More aid for fewer emerging countries

The Swiss government wants to extend technical aid to emerging countries, but reduce the number of beneficiaries over the next four years.

This content was published on March 7, 2008 - 14:11

The economics ministry said the cabinet had approved a SFr800 million ($784 million) credit pending backing by parliament.

The programme will be cut back from 12 to seven countries: Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Indonesia, Peru, South Africa and Vietnam.

It is aimed at diversifying trade and boosting their competitive edge in the globalised economy, according to the statement.

The economics ministry spent SFr203 million on aid projects in 2007, while the budget for the foreign ministry's Agency for Development and Cooperation stood at SFr1.3 billion.

Moves are underway to merge aid efforts in one ministry as part of an overhaul of the federal authorities.

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