The Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) manages the majority of Australia’s aid program. Other government agencies, such as the Australian Federal Police, help deliver the aid program too.
Why we give aid?
The fundamental purpose of Australian aid is to help people in developing countries overcome poverty. This also serves Australia’s national interests by promoting stability and prosperity in our region and beyond. We focus our effort in areas where Australia can make a difference and where our resources can most effectively and efficiently be deployed.
Australian aid has helped our neighbours and countries further abroad to develop, and our aid program continues to grow. For example, Australian aid has wiped out polio from the Pacific. Australian aid has seen more than 1.5 million children immunized against measles and polio in Papua New Guinea.
We helped build the first bridge across the Mekong River in East Asia, boosting economic opportunities for millions of people living in the region. And our water supply and sanitation programs are providing clean water for nearly 500,000 people in Tanzania, South Africa, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
Where we give aid?
Australia’s aid program focuses on the Asia Pacific region. We are internationally recognised for our leading role in the region, particularly in PNG and the Pacific. Our aid is even more important given two-thirds of the world’s poor—some 800 million people—live in the Asia Pacific, yet they receive less than one third of global aid. Australia also provides assistance to Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean. Our aid to Africa has increased significantly in recent years and now represents around five per cent of the aid program. See Where We Give Aid—World map
The Government is committed to scaling up our aid effort so that it reaches 0.5 per cent of Gross National Income (GNI) by 2015–16. This will, subject to future levels of economic growth, see the aid budget almost double to around $8 billion by 2015–16.
The Government has announced a new policy for Australia’s aid program, An Effective Aid Program for Australia: Making a real difference—Delivering real results. Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd released the policy in July 2011 in response to the Government-commissioned Independent Review of Aid Effectiveness. The policy centres on delivering real results for poor people in developing countries by maximising the effectiveness of Australia’s aid. To find out more about Australia’s new aid policy please visit our website.
Want more information?
For more details on Australia’s aid program please spend some time on our website. There is a large amount of information available for those interested in:
- How Australia delivers aid
- AusAID country programs
- AusAID aid themes
- AusAID funded development research
- Australia’s new aid transparency charter
- A career at AusAID