Report 2020

Poland on the way to SDGs
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Goal 17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development

Official Development Assistance

Sustainable Development Goals have been set for the whole world, therefore attaining them requires the collaboration of many countries and extending special support to countries whose economies are less developed. The aid is offered through e.g. Official Development Assistance (ODA), which is the initiative of 30 highly developed countries that belong to the OECD Development Assistance Committee. Since 2005, the annual value of the ODA has increased by 22%, reaching over USD 150 billion, which constitutes 0.29% of the joint Gross National Income (GNI) of the donor countries. However, this figure is still much below the target amount – 0.7% of GNI, which the countries pledged to achieve by 2030.

Total value of Official Development Assistance (billion USD)

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2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
122.67 115.88 106.90 119.33 121.18 127.86 126.69 121.85 128.28 130.33 138.46 153.65 153.36 150.06 150.23

Official Development Assistance is granted in the framework of bilateral collaboration between donor and beneficiary countries, or multilateral collaboration carried out through international organisations. The largest part of the resources is transferred in the framework of bilateral cooperation, which totals over USD 105 billion (USD 95 billion in 2005), and constitutes approximately 70% of the global ODA. The beneficiaries of bilateral assistance are mostly African countries, which in 2018 received over USD 30 billion, i.e. nearly 29% of the global ODA, and Asian countries, which received USD 26 billion, i.e. 25% of the global ODA. The greatest part of development assistance is spent on the improvement of infrastructure and social services (over USD 46 billion), of which USD 16.1 billion is earmarked for the needs of governments and civic society, and USD 9.1 billion for education. A substantial part of the ODA is assigned to the improvement of the economic infrastructure (USD 21.9 billion) and to humanitarian aid (USD 14.7 billion).

However, multilateral collaboration is also becoming an increasingly popular form of providing aid. Its annual value has grown to approximately USD 45 billion, which constitutes about 30% of the global ODA, compared to 23% in 2005. The main global donor in the framework of the multilateral approach is the European Union, whose contribution constitutes about a third of the total ODA granted by international organisations (in 2018, the EU transferred over USD 15 billion abroad, which accounted for 34% of the global ODA).

Value of bilateral Official Development Assistance according to regions (billion USD)

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2005 2018
AFRICA 27.5 30.4
AMERICAS 5.6 6.9
ASIA 43.7 25.9
EUROPE 2.8 3.0
OCEANIA 0.1 0.3

Flows of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is an important form of transferring both capital and technologies from highly developed countries to those with a lower level of social and economic development. Since 2005, the value of the yearly global FDI has increased by over 60%, to approximately USD 1,540 billion. Investments located in developed countries account for over half of the global FDI, but their share has decreased since 2005, while the value of FDI flow to developing countries has increased from 35% to 44% of the global FDI over the same period. The remaining part of the global FDI (about 4%) goes to countries undergoing transformations. Among developing countries, those located in Asia receive the most of the invested capital (over 60%), over 20% goes to countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, and nearly 10% to African countries.

Total value of Foreign Direct Investment (billion USD)

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2005 2018
WORLD 947.7 1539.9
developed countries 585.8 800.2
developing countries 331.3 684.7
AFRICA 29.3 45.4
AMERICAS 207.7 460.9
Northern America 130.5 296.7
Latin America and the Caribbean 77.2 164.2
ASIA 237.2 517.7
EUROPE 500.3 473.1
OCEANIA -26.8 42.8

Polish development assistance

Development assistance, offered by Poland on the basis of the Development Cooperation Act of 16 September 2011 and Multiannual Development Cooperation Programmes, has been an integral part of Poland’s foreign policy. In recent years, its scope has been defined by the Multiannual Development Cooperation Programme for 2016-2020. The priority directions for the Polish development assistance have been the countries of the Eastern Partnership (Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine), and selected countries of Africa, Asia and the Near East (Ethiopia, Kenya, Lebanon, Myanmar, Palestine, Senegal, Tanzania and Uganda). According to the Programme, the assistance offered by Poland focused on six thematic areas, i.e. good governance, democracy and human rights, human capital, entrepreneurship and the private sector, sustainable agriculture and the development of rural areas, and environmental protection.

The main objective of activities undertaken by Poland is extending support to developing countries, especially the country’s partners, following the principles of the international solidarity. In the recent decade, the ODA provided by Poland, measured by the grant equivalent1, has increased over two-fold, to nearly PLN 3 billion. At the same time, the proportion of ODA to the gross national income has grown from 0.08% in 2010 to 0.12% at present, and is planned to further increase to 0.33% by 2030.

Total value of Polish ODA in 2019 according to the largest recipients (million PLN)

* The amount includes the payment of PLN 39.92 million to the EU Facility for Refugees in Turkey to support Syrian refugees.

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mln PLN
Ukraine 303.55
Belarus 150.29
Turkey* 51.61
Tanzania 39.05
India 29.05
Mongolia 27.23
China 20.52
Kenya 16.00
Iraq 13.26
Georgia 11.04
Moldova 10.62
Lebanon 8.55

The greatest part of the Polish development assistance (over 70%) has been distributed in the framework of multilateral collaboration. In this form of support, Poland assigned PLN 2.1 billion in 2019, i.e. twice as much as in 2012, to aiding developing countries. Most of these resources (PLN 1.8 billion) have been distributed by the European Union, and the remaining part through organisations operating within the United Nations System, regional development banks, and institutions belonging to the World Bank group.

In the framework of bilateral assistance (which accounts for 30% of the Polish ODA), the country has been transferring resources mostly to its priority countries (specified in the Multiannual Development Cooperation Programme) and other countries featuring on the list of the beneficiaries of the OECD Development Assistance Committee’s ODA. In 2019, Polish aid for these countries reached PLN 0.9 billion, i.e. over twice as much as in 2012. Over half of this amount was divided between Ukraine (PLN 0.3 billion) and Belarus (PLN 0.2 billion).

Almost 59% of the whole Polish ODA has been assigned to scholarships and costs related to education. The remaining part has been the source of financing several undertakings, including projects (15%), earmarked contributions to international institutions (11%), and loan agreements (10%).

1 The equivalent of a grant makes it possible to distinguish the element of donation in ODA loans. It is calculated on the basis of the current value of a loan as well as its future installments, using the discount rate.

Bilateral Poland Official Development Assistance by purpose in 2019 (%)

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scholarships and costs related to education 58.8
other projects 14.8
earmarked contributions to international institutions 10.6
loan agreements 10.2
costs of hosting refugees in Poland 2.6
technical support 1.7
administrative costs 1.0
global education 0.3

Macroeconomic stability

In order to be able to provide developing countries with stable and long-term financial aid, it is of key importance that the donor countries maintain their public finances in a good condition. In the EU, the necessary financial discipline is to be kept by the member states’ adherence to the Stability and Growth Pact, according to which the general government deficit should not exceed 3% of GDP, and the debt should not go beyond 60% of GDP. In the past, economic downturns caused countries to struggle to adhere to budget discipline and meet the two above-mentioned criteria at the same time; in many cases both the general government deficit and the debt significantly exceeded the reference values. As the economic situation improved, so did the condition of public finances, and in some countries record-low deficit or even a budget surplus was observed. Nevertheless, public debt in many countries still exceeds the permissible level of 60% of GDP.

Deficit of the general government sector (in % GDP)

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2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
EU-28 -6.4 -4.6 -4.3 -3.3 -2.9 -2.3 -1.7 -1.0 -0.7 -0.8
PL -7.4 -5.0 -3.8 -4.2 -3.6 -2.6 -2.4 -1.5 -0.2 -0.7

In Poland, the general government deficit has decreased from 7.4% of GDP in 2010 to 0.7% of GDP, which is slightly below the EU average (0.8% of GDP). The general government debt has fallen from 53.5% of GDP to 45.7%, the lowest level in the past decade (compared to the current EU average of 79.2% of GDP). Budget surpluses and a relatively low general government debt is observed in EU members such as Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Sweden, all of whom donate the largest amounts to development assistance in relation to their GNI.

Debt of the general government sector (in % GDP)

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2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
EU-28 79.5 82.0 84.4 86.3 86.9 84.9 83.8 82.0 80.3 79.2
PL 53.5 54.7 54.4 56.5 51.1 51.3 54.2 50.6 48.8 45.7

Raport 2020
Poland on the way to SDGs
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