Text from the Indicator Report 2022
The data on which the indicator is based are the statistics on German official development assistance which are compiled by the Federal Statistical Office on behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. Whether a flow is counted as ODA is determined by guidelines issued by the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC). ODA comprises public funds spent in order to advance the economic and social development of developing countries. It primarily includes expenditure for financial and technical cooperation with developing countries, humanitarian aid and development-cooperation contributions to multilateral institutions such as the United Nations, the European Union, the World Bank or regional development banks. Under certain conditions, spending on peace missions, debt relief and certain items of development expenditure in the donor country – such as tuition costs for students from developing countries, domestic spending on refugees and funding for development-related research – can also be counted as ODA. The DAC also defines the list of developing countries eligible for ODA. This includes the least developed countries (LDCs) as well as other countries with low and medium per capita GNI. The list is consistently updated, such that changes in the indicator may therefore be the result of one or more countries being added to or removed from the list.
In 2018, there was a change in the way ODA loans (i.e. loans, bonds and debt reliefs) are evaluated, in that the previous net-flows principle was replaced by the grant-equivalent method. In this method, only the grant element of an ODA loan is determined by the interest rate and duration, among others, and is counted as ODA. The intention behind the new methodology is to make ODA grants and ODA loans comparable.
As calculated using the new method, Germany’s ODA came to 27.3 billion euros (provisional results) in 2021, slightly higher than the 25.2 billion euros recorded for 2020. ODA in 2021 accounted for 0.74 % of Germany’s GNI (2020: 0.73 %). Hence, the target of 0.70 % was reached in 2020 and 2021. For comparison, net ODA spending (using the evaluation method that was standard until 2017) came to around 26.6 billion euros in 2021. While the GNI increased by a factor of 1.5 compared to 2010, net ODA trebled in the same period.
On the international scale, in 2021 Germany was once again the second-largest contributor in absolute terms, after the United States and ahead of Japan (provisional figures). However, the ODA-ratio for the United States was at 0.18 % below the average of the DAC countries (0.33 %). Germany had the fourth-highest ODA:GNI ratio among the 29 members of the DAC. According to the provisional figures for 2021, the international target of 0.70 % was met by four DAC countries: Luxembourg (0.99 %), Norway (0.93 %), Sweden (0.92 %), and Denmark (0.70 %).
In addition to official development cooperation, private funds are also provided by such organisations as churches, foundations and associations. These chiefly take the form of contributions and donations. This private development cooperation, which does not affect the ODA figures, amounted to 1.3 billion euros in 2020, the equivalent of a 0.04 % share of GNI. Private direct investment in developing countries came to 1.9 billion euros in 2020.