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Pursuant to the Development Cooperation Act, which came into force on 1 January 2012, Polish Development Cooperation is implemented in line with the Multiannual development cooperation programme for a period of minimum 4 years. Under the Act, development cooperation is defined as all actions taken by government administration agencies to provide developing countries with development and humanitarian aid. The definition also covers the implementation of educational activities aimed at raising awareness and understanding of global issues and interdependencies.
Poland’s development cooperation is implemented in the form of bilateral assistance provided through non-governmental organisations, public sector institutions, the Polish Academy of Sciences and its organisational units, universities and in the form of multilateral assistance provided through international organisations.
Bilateral assistance is conducted through specific development projects in partner countries. Pursuant to the Multiannual development cooperation programme in 2016-2020, Polish development cooperation is implemented in two groups of priority countries. The first group consists of four Eastern Partnership countries: Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. In terms of their development needs, these countries have much in common: the consequences of the command-and-quota economy, numerous transitional challenges, and an agricultural sector that is uncompetitive with respect to EU economies. In these countries Poland offers its transformation experiences. The second group comprises selected countries with high poverty levels and/or countries facing significant transformation challenges. The group consists of four african countries (Ethiopia, Kenya, Senegal and Tanzania), Myanmar and the Palestine (West Bank and Gaza Strip).
Bilateral assistance is implemented through specific development projects financed by the MFA and other ministries. Projects financed by the MFA are selected either through annual call for proposals addressed to non-governmental organisations, central and local government institutions, universities and research institutes or in a non-competitive procedure for central government institutions and its organizational units. The MFA finances projects implemented by Polish embassies in the framework of the Small Grants System. Development cooperation activities may be implemented by the Solidarity Fund PL.
Other forms of development cooperation provided in the framework of the "Polish Aid" Programme include: grants for carrying out voluntary service projects under the "Polish Aid Volunteering Programme", operations of the Eastern Partnership Academy of Public Administration and financing scholarship programs.
For the years 2016-2020, the Multiannual Development Cooperation Programme defines six cross-cutting thematic areas, namely:
- good governance,
- democracy and human rights,
- human capital,
- entrepreneurship and private sector,
- sustainable agriculture and rural development,
- environment protection.
Multilateral assistance is provided through specialised international organisations and institutions. Through annual payments and voluntary contributions Poland supports development and humanitarian assistance via selected organisations (mainly the EU, the UN and the OECD). Poland co-finances projects and programmes focusing on eradication of poverty, systemic transformation, human rights and democracy, combating contagious diseases, improving health care, access to education, and humanitarian assistance provided to the victims of natural disasters and conflicts in developing countries.
Multilateral assistance represents approximately 75% of Poland’s overall development cooperation funds. The biggest part of this volume consists of contribution to the European Union general budget towards development cooperation. Bilateral cooperation encompasses the remainder.
In its multilateral cooperation, the MFA partners with many institutions, the most important of which are:
- the European Union;
- the UN and its specialised agencies;
- the OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development).
When Poland joined these organisations (the UN – 1945, OECD – 1996, UE – 2004), it assumed responsibilities for development assistance. By financing the development activities of these organisations and participating in a strategic dialogue on development assistance on their fora, Poland has the right to shape the directions, goals and methods of global assistance policy.
The largest part of our country's annual contributions to multilateral assistance, supplied in the framework of the Official Development Assistance (ODA) is made of Polish EU budget contribution, transferred by the Ministry of Finance, to the implementation of the EU development and humanitarian policy. Each year, the MFA also makes payments from the state budget’s special purpose reserve to multilateral development funds, aid organisations and programmes.
Pursuant to the 2003 Treaty of Accession of the Republic of Poland to the European Union, as well as provisions of the 2000 Cotonou Agreement between the ACP countries and the European Union and its Member States, the Republic of Poland is obligated to participate in the financing of the European Development Fund, beginning with its 10th edition, which covers the years 2008-2013. Polish participation in the 10th EDF was set at 294.866 milion EUR according to a contribution key of 1.3%. Polish contribution to the 11th EDF for the period 2014-2020 will amount to 612 359 140 EUR, which corresponds to a contribution key of 2.00734%.
Detailed data on financial resources earmarked by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for actions in the field of development and humanitarian aid is published in annual reports "Poland's development cooperation" and on the website "Polish aid in figures".See more
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