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European Commission

MEMO

Brussels, 3 April 2013

Publication of preliminary data on Official Development Assistance, 2012

Are there differences of methodology between the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the EU? How do we compare data?

The OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) is the ultimate authority that decides if certain expenditure reported to it (by member states or other donors) qualifies as Official Development Assistance (ODA). The DAC is currently composed of 24 members: Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, USA, EU15 countries and the EU.

6 EU Member States (i.e., the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Poland, Slovak Republic and Slovenia) are non-DAC OECD members, while another 6 (Bulgaria, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta and Romania) are neither OECD nor DAC Members.

The DAC press release collects and presents individual data for DAC members and non-DAC OECD members, thereby covering the individual ODA performance of 21 EU Member States. In addition, based on the data gathered by the EU Commission for 2013 EU Accountability Report on Financing for Development, DAC presents the collective outcome of the 27 EU Member States, without publishing the individual performance of the six EU Member States that are not part of the OECD.

The Commission presents individual data on all EU Member States, including on those whose data are not available through DAC. Otherwise the data published by the OECD and by the Commission are identical. The EU uses the same current price figures as presented by DAC in the publication of preliminary figures for 2012, reconverted from USD to EUR using the DAC exchange rate.

There are two differences in analysing the changes in ODA volumes:

  • The Commission presents and analyses data in Euro values, while the DAC uses US Dollars. As the Euro depreciated by about 8% against the US Dollar between 2011 and 2012, the same amount of EUR converted to USD would give a lower figure in 2012 than in 2011. Therefore DAC data in USD in current prices would show a bigger decrease in EU27 ODA (from $73.4 to $65.0 billion) while the EU presentation in EUR shows a smaller decline (from €52.8 to €50.5 billion). This exchange rate difference in evaluation applies for both global figures and individual Member States.

  • The Commission uses values in nominal terms (current prices) for presenting changes. The DAC presents data both in constant prices and nominal terms, but calculates changes only in constant prices and exchange rates.

Note that ODA to GNI ratios are not affected by the above differences.

In addition to the EU27 ODA that is also presented by the DAC, the EU also presents the EU collective ODA, which is a sum of the ODA reported by the EU Member States and the additional ODA provided by the EU institutions. Most of the EU institutions' ODA spending is, for the purposes of ODA/GNI reporting, imputed to EU Member States, i.e. Member States data include part of the institutions' spending. The ODA provided through European Investment Bank (EIB) own resources (€ 4,5bn) is not imputed to Member States and is additional to the Member States’ ODA.

Why is the data preliminary?

The data presented is based on information that OECD and EU Commission have received from Member States in recent weeks. Additional information on the details of funds and programmes for 2012 will be reported to and checked by DAC over the course of 2013. Final 2012 ODA figures with detailed breakdown will be published by OECD DAC in December 2013.

Table 1: EU Official Development Assistance 2004-2012

Note – 2012 ODA data for France is a DAC Secretariat estimate.

Table 2: EU ODA 2011-2015

Note: 2012 ODA data for France is a DAC Secretariat estimate. Other shaded cells contain projections prepared by the European Commission. All other estimates have been provided by Member States.

Graph 1: State of individual progress towards the 2015 EU targets

Graph 2: Evolution of ODA from EU Member States

Graph 3: Comparison of EU ODA other G7 donors

Source: OECD/ DAC data for 1995 – 2012 when available; Commission simulation based on information provided by EU Member States or based on agreed EU commitments 2015.


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