Dutch Minister Proposes Shift in EU Aid Priorities

Dutch Minister for European Affairs and International Cooperation Ben Knapen visits a Dutch aid project in Rwanda. Knapen has called on the European Union to reduce the amount of aid it spends on China, Turkey, India and other emerging economies as well as adopt stricter rules on the provision of budget support. Photo by: Danielle Mbesherubusa / IFDC Photography

The European Union should reduce the amount of aid it spends on China, Turkey, India and other emerging economies as well as adopt stricter rules on the provision of budget support, according to Dutch Minister for European Affairs and International Cooperation Ben Knapen.

In a speech before the Netherlands’ House of Representatives, Knapen said the European Commission should focus its development efforts on the EU’s neighboring countries and to specialize in energy, agriculture and infrastructure.

Knapen has previously called on the EU to make its aid more effective and to avoid waste in its development program following the release of a report claiming that only less than half of EU foreign aid goes to the world’s poorest countries.

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About the author

  • Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.