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Subject: Miscellaneous | Issued in: 2013 | Symbol: E/ESCWA/OES/2013/WP.6

Reinforcing the Role of Arab Development Funds: The Financing Gap

This paper analyzes foreign aid with regards to Arab countries, considering them both as donors and recipients. Given that Arab assistance is channeled through Arab Development Funds (ADFs), the paper describes the main features of such Funds, the resources they have available, how they work, and the sector allocation of their operations. Arab Official Development Assistance (ODA) has been substantial contributing to the positive results achieved, as the ADFs seem to ensure effectiveness of the aid they channel. However, given the significant economic challenges Arab countries still face, the current ADF resource levels are insufficient to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). More resources should be made available for the ADFs to substantially support progress towards the region’s developmental objectives. This call for an increase in Arab ODA is all the more critical given that ODA flows to the region have decreased in recent years. This reduction includes ODA from Arab donors and would have been even greater without the support of the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to Iraq after the 2003 war.

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