Austria

Austria’s development policy prioritises poverty reduction, peace and human security, and preserving the environment, with a geographic focus on South East Europe. Its official development assistance (ODA) has declined in recent years, both in volume and as a share of national income. The Ministry for European and International Affairs is responsible for Austria’s development policy, and allocates the budget of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA). The Austrian Development Bank (OeEB) mobilises private finance for development with a focus on addressing climate change.

The 2020 OECD-DAC peer review praised Austria’s regional leadership, strong multilateral contributions, and commitment to gender and the environment. It recommended that Austria take steps to achieve a more co-ordinated and coherent whole-of-government approach to development co-operation and develop a plan to increase its ODA budget in line with its commitments. Learn more about the 2020 OECD-DAC peer review of Austria.

The Federal Act on Development Co-operation (2003) defines Austria’s three main development co-operation objectives as poverty eradication, ensuring peace and human security, and preserving the environment. The current Three-year Programme for Austrian Development Policy (2019-21) reflects these objectives, prioritising meeting basic needs to eradicate poverty, sustainable economic development, protecting and preserving the environment, peace and security, building inclusive societies, and promoting women. It also defines 11 priority countries for Austrian Development Co-operation (ADC), each falling into one of three categories: 1) South East Europe and the southern Caucuses; 2) fragile and crisis-affected states; and 3) least developed countries (LDCs). Austria channels most of its support to multilateral organisations, with a special emphasis on international financial institutions, supported by the Ministry of Finance’s Strategic Guidelines.

Austria provided more ODA in 2019 than in the previous year. Total ODA on a grant-equivalent basis stood at USD 1.2 billion (preliminary data), representing 0.27% of Austria’s gross national income (GNI) in 2019.1 The increase of 7.4% in real terms from 2018 was due to increased contributions to multilateral organisations, although its bilateral aid fell due to reduced in-donor refugee costs and debt relief operations. Austria ranked 17th among DAC member countries in relation to its ODA/GNI ratio in 2019. The government maintains a commitment to achieving a 0.7% ODA/GNI ratio, but has not set an interim target. Austria is committed, at the European level, to collectively achieve a 0.7% ODA/GNI ratio by 2030. Under the cash-flow methodology used in the past, net ODA was USD 1.2 billion in 2019. Within Austria’s gross ODA portfolio in 2019 (USD 1.2 billion), 98.9% was provided in the form of grants and 1.1% in the form of non-grants.2

Austria channels a large share of its ODA multilaterally, notably to the European Union (EU) and international financial institutions. Austria’s bilateral ODA is focused on developing countries in Europe and Asia and over half of bilateral allocable aid targets gender equality and women’s empowerment. 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 Austria’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 19% was channelled through multilateral organisations (earmarked contributions).

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, Austria’s total support (core and earmarked contributions) to multilateral organisations contracted slightly. It provided USD 779 million of gross ODA to the multilateral system, a fall of 2.9% in real terms from 2017. Of this, USD 685 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 15% of Austria’s non-core contributions, while the remaining 85% was softly earmarked (to pooled funds and specific-purpose programmes and funds).

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

In 2018, Austria’s contribution to multilateral organisations was mainly allocated to the EU institutions, the World Bank Group and regional development banks. These contributions together accounted for almost 90% of Austria’s total support to the multilateral system. The United Nations (UN) system received 8% of total multilateral contributions, equally split between core and earmarked contributions. Out of a total gross volume of USD 62 million to the UN system, the top three UN recipients of Austria’s support (core and earmarked contributions) were: the United Nations Development Programme (USD 12 million), the UN Department of Peace Operations (USD 7 million) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (USD 6 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, Austria decreased its bilateral ODA compared to the previous year. It provided USD 492 million as gross bilateral ODA (including earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations), which represented a decrease of 23.6% in real terms from 2017.

In 2018, country programmable aid was 17% of Austria’s gross bilateral ODA, compared to a DAC country average of 49%. In-donor refugee costs were USD 62 million in 2018, representing 5% of Austria’s total net ODA and a decrease of 62.1% in real terms over 2017.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: NGO: non-governmental organisation.

In 2018, most of Austria’s bilateral ODA was channelled through the public sector; universities, research institutes or think tanks; multilateral organisations; and non-governmental organisations.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: NGO: non-governmental organisation; PPP: public-private partnership.

In 2018, civil society organisations (CSOs) received USD 80 million of gross bilateral ODA. Less than 1% of gross bilateral ODA was allocated to CSOs as core contributions and 16% was channelled through CSOs to implement projects initiated by Austria (earmarked funding). Between 2017 and 2018, core and earmarked contributions to CSOs increased as a share of bilateral ODA, from 15% to 16%. 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, Austria’s bilateral ODA was focused on Europe, Asia and Africa. USD 135 million was allocated to ODA-eligible countries in Europe and USD 113 million to Asia, accounting respectively for 27% and 23% of gross bilateral ODA. USD 90 million was allocated to Africa. Europe was the largest regional recipient of Austria’s earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations. Twenty-four 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, 31% of gross bilateral ODA went to Austria’s top 10 recipients. Its top 10 recipients are in Europe and Asia, mainly. The share of gross bilateral ODA that was not allocated by country was 35%, partly explained by expenditure for in-donor refugees.

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 12.3% of Austria’s gross bilateral ODA (USD 60 million). This is well below the DAC country average of 23.8%. Austria allocated the highest share of gross bilateral ODA (29%) to upper middle-income countries in 2018, noting that 35% was unallocated by income group. Within bilateral ODA that was unallocated, Austria estimates that 12% was directed to the LDCs. Austria allocated 2.9% of gross bilateral ODA to small island developing states in 2018, equal to USD 14 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 115 million of gross bilateral ODA in 2018 (23.3% of gross bilateral ODA). Extremely fragile contexts received 31.3% 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 of Austria’s bilateral ODA was allocated to social infrastructure and services. Investments in this area accounted for 50% of bilateral ODA commitments (USD 256 million), with a strong focus on support to education (USD 156 million). Bilateral humanitarian aid amounted to USD 27 million (5% of bilateral ODA). Earmarked contributions to multilateral organisations focused also on social infrastructure and services and humanitarian aid in 2018.

In 2018, Austria committed USD 0.4 million of ODA to the mobilisation of domestic resources in developing countries, amounting to 0.1% of bilateral allocable aid. Austria committed USD 80 million (29.7% 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, Austria committed 51% of its bilateral allocable aid to gender equality and women’s empowerment as either a principal or significant objective (up from 40% in 2017),3 compared with the DAC country average of 42%. This is equal to USD 130 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 5%, compared with the DAC country average of 4%. A significantly higher share of interventions on social infrastructure and services – particularly education, population and reproductive health – addresses gender equality than those on economic infrastructure. Austria screens virtually all activities against the gender marker (95.4% 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, Austria committed 38% of its bilateral allocable aid (USD 102 million) in support of the environment as either a principal or significant objective, up from 35% in 2017 (the DAC country average was 33%). Fourteen per cent focused on environmental issues as a principal objective, compared with the DAC country average of 11%. Twenty-five per cent (USD 68 million) focused on climate change as either a principal or significant objective, up slightly from 24% in 2017 (the DAC country average was 26%). Austria has a greater focus on mitigation (17% in 2018) than on adaptation (15%). Learn more about climate-related development finance.

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

In 2018, Austria’s development finance institution, the Austrian Development Bank (OeEB), and the Development Agency of Austria (ADA) together mobilised USD 123 million from the private sector through syndicated loans, shares in collective investment vehicles, direct investment in companies or project finance special purpose vehicles (SPVs) and simple co-financing arrangements with the private sector.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

Note: CIV: collective investment vehicle; SPV: special purpose vehicle.

Of the country-allocable finance mobilised from the private sector in 2017-18, 73% targeted middle-income countries and 27% 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.

Austria’s private finance mobilised in 2017-18 mainly related to activities in the energy (42%); banking and financial services (29%); and industry, mining and construction (7%) sectors. Approximately 10% was unallocated by sector. Learn more about the amounts mobilised from the private sector for development.

The Ministry for European and International Affairs (BMEIA) develops and co-ordinates development policy, and allocates and oversees the budget of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), which was 8.4% of total ODA in 2018. The ADA, the operational unit of Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC), operates from a head office in Vienna and through co-ordination offices in Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe. The Federal Ministry of Finance is responsible for most core contributions to multilateral organisations, and is involved in the oversight of the Development Bank of Austria (OeEB). Local governments, the federal states and several other federal ministries – the Ministry of Sustainability and Tourism; the Ministry of Education, Science and Research; the Ministry of Defence; the Ministry of the Interior; and the Federal Chancellery – also contribute and are involved in the delivery of Austria’s ODA.

Share
Embed code for this view
Copy code
Code copied!

The BMEIA and the ADA share responsibility for strategically evaluating Austrian development co-operation. In 2018, the BMEIA established the Unit for Evaluation and Quality Management in the Directorate for Development. The ADA has a separate Unit for Evaluation and Statistics located under the managing director. Independence is the key guiding principle and cornerstone of the new evaluation policy. The new policy, launched in 2020, establishes a common framework to govern the evaluation function and practice across Austria’s development co-operation system and which will apply to both organisations, as well as to the Federal Ministry for Finance, the Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism, and the Austrian Development Bank.

The BMEIA’s and the ADA’s Evaluation Units prepare joint two-year plans for strategic evaluations which are approved by management in both institutions and published on line. The current ADC Evaluation Plan 2019-2020 sets out strategic evaluation priorities and forecasts potential topics for evaluation beyond 2020. Learn more about evaluation in Austria.

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

Austrian Development Agency (ADA): https://www.entwicklung.at/en

Development Bank of Austria (OeEB): https://www.oe-eb.at

Member of the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) since 1965.

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.