Development finance topics

We help donors and recipients understand where development finance is expected and most needed so that they can better plan and co-ordinate.

Our insights, analysis and policy recommendations

Aid for trade

The Aid for Trade Initiative has allowed for the active engagement of a large number of organisations and agencies in helping developing countries and especially the least developed build the infrastructure and supply-side capacity they need to connect to regional and global markets and improve their trade performance.

We track aid-for-trade flows and share good practice so that developing countries can capitalise on the opportunities of international trade.

More about aid for trade

Aid fragmentation and orphans

Fragmentation occurs when there are too many donors giving too little aid to too many countries. This can seriously impair the effectiveness of aid.

The current pattern of how aid is delivered and received shows that aid is splintered across too many donors, each with their own processes and priorities, often working in overlapping relationships with each other.

Founded on the OECD-DAC work on fragmentation, the areas where aid overlaps are commonly referred to as "aid darlings", while the areas where there are aid gaps are called "aid orphans".

More about aid fragmentation and aid orphans

Development finance of countries beyond the DAC

Emerging providers of development finance and other countries that are not members of the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) have an increasingly important role in financing development co-operation. This generates a stronger need for transparency on their development co-operation programmes.

Statistics, analyses and information on reporting by these countries to the OECD are available here. Estimates are published on countries that do not provide the OECD with data.

More about development finance of countries beyond the DAC

Ensuring efficient and targeted resources to countries most in need

Because ODA is a scarce resource for financing development, it is important to ensure it reaches the countries and people that need it most. The DAC is keen to promote a more effective distribution of ODA in line with international commitments and pledges designed to ensure that no country -- including least developed countries (LDCs), low-income countries (LICs), small island developing states (SIDS), land-locked developing countries (LLDCs) and fragile and conflict-affected states – is left behind.

More about ensuring efficient and targeted resources to countries most in need

Global aid prospects and projections

Unpredictable aid loses 15-20% of its value according to recent studies. Developing countries need accurate information on future resources in order to plan better over the medium to long term. Donors need an accurate picture of resource flows in order to harmonise their efforts. Put together, unpredictable aid makes it harder for all partners to achieve sustainable development results.

Making aid more predictable is a priority. The OECD DAC conducts an annual survey of donors' spending plans for the years ahead and prepares the Outlook on aid report based on the findings.

More about predictability

Multilateral Aid

The OECD monitors development co-operation flows channelled through multilateral organisations and shares good practice to improve support to developing countries.

Over 200 multilateral organisations collectively receive about 40% of official development assistance and using these funds effectively will be fundamental in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

More about multilateral aid

Private sector

The OECD-DAC is playing a key role to ensure that the private sector contributes to the delivery of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This includes leveraging private investment for the SDGs and improving the quality of this investment.

Statistical reports by sector and cross-cutting themes


Transparency is critical to ensure accountability between development partners and the intended beneficiaries of development. Transparent practices helps to ensure that funds reach their intended targets and results are achieved.

 More about transparency

The OECD DAC works towards a successful "transparency transformation" by:

  • developing instruments to help governments translate transparency into tangible improvements
  • supporting e-government and internet-based technologies and applications
  • providing regular reviews of development partner and donor countries, and
  • promoting greater transparency as a means to fight corruption.

Small Island Developing States (SIDS)

Because ODA is a scarce resource for financing development, it is important to ensure it reaches the countries and people that need it most. The OECD provides statistical data and policy analysis on concessional finance to Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) to enhance access to and quality of development finance to countries most in need and support the development of financial instruments and approaches that are tailored to SIDS’ specific circumstances and needs.

More about SIDS