What’s the future of official development assistance?
Not just rich countries giving to the poor — but rather engaging emerging donors like China and leveraging the private sector to benefit from its much larger financial flows to raise enough funds to truly eradicate poverty around the world, Erik Solheim, chair of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, told Devex Editor Rolf Rosenkranz at the European Development Days in Brussels.
“Historically, of course development [cooperation] was North America, Europe, Japan assisting poor people out in the rest of the world. That’s long, long back in the past,” Solheim said. “What we need now is a conversation with all providers of assistance, what are the right policies, how can we do it, how can we mobilize the right resources.”
Although the former Danish development minister admitted that in the future most ODA will continue to come from rich nations, more South-South providers such as China are taking center stage. He stressed that OECD wants to be a part of this through a global discussion on standards and best practices that not only includes Development Assistance Committee members but also these emerging donors, among which he mentioned Turkey and Chile.
“[It’s a] double process of reaching out to others while enlarging our own club,” Solheim said, adding that “ODA is important, but it can never be enough to eradicate poverty.”
Watch the full video above for more insights from the OECD chair, who wants the organization to debate less about itself and more about the people it aims to help.
Devex was at the European Development Days 2013. Check out our coverage of Europe’s leading global development event of the year.