Hungary

Introduction

Hungary’s development co-operation strategy – as stipulated in the International Development Cooperation Strategy and Strategic Concept for International Humanitarian Aid of Hungary 2014-20 – seeks to foster sustainable development, inter alia by promoting economic development, enhancing local human capacities, developing health services and promoting water management. The strategy places great emphasis on the involvement of both private and public sector actors, while seeking to engage civil society organisations. Hungary has also implemented a number of educational initiatives to facilitate knowledge transfer, such as the Stipendium Hungaricum Scholarship Programme.

The strategy is complemented by an Action Plan for 2018-20. A mid-term review of the strategy took place in 2017 to ensure compliance with the objectives of Agenda 2030. A new strategy is currently being formulated and will be submitted for adoption before 2020. It will seek to streamline Hungarian development co-operation, while prompting further engagement with the EU and OECD development policies and initiatives.

A DAC mid-term review of Hungary was undertaken in June 2019.

Official development assistance

In 2017, the majority of Hungarian official development assistance (ODA; 74%) was allocated through multilateral channels, mainly through institutions of the European Union. Bilateral ODA was focused on education (63.9%) and programmed with partner countries (85%).

In 2018, Hungary provided USD 190 million in total ODA (preliminary data, current prices), using the new “grant-equivalent” methodology (see the methodological notes for further details) adopted by DAC members on their reporting of 2018 data as a more accurate way to count the donor effort in development loans. This represented 0.14% of gross national income (GNI). Under the “cash-flow basis” methodology used in the past, 2018 net ODA was USD 190 million, which represented an increase of 20.7% in real terms from 2017.

Hungary’s share of untied bilateral ODA (excluding administrative costs and in-donor refugee costs) was 86.6% in 2017, while the DAC country average was 82.1%. The grant element of total ODA was 100% in 2017.

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In 2017, 26% of gross ODA was provided bilaterally, of which 11% was channelled through multilateral organisations (multi-bi/non-core contributions). Hungary allocated 74% of total ODA as core contributions to multilateral organisations. Learn more about multilateral development finance.

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In 2017, country programmable aid was 85% of Hungary’s bilateral ODA, compared to a DAC country average of 48% (see the methodological notes for further details on country programmable aid). Project-type interventions accounted for 15% of this aid.

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In 2017, Hungary channelled 87.2% of gross bilateral ODA through the public sector (up from 74.4% in 2016) and 11% through multilateral organisations. See the methodological notes for further details on channels of delivery.

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In 2017, USD 294 thousand of gross bilateral ODA was channelled to and through civil society organisations (CSOs). Between 2016 and 2017, ODA channelled to and through CSOs decreased as a share of bilateral aid (from 2% to 1%). Learn more about ODA allocations to and through CSOs and the Civil Society Days.

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In 2017, bilateral ODA was primarily focused on Asia. USD 8.6 million was allocated to Far East Asia, and USD 5.4 million to South and Central Asia.

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In 2017, 54% of gross bilateral ODA went to Hungary’s top 10 recipients. In accordance with its development co-operation strategy and the corresponding Action Plan for 2018-2020, Hungary has nine strategic partner countries, located in Africa, the Middle East, Asia/Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe and the Western Balkans. Four of its priority partners were among its top 10 recipients in 2017. Support to fragile contexts reached USD 9 million in 2017 (22% of gross bilateral ODA). Learn more about support to fragile contexts.

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In 2017, 11% of Hungary’s gross bilateral ODA (USD 4 million) was allocated to the least developed countries (LDCs), compared to the DAC country average of 23.5%. This is up from 8.9% in 2016. Lower middle-income countries received the highest share of bilateral ODA in 2017 (39.7%), closely followed by upper middle-income countries (38.1%), noting that 11.2% was unallocated by income group.

At 0.02% of GNI in 2017, total ODA to the LDCs (including imputed multilateral flows) was lower than the UN target of 0.15-0.20% of GNI.

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In 2017, 71.9% of bilateral ODA commitments (USD 28 million) was allocated to social infrastructure and services, with a greatest focus on education (USD 25.2 million). Humanitarian aid amounted to USD 0.2 million. Hungary also committed USD 2.4 million (6.9% of bilateral allocable aid) to promote aid for trade and improve developing countries’ trade performance and integration into the world economy in 2017.

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Institutional set-up

The development co-operation programme is implemented by line ministries and other governmental entities, whereas the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade plays a key implementing and coordinating role. In 2017, the Ministry of National Economy was the government entity disbursing the most ODA (54.5%), as it was responsible for Hungary’s multilateral allocations, which represented 74% of gross ODA. These allocations include contributions to the EU budget and funds, international financial institutions and the International Labour Organization.

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Evaluation system

Development co-operation projects are evaluated and assessed ex post facto depending on budgetary possibilities. In case of limited availability of funds, evaluations or assessments are conducted by mission according to a pre-defined set of criteria which is also used during the selection process. Larger projects may be subject to larger scale evaluations based on the same criteria. All contracts contain provisions requiring the grantee to conduct an evaluation of the project as part of the accounting process. Lessons learnt are collected and stored in a database utilised by the Department for International Development.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary is currently developing a monitoring and evaluation guide, which, together with an evaluation form, will be utilised during the monitoring and evaluation of certain projects and programmes. The monitoring guide has also become a key component of preparing diplomats for missions abroad, as diplomats likewise play a key role in the monitoring process. Learn more evaluation in Hungary.

Read Hungary’s evaluation plan.

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

Performance against the commitments for effective development co-operation

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

Member of the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) since 2016.

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