Danish aid is set to increase by DKK 800 million, reaching DKK 13.595 billion in 2007, according to the proposed Finance Bill for 2007. Development Today has analysed the predicted disbursements in the bill up to 2010. (See Table) These show that the government wants to cut Danish aid to countries in Africa by 3 per cent over the coming five years. Total bilateral aid over the same period is to increase by 17 per cent.
Two of the eight priority recipients of Finnish aid, Zambia and Tanzania, are the big winners in the budget proposal for 2007. But increasing support to the other core Finnish recipients is not proving easy. In a year when Finland’s aid pie grows by 11 per cent, five of the eight priority countries will in fact receive less aid from Finland than they did in 2006.
The powerful President of the Norwegian oil giant Norsk Hydro Eivind Reiten warns against conflict of interest dilemmas related to oil companies becoming involved in Norwegian aid in the petroleum sector. Although positive to such an initiative, Reiten says one could imagine situations where local authorities did not dare to give Statoil and Hydro what they deserve due to fear of criticism.