Other official providers not reporting to the OECD

International development co-operation is a component of Argentina’s foreign policy and a valuable tool that promotes the country’s actions in line with the objectives of the 2030 Agenda. As an upper middle-income country, a beneficiary of official development assistance (ODA) and a provider of technical co-operation through South-South and triangular co-operation, Argentina undertakes commitments and responsibilities that strengthen the effectiveness of co-operation and promote partnership mechanisms with various development actors.

Argentina leverages its technical expertise to promote South-South and triangular co-operation primarily in Latin America. Still, it has some ongoing projects in Africa and Asia and has ambitions to expand its co-operation in these regions further. In 2022, it created its international co-operation agency, the Argentinian International Co-operation and Humanitarian Assistance Agency1 (ACIAH), whose goal is to streamline its strategies towards co-operation and position Argentina as a leader in South-South and triangular co-operation modalities.

Argentina is an active member of the international community within the framework of South-South and triangular co-operation. It dates back to 1978 when it hosted the conference on South-South co-operation that resulted in the Action Plan for Buenos Aires (PABA ’78). This plan was renewed in 2019 at the second High-Level United Nations Conference on South-South Co-operation, which was also hosted in Buenos Aires. During 2021 and 2022, Argentina held the presidency for the High-Level United Nations Committee on South-South Co-operation. It will take over the presidency for the first United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) Conference on South-South Co-operation in 2023.

Argentina is Adherent to the OECD Recommendation of the Council for Development Co-operation Actors on Managing the Risk of Corruption and the OECD Recommendation of the Council on Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas.

According to OECD estimates, Argentina provided 1.45 USD million2 in bilateral support to developing countries in 2021. Cooperación Argentina has active projects across Latin America, Africa, and Asia. The distribution of projects by thematic area focuses primarily on agroindustry (35%) and technological innovation and productivity (28%), but also covers areas including health, social development, environment, education and culture, security and justice, and public innovation management.

Argentina engages in triangular co-operation. However, it has not reported the modality to Total Official Support for Sustainable Development (TOSSD). Data from the Ibero-American General Secretariat (SEGIB) show Argentina engaged in seven triangular co-operation projects in 2019. Learn more about triangular co-operation and Argentina’s number of projects through the OECD’s voluntary triangular co-operation project repository. Argentina is a member of the Global Partnership Initiative on Effective Triangular Co-operation.

Argentina’s international co-operation comes under the leadership of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Worship, whose function is to plan, develop, and coordinate its national policy towards international co-operation. The 2030 Agenda is a key framework that guides the development of Argentina’s international co-operation policies. ACIAH3 is a government agency that coordinates and implements co-operation activities, manages development projects, conducts monitoring and evaluation assessments, and supports multilateral efforts with international organisations.

Cascos Blancos (White Helmets) falls within the remit of ACIAH and is an agency attached to the ministry that designs and executes the actions in humanitarian aid, emergency response, and disaster risk management. It aims to uphold the commitments of the Sendai Framework (2015-2030) and contributes to Argentina’s efforts towards achieving the 2030 Agenda and SDGs. It has been operational since 1995 and relies heavily on volunteers to carry out its activities, actions, and projects.

Cooperación Argentina was created in 2022 and also falls within the remit of ACIAH as an agency attached to the ministry that coordinates the activities and implementation of South-South and Triangular co-operation projects. Before the creation of Cooperación Argentina, the Argentine Fund for International Co-operation4 (FO-AR) was used as a key instrument to implement its co-operation strategy. FO-AR was created in 1992 and has been the platform through which Argentina shares its capacities and technical expertise in South-South and triangular co-operation. It continues to be an integral part of Argentina’s international co-operation strategy.

China has been providing development assistance since the foundation of the People’s Republic of China (hereafter “China”). It initially focused on technical assistance and South-South co-operation, taking on a low profile in terms of foreign policy priorities. However, with the establishment of the China International Development Cooperation Agency (CIDCA) in 2018, the domestic aid governance model reflects a more dedicated role as a provider of development co-operation, coupled with a more assertive foreign policy.

In January 2021, China’s State Council published a new white paper “China’s international development cooperation in the new era”, which commits to supporting the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, notably poverty reduction, food security, healthcare, quality education, gender equality, infrastructure, sustainable and innovative-driven economic growth, and environmental protection. The white paper stresses two pillars: “foreign aid”, co-ordinated by CIDCA and mainly concessional loans; and “international development co-operation”, which includes non-concessional loans and economic co-operation under the Belt and Road Initiative. China also issued “Measures for the administration of foreign aid” in 2021. At the 2021 United Nations General Assembly meeting, China’s President Xi Jinping announced a new “Global Development Initiative” (GDI) to “speed up the implementation of the 2030 Agenda” (Xi, 2021) and address the needs of countries impacted by COVID-19 and adapting to climate change. In June 2022, President Xi chaired the High-level Dialogue on Global Development and announced that the Global Development Promotion Center (GDPC), which sits in CIDCA, would be established to implement the GDI. According to Chinese statements, more than 50 countries have joined the Group of Friends of the GDI, and more than 100 countries have expressed their support to date (CIKD, 2022: 39).

In 2022, the Center for International Knowledge on Development was tasked with drafting a report on the GDI and later released a “Global Development Report” (CIKD, 2022). The report, which is published in Chinese and English, analyses the progress and challenges of implementing the 2030 Agenda; delineates the context of global development; and explains the core concepts, fundamental principles, implementation pathways and “early harvests of the GDI”. The report also mentions the launch of the Group of Friends of the GDI at the United Nations and endorsements in joint statements of China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Pacific Island Countries, the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, and the five Central Asian countries. According to the report, “the GDI offers Chinese solutions to the questions of our times, to making the post COVID-19 world a better place for everyone, and to building a community with a shared future for mankind” (CIKD, 2022: 35).

According to OECD estimates, in 2021, China’s bilateral international development co-operation reached USD 3.1 billion, up from USD 2.9 billion in 2020.5

China engages in triangular co-operation and has a strategic policy for engaging in the modality, elaborated under the white paper “China’s international development cooperation in the new era”. Its focus is on tripartite projects where China can contribute with its domestic experiences, enhancing policy dialogues and knowledge exchange, and advancing co-operation with international organisations. The white paper indicates a strong focus on agriculture and public health. Learn more about triangular co-operation and China’s numerous projects through the OECD’s voluntary triangular co-operation project repository.

In August 2021, China issued the Measures for the Administrations of Foreign Aid, which defines the responsibilities and division of labour of the new CIDCA, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Commerce and other foreign aid implementation departments, as well as Chinese embassies and consulates abroad in the management of foreign aid. As a key national entity, CIDCA is in charge of formulating strategic guidelines, plans and policies for foreign aid; drafting country-specific aid policies; co-ordinating and selecting foreign aid projects; signing foreign aid agreements with recipients; and oversight and evaluating projects. CIDCA has embraced some of the responsibilities and functions of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Commerce (the Department of Aid to Foreign Countries and part of the Department of Outward Investment and Economic Co-operation). CIDCA is not intended to be an implementing agency but is expected to design strategies, plans and policies on China’s foreign aid and evaluate their implementation. In April 2021, Mr. Zhaohui Luo was appointed Chairman of CIDCA.

Project implementation is done mainly by the Ministry of Commerce’s subordinate agencies and specialised line ministries. The Ministry of Commerce is responsible for implementing the largest part of Chinese foreign aid projects, including turnkey, technical assistance, and material and human resource projects. It also manages the accreditation and selection of Chinese companies to implement foreign aid projects.

China International Development Co-operation Agency (CIDCA): http://en.cidca.gov.cn.

CIDCA, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Commerce (2021), “New measures for the administration of foreign aid by CIDCA, MFA and MOFCOM”, http://china-aid-blog.com/2021/09/01/407.

CIKD (2022), Global Development Report, Center for International Knowledge on Development, www.cikd.org/ms/file/getimage/1538692307220475905.

Government of China (2021), “China’s international development cooperation in the new era”, White Paper, State Council Information Office of the People’s Republic of China, http://en.cidca.gov.cn/2021-01/10/c_581228.htm.

India’s approach to development co-operation is embedded in its foreign policy and stresses solidarity with developing countries. India’s development co-operation uses multiple instruments, including grants, lines of credit, and capacity building and technical assistance. Its areas of focus range from commerce to culture, energy to engineering, health to housing projects, information technology to infrastructure, sports to science, disaster relief and humanitarian assistance to restoration and preservation of cultural and heritage assets.

While India focused for quite some time exclusively on South-South co-operation, Prime Minister Modi is also prioritising triangular co-operation. India is collaborating on development co-operation with France, Germany, Japan, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United States, and has a new partnership with the European Union on bringing connectivity to Africa and Central Asia. India’s development co-operation programmes focus on Africa and CLMV countries (Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar and Viet Nam) and include technical co-operation and a capacity-building programme.

Sectors of priority for India’s development co-operation, which involves 154 countries, are agricultural development and energy and electricity grids for rural areas. India’s co-operation goes beyond government-to-government co-operation to include civil society organisations.

In 2023, India took over the presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20) and advanced collective G20 actions to strengthen contributions to the 2030 Agenda. India is advancing this mainly through the G20 Development Working Group.

The OECD estimates that India’s bilateral development co-operation reached USD 1.03 billion in 2021, similar to USD 1.01 billion in 2020. Importantly, this amount does not include lines of credit from India to developing countries because EXIM Bank provides them and also contributes to India’s trade development.6

The Indian think tank Research and Information System (RIS) estimates that India’s development cooperation decreased from USD 6.18 billion in 2014 to USD 5.8 billion in 2021.

India’s triangular co-operation is evolving and increasing engagement with the OECD and Development Assistance Committee members. An example of this is a Joint Declaration of Intent signed in May 2022 by the German Federal Minister for Economic Co-operation and Development and the Indian Minister of External Affairs to strengthen their triangular partnerships. RIS India collects data on Indian triangular co-operation initiatives, some of which are included in the OECD’s voluntary triangular co-operation project repository. A joint RIS India-OECD publication highlights the importance of Indian civil society organisations in implementing this co-operation modality.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) plays a pivotal role in the delivery of development co-operation, notably through its Development Partnership Administration (DPA). India’s development co-operation is delivered through various mechanisms and channels for engaging with developing countries, including the Indian Technical and Economic Co-operation Programme, Special Commonwealth Assistance Programme for Africa, and bilateral development assistance to neighbouring and other developing countries. Various Indian ministries, institutions and programmes are also involved in development co-operation and implement projects. India’s development co-operation aims to be demand-driven, mutually beneficial and ensure local ownership. It aims to create co-operation programmes without conditionality, building partnerships that are governed by mutual respect, diversity, care for the future and sustainable development.

The DPA, created in 2012, co-ordinates India’s bilateral development co-operation in close collaboration with the Ministry of External Affairs’ regional divisions. It manages grants and the Indian Technical & Economic Cooperation Programme, and has four pillars:

  • DPA-I deals with project appraisal for the Lines of Credit (LoC) programme and loans on concessional terms to developing countries, falling under the Ministry of Finance’s Indian Development and Economic Assistance Scheme. DPA-I handles all lines of credit modalities and projects in Africa, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka, as well as housing projects.

  • DPA-II focuses on technical co-operation. It manages the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation programme, which focuses on capacity building and training of defence personnel and civilian training under the Colombo Plan for Cooperative and Economic Social Development in Asia and the Pacific, established in 1964. The programme offers customised courses as well as humanitarian assistance. DPA-II also co-ordinates South-South co-operation initiatives and other multilateral development co-operation matters, including co-ordination with international development agencies.

  • DPA-III manages bilateral grants to Afghanistan, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka for infrastructure (except housing projects), education and health. It also supports community-based and community-driven projects in these countries.

  • DPA-IV includes a humanitarian assistance and disaster relief procurement cell.

The Ministry of Finance manages multilateral assistance and exercises administrative oversight for concessional loans and credit lines provided by the EXIM Bank. The bank provides financial assistance and functions as the principal financial institution for co-ordinating the institutions engaged in financing the export and import of goods and services to promote India’s international trade.

Ministry of External Affairs (2021), Annual Report 2020-21, Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi, www.mea.gov.in/Uploads/PublicationDocs/33569_MEA_annual_Report.pdf.

Ministry of External Affairs (2021), “Development partnerships”, https://mea.gov.in/dpa/

Chaturvedi, S. (2021), “Why India needs an international development cooperation agency”, The Indian Expresshttps://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/why-india-needs-an-international-development-cooperation-agency-7582421.

South Africa’s African Renaissance and International Co-operation Fund (ARF) emphasises co-operation with the African continent through promoting democracy, good governance, the prevention and resolution of conflict, socio-economic development and integration, humanitarian assistance, and human resource development. The ARF focuses on South-South and triangular co-operation projects with African countries, notably Southern African Development Community members. It also provides loans and/or other financial assistance. South Africa provides its bilateral development co-operation mainly through technical co-operation.

South Africa is a member of the Group of Twenty (G20) and advocates for a more substantial role of the G20 in support of the 2030 Agenda, notably through the G20 Development Working Group and its focus on finance for sustainable development for developing countries. This includes capacity-building efforts and curbing illicit financial flows, advancing work towards localising the Sustainable Development Goals and enhancing G20 actions towards the 2030 Agenda, including on digital transformation and supporting developing countries in COVID-19 recovery. South Africa chairs the Total Official Support for Sustainable Development (TOSSD) Task Force.

The ARF was established by the African Renaissance and International Cooperation Fund Act, 2000 (Act 51 of 2000). South Africa’s development co-operation is guided by the ARF’s Strategic Plan 2020-2025 and Annual Performance Plan 2022-2023, which outlines seven key areas of focus that align with the aspirations of the African Union’s Agenda 2063. These areas of focus include: 1) promotion of democracy and good governance as it aligns with Aspiration 3; 2) prevention and resolution of conflicts as it aligns with Aspiration 4; 3) support to socio-economic development and integration as it aligns with Aspiration 1; 4) provision of humanitarian assistance; 5) human resource development as it aligns with Aspiration 6; 6) co-operation between South Africa and other countries, in particular African countries; and 7) effective management of resources through sound administration and good governance. South Africa held the chairmanship of the African Union in 2020 where it prioritised peace and security; economic development; and continental integration through the operationalisation of the African Continental Free Trade Area, infrastructure development to facilitate continental free trade, advancing the economic empowerment of women, and support for good governance and democracy.

South Africa is an Adherent to the OECD Recommendation of the Council for Development Co-operation Actors on Managing the Risk of Corruption. Since 2007, South Africa has been one of the OECD’s five Key Partners, contributing to the OECD’s work comprehensively and participating in different OECD activities, notably the first Global Meeting of Development Co-operation providers in February 2023.

According to OECD estimates, South Africa’s bilateral international development co-operation reached USD 34 million in 2021, up from USD 32.6 million in 2020.

According to the African Renaissance and International Co-operation Fund Strategy Plan 2020-2025, between 2015 and 2020, 49% of the ARF’s allocations were directed to humanitarian assistance-related support, 9% to democracy and good governance, and 4% to conflict resolution. The plan indicates a downward trend in fiscal allocations to various government departments, including the Department of International Relations and Co-operation (DIRCO), foreseeing the need to prioritise its allocations and maximise the impact of its interventions.

South Africa engages in triangular co-operation, partnering with several Development Assistance Committee members, such as Canada, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the United States, to support other African countries in areas such as governance, public security and post-conflict reconstruction. South Africa is a member of the Global Partnership Initiative on Effective Triangular Co-operation.

DIRCO is responsible for strategy and foreign policy formulation while line ministries are involved in the implementation of development co-operation projects. The African Renaissance and International Co-operation Fund is housed in DIRCO.

The National Treasury co-ordinates incoming official development assistance and disbursing funds for outgoing co-operation. DIRCO and National Treasury officials are on the ARF Advisory Committee. South Africa’s development co-operation structures may change when South Africa establishes a development co-operation agency under DIRCO.

DIRCO Department of International Relations and Co-operation, https://www.dirco.gov.za/legislative-and-other-mandates

DIRCO (2021), Annual Report 2020-21, Department of International Relations and Co-operation, Pretoria, www.dirco.gov.za/department/report_2020-2021/annual_report2020_2021.pdf.

DIRCO (n.d), African Renaissance and International Co-operation Fund (ARF) Strategic Plan 2020-2025 & Annual Performance Plan 2020-2021 Revised, Department of International Relations and Co-operation, Pretoria, http://www.dirco.gov.za/department/african_renaissance2020_2025/arf_2020_2025_newrevised.pdf.


← 1. Agencia Argentina de Cooperación Internacional y Asistencia Humanitaria – Cascos Blancos

← 2. Source: Budget Information from instituto nacional de la administración pública.

← 3. Agencia Argentina de Cooperación Internacional y Asistencia Humanitaria Cascos Blancos

← 4. Fondo Argentino de Cooperación Internacional

← 5. Based on data from the Chinese Ministry of Finance, available at: http://yss.mof.gov.cn/2021zyjs/202207/t20220712_3826606.htm. However, neither the scope of foreign assistance nor detailed information such as aid amount by the recipient country or outline of specific projects is clarified in the data. Scholars (Kitano and Miyabayashi) provide higher estimates. OECD estimates include data comparable to ODA-like flows, which excludes concessional loans from China’s export credit agency. Data from research bodies like AidData also provides higher estimates, however only one-tenth of data is comparable to ODA-like flows.

← 6. These estimates are conservative since the OECD cannot verify that such operations have the economic development and welfare of developing countries as main objectives.

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