As an official provider of development co-operation since 2004 and a Development Assistance Committee (DAC) member since 2022, Lithuania’s co-operation focuses on democratic values and sharing its transition experience, notably in countries of the European Union’s (EU) Eastern Partnership. Most official development assistance (ODA) is channelled through the EU. Lithuania’s total ODA (USD 197 million, preliminary data) increased in 2022 due to in-donor refugee costs and aid to Ukraine. ODA represented 0.29% of gross national income (GNI).

Find the methodological notes behind the profile here.

The Law on Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid provides the overarching framework for Lithuania’s development co-operation. The Strategic Guidelines for Development Cooperation 2022-2025, complemented by regional and country co-operation strategies, set out priorities for Lithuania’s co-operation, in particular freedom and democracy as well as education, gender equality, energy and climate. Lithuania focuses on EU Eastern Partnership countries as well as select priority countries in Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Digitalisation is a main priority for its co-operation with African countries.

The majority of Lithuania's ODA (59%) was delivered multilaterally in 2022. The EU is a key partner for channelling Lithuanian ODA, but Lithuania is also very active in sharing its public sector expertise through EU twinning. Governance and democracy are priorities for Lithuania’s diplomacy, for instance, focusing on freedom of expression and media protection in the UN Human Rights Council.

Lithuania provided USD 197 million (preliminary data) of ODA in 2022 (USD 191.3 million in constant terms), representing 0.29% of GNI.1 This was an increase of 121.4% in real terms in volume and an increase in share of GNI from 0.14% in 2021. Lithuania’s ODA volume has consistently increased since 2017, and the growth rate peaked in 2022 compared to previous years mostly due to an increase in bilateral grants to Ukraine and in-donor refugee costs. Lithuania provided all of its ODA as grants in 2021 and 2022.2

In 2022, Lithuania ranks 21st among Development Assistance Committee (DAC) countries in terms of ODA to GNI ratio. In line with its policy, Lithuania distinguishes itself by its high share of bilateral ODA is focused in Europe (48.2%).

Lithuania is committed to several international targets, Development Assistance Committee standards and recommendations. Learn more about DAC recommendations.

Lithuania provided a higher share of its ODA multilaterally in 2021. Gross bilateral ODA was 22.3% of total ODA. Fourteen per cent of gross bilateral ODA was channelled through multilateral organisations (earmarked contributions). Lithuania allocated 77.7% of total ODA as core contributions to multilateral organisations.

In 2022, Lithuania provided USD 49.7 million of gross bilateral ODA to Ukraine to respond to the impacts of Russia’s war of aggression, of which USD 37.1 million was humanitarian assistance (preliminary data). In 2021, it provided USD 3 million.

In 2022, Lithuania provided USD 1.5 million in ODA for the COVID-19 response. Regarding COVID-19 vaccines, donations of excess doses to developing countries accounted for USD 1.5 million of ODA. In 2020 and 2021, Lithuania’s total bilateral support for COVID-19 response was USD 1 million and USD 3.8 million, respectively.

In 2021, Lithuania provided USD 69.7 million of gross ODA to the multilateral system, an increase of 2.4% in real terms from 2020. Of this, USD 67.1 million was core multilateral ODA, while non-core contributions were earmarked for a specific country, region, theme or purpose. 100% was programmatic funding (to pooled funds and specific-purpose programmes and funds).

Eighty-six per cent of Lithuania’s total contributions to multilateral organisations in 2021 was allocated to EU Institutions.

The UN system received 5.7% of Lithuania’s multilateral contributions, mainly in the form of core contributions. Out of a total volume of USD 4 million to the UN system, the top three UN recipients of Lithuania’s support (core and earmarked contributions) were the UN secretariat (USD 1 million), FAO (USD 0.3 million) and UNHCR (USD 0.3 million).

See the section on Geographic and sectoral focus of ODA for the breakdown of bilateral allocations, including ODA earmarked through the multilateral development system. Learn more about multilateral development finance.

In 2021, Lithuania’s bilateral spending increased compared to the previous year. It provided USD 19.3 million of gross bilateral ODA (which includes earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations). This represented an increase of 46.7% in real terms from 2020. In 2021, Lithuania focused most of its bilateral ODA on quality education, health and well-being, and peace, justice and strong institutions goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

In 2021, country programmable aid was 59.4% of Lithuania’s gross bilateral ODA, compared to a DAC country average of 45.2%. In-donor refugee costs were USD 1.9 million in 2021, an increase of 43.9% in real terms over 2020, and represented 9.9% of Lithuania’s gross bilateral ODA.

In 2021, Lithuania channelled bilateral ODA mainly through the public sector and multilateral organisations. Technical co-operation made up 6% of gross ODA in 2021.

In 2021, civil society organisations (CSOs) received USD 2.3 million of gross bilateral ODA. Five per cent of gross bilateral ODA was allocated to CSOs as core contributions and 6.7% was channelled through CSOs to implement projects initiated by the donor (earmarked funding). From 2020 to 2021, the combined core and earmarked contributions for CSOs increased as a share of bilateral ODA, from 10.3% to 11.8%. Learn more about ODA allocations to and through CSOs, civil society engagement in development co-operation, and the DAC Recommendation on Enabling Civil Society in Development Co-operation and Humanitarian Aid.

In 2021, Lithuania’s bilateral ODA was primarily focused on Europe. USD 9.6 million was allocated to Europe and USD 5.1 million to Asia, accounting respectively for 50% and 26.6% of gross bilateral ODA. USD 0.6 million (3.1%) was allocated to Africa. Europe was also the main regional recipient of Lithuania’s earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations, in line with the policy priorities.

In 2021, 61.4% of gross bilateral ODA went to Lithuania’s top 10 recipients. Its top 10 recipients are in Europe, Asia and Africa, in line with its focus on its immediate neighbourhood and its policy priorities. The share of gross bilateral ODA that was not allocated by country was 29.2%, with 33.9% of this unallocated bilateral ODA spent on refugees in the donor country.

In 2021, the least developed countries (LDCs) received 4.1% of Lithuania’s gross bilateral ODA (USD 0.8 million). This is lower than the DAC average of 22.9%. Lithuania allocated the highest share of gross bilateral ODA (38.6%) to upper middle-income countries in 2021, noting that 29.2% was unallocated by income group. Lithuania allocated 13% of gross bilateral ODA to land-locked developing countries in 2021, equal to USD 2.5 million.

Support to fragile contexts reached USD 1.7 million in 2021, representing 9% of Lithuania’s gross bilateral ODA. Thirty-four per cent of this ODA was provided in the form of humanitarian assistance, which is the same as in 2020, while 6.8% was allocated to peace, decreasing from 8.6% in 2020.

Learn more about support to fragile contexts on the States of Fragility platform.

In 2021, just over two-thirds of Lithuania’s bilateral ODA was allocated to social infrastructure and services. Investments in this area accounted for 65.3% of bilateral ODA commitments (USD 12.6 million), with a strong focus on support to education (USD 5.5 million), health (USD 3.9 million) and government and civil society (USD 3 million). ODA for economic infrastructure and services totalled USD 1.1 million, focusing on energy (USD 1.1 million). Bilateral humanitarian assistance amounted to USD 1.6 million (8.5% of bilateral ODA). In 2021, earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations focused on government and civil society, emergency response and environment protection.

In 2020-21, Lithuania committed 32.7% of its screened bilateral allocable aid to gender equality and women’s empowerment, as either a principal or significant objective (down from 63.7% in 2018-19, compared with the 2020-21 DAC average of 44.4%). This is equal to USD 2.1 million of bilateral ODA in support of gender equality. The share of screened bilateral allocable aid committed to gender equality and women’s empowerment as a principal objective was 4% in 2020-21, compared with the DAC average of 4.5%. Lithuania includes gender equality objectives in 43.1% of its ODA for humanitarian aid, compared with the 2020-21 DAC average of 17.5%. Lithuania screens just over half of activities against the DAC gender equality policy marker (51.8% in 2020-21). Learn more about ODA focused on gender equality, the DAC Network on Gender Equality and the DAC Recommendation on Ending Sexual Exploitation in Development Co-operation.

In 2020-21, Lithuania committed 14.7% of its total bilateral allocable aid (USD 1.9 million) in support of the environment and the Rio Conventions (DAC average of 34.3%), down from 15.9% in 2018-19. Unpacking the environmental data further:

  • Nine per cent of total bilateral allocable aid (USD 1.2 million) focused on climate change overall (the DAC average was 29%), up from 6.7% in 2018-19.

Learn more about climate-related development finance and the DAC Declaration on Aligning Development Co-operation with the Goals of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

In 2021, Lithuania also:

  • Committed USD 1.3 million (8.3% of its bilateral allocable aid) to promote aid for trade and improve developing countries’ trade performance and integration into the world economy in 2021.

  • Committed USD 0.9 million (5.8% of its bilateral allocable aid) to address the immediate or underlying determinants of malnutrition in developing countries across a variety of sectors, such as maternal health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) or agriculture.

  • Committed USD 0.2 million (1.3% of its bilateral allocable aid) to development co-operation projects and programmes that promote the inclusion and empowerment of persons with disabilities.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) is responsible for implementing and co-ordinating Lithuania’s development co-operation. The National Development Co-operation and Humanitarian Aid Commission, chaired by the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs, plays an important role in co-ordinating development co-operation activities across line ministries and other public institutions as well as private sector organisations. The Central Project Management Agency (CPMA) is the main implementing agency for Lithuania’s bilateral development co-operation and also implements projects on behalf of the EU. The Ministry of Environment and its Environmental Projects Management Agency oversee projects under a Climate Change Programme.

The Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Assistance Fund became operative in 2022. Annual budgeting rules do not bind the Fund. The Fund is open to any (public, private, international) funding sources and provides flexibility for multiannual programming. It is managed by the Governing Board, which comprises seven members (appointed for a three-year term) and represents all relevant national stakeholders. CPMA acts as an administrator and secretariat of the Fund.

Around 50 staff work on development co-operation in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Office of the Government and the CPMA. In addition, around 50 staff working in diplomatic missions, line ministries and other state institutions work part-time on development co-operation issues.

Lithuania organises an annual conference with experts, representatives of international institutions, civil society, business and other relevant stakeholders to share experiences and discuss proposals on how to achieve more advanced, transparent and innovative policy solutions for development co-operation. CSOs active in development co-operation, humanitarian assistance and global citizenship education co-ordinate through the Lithuanian NGDO Platform.

Internal systems and processes help ensure the effective delivery of Lithuania’s development co-operation. Select features are shown in the table below.

The Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation monitoring exercise tracks the implementation of the effectiveness commitments. Following a reform of the exercise during 2020-22, the 4th global monitoring round (2023-26) has resumed.

Lithuania Development Cooperation:

Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

Lithuanian Central Project Management Agency (CPMA):

CSO umbrella organisation “National Non-Governmental Development Cooperation Organisations’ Platform”:

Member of the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) since 2022.

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 2019 data as a more accurate way to count the donor effort in development loans. See the methodological notes for further details.

← 2. Non-grants include sovereign loans, multilateral loans, equity investment and loans to the private sector.

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