Turkey’s aid doubled in 2012

by Mariella Di Ciommo

Turkey gave double the amount of official development assistance (ODA) in 2012 (US$2.6 billion) as in 2011 (US$1.3 billion). Most of this increase went to Syria, which received US$1 billion. While Turkey is an emerging source of development cooperation, it was the largest provider of ODA in 2012. Initial 2013 data suggests Turkey’s ODA has risen further.

Turkey is hosting a United Nations Development Programme international development cooperation conference focusing on emerging development cooperation providers.

Turkey gave more ODA in 2012 than did Belgium (US$2.5 billion) and Spain (US$2.2 billion). The vast majority (96%) of Turkey’s ODA is bilateral: allocated to specific countries, rather than to multilaterals. Preliminary data for 2013 suggests that Turkey’s aid will reach US$3.3 billion.*

Turkey’s aid has tended to be concentrated in the Middle East and the South & Central Asia regions. These regions received 46% and 18% of Turkey’s bilateral aid respectively in 2012.

The share of Turkey’s ODA going to North Africa also increased, the largest increase for any region in 2012 (by 54 times), to reach 24% of bilateral aid (US$570 million).

Syria became the largest recipient of Turkey’s ODA in 2012, supplanting Pakistan. The conflict in Syria is a likely factor behind the six-fold increase of aid to the country in 2012 (to US$1 billion). Egypt, also facing internal issues, was the second largest recipient in 2012, receiving half the amount given to Syria (US$507 million).

Along with several other emerging donors, Turkey reports ODA to the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee (DAC) and has been offered membership but it is not yet a member. Non-DAC donors are not compelled to report their ODA by sectors, although the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait do report project details. The data for Turkey would help inform how the growing aid budget is being used.

Data is available in Excel and CSV format.


Gross disbursements of ODA, 2005-2012, in constant 2013 prices

* These are preliminary data and refer to net disbursements. To date, Turkey’s net and gross disbursements have been identical.


OECD DAC database, data downloaded 9 April 2014. Also see our report Development Cooperation for the Future (April 2014)