Emerging donors giving on one hand, receiving on the other

By Lorenzo Piccio 08 May 2015

South African President Jacob Zuma shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin. South Africa and Russia are two emerging donors that continue to receive foreign aid. Photo by: GCIS / CC BY-ND

Despite signs of slowing growth, global development’s emerging donors have seen steady and sustained increases in their foreign aid budgets in recent years. That’s just one of the key findings from last week’s Devex research report, which examined the budgets, priorities and practices of eight emerging donors: the BRICS economies, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and South Korea.

Yet even as these up-and-coming development players tout their foreign aid largesse as proof positive of their newfound economic standing, five of the donors we profiled actually continue to receive substantial amounts of foreign aid: Brazil, India, South Africa, Turkey and Russia.

Below, Devex takes a closer look at foreign aid flows to these five emerging donors. If incoming ODA figures from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development are compared with government figures for outgoing aid, then only South Africa and India seem to receive more aid than they give out.

It’s worth noting that while each of the five emerging donors that receive foreign aid still face pressing development challenges at home, not a single one is considered dependent on external assistance. In 2013, South Africa’s ODA receipts accounted for only 0.4 percent of its national income, already the highest level among the five countries.

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About the author

Lorenzo Piccio@lorenzopiccio

Lorenzo is a contributing analyst for Devex. Previously Devex's senior analyst for development finance in Manila, he is currently an MA candidate in international economics and international development at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington. Lorenzo holds a bachelor's degree in government and social studies from Wesleyan University.

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