Luxembourg's development cooperation programme is firmly committed to ending poverty, especially in the Least Developed Countries. Its activities are imbued with an ethos of sustainable development, construed in its social, economic and environmental aspects - with man, woman and child taking centre stage. These activities are concentrated on implementing - by 2030 - the Sustainable Development Goals.
Official development assistance
In terms of official development assistance (ODA), since the year 2000 Luxembourg's development cooperation has been in the group of the five industrialised countries spending more than 0.7% of their gross national income on development cooperation. Since 2009, ODA has reached 1% of GNI, in line with the commitment made in the government programme for 2013-18. ODA is carried out by bilateral and multilateral cooperation mechanisms, programme support mechanisms and cooperation with development NGOs.
Moreover, Luxembourg's official development assistance comprises an important humanitarian action component which makes it possible to respond primarily in the form of emergency aid in the event of humanitarian and natural disasters or violent conflicts. Humanitarian action also includes both a "prevention" of humanitarian disasters component and a "transition" component, between a humanitarian disaster, reconstruction and the resumption of development activities.
Geographic and sectoral concentration
Geographically speaking, in the interests of effectiveness and impact, Luxembourg's development cooperation pursues a policy of targeted intervention in a limited number of partner countries. Five of the seven partner countries are in sub Saharan Africa. Cooperation with these countries is characterised by an acute sense of partnership with the authorities and communities. This spirit of partnership, with the added desire that the beneficiaries take ownership of the programmes and projects, lies behind the development of multi-annual cooperation programmes, the ICPs (Indicative Cooperation Programmes). The geographical concentration of Luxembourg's development cooperation takes account of the UNDP's human development index as well as regional approach and fragility considerations.
The principal sectors of development cooperation activity fall within the social arena: health, education, including professional training and integration, and integrated local development. Relevant microfinance initiatives are encouraged and supported, be it at a conceptual or operational level.
International development aid quality and effectiveness standards
Luxembourg's development cooperation is actively involved in discussing, defining and implementing new international development aid quality and effectiveness standards. It has adopted the conclusions of successive fora on aid effectiveness, the 4th of which took place in Busan in 2011.
Luxembourg's development cooperation and humanitarian action policy is characterised by a constant and progressive effort, both quantitatively and qualitatively, for the most deprived communities. It is the expression of a stated and repeated international solidarity and as such is an important vehicle for the government of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg's dealings with the outside world.