Humanitarian, Emergency and Refugee Programs in 2008‑09 $319.6 million
On average Australia provides assistance to over 30 humanitarian and protracted emergency situations worldwide each year, through funding the work of effective Australian and international partners. Examples include International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and UNICEF emergency response and Australian non‑government organisation (NGO) peace building initiatives during post election violence in Kenya, the work of Australian NGOs and UN agencies responding to the cyclone and flooding in Bangladesh, and work by Australian NGOs following the April 2007 tsunami in Solomon Islands. Where geographical proximity presents an opportunity or local circumstances create a need Australia also provides direct material and logistics assistance in response to emergencies. An example is Australia's response to the 2007 floods in Papua New Guinea's Oro Province involving both logistics support from the Australian Defence Force and direct provision of Australian emergency food, shelter and other supplies.
The long-term effects of disasters and crises undermine growth prospects and hard‑won development gains — they destroy lives, livelihoods, essential infrastructure and communities; they impact upon schooling, food security, nutrition and health. Women and children suffer disproportionately. Where capacity to deliver services is low or insecurity prevails, vulnerability to hazards and conflict increases and poverty is exacerbated.
In addition to protecting vulnerable populations and promoting stability, Australian humanitarian action aims to facilitate effective disaster risk management. In focusing on risk identification, mitigation, preparedness, response and early recovery, the Australian Government seeks to address not only the symptoms of a crisis, but also the causes of vulnerability. Australia's approach is to work with effective national and international organisations to enhance partner countries' and their communities' capabilities to manage crises — becoming self reliant.
In response to the increasing risk of disasters and the cost to human lives and livelihoods, Australia's humanitarian program expanded in 2007‑08 to include a new four-year $93.3 million enhanced humanitarian response and disaster risk reduction program. This is designed to: enhance Australia's preparedness and response capabilities, including better equipped and trained response experts and updated store holdings; support partner governments and international organisations to reduce the impact of risk and better prepare for disasters; and undertake research and analysis to better target our interventions and support. Spending on Humanitarian, Emergency and Refugee Programs in 2008‑09 will be approximately 8.7 per cent of total estimated Australian ODA. Programs for 2008‑09 are shown in Table 9.
Table 9: Humanitarian, emergency and refugee programs in 2008‑09
Estimate 2008‑09 ($m)
|Humanitarian and Emergency Response 202.5||Emergency response and support for global, regional and country level humanitarian initiatives that help improve basic conditions of life, alleviate suffering, and maintain dignity of affected and displaced people.|
|International Committee of the Red Cross 14.5||Australia will continue to provide core support for key humanitarian agencies including the International Committee of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (ICRC). ICRC plays a key role responding to conflict and meeting the needs of conflict and crisis affected populations.|
UN Humanitarian Agencies 87.6
World Food Programme 57.5
Australia will continue to support the United Nations humanitarian response mechanisms, with an emphasis on effective and efficient UN agencies.
Australia will continue to provide core support for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) which plays a lead role in strengthening the UN response to humanitarian crises though coordination, policy development and advocacy of the UN humanitarian reform agenda.
Emergency food aid continues to be an important element of Australia's humanitarian program, and Australia will continue to provide core support for WFP in their key role as lead UN agency in humanitarian food assistance.
Australia will continue to support the UN's Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) which works to improve the speed and efficiency of funding access in the earliest days of a crisis response, as well as filling the gaps in funding for 'forgotten' emergencies.
Australia will continue to provide core support to UNHCR as the lead agency to assist refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs). The plight of refugees and IDPs requires a dedicated and mandated agency to meet the needs of those affected.
Australia will continue to support UNRWA to deliver services to over 4.4 million registered Palestinian refugees across its five fields of operation (the West Bank, Gaza, Jordon, Syria and Lebanon), through basic health and education assistance and by responding to humanitarian and emergency appeals.
|International Refugee Fund 15.0||Continued support to address the needs of people displaced by conflict and natural disasters through humanitarian programs that help improve conditions, alleviate suffering, and maintain dignity of displaced people. Eligible agencies such as UNHCR, International Organisation for Migration, ICRC, UNICEF, UNDP and OCHA are accessing this Fund.|
Estimated 2008‑09 funding for multilateral replenishments $175.0 million
Estimated 2008‑09 funding for UN, Commonwealth and other international organisations $175.1 million
Multilateral institutions and international organisations are central to the global development agenda and efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. Multilateral institutions and international organisations play an influential policy role often leading analysis and dialogue in key areas of development policy such as governance (World Bank, UNDP), health (WHO), HIV/AIDS (the Global Fund and UNAIDS), children (UNICEF), environment (Global Environment Facility) and female empowerment (UNIFEM). They also play an important role in development assistance coordination and delivery.
Engaging with effective multilateral institutions helps Australia to extend the reach of its own development assistance, to participate in development assistance activities on a scale and scope not possible bilaterally. The World Bank and Asian Development Bank are important, complimentary partners for the Australian development assistance program. Their comparative advantages include their convening power, knowledge products and program delivery expertise in many sectors.
Australia will continue to expand its cooperation with the multilateral development banks through specific country/regional initiatives such as the Pacific Regional Infrastructure Facility (page 28 refers), as well as global initiatives in emerging priority areas, for example relating to climate change. Australia continues to support the work of the multilateral development banks through regular replenishment of their concessional financing facilities.
Revitalising Australia's engagement with the United Nations is one of the three pillars of the Government's foreign policy. The United Nations is at the heart of global efforts to realise the Millennium Development Goals, working closely with donors to support developing countries to implement their national development plans. The development assistance program engages with selected UN agencies to eradicate poverty, achieve sustainable economic growth and improve the lives of millions in the Asia-Pacific region and globally. Direct support for key UN agencies will increase by $200 million over four years from 2008‑09 through a new United Nations Partnership for the Millennium Development Goals (see Box 9 on page 57).
Table 10: Assistance through multilateral institutions in 2008‑09
Estimate 2008‑09 ($m)
|World Bank (through the International Development Association) 87.5|
Negotiations for the International Development Association (IDA) 15 replenishment concluded in December 2007. Australia committed $583 million to this replenishment, which will be paid over nine years commencing in 2008‑09, increasing Australia's burden share in IDA from 1.46 to 1.80 per cent. Australia will also continue to pay commitments made under previous replenishments. In 2008‑09, Australia will also commit $26.6 million to meet its share of the costs of clearing World Bank debt arrears for countries with improved political and economic environments that are unable to clear the large amounts of arrears they owe to multilateral institutions. Payments against this commitment will begin in 2008‑09.
|Asian Development Bank (through the Asian Development Fund) 41.4|
Negotiations for the current Asian Development Fund (ADF) replenishment concluded in May 2008. Australia's commitment for ADFX will begin to be paid in 2009‑10. Payments in 2008‑09 reflect Australia's commitments made under previous replenishments.
|Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPC) 22.7|
The HIPC Initiative provides multilateral debt relief to the world's poorest and most heavily indebted countries that have demonstrated commitment to reform. Payments in 2008‑09 reflect Australia's commitments made under IDA15 and previous replenishments.
|Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative (MDRI) 0.0|
Australia will make a new commitment towards the World Bank's costs under MDRI in 2008‑09, which will be paid in 2016‑17 to 2018‑19. Australia paid $136.2 million in 2006‑07 for its share of the World Bank's costs during the first decade of the MDRI.
|Global Environment Facility (GEF) 19.6|
GEF supports projects in developing countries related to biodiversity, climate change, international waters, the ozone layer, land degradation and persistent organic pollutants.
|Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol (MPMF) 3.8|
Support will continue to be provided to the Multilateral Fund for the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, following the successful completion of its sixth replenishment.
|United Nations Development agencies 55.8
Core funding supports UN efforts to realise the Millennium Development Goals globally. Key areas of engagement focus on HIV/AIDS, basic education, health, and gender equality.
Expanded support focusing on child survival and development, basic education and gender equality, child protection, HIV/AIDS and children and policy advocacy and children.
Expanded support for lead role on global health and advocacy with partner countries to improve the delivery of health services and the systems that underpin it.
Expanded support for sexual and reproductive health initiatives
Expanded partnership to promote gender equitable development opportunities and outcomes
Expanded support for UNDP's central role in coordinating the UN development system and UN implementation of the Millennium Development Goals.
Expanded support for lead role in coordinating the global response to HIV including scaling up assistance towards universal access on treatment, care and support.
Support for development and associated activities by other UN agencies, including the UN Peacebuilding Commission, the UN Drug Control Program and the UN Environment Programme. Support for UN humanitarian agencies is outlined on page 54 under Humanitarian, Emergency and Refugee Programs.
Support for the development‑related work of the Commonwealth focuses primarily on the Commonwealth Fund for Technical Cooperation which provides small-scale, short-term technical assistance in a range of sectors.
|International environment programs 42.7|
Support for international environment programs including the International Tropical Timber Organisation, the Global Crop Diversity Trust, the International Forest Carbon Initiative, and international climate change adaptation funds.
|International health programs 63.0|
Support for key international health partners including the GAVI Alliance which focuses on strengthening immunisation and health systems, and the Global Fund Against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
A new United Nations Partnership for the Millennium Development Goals (outlined in Box 9) will support UN agency leadership of international efforts to reach the Millennium Development Goals.
|Box 9: UN Partnership for the Millennium Development Goals|
Australia will invest an additional $200 million over four years, with $10 million in 2008‑09, through strengthened partnerships with the United Nations Children's Fund, World Health Organisation, United Nations Population Fund, United Nations Development Fund for Women, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, boosting their capacity to lead global efforts to realise the Millennium Development Goals.
Increased multi-year core funding will help improve the performance of these agencies by ensuring greater financial stability and flexibility to focus on key result areas. These agencies have demonstrated their leadership and effectiveness in working towards achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
This funding will enable the Australian international development assistance program to contribute directly to UN projects on issues as diverse as increasing child literacy, improving maternal and child health and the empowerment of women in countries beyond our own region. Substantial increases in contributions to such global programs demonstrates Australia's commitment to the United Nations and the Millennium Development Goals and complements the direct work of the Australian development assistance program in the Asia‑Pacific region.
Community engagement in the international development assistance program will be advanced during 2008‑09 through enhanced partnerships with Australian non‑government organisations (NGOs). Australian NGOs are significant partners in the development assistance program due to their extensive experience, innovative approaches, linkages with communities in developing countries and their community engagement in Australia. AusAID's NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP) ($44.0 million in 2008‑09, an increase of 19.6 per cent on 2007‑08) recognises Australian community support for the work of NGOs by providing matching funding for NGOs' own activities.
Direct engagement of the Australian community in the development assistance program will continue to be promoted through volunteer programs, providing opportunities for Australians to volunteer overseas. People-to-people links contribute to better understanding of other cultures and global development issues. Volunteers also contribute by sharing their skills and time while on assignment. During 2008‑09 the volunteer program will also place volunteers in the technical and vocational and disability sectors.
Table 11: Community engagement programs in 2008‑09
Estimate 2008‑09 ($m)
|Non-government organisations 45.8|
Supports approximately 40 AusAID‑accredited NGOs that undertake effective community development, including through the AusAID NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP).
Supports annually approximately 850 new Australian volunteer placements in up to 25 developing countries including through the Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development (AYAD) program.
|Development research program 8.9|
A strengthened research program, in line with a new AusAID development research strategy, will continue to contribute to aid effectiveness with increased research funding, partnerships, capacity building and improved research communication. The 2007 pilot of the competitive research grants scheme, the Australian Development Research Awards, awarded 27 grants totalling $8.8 million over three years. In 2008, this scheme will expand, an AusAID research steering committee will be constituted, and new frameworks for commissioning, and evaluating research prepared.
|Public engagement and development education7.4|
Increasing awareness of development issues and the activities of the Australian development assistance program in Australia and overseas.
Supporting participants from partner countries to attend development‑oriented seminars in Australia and overseas under the International Seminar Support Scheme.
In 2008‑09, total ODA delivered through the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) is estimated at $51.9 million. Australia is working closely with partner countries to promote rural development through agricultural research and training. ACIAR develops projects that link Australian scientists with their counterparts in developing countries in the Asia-Pacific region to address priority agricultural problems, contributing to improving livelihoods, increasing agricultural productivity and sustainability. Of ACIAR's bilateral programs, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea will remain the largest.
Estimated ODA in 2008‑09 $51.9 million
Table 12: ACIAR programs in 2008‑09
ACIAR's bilateral programs with developing partner countries across the Asia‑Pacific region will focus on identified priorities across economics and farming systems, cropping systems, livestock production systems and natural resource management. ACIAR will focus its research through the development of larger multidisciplinary projects and by targeting 'lagging' regions within countries where poverty remains, and countries where poverty is widespread. The development and implementation of R&D projects reflect the overarching framework and initiatives of the AusAID Research Strategy, which guides program funded research delivery. Priorities for each partner country are developed in close collaboration with partner government policy makers, research institutions, and agricultural and natural resource systems managers and include:
Continued support for selected International Agricultural Research Centres operating under the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research umbrella, a strategic global partnership of countries, international and regional organisations and private foundations supporting research by 15 centres. ACIAR will provide support to selected centres through:
Development of the skills of partner country research scientists involved in ACIAR projects, through formal training courses, and informal project activities and interactions, including:
|Communicating research results||
ACIAR communicates the results of its research activities through electronic media and publications. These raise awareness of research and development activities and outcomes, helping link these to adoption, through
ACIAR's Program Linkages and Impact Assessment program will commission independent studies of the impacts arising from projects, and will work closely with the AusAID Office of Development Effectiveness:
Most of ACIAR's research expenditure in 2008‑09 will be in South East Asia (57 per cent), followed by Papua New Guinea and the Pacific (19 per cent), South Asia (17 per cent), North Asia (6 per cent) and Southern Africa (1 per cent). ACIAR's Annual Operational Plan provides further details of the Centre's priorities and programs for the 2008‑09 year.
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