Norway to limit financial aid to fewer countries 

PENGER

The government has proposed to reduce the number of countries who receive financial aid. Norway currently gives aid to 116 out of 148 countries that are approved recipients.

«We have to concentrate the aid to the areas where it has the biggest effect,» says State Secretary Hans Brattskar (The Conservative Party/Høyre) to Aftenposten.

Some organizations have said that they are concerned about how the cuts will affect their organization, while others see it as a necessary measure in order to concentrate the total NOK 33 billion in financial aid.

Svein Bæra, head of the civil society department in Norad, says that Norad emphasizes documented results, and that Norwegian aid results in added value. «We have to put in more resources where progress is possible, and phase out of the areas where it is not possible to succeed,» Bæra explains.

The Norwegian Church Aid has already cut their presence from 65 to 25 countries. «Concentration is needed, but it will harm everybody. we all have our ‘babies,’» says Wenche Fone in the Norwegian Church Aid.

Brattskar does not want to comment on exactly how many countries that will be cut from the list of aid recipients. However, he thinks that the current number of 116 countries needs to be reduced because there is a lack of control of whether the aid actually has an effect.

«The OECD has stated in two reports that the Norwegian aid is spread too thin. There are only 32 possible countries that we are currently not giving aid to,» he says. «The aid we give today is too fragmented, and it is hard to document the results.»

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