Foreign Assistance: Lessons Learned From Donors' Experiences in the Pacific Region Page: 13 of 60
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and natural resources, 5 percent for private sector development, and 10
percent for other areas. Similarly, to achieve its objectives, New Zealand
supports projects around six strategies: security and governance, civil
society, gender equality, social development, the environment, and
business. Finally, as another example, the ADB is tackling poverty through
promoting programs, such as public sector reform programs, in its Pacific
member countries. Since 1995, the ADB has undertaken reform programs
in seven Pacific Island nations for macroeconomic stabilization, good
governance, public sector efficiencies, and private sector development.
Donors' Choices of
Most Donors Expect Long-
term Dependence on
Assistance in the Pacific
The major donors recognize that their choice of assistance strategies must
address long-term aid dependence by many Pacific recipients and trade-
offs involving multiple objectives for assistance, costs, effectiveness, and
accountability. Within this environment, the donors have tried several
strategies to achieve their development objectives, such as incorporating
flexibility and relying on trust funds. (See app. IV for further information
on trust funds.)
Economic self-sustainability will be a difficult challenge for many Pacific
Island nations and is not a realistic goal for the smaller and more remote
countries, according to officials at and documents from the Australian
Agency for International Development, the Japan Ministry of Foreign
Affairs, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and the
ADB. The officials expect that, under the best circumstances, most
countries will need assistance for the foreseeable future to achieve
improvements in development. According to an ADB report,13 "[I]t is
widely understood that the smallest and least-endowed island states will
need to be assisted by free transfers of resources indefinitely, if they are to
maintain standards of welfare that the donors of the aid can bear to look
Two major donors-the United Kingdom Department for International
Development and USAID-chose to cut their bilateral programs
significantly in the 1990s, due to changed priorities and agency budgetary
reasons. The United Kingdom switched from a bilateral program to a
regional program in 1995 that focused on three countries-Kiribati, the
13A.V. Hughes, A Different Kind of Voyage: Development and Dependence in the Pacific
Islands (Manila, Philippines: Asian Development Bank, Feb. 1998).
GAO-01-808 Pacific Development Assistance Strategies
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United States. General Accounting Office. Foreign Assistance: Lessons Learned From Donors' Experiences in the Pacific Region, report, August 17, 2001; Washington D.C.. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc293232/m1/13/: accessed March 26, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.