The period 2019-2020 was one of contrasts: on the one hand, 2019 broke new ground for overall European support to SRH/FP – looking at the newest Countdown 2030 Europe donor tracking data, and commitments made by European donors in Nairobi at the ICPD+25 the end of 2019. On the flip side, the Coronavirus that spread across the world in 2020 will most likely have drastic impact levels on Official Development Assistance (ODA), including for SRH/FP.
The analysis done by the Countdown 2030 Europe Consortium shows a significant increase of financial contributions to SRH/FP in the context of international development: most European donors (eight out of 12) analysed in this report either increased or maintained their level of funding. This is of relevance considering that overall levels of ODA largely remained the same in 2019. The combined figure for all 12 European donor countries gives an estimated support of 1.17 billion Euros for 2019, an overall increase of 13% when compared to 2018 and 74% compared to 2012.
Germany brought in the most significant increase in percentage growth of funding for SRH/FP since 2018, equivalent to an additional 50%. Increased support to SRH/FP was followed by the UK (29%) and France (28%). The UK, Norway, the Netherlands and Sweden remain the largest donors in absolute terms. Belgium, Ireland, Spain and Sweden reported lower levels of funding, with some of these decreases being expected, due to a change of approach to funding SRH/FP in 2019.
European donors also continue being vocal about SRH/FP at the policy level. Eight new policy and strategy documents from European governments and EU institutions are testament to this. In addition to political pledges in several international fora, European governments also reinstated the importance of SRH/FP in official responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and in humanitarian aid.
However, the global crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic threatens years of hard-won progress on gender equality and SRHR, and risks pushing them to the fringes of development agendas. On top of the immediate impact of COVID-19 on access to SRHR, the COVID-19 pandemic will likely affect European ODA budgets and possibly respective support to SRH/FP. This may be due to both shrinking European economies or a shift of priorities in countries’ development assistance. The financial crisis in 2008 showed that, if ODA and development are not high on the agenda, these can easily become the hardest hit sectors during and after a financial crisis. Available projections indicate that the pandemic will most certainly affect levels of European ODA, including support to SRH/FP.
Despite existing gloomy forecasts, some European donors are projecting increased SRH/FP funding contributions in upcoming years in line with announcements from the Nairobi Summit. Donors are determined to protect SRHR, as part of the push towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and beyond, but holding them to account remains crucial – e.g. in the context of the renewal of FP2020 and the Generation Equality Forum.
For more detailed data and analysis, read the full report ‘European Donor Support to Sexual & Reproductive Health & Family Planning Trends Analysis 2019-20’.
The data can also be further explored on the new online data dashboard here.For individual country profiles, providing country-specific context, policies and funding information for each of the 12 countries and the European Institutions, please visit: www.countdown2030europe.org/country-profiles
One of our core activities is to collect financial data on Countdown 2030 Europe country governments’ Official Development Assistance (ODA) for sexual and reproductive health and family planning. Based on the latest data collected, we develop trends analyses for Europe and each of the individual European donor countries on support for SRH/FP.
Countdown 2030 Europe is committed to publishing these reports annually.