The 2017 Polish Development Cooperation Report sums up the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ year-long activities in the area of development cooperation. Poland draws up annual reports in the second half of the year for the previous year to fulfil its obligations towards international partners, such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Andrzej Papierz, the MFA Director General (until 21 October 2018, MFA Undersecretary of State in charge of Polish development aid) underscored that “Poland is a relatively new donor of development aid, and yet we are already working in areas where we can share our knowledge and experience.”
The report presents a cross-section of development policy activities in 2017, besides providing a wealth of information (both current and archival). It lists funds allocated to this purpose and includes a thematic and geographical breakdown i.e. on what and where the funds were spent. The report also describes some projects implemented in priority countries selected on the basis of the following five criteria:
1) development needs,
2) implementation of development cooperation,
3) bilateral cooperation,
4) cohesion with EU activities, and
Last year, Polish Aid was present in ten priority countries: four Eastern Partnership countries of Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, which are of particular importance, and six non-European countries of Palestine, Myanmar, Ethiopia, Kenya, Senegal, and Tanzania.
The main project themes implemented by Poland aim to provide education at different levels, including vocational education, to offer better chances of finding decent work, and projects that aim to provide better health care. The recipients of Polish Aid are children, people with disabilities and people at risk of social exclusion. We realise that investments in people will always yield returns and make measurable impact. Acquired knowledge will not be lost and it could be passed further on.
In addition to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, development cooperation is also carried out by the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, the Ministry of the Interior and Administration, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs partners with Polish non-profit organisations, Polish diplomatic missions and public administration offices in providing development aid.
In 2017, Poland’s Official Development Assistance amounted to PLN 2.57 billion. Bilateral cooperation accounted for 33% of the total Polish ODA, i.e. about PLN 839 million, while multilateral cooperation was worth PLN 1.73 billion.