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Development aid from industrialised nations stable in 2017

PARIS, April 9 (KUNA) -- Aid flows to needy nations from the world's most industrialised countries was relatively stable in 2017 at USD 146.6 billion, with less money spent on refugees inside donor nations but more of the aid going to the globe's poorest countries, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) said on Monday.
As is customary, the OECD donors again did not reach UN-recommended targets for this kind of assistance to poor countries. Refugees were the big losers in aid disbursements, according to the latest OECD report, and funds spent on refugees declined 13.6 percent last year to USD 14.2 billion.
The report suggested that the drop in financing for refuges was largely due to a fall off in numbers of arrivals.
The European Union and other destinations for refugees have tightened border controls and are also urging departure countries to halt the flow of migrants and refugees.
Outside of the refugee costs, Official Development Assistance (ODA) rose in real terms by 1.1 percent when compared with 2016.
In 2017, bilateral aid to least-developed countries rose 4.0 percent to USD 26 billion, while overall aid to Africa also rose 3.0 percent to USD 29 billion. Sub-Saharan aid flows were also up 3.0 percent at USD 25 billion while humanitarian assistance was 6.1 percent higher at USD 15.5 billion, the OECD noted.
The industrialised nations in the Development Aid Committee of the OECD gave only 0.31 percent of Gross National Income (GNI) to official aid last year, down from 0.32 percent in 2016.
The United Nations target for ODA contributions is 0.7 percent of GNI but only a handful of OECD countries, mainly the Nordic members, regularly attain that target. (end) jk