New NZ fund to replace Sustainable Development Fund for NGOs

New Zealand aid program staff visit school children in Cambodia. New Zealand is working on a new funding scheme for promoting sustainable development. Photo by: New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

New Zealand is working on a new fund aimed at promoting sustainable development.

The new funding scheme, NZ Partnerships for International Development, is a contestable fund for nongovernmental organizations, and state and private business actors working in developing countries. It will replace the Sustainable Development Fund and the State Sector Development Partnerships Fund by late 2012.

The fund pretty much follows the Sustainable Development Fund, except that it will no longer be only for NGOs. Countries in the Pacific will still be the main focus of the fund and the current allocations stand: 75 percent for Pacific countries, 15 percent for Southeast Asia and 10 percent for other regions.

The fund also proposes to adopt the matched funding approach, following the proportions the Sustainable Development Fund set for NGOs per region. For example, funding for NGO programs in the Pacific will still be 4 New Zealand dollars ($3.26) for every NZ$1 from NGOs. Also, the fund will continue to prioritize projects amounting to more than NZ$500,000, allocating 10 percent of total funds to projects below said amount.

The fund will remain open only to New Zealand-based organizations — again, like in the Sustainable Development Fund. But NGOs fear they may actually receive less as more actors will be sharing the pie, and also since the country’s aid budget was reduced from NZ$586 million in 2011 to NZ$570 million this year.

The fund is currently in the consultation process. Once launched, it plans to have two funding rounds a year, with total annual funding estimated to reach NZ$40 million.

Projects currently being financed by the two other funds will continue to receive support until they are completed.

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About the author

  • Jenny Lei Ravelo

    Jenny Lei Ravelo is a Devex Senior Reporter based in Manila. She covers global health, with a particular focus on the World Health Organization, and other development and humanitarian aid trends in Asia Pacific. Prior to Devex, she wrote for ABS-CBN, one of the largest broadcasting networks in the Philippines, and was a copy editor for various international scientific journals. She received her journalism degree from the University of Santo Tomas.