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  • EUROPEAN UNION

    Development Assistance Committee (DAC)

    PEER REVIEW 2012

    ORGANISATION FOR ECONOMIC CO-OPERATION AND

    DEVELOPMENT

  • 2 – FOREWORD

    This work is published on the responsibility of the Secretary-General of the OECD. The opinions

    expressed and arguments employed herein do not necessarily reflect the official views of the organisation

    or the governments of its member countries.

    This document and any map included herein are without prejudice to the status of or sovereignty over

    any territory, to the delimitation of international frontiers and boundaries and to the name of any

    territory, city or area.

  • FOREWORD – 3

    DAC PEER REVIEW OF THE EUROPEAN UNION–© OECD 2012

    The Peer Review Process

    The DAC conducts periodic reviews of the individual development co-operation efforts of DAC members. The policies and programmes of each member are critically examined approximately once every four or five years. Five members are examined annually. The OECD’s Development Co-operation Directorate provides analytical support and is responsible for developing and maintaining the conceptual framework within which the Peer Reviews are undertaken. The Peer Review is prepared by a team, consisting of representatives of the Secretariat working with officials from two DAC members who are designated as “examiners”. The country under review provides a memorandum setting out the main developments in its policies and programmes. Then the Secretariat and the examiners visit the capital to interview officials, parliamentarians, as well as civil society and NGO representatives of the donor country to obtain a first-hand insight into current issues surrounding the development co-operation efforts of the member concerned. Field visits assess how members are implementing the major DAC policies, principles and concerns, and review operations in recipient countries, particularly with regard to poverty reduction, sustainability, gender equality and other aspects of participatory development, and local aid co-ordination. The Secretariat then prepares a draft report on the member’s development co-operation which is the basis for the DAC review meeting at the OECD. At this meeting senior officials from the member under review respond to questions formulated by the Secretariat in association with the examiners. This review contains the Main Findings and Recommendations of the Development Assistance Committee and the report of the Secretariat. It was prepared with examiners from Japan and Norway for the Peer Review of the European Union on 28 March 2012.

    In order to achieve its aims the OECD has set up a number of specialised committees. One of these is the

    Development Assistance Committee, whose members have agreed to secure an expansion of aggregate

    volume of resources made available to developing countries and to improve their effectiveness. To this

    end, members periodically review together both the amount and the nature of their contributions to aid

    programmes, bilateral and multilateral, and consult each other on all other relevant aspects of their

    development assistance policies.

    The members of the Development Assistance Committee are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada,

    Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, the Netherlands,

    New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States

    and the European Union.

  • 4 – FOREWORD

    DAC PEER REVIEW OF THE EUROPEAN UNION–© OECD 2012

    European Union’s aid at a glance*

    *:The data on "ODA" flows and concessional assistance shown in this report for EU institutions from 2008 relate to grants only.

  • TABLE OF CONTENTS – 5

    Table of contents

    LIST OF ACRONYMS .................................................................................................................... 8

    European Union: Essential Glossary .............................................................................................. 9

    The DAC’S main findings and recommendations ....................................................................... 13

    Chapter 1. Strategic orientations .................................................................................................. 27

    The European Union: a major, unique donor with potential to be a strong global leader ............ 28 Strategic framework ...................................................................................................................... 32 Efforts in strengthening external partnerships .............................................................................. 36 Communicating and building public awareness and support ........................................................ 37 Future considerations .................................................................................................................... 39

    Chapter 2. Development beyond aid ............................................................................................. 43

    Policy coherence: enshrined in the Lisbon Treaty ........................................................................ 44 “Federator role”: a crucial need for high level support ................................................................. 44 Commission: a well structured approach, with potential for influencing policies further ............ 45 Aid and beyond: a lead role in promoting better financing for development ............................... 49 Future considerations .................................................................................................................... 51

    Chapter 3. Aid volumes, channels and allocations ...................................................................... 53

    “Federator role”: the challenge of meeting the 0.7% ODA/GNI target in a time of crisis ........... 54 Official development assistance managed by the EU institutions ................................................ 55 Geographic and sector allocations ................................................................................................ 56 Multilateral channel: becoming more strategic ............................................................................. 60 Future considerations .................................................................................................................... 61

    Chapter 4. Organisation and management .................................................................................. 65

    Progress since the last peer review ............................................................................................... 66 The EU institutions in flux: managing change to realise potential ............................................... 66 The need to invest in knowledge .................................................................................................. 68 Devolution has been a success on which the EU should build further ......................................... 69 Finding ways to streamline and simplify programming processes ............................................... 70 The approach to monitoring is thorough but could be more focused on development results ..... 71 The EU has built a strong basis for evaluation and is seeking to improve its impact ................... 73 Future considerations .................................................................................................................... 73

    Chapter 5. Aid effectiveness and results....................................................................................... 75

    Progress since the last peer review ............................................................................................... 76 An important global player in efforts to make development co-operation more effective ........... 76

  • 6 – TABLE OF CONTENTS

    DAC PEER REVIEW OF THE EUROPEAN UNION–© OECD 2012

    The challenge of meeting ambitions of the EU’s “federating” role on aid effectiveness ............. 76 As a donor: mixed progress on making aid managed by the Commission more effective ........... 79 Going forward: consolidating progress and responding to global development challenges ......... 84 Future considerations .................................................................................................................... 85

    Chapter 6. Humanitarian assistance ............................................................................................ 87

    Progress on the 2007 peer review recommendations .................................................................... 88 A strong policy framework, but challenges remain in countries emerging from crisis ................ 88 More than a traditional donor – delivering programmes, not just funds ....................................... 92 Promoting humanitarian issues across the Commission, with Member States, and in the field ... 95 The need to reduce cumbersome procedures to improve programming ....................................... 98 Future considerations .................................................................................................................... 99

    BIBLIOGRAPHY .......................................................................................................................... 103

    Annex A Progress since the 2007 DAC peer revi

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