Development policy and humanitarian efforts

Worldwide, 800 million people are living in extreme poverty, and 70 million people have been forced to flee their homes. We have a global responsibility to help people in need and contribute to long-term development and a more just world.

Photo: Ken Opprann/Norad

The world has made great progress in many areas. The Millennium Development Goal of halving the number of people living in extreme poverty by 2015 was achieved. Never before have so many people had such good living conditions. And never before have so many had access to education and health services. However, the gap between those who are living in prosperity and those who are living in poverty keeps widening, and more and more people are in need of protection and humanitarian aid. Climate change and infectious diseases are not contained by national borders, and the challenges posed by migration are increasing.

Norway’s development policy is based on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that were adopted by all UN member states in 2015. These goals provide the global framework for efforts to promote sustainable development, peace and justice by 2030.

Five areas are given priority in Norway’s development policy:

  • Education
  • Health
  • Climate change, the environment and the oceans
  • Private sector development, agriculture and renewable energy
  • Humanitarian aid

Human rights, gender equality, climate change and the environment, and anti-corruption are cross-cutting issues.

Humanitarian aid and long-term development assistance must be coordinated. We will improve our chances of success if we focus on prevention and on reaching the most vulnerable groups. By doing so, we will also reduce the need for humanitarian aid in the future.

Development policy covers far more than just aid. Trade, investments, cooperation in fields such as technology development, research and culture, and efforts to strengthen the international legal order are equally important. This is why these areas are also an essential part of our policy.

Our aims

Norway will contribute to the efforts to:

  • eradicate extreme poverty by 2030
  • ensure good governance and respect for human rights for all by 2030
  • promote rights-based implementation of the SDGs
  • save lives, alleviate suffering and protect human dignity in humanitarian crises
  • promote sustainable development and help to make countries independent of aid

Support for private sector development

Over the next ten years, one billion young people will be looking for work. The private sector provides nine out of ten jobs in developing countries. This is why support for private sector development, for example through Norfund, is an important part of Norwegian development cooperation.


Education for displaced children

59 million children and 65 million young people do not have access to school. A significant share of Norway’s support for education is used to provide schooling for children and young people who have been forced to flee their homes or who live in areas of conflict.


The oceans and marine litter

Some 80-90 % of marine plastics come from land-based sources. In 2018, Norway established a fund to help developing countries to develop waste management systems, increase their knowledge about marine litter and carry out efficient clean-up operations.

Current efforts

Norway is:

  • promoting closer coordination between humanitarian relief and long-term development
  • using aid to trigger private investments and create jobs
  • strengthening humanitarian relief and long-term development in areas affected by fragility
  • helping to enhance respect for women’s and girls’ rights
  • intensifying efforts to promote girls’ education and education in situations of crisis and conflict, and to improve the quality of education
  • playing a leading role in efforts to reduce child and maternal mortality, and to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other infectious diseases
  • actively promoting more ambitious goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions globally
  • investing in renewable energy with a view to reducing global greenhouse gas emissions
  • providing around 1 % of GNI a year for development and humanitarian efforts

Combating illicit financial flows and corruption

National income generation, taxation, and combating illicit financial flows and corruption are far more important for development than aid. A number of analyses show that the impact of illicit financial flows and corruption may be more than USD 1 trillion a year. In comparison, global aid is around USD 140 billion.

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Maternal and child health

Norway recognises the importance of education for maternal and child health. Girls who go to school and gain an education tend to marry and have children later. Education for girls and women is therefore crucial for improving maternal health and reducing child mortality.


Knowledge transfer

Norwegian expertise in the fields of natural resource management and taxation is increasingly sought after by developing countries, and we are happy to share it. We do so through the programmes Fish for Development, Oil for Development, and Tax for Development. In addition, the Digitalisation for Development programme was launched in 2018.


Norway is no more involved in traditional country-to-country development assistance to India; that was closed down in 2003 – 2004. Still, according to official statistics, India is a substantial recipient of Norwegian development funds. During the 10 years 2007 - 2016, it varied annually between 101 and 216 mill. NOK with an average of 163 mill. NOK – equal to about USD 19.4 mill. Since 2000, India has normally been around no. 20 on the list of about 100 countries receiving development assistance from Norway.

Most of the development funds go to the two sectors Health and Research. The support to the health sector (the NIPI programme) is being phased out, leaving research as the main sector from 2018.

Other prioritized areas are Climate, Environment, Energy, Education, Gender equality and Culture.

Currently, the following programmes / projects in India are supported:

Programme /   Project Title


Agr. no.

Bioforsk - India - Climate Change Adaptation Programme



DN-NBA Centre on Biodiversity Policy and Law (CeBPOL)

DN -   Direktoratet for Naturforvaltning


Research   Council - Agreement no 1

Norges   Forskningsråd


Research   Council - Agreement no 2

Norges   Forskningsråd


Research   Council - Agreement no 3

Norges   Forskningsråd


SINTEF CPWD Building Waste Mgmt



SINTEF CPCB Co-processing (II)



SINTEF   Ecofriendly refrigeration & ACs



Management of Catastrophic Natural Disasters in Uttarakhand

Norges   Geotekniske Institutt


Institutional   Support to ATREE

ATREE - Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment


TERI Norway Inst Climate Energy (II)

TERI - The Energy and Resource Institute


SIU Higher   Education Collaboration

SIU - Senter   for internasjonalisering av utdanning


NIPI- LFA   Addendum II

UNOPS - UN Office for Project Services


UNDP: Support to Norway India Partnership Initiative

UNDP - UN   Development Programme


Jhpiego Cooperation: Pre-service nursing/midwifery education



Research for documentation of NIPI 2013-2017

Sambodhi Research & Communications Pvt. Ltd.


PHFI: RMNCH+A Implementation in Jammu and Kashmir through Swasthya Slate

PHFI - Public Health Foundation of India


ITD-HST: Sustainable Integrated Mother/Child Health Care in Rural India

ITD-HST - Institute of Trans-disciplinary Health Sciences and Technology


IPE Global: Administration of NIPI Project

IPE Global Ltd


INCLEN: Evaluation of HBNC+ project at district level

INCLEN - International Clinical Epidemiology Network


WB: South Asia Water Initiative, phase II (Regional)

World Bank


Multi Sectoral Approach to Enhancing Gender Responsive Governance   (Regional)

UN Women


THP: Women in Panchayats and Violence against Women

The Hunger   Project


Kailash   Satyarthi Children's Foundation

Kailash   Satyarthi Children's Foundation


Afghanistan and its neighbours: A Regional Consensus

Delhi Policy   Group


IDSA-PRIO. India in the World: Emerging Perspectives on Glob. Challenges

PRIO - International Peace Research Institute, Oslo


Rikskonsertene - Music cooperation Indo-Nor 2014-2017



Seagull School of Publishing (phase 2)

Seagull Foundation for the Arts


A vision for contemporary dance and performance art in India 2014-2017

Attakkalari   Centre for Movement Arts


GATI Dance   Forum Programme

Gati Dance   Forum


Khoj International Artists Association Programme

KHOJ -   International Artists Association


Ibsen in   Hyderabad (phase 2)

University of   Hyderabad


Strategic Management in the Arts of Theatre

IFA - India Foundation for the Arts


Ibsen between Tradition and Contemporaneity: The Peer Gynt Cycle

University of   Hyderabad