Fighting poverty together: a comprehensive development policy [White Paper on Norwegian development policy]

Fighting poverty together: a comprehensive development policy [White Paper on Norwegian development policy]

White Paper on Norwegian development policy

This white paper is the first report to the Storting on development policy to be submitted for eight years. The report takes the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) as its starting point. The paper argues for activity in 4 clear areas:

  • Global partnership: fair trade and more debt relief
  • Donor reform: more, and better, development assistance and putting recipient countries in the driver’s seat
  • Governance reform: a genuine willingness by the developing countries to put their own house in order
  • Mobilisation: of the private sector and NGOs

The main initiatives for a coherent development policy include:

  • Further allocations to poverty reduction – development assistance is to be increased to 1 per cent of GNI. When this target has been reached the figure will be maintained at 1 per cent throughout the next Storting session, from 2005 to 2009.
  • Greater priority to enabling the developing countries to sell their goods and services in Northern markets.
  • An updated and expanded debt relief plan describing the new international debt relief schemes to be launched soon.
  • A systematic review of the other Norwegian policy areas with a view to seeing whether they pose any obstacles to the fight against poverty in the South.
  • A greater emphasis on the developing countries’ own responsibility and on measures that will promote governance reforms in our partner countries.
  • A stronger emphasis on the fight against corruption and money laundering
  • A restructuring of development co-operation so that Norway can be a driving force for an international reform that involves redirecting funds from earmarked projects to larger lump-sum allocations and co-operation with other donors.
  • Co-ordination of measures, so that contributions to the developing countries and through the UN and the World Bank have a greater synergistic effect.
  • A greater geographical concentration on the poor countries that are lagging behind in their efforts to achieve the MDGs.
  • A greater thematic concentration, for example, by as a rule focusing development assistance on two to three sectors in partner countries.
  • Increased support for agricultural development in our partner countries. A separate action plan on agricultural development will be launched soon.
  • Introduction of a new dimension in development co-operation whereby poor people’s rights of use and ownership are formalised and documented so that their potential for value creation can be realised.
  • A greater focus on research on diseases that particularly affect the poor. This initiative is based on the new programme "Global Health" developed by the Research Council of Norway.
  • Intensified efforts to promote women’s and children’s rights. A new children and youth strategy is being developed and the strategy for women and gender equality in development co-operation is being updated.
  • A committee to evaluate the results of the work of NGOs.
  • Strengthening of cultural and sports-related co-operation and closer integration of these fields into development co-operation.