Transparency in relation to official aid flows is crucial for the effectiveness of the aid. This idea was officially described and widely endorsed by the international community for the first time in the "Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness" (2005), and further developed in the "Accra Agenda for Action" (2008) and the "Busan Partnership Agreement" (2011).
In effect, transparency enables donors to coordinate their efforts, avoiding duplication or omissions in aid. Partner countries can plan their budgets more effectively. And donors and partner countries can both be called to account: by each other, their representatives, civil society, or directly by citizens.
International cooperation has historically been a part of Belgium's DNA, and transparency is an inherent part of a modern policy. As such, it is logical that Belgium ascribes to this international dynamic.
What can you find on this data portal?
In this portal you will find all projects, programmes, international contributions, humanitarian aid, or other expenditures since 2014 that are part of the official Belgian aid and charged to the budgets of the Directorate General for Development Cooperation and humanitarian aid (DGD).
In addition, we propose a number of "Stories", selected because of their innovative approach, or because they illustrate the priorities of policy makers, or because they show how to be creative in difficult circumstances to come up with solutions.
Indeed, Belgian development policy focuses primarily on the poorest countries, which are in most need of our help. These countries often suffer from inadequate or even non-existent state structures, meaning that implementing something sustainable is not necessarily a given. In order to achieve lasting results in these places, a dose of Belgian "out of the box" thinking is useful to make a difference with scarce resources.
We will regularly expand and adapt our selection of illustrative stories.
You will find them on the "Stories" page.
On the "Projects" page, activities supported by the DGD from 2014 onwards can be searched, using the parameters partner country, sector, implementer, or a combination of these.
Projects or programmes with specific locations are marked with red dots on the map.
However, this is not relevant for a significant proportion of our aid. Many projects support a partner country as a whole, such as support for modernising education or agriculture ministries for instance.
Naturally, general contributions to international aid organisations such as the Red Cross or UNICEF cannot be linked to specific countries. This also applies to awareness-raising projects that provide information to citizens, or general research into development by universities or other research centres.
In order to provide as complete and accurate a picture as possible of the allocation of aid by sector, the general contributions to international organisations have been divided by sector.
Transparency, as referred to here, is not achieved with a click of the fingers, but requires a long and sustained effort. The staff at the DGD are committed to providing self-explanatory project titles, which give an immediate idea of the underlying activities. And descriptions, which give more detailed information.
Original titles from the past will be adapted to the new way of working, although not yet comprehensively; some titles will not yet be translated, descriptions may still be missing.
But transparency is a process, and the information will steadily expand and become more useful.