SA allocates R268m in aid to 19 countries

Cape Town – South Africa’s African Renaissance and International Cooperation Fund has provided R268 million in the last financial year in foreign aid and assistance to 19 countries, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation said today.

In a written response to a question raised in the National Assembly by a member of opposition on the amount of aid that the government has provided to countries in the last three financial years, International Relations Minister Maite Nkoane-Mashabane said the bulk of the allocations went to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and to Cuba.

In all, R126 million went to assist the DRC to undertake elections in November last year, while R100 million went to Cuba to help support the country’s economic recovery following the 2008 hurricanes, she said.

South Africa’s assistance also included R15 million allocated to the International Atomic Energy Agency for the improvement of veterinary laboratory capacities in Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Mali, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, DRC and Senegal.

A further R13 million was granted to an international diplomatic training programme at the department’s diplomatic academy, which benefited diplomats from South Sudan, Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Burundi, Rwanda, Mauritius and Comoros.

The department also spent R10.6 million to help transport humanitarian assistance donated by Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) member states to the people of Somalia.

South Africa also spent R5 million for its participation in SADC and AU observer missions during the financial year – for the elections in Seychelles, Zambia and the DRC.

Under the African Renaissance and International Cooperation Fund, allocations of R327 million were made in the 2009/10 financial year, with the bulk (or R300 million) going to Zimbabwe to contribute towards supporting the country’s economic recovery programme.

The remaining funds were allocated to Sierra Leone (R24 million) to fund 20 Cuban doctors to offer medical services and to the African Research Centre (R3 million), which serves as a focal point for ombudsman offices in Africa.

In 2010/11, a total of R4 million went to cover the AU’s Observer Mission to the elections in Sudan.

A further R141 million was recommended for other projects, but these were only followed through in the next financial year.

Source: SA News – Press Release – 12 July 2012