SEOUL, April 17 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's official development assistance (ODA) for foreign countries fell 8.7 percent to US$2.25 billion last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic, recent data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has shown.
According to the data on the tentative tally of 29 members of the OECD's Development Assistance Committee (DAC) released Tuesday, South Korea's bilateral ODA for 2020 stood at $1.76 billion, down 5 percent from a year ago, while its multilateral contributions slumped 19.9 percent to $490 million.
South Korea's overall ranking among DAC members in terms of assistance volume stood at 16th, down one notch from a year ago. The country's ratio of ODA against its gross national income (GNI) was tallied at 0.14 percent, down 0.01 percentage point from a year ago.
The South Korean government attributed the decline to the overall decrease in assistance programs due to the COVID-19 pandemic and reductions in contributions to regional development banks.
Half of Seoul's bilateral ODA last year went to Asian nations, with those channeled to African and Central and South America accounting for 22.8 percent and 7.6 percent, respectively, according to the OECD data.
The combined volume of ODA by all DAC members stood at $161.2 billion in 2020. The average ODA/GNI ratio was recorded at 0.32 percent.
N. Korean leader's sister condemns U.S. provision of tanks to Ukraine
Prosecutors indict head of hotel adjoining site of Itaewon crowd crush
S. Korea mistakenly fires machine gun near border with N. Korea
(LEAD) S. Korea's new COVID-19 cases fall below 30,000
(Yonhap Interview) NATO chief calls for stronger security ties with S. Korea to address China, other global challenges