Luxembourg is an exemplar when it comes to helping some of the world’s poorest countries, according to recent figures from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
Worldwide, only Norway provides more official development assistance (ODA) as a percentage of gross national income (GNI), at 1.1%.
Luxembourg set aside 1% of GNI for development assistance over the course of 2016.
Only four other countries managed to achieve the United Nations target of providing at least 0.7% of GNI for development aid: Sweden (0.94%), Denmark (0.75%), Germany (0.7%) and the UK (0.7%).
By comparison, the average ODA figure for the OECD Development Assistance Committee’s 29 member countries averaged at just over 0.3%.
According to data collected by the committee, ODA reached a new high of 143 billion dollars (€135 billion) in 2016, a nearly 9% year-on-year increase.
Even stripping out refugee costs, which some countries (not Luxembourg) included in their OAD figures, aid increased by more than 7% over the period.
ODA spent on hosting refugees inside donor countries increase by 27.5% in real terms, while humanitarian aid rose by 8%.
The OECD, however, voiced concern that, despite an overall increase, aid to the least-developed countries fell by 3.9% in real terms from 2015, while aid to Africa fell by 0.5%.
OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said: “While governments should be commended for sustaining investment in development during these difficult times, it is unacceptable that – once again – aid to the poorest countries is in decline.
“Recent signals from some donor countries on future aid levels add further cause for concern.”
He added: “Major donor nations have committed to refocus their efforts on the least developed countries. It is now time to turn these commitments into action.”