Polish development cooperation – assistance far below our potential

We failed to create an effective program of Polish bilateral development aid with the objectives and results, adapted to the needs of our priority countries and harmonized with actions of other donors. There is an urgent need to elaborate realistic plans that will significantly increase both the volume and quality of Polish development aid over the next five years - stated Grupa Zagranica in the published report "Polish Development Cooperation 2012".

In relation to the declarations that Poland has made on the international forum, the volume of its development aid still remains at a very low level. The total value of Polish development aid in 2012 amounted to 437,7 million USD, which accounted for 0.09 % of GNI. This level is practically unchanged for five years. Observing this negative trend, it seems unrealistic to expect reaching the target of 0.33 % of GNI in 2015.

Polish ODA statistics show a lack of connection between the priority countries (listed in Multiannual development cooperation programme 2012-2015) and the largest recipients of Polish ODA, which include China - the largest individual country-recipient. China received over 40% of Polish bilateral development assistance in the form of preferential loans. Moreover, the Polish aid statistics - as in other European countries - are to a certain extent "inflated", which means they include funds, which in fact never reach developing countries.

Poland inflates the size of its assistance, including to ODA categories such as in-donor refugees cost, scholarships for foreign students from developing countries or - to the greatest extent - tied aid, mainly concessional loans. Grupa Zagranica, as well as CONCORD – European platform of NGDOs,  is critical to such approach.

Seventh annual report issued by the Grupa Zagranica, was launched together with a CONCORD AidWatch report during a debate "Polish development cooperation – do we help with sense?" on 12th of December. The guests of the debate were: Jan Hofmokl (Development Cooperation Department of PL MFA), Patryk Kugiel (Polish Institute of International Relation) and Marta Gontarska, Polish AidWatch Working Group representative.

Polish Development Cooperation. Report 2012 (only in Polish)