Republic of Cyprus
CyprusAid is the Development Cooperation Service of the Republic of Cyprus, established in 2005. The following year, Cyprus entered into direct involvement with its development cooperation policy.
The decision-making process of Cyprus’ development policy retains a high degree of centralization, while aid delivery arrangements mirror a more decentralised approach. There exists a Coordination Body headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and has the Minister of Finance (MF) and the Permanent Secretary of the Planning Bureau as members. The Coordination Body is responsible for the establishing targets (quantitative, territorial and sectoral) on the basis of international obligations, EU policy recommendations and national priorities.
The Planning Bureau has policy preparation, administrative and implementation functions for the decisions of the Coordination Body, while the MFA represents Cyprus and is responsible for publicizing Cyprus’ development activities. A second body, headed by the Permanent Secretary of the MFA and comprised of representatives of the Ministries of Finance, Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment, Labour and Social Insurance, Education and Culture and the Planning Bureau, as well as representatives of civil society, acts in a consultative capacity to the Coordination Body.
After its accession to the European Union, Cyprus redefined its development cooperation policy to mirror EU policy and priorities. The 2006-2010 Medium Term Strategy, adopted in 2005, summarizes these goals:
- Focus on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) especially poverty reduction
- Improvement of Aid Effectiveness
- Promotion of Sustainable Development
- Cooperation with other EU Member States and international organisations for the purpose of joint delivery of aid to third countries
- The gradual increase of the national aid budget in accordance with the decisions of the international community and the EU
Cyprus’ ODA is channelled to areas and sectors in which Cyprus has a comparative advantage and accumulated experience. As a whole, it targets to achieve the MDGs. They can be divided into three areas:
- Social and services sectors: including health care services, education, tourism-related services, development of human capital, and the promotion of equal opportunities
- Infrastructure development: including road construction, dam and sewage system construction, irrigation systems, solar energy infrastructure, forestry, engineering, telecommunications, and health infrastructure
- Environment: including environmental protection, rational land-use planning, urban planning and housing policy, environmental monitoring, environmental impact assessment and protection of human health
As of 2010, Cyprus does not have a project implementation mechanism of its own. As a result, Cyprus implements development projects in developing countries in cooperation with other EU Member States’ development agencies and/or International Organisations. Cyprus’ development assistance is directed to a small number of countries where it finances the implementation of more comprehensive schemes of assistance and to a larger group of countries where Cypriot aid is in the form of technical assistance. Cypriot priority countries are:
- Autonomous Palestinian Territories
- Egypt, Lebanon
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
This enables the concentration of aid in order to avoid the waste of resources and to ensure effective delivery.
Support for SRHR and HIV/AIDS activities
Health and HIV/AIDS are important thematic priorities of CyprusAid’s support for the Human capital and Services sector, as mentioned in the Medium term strategy. Several health projects have been financed by CyprusAid in the past, including for the issue of reproductive health. As of 2010, the following projects have either been completed or are still under implementation:
- Programme Support to Reproductive Health in Yemen by Marie Stopes International. Total financing by CyprusAid: €2 million (2008-2012)
- Prevention and Treatment of HIV/AIDS in Guinea Conakry. Total financing by CyprusAid: €125,000 (2010)
- Fighting Malnutrition on people affected by HIV/AIDS in Malawi. Total financing by CyprusAid: €125,000 (2010).
Co-operation with NGOs
CyprusAid delivers assistance through the method of “delegated cooperation” and does not operate a funding or grant programme of its own. The only funding provided for NGOs concerns micro-grants offered by an ad-hoc basis mostly for the delivery of humanitarian assistance. The micro-scheme is under the responsibility of the MFA and is made possible through the Ministries own budget, which funds the programme. NGOs can contact the MFA and submit proposals.
Lambrianides, Emmanuela, Senior Coordination Officer, Planning Bureau, Department of Economics and Development Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus
Maria Poeti-Zitti, Coordination Officer, Planning Bureau, Department of Economics and Development Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus
CyrprusAid: ODA Activities
CyprusAid: CyprusAid Brochure 2009