Development cooperation is an essential element of Ireland’s foreign policy and national presence overseas, enabling us to respond to complex human needs and humanitarian crises around the world.
In the Programme for Government, the Government committed to making incremental, sustainable progress towards achieving the UN target of 0.7% of Gross National Income (GNI) to Official Development Assistance (ODA) by 2030. In making this commitment, the Government recognised that reaching 0.7% will require a significant expansion in ODA volumes over the next decade and that, at times, difficult choices would be required between competing priorities.
Progress is being made toward 0.7%. From 2014 to 2020 Ireland's allocations to ODA grew from €614 million to almost €838 million, an increase of almost €21 million on the 2019 budget allocation and the sixth consecutive year allocations to ODA were increased. On Budget day October 2019, it was predicted that the GNI/ODA percentage would be in the region of 0.31%.
Further sustained, managed increments will be required to deliver on the 0.7% commitment by 2030, taking into consideration the range of demands across Government and the capacity of the public finances to meet them. It is critical that the Government grows our ODA programme in a steady, measured and graduated manner, ensuring that we protect and nurture the good reputation and quality of our work.