Wohlgemuth, L. and O. Saasa. 2008. Changing aid relations in Zambia (ECDPM Discussion Paper 83). Maastricht.
The aid architecture is changing radically in many countries today, largely in step with the implementation of the 2005 Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness. In that document, donors and partner countries committed themselves to new ways of operating in which aid is more efficiently planned, delivered and evaluated.
Zambia’s relationship with the donor community has undergone multiple revisions over the years. Particularly the manner in which aid is disbursed and the conditionalities to which it may be attached have emerged as discussion topics in Zambian politics. A special focus herein has been the potential impacts of the reforms under way in the wider aid system on the possibilities for Zambia to implement its own development plans. To position itself to take advantage of the new aid modalities currently being promulgated, the country has drafted an aid policy and strategy, implemented a joint assistance strategy and developed its local planning processes.
This Discussion Paper examines the process of changing aid modalities, commenting on the time, resources and commitment that both donors and national governments must invest to make the new aid framework work, in cooperation with key stakeholders from national civil society. Focusing on the case of Zambia, it concludes that new aid modalities and revitalised national governance processes are vital if development cooperation is to lead to sustainable development and reduced aid dependency.