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S. Korea's ODA rises 2.9 pct in 2015: OECD data

All Headlines 17:02 April 14, 2016

SEOUL, April 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's official development assistance (ODA) to underdeveloped countries rose nearly 3 percent in 2015 from a year earlier to reach US$1.91 billion, the Foreign Ministry said Thursday, citing recent data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

According to the data on contributions from the members of the Development Assistance Committee (DAC), Seoul's overseas aid increased 2.9 percent from $1.86 billion recorded in 2014. Last year's figure was 0.14 percent of the country's gross national income (GNI), still lower than the DAC average of 0.3 percent.

Under its efforts to beef up development aid to developing countries, Seoul's ODA has increased an annual average of 10.2 percent -- much greater than the DAC average of 0.5 percent -- over the last five years, the ministry said in a press release.

Of the total ODA contributed in 2015, Seoul spent $1.46 billion on direct bilateral aid to developing nations and the remaining $450 million for indirect aid through international organizations.

Seoul has so far concentrated its aid on Asia, but has recently expanded its assistance for African nations, the ministry said.

According to a government plan for international development cooperation, Seoul has earmarked 2.43 trillion won (US$2.10 billion) for its 2016 ODA budget, with which it plans to push for some 1,230 overseas aid projects.

sshluck@yna.co.kr
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