Portugal’s official development assistance for this year will be at the same level as that in 2010, despite Europe’s lingering financial crisis, according to Manuel Correia, president of the Portuguese Institute for Development Support, or IPAD.
Portuguese ODA reached 0.23 percent of the gross domestic product last year, down from 0.27 percent in 2009. IPAD manages Portugal’s ODA.
“The financial crisis has had little impact on the funds that Portugal dedicates to cooperation. For 2011, independently of budget restrictions, the funds earmarked for IPAD are the same as in 2010,” Correia told the Inter Press Service.
Which nations will benefit from Portuguese aid? Correia said his government is prioritizing Mozambique, Cape Verde and East Timor, “closely followed” by Guinea Bissau and Sao Tome and Principe.
“The case of Angola is unique, because we are in a phase in which the projects are now being co-financed at a level of 50 percent,” he added.
Focus sectors, meanwhile, include education and training, as well as health.
“If you combine education and training at different levels and through the broadest range of ministries, you will see the fundamental objective of our development aid. In this framework, the training of teachers in different countries is one of the essential elements today,” Correia said.