On 2nd March 2005, Ministers and other high-level officials of some 85 developed and developing countries as well as heads of some 20 bi-lateral and multilateral development organisations gathered in Paris, France, to discuss ways to improve the quality of development assistance. The message coming out of Paris was loud and clear: “Development assistance works best when it is fully aligned with national priorities and needs.”
They adopted the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness which lays out a practical, action-orientated road-map to improve the quality of aid and its impact on development. It puts in place a series of specific measures for implementation and establishes performance indicators that assess progress. It also calls for an international monitoring system to ensure that donors and recipients hold each other accountable – a feature that is unique among international agreements.
- Ownership – Developing countries set their own development strategies, improve their institutions and tackle corruption.
- Alignment – Donor countries and organisations bring their support in line with these strategies and use local systems.
- Harmonisation – Donor countries and organisations co-ordinate their actions, simplify procedures and share information to avoid duplication.
- Managing for Results – Developing countries and donors focus on producing and measuring results.
- Mutual Accountability – Donors and developing countries are accountable for development results.
Further to this, the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation is the multilateral agreement resulting from the 4th High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness (HLF4) held in 2011 in Busan, Republic of Korea and agreed by Governments, Donors, South-South Co-operators, the BRICS, and private donors. The principles of the partnership are:
- Ownership by developing countries;
- A focus on results;
- Inclusive development partnerships; and,
- Transparency and accountability to one another
These principles were endorsed at HLF4 in Busan, with 160 Governments and 45 organisations endorsing the Busan agreement to date. The Global Partnership works with partners to complement existing efforts that impact on effective development co-operation.
Malawi is a signatory to the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness (2005), Accra Agenda for Action (2008) and the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (2011) that set out the principles, commitments and actions for effective co-operation in support of international development. Parties to the Busan agreement committed to adopt transparent, country-led and country-level results frameworks and platforms as a common tool among all concerned actors to assess performance based on indicators drawn from country development priorities and goals and with providers of development co-operation minimising their use of additional frameworks.
Consequently, as a trusted and long standing development organisation, the UN in Malawi has built joint operational and strategic partnerships with the government of Malawi and Development Partners in order to maximise the overall impact of development cooperation in Malawi.