Privésector en armoedebestrijding: een moeilijke evenwichtsoefening


Reality of Aid, een internationaal netwerk van ngo's uit Noord en Zuid, publiceerde zijn 2-jaarlijkse Reality of Aid Report. Het rapport bundelt 30 bijdragen met ervaringen en inzichten uit zowel donorlanden als ontwikkelingslanden. Dit jaar wordt vooral de rol van de privésector in armoedebestrijding en ontwikkeling belicht.

11.11.11 verzorgde een bijdrage 'What's in it for development? Assessing the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries' Development Outcomes'.


RoA 2012De privésector wordt, niet in het minst door de overheid zelf, steeds vaker betrokken bij ontwikkelingsinitiatieven in het Zuiden. Hoewel Reality of Aid geen principiële bezwaren heeft blijkt toch uit het rapport dat de privésector teveel focust op grootschalige investeringen en infrastructuurprojecten en te weinig oog heeft voor de concrete situatie van de mensen zelf en het belang van informele economie in ontwikkelingslanden. 

De private sector speelt ongetwijfeld een centrale rol in de ontwikkeling van de armste en meest kwetsbare mensen in ontwikkelingslanden. Ondernemingen zorgen voor investeringen, waardig werk, innovaties en leveren nodige middelen voor het sociale beleid van overheden. Maar zeker niet al die investeringen en innovaties leiden tot minder armoede en ongelijkheid, zelfs niet in landen waar sterke economische groei is. 

Dit gloednieuwe Reality of Aid-rapport verwelkomt de vernieuwde aandacht voor de private sector, maar stelt een aantal voorwaarden aan de betrokkenheid van de private sector in ontwikkelingssamenwerking. Zo moeten partners rekening houden met principes van doeltreffende hulp en de plannen voor armoede- en ongelijkheidsbestrijding van de ontwikkelingslanden zelf.

In het hoofdstuk 'What's in it for development? Assessing the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries' Development Outcomes' gaat 11.11.11 na in  welke mate de Belgische Investeringsmaatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (BIO) erin slaagt haar doelstellingen op vlak van duurzame ontwikkeling en armoedebestrijding te bereiken.  Niet zo goed, want het feit dat de investeringen van BIO vooral een financiële opbrengst moeten genereren maakt dat hun ontwikkelingswaarde vaak zeer gering is.

Lees hieronder een verslag van de perspresentatie van  'Reality of Aid Report 2012'.


 

Aid and the private sector - who benefits?

International aid network report reveals increasing role of private sector does little for world's poorest

Nairobi, Kenya, 7 December 2012

Reality of Aid, a leading international aid network's latest biennial report reveals that the increasing role of the private sector in the global aid industry is doing little to benefit the poor - instead, it is the private sector businesses, aided by Northern governments, who reap profit from their involvement in aid.
 
The Reality of Aid Network's report, 'Aid and the Private Sector: Catalysing Poverty Reduction and Development?', is written by authors from civil society organisations worldwide whose research draws on knowledge and expertise from aid agencies, academis, community-based organisations and governments. It features evidence from across the world that demonstrates the goal of poverty reduction is often an afterthought when it comes to private sector involvement in aid.
 
Among other issues, the report addresses the role of "development finance institutions" (DFIs), state-based institutions created to blend overseas development assistance (ODA) with capital and initiatives from the private sector.
 
Reality of Aid Chairperson, Jorge Balbis, said: "The role of the private sector in aid is rapidly increasing. In these times of financial crisis, Northern governments are increasingly looking to private businesses to boost their aid obligations.
 
"But there are serious questions as to whether this involvement is creating development outcomes that reduce poverty and strengthen the capacity of poor and vulnerable populations to claim their rights. In fact, much of our research point to the opposite - poor people are not benefitting, while already profitable corporate businesses are."
 
He went on: "Reconciling private sector interests with poverty reduction is difficult. And at the moment it is not happening."
 
While poverty reduction is the intended mandate for most DFIs, according to an evaluation of the World Bank's IFC investment portfolio "fewer than half of the projects reviewed included evidence of poverty and distributional aspects in project objectives, targeting of interventions, characteristics of beneficiaries, or tracking of impacts".
 
The report, comprised of 30 contributions revealing experiences and insights from both aid-giving and aid-recipient countries, questions whether DFIs are suitable to tackle poverty and inequality. It draws in evidence from DFIs including those run by Belgium, Finland and Sweden.

Reality of Aid recognizes that the private sector is a necessary component of development. But it believes the deployment of aid for private sector development must focus on strengthening the economic rights of people living in poverty.
 
As this latest report demonstrates, too often the focus of donors has been on large-scale investments or infrastructure development to increase economic growth. And too often these interventions target the formal economy instead of addressing the realities of significant informal economies.


 

Notes:


 

  1. The Reality of Aid Network (RoA) is the only major North/South international non-governmental initiative focusing exclusively on analysis and lobbying for poverty eradication policies and practices in the international aid regime.
    It brings together 172 member organizations - including more than 40 civil society regional and global networks - working in the field of international cooperation in 21 donor countries of the OECD, and in Europe, the Americas, Africa, and in the Asia-Pacific. RoA builds on a nineteen-year track record of independent assessment of aid policies and practices, accompanied by constructive dialogue with policy makers at national and international levels.

  2. The Reality of Aid Reports analyse and advocate key messages relating to the performance of aid donors from a unique perspective of civil society in both donor and recipient developing countries. RoA also facilitates the production of regular regional reports in Asia, Africa and Latin America, which draw on the common analysis of the global Report with additional regionally generated chapters.

  3. www.realityofaid.org
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