Kuwait

The state of Kuwait is one of the largest providers of development co-operation in the Gulf region, providing its assistance under the broad framework of its commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Kuwait’s official development assistance (ODA) has been increasing consistently over the past decade. To deliver its assistance, Kuwait established the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) in 1961, originally as an institution for development co-operation with other countries in the Arab region, although KFAED is now a global provider. KFAED – the first fund to be established in the Arab world – primarily provides concessional loans for development projects that are high priority to recipient countries, following a demand-driven approach.

Kuwait’s policy framework for development co-operation is anchored in its commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Kuwait’s activities mainly target projects in various sectors, notably agriculture, electricity, irrigation, industry, transport, telecommunications, water and sewerage, and health and education. Over the past years, most of the fund’s operations were geared towards assisting partner countries in achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, with a focus on eradicating poverty globally. Since its establishment, KFAED has disbursed over USD 17.9 billion in assistance to 107 countries, mostly low-income and least developed countries. These activities are channelled bilaterally, although Kuwait is also working with the multilateral system (e.g. the Islamic Development Bank, the World Bank, the United Nation’s Children Fund or the World Food Programme).

In 2018, Kuwait provided USD 838 million in ODA, equivalent to 0.52% of gross national income on a grant-equivalent basis, representing an increase of 29% in real terms over 2017. See the methodological notes for details on the definitions and statistical methodologies applied.

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In 2018, Kuwait provided the largest proportion of its ODA bilaterally. Gross bilateral ODA was 100% of total ODA. Kuwait did not report any ODA as core contributions to multilateral organisations.

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In 2018, Kuwait’s bilateral spending increased compared to the previous year. It provided over USD 2 billion of gross bilateral ODA, which represented an increase of 129.5% in real terms from 2017.

In 2018, country programmable aid was 100% of Kuwait’s gross bilateral ODA, compared to a non-DAC country average of 40%.

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Note: NGO: non-governmental organisation.

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

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In 2018, Kuwait’s bilateral ODA was primarily focused on Africa and Asia. USD 1.2 billion was allocated to Africa and USD 0.6 billion to Asia, accounting respectively for 60% and 29% of gross bilateral ODA.

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Bilateral ODA by recipient country

In 2018, 71% of gross bilateral ODA went to Kuwait’s top 10 recipients. There was no gross bilateral ODA unallocated by country.

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In 2018, least developed countries received 25.2% of Kuwait’s gross bilateral ODA (USD 511 million). This is higher than the DAC country average of 23.8%. Kuwait allocated 4.9% of gross bilateral ODA to small island developing states in 2018, equal to USD 99 million.

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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 1.2 billion of gross bilateral ODA in 2018 (58.5% of gross bilateral ODA). Learn more about support to fragile contexts on the States of Fragility platform.

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

In 2018, most of its bilateral ODA was allocated to transport and storage. Investments in this area accounted for 41.3% of bilateral ODA commitments (USD 407 million). This was followed with allocations to water and sanitation, 29% of Kuwait’s bilateral ODA (USD 287 million). Bilateral humanitarian aid amounted to USD 258 million (26% of bilateral ODA).

In 2018, Kuwait committed USD 407.7 million (41.4% of bilateral allocable aid) to promote aid for trade and improve developing countries’ trade performance and integration into the world economy in 2018.

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Kuwait’s Law No. 35 of 1961 created the legal basis for KFAED to act as an implementing agency in all developing countries on behalf of the Kuwaiti government. KFAED acts under the overall supervision of the Prime Minister, who in practice delegates this mandate to the Minister of Finance. Other ministries, public authorities and non-governmental organisations also contribute to promoting development internationally, notably the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which can also provide humanitarian assistance. The mandate of the fund was transferred to the Minster of Foreign Affairs in 2003.

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

Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development: https://www.kuwait-fund.org/en/web/kfund

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Kuwait: https://aid.mofa.gov.kw

Participant in the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC). Reporting to the OECD since 1970 and reporting activity-level data since 2011 on 2010 activities.

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.

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

© OECD 2020

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