Fact Sheet
Bureau of Public Affairs, Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
March 30, 2009

United States Official Development Assistance (ODA) increased substantially across social and economic sectors worldwide in 2008 based on preliminary U.S. data provided to the OECD this week. Once again, the United States is the largest single donor in the world on the basis of net annual disbursements. The United States will provide final ODA data in November.

· U. S. ODA totaled $26.0 billion in calendar year 2008, a $4.2 billion, or 19 percent increase from last year.

· Development assistance continues to be high--U.S. 2008 ODA is the second largest net level historically for any donor country, after the record U.S. level in 2005 of $27.9 billion.

· U.S. ODA growth is due to expanded U.S. programs in a wide variety of areas, including global health, food security, HIV/AIDS, humanitarian assistance, and economic development.

· U.S. ODA to the Least Developed Countries increased by over 40 percent to $6.9 billion, from $4.8 billion in 2007.

ODA is only one source of support for development; net private resource flows from the U.S. to developing countries -- trade, investment capital, remittances, and private grants -- dwarf global ODA. Development depends on effective, accountable governance and economic policies that stimulate private sector growth.

  • The United States has not only increased assistance levels, but is also committed to making bilateral and multilateral assistance effective and results-oriented, avoiding aid dependency and promoting long term and sustainable economic growth.

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