External assistance to agriculture

The 2012 FAO Statistical Yearbook highlights how Sub-Saharan Africa is the beneficiary of the highest rates of Official Development Assistance (ODA) per capita, where ODA averages 28 percent of total agricultural spending.

Sub-Saharan Africa beneficiary to highest rates of official development assistance

Source: UNCTAD

Resource-poor and income-poor countries are heavily constrained by their limited capacity to mobilize domestic resources as well as to attract external resources – apart from those official aid flows aimed at sustaining a minimum level of investment that prevents the agricultural development process from stalling altogether. For this reason, relationships with external actors - traditional aid donors and new development partners from emerging economies -  are essential to addressing the domestic resource gap (the distance between domestic savings and investment).

External Assistance to Agriculture (EAA)1 is the commitments made by bilateral and multilateral donors to the developing countries and countries in transition for the development of agriculture. EAA statistics are available from 1974 and offer an overview of the investments made to agriculture and rural development by bilateral and multilateral donors to Developing Countries.

Growth rates of multilateral and bilateral donor commitments (1974-2008)

Growth rates of Multilateral & Bilateral Donors Commitments 1974-2008

1 EAA consists of data on commitments from Development Assistance Committee (DAC), OPEC the World Bank, Asian and African Regional Development Banks, UNDP, FAO, CGIAR, IFAD. The data does not cover some of the donors like EEC, CMEA and some of the regional banks due to availability of data. The assistance also does not cover food aid and other technical cooperation provided in kind. The term “Agriculture” is used in broad sense to cover agriculture, forestry, fisheries, land & water, agro-industries, environment, manufacturing of agricultural inputs & machineries, regional & river development and rural development.