An investigation by the Swedish National Audit Office of aid channelled through NGOs finds irregularities in all the projects reviewed. Sida is harshly criticised for allowing the misuse of aid funds to continue undetected.
Norway has terminated six aid programmes in Ethiopia and expansion of seven others has been stopped. Aid is cut by NOK 25 million this year. The move comes after Ethiopia kicked out six of nine Norwegian diplomats last August.
The government seeks to strengthen three areas in Swedish aid: democracy and human rights, gender equality and women’s rights, and the environment and climate change. Human rights will be pursued aggressively, with explicit exit options if recipient countries fail to comply.
Fewer recipient countries, fewer sectors and bigger programs, is the Swedish governments’ medicine for making aid more efficient. “We need to create a strong result-oriented culture," it states in the budget proposition for next year.
When the Red-Green Norwegian government took office two years ago, it promised to increase funding to the UN at the expense of the World Bank. Now Development Minister Erik Solheim is doing the opposite.
At the UN Summit in New York, Sweden’s Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt announces the establishment of a Commission on Climate Change and Development to be chaired by Development Minister Gunilla Carlsson.