% of Portugal’s bilateral allocable aid commitments (USD 13 million) supported environmental sustainability as either a principal or significant objective, down from 11% in 2017 (the DAC country average was 33%). Three per cent focused on environmental issues as a principal objective, compared with the DAC country average of 11%. Four per cent (USD 5 million) focused on climate change as either a principal or significant objective, equal to 2017 levels (the DAC country average was 26%). Portugal has a greater focus on adaptation (3% in 2018) than on mitigation (1%). Learn more about climate-related development finance.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Data analysis for the OECD initiative Sustainable Oceans for All shows that Portugal committed USD 0.5 million in support of the conservation and sustainable use of the ocean in 2018, amounting to 0.4% of bilateral allocable aid. Learn more about ODA focused on the ocean economy.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, the Portuguese government and Portugal’s development finance institution, the Sociedade para o Financiamento do Desenvolvimento (SOFID), together mobilised USD 54.3 million from the private sector through direct investment in companies.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: SPV: special purpose vehicle.

Of the country-allocable finance mobilised from the private sector in 2017-18, 32% targeted middle-income countries and 68% targeted the LDCs.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: LDC: least developed country; LMIC: lower middle-income country; UMIC: upper middle-income country.

Portugal’s private finance mobilised in 2017-18 mainly related to activities in tourism (39%), industry, mining and construction (36%), and business and other services (22%). Learn more about the amounts mobilised from the private sector for development.

Camões, I.P. is Portugal’s public institute for development co-operation and the promotion of Portuguese language and culture. It ensures the overall direction and co-ordination of Portuguese development co-operation, but implements only a small share of the Portuguese ODA programme (7% in 2018). The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, line ministries and many other public institutions also implement programmes, while Camões, I.P. is taking increasing responsibility as implementer of delegated co-operation on behalf of the EU. The Sociedade para o Financiamento do Desenvolvimento (SOFID) is Portugal’s development finance institution.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

The Evaluation and Audit Unit under Camões I.P. is responsible for carrying out evaluations of Portuguese development co-operation and Portuguese language and cultural promotion activities. The unit is in charge of the evaluation of development co-operation, delivered directly and through line ministries, as well as internal audit. The unit also reports directly to the President of Camões I.P., aiming to ensure greater independence. The triennial evaluation work plan is prepared with operational units and policy makers to be demand-driven and fill information gaps for decision making. Although evaluation continues to be considered an important mechanism for accountability, reporting and learning, budget constraints have been limiting the unit’s capacity to plan and manage evaluations. Read more about Portugal’s evaluation system.

Visit the DAC Evaluation Resource Centre website for evaluations of Portuguese development co-operation.

Explore the Monitoring Dashboard of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation.

2016 OECD-DAC peer review of Portugal: https://www.oecd.org/dac/peer-reviews/peer-review-portugal.htm

2018 OECD-DAC mid-term review of Portugal: https://www.oecd.org/dac/peer-reviews/DAC-mid-term-Portugal.pdf

Camões Institute for Cooperation: https://www.instituto-camoes.pt/en

Sociedade para o Financiamento do Desenvolvimento (SOFID), Portugal’s development finance institution: http://www.sofid.pt

Member of the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) since 1960/91 (Portugal joined the DAC in 1960, withdrew in 1974 and rejoined in 1991).

The methodological notes provide further details on the definitions and statistical methodologies applied, including the grant-equivalent methodology, core and earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations, country programmable aid, channels of delivery, bilateral ODA unspecified/unallocated, bilateral allocable aid, the gender equality policy marker, and the environment markers.

← 1. DAC members adopted the grant-equivalent methodology starting from their reporting of 2018 data as a more accurate way to count the provider’s effort in development loans. See the methodological notes for further details.

← 2. All 2019 statistics in this paragraph are expressed in current prices and, therefore, they may differ from values in the ODA volume chart, which uses constant prices. Non-grants include sovereign loans, multilateral loans, equity investment and loans to the private sector.

← 3. The use of the recommended minimum criteria for the marker by some members in recent years can result in lower levels of aid reported as being focused on gender equality.

Metadata, Legal and Rights

This document, as well as any data and map included herein, are without prejudice to the status of or sovereignty over any territory, to the delimitation of international frontiers and boundaries and to the name of any territory, city or area. Extracts from publications may be subject to additional disclaimers, which are set out in the complete version of the publication, available at the link provided.

https://doi.org/10.1787/2dcf1367-en

© OECD 2020

The use of this work, whether digital or print, is governed by the Terms and Conditions to be found at http://www.oecd.org/termsandconditions.