Over its 60 year history of development co-operation, the Netherlands has earned itself a well deserved reputation for responding positively and creatively to challenges and setting trends for new approaches. It is one of only five DAC members to have achieved the United Nations (UN) target of allocating 0.7% of its national income as official development assistance (ODA). Since 1975 it has surpassed this target every year.
The Netherlands is now revising its approach to development co-operation, formulating new policies and strategies to respond better to a rapidly-changing world. While retaining its emphasis on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the focus of Dutch aid is shifting away from social development towards economic sectors, supporting the self-reliance of developing countries and promoting the relationships between development objectives; global public goods, such as climate policy or protecting biodiversity; and Dutch national interests.