“Brazil is fast becoming one the world’s biggest providers of help to poor countries”
According to the Economist, total official aid figures for Brazil, obtained from the Brazilian’s Co-operation Agency (ABC) are relatively low with only US$30 million budgeted in 2010. However, they also quote estimates by Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and Canada’s International Development Research Centre which suggest that Brazil could spend nearly fifteen times this amount on domestic technical assistance programmes alone. The Economist highlights additional funds from Brazil in 2010 which take their total aid contributions closer to US$4 billion, ranking it alongside Sweden and Canada. Additional aid from Brazil includes US$30 million specifically for humanitarian aid; US$25 million to the UNDP; US$300 million to the World Food Programme; US$10 million Gaza and US$350 million to Haiti.
Whilst there are different figures from the various sources on Brazil’s actual aid contributions (an issue that really has to be addressed) it is clear that donors outside of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Development Assistance Committee (DAC) reporting system, such as Brazil, are playing an ever increasing role in both development and humanitarian funding. The article suggests that for recipients, Brazil’s approach to aid delivery is unique as it focuses specifically on social development and agricultural programmes and has fewer conditions. However, Brazil’s role as ‘a donor’ continues to be unclear because it still receives development aid itself, which, the Economist suggests, “is eroding the distinction between donors and recipients, thus undermining the old system of donor-dictated, top-down aid.” The article concludes that Brazil may well be the aid model of the future………watch this space!