NZ to scrutinise its Pacific aid program

The New Zealand government is seeking submission on the effectiveness of aid program to the Pacific, and people from the region are welcome to have their say.

The New Zealand Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (DEFAT) Committee-led inquiry is focused on understanding, comparing, evaluating, investigating, building and considering its aid programs in the Pacific.

It comes as New Zealand rolls out its “Pacific Reset” policy which names as it’s principles; collective ambition, mutual benefit, friendship, understanding and sustainability. The Lowy Institute states that New Zealand invests one-third of its aid allocation to the Pacific in the area of governance.

The inquiry will focus on:

  • understanding the different aid models used in the Pacific, and their purpose and effectiveness
  • comparing the effectiveness of New Zealand’s past and present aid models in the Pacific to those used in other parts of the world
  • evaluating the effectiveness of existing programmes such as the Pacific Reset, Aid for Trade, and PACER Plus
  • evaluating how other countries manage their Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) programmes in the Pacific
  • evaluating the effectiveness of New Zealand’s domestic and international partnerships that support ODA in the Pacific
  • considering value for money and accountability in respect of New Zealand’s ODA commitments in the Pacific
  • investigating how New Zealand’s ODA programmes in the Pacific contribute to human rights and environmental sustainability
  • evaluating the risks and opportunities arising from ODA spending in the Pacific and how they affect and contribute to short and long-term outcomes (including unintended outcomes)
  • building a social licence for ODA in the Pacific.

New Zealand’s total aid allocation increased in the 2019-2020 budget. It’s forecast allocation for the 2018/19 financial year for the Pacific region was NZ$256.69 million.

Parties interested in making a submission to the inquiry can do so on the Parliament website no later than 30 August 2019.