Development Policy in Democratic Republic of the Congo

By | April 14, 2021

Great efforts have been made in implementing the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to themakeupexplorer.

The data situation is uncertain as large parts of the rural population live very isolated and there are no reliable figures on the population and development situation. The results of the indicators used are also not reliable in urban areas. Improvements in living conditions can be seen in the greater areas of the cities of Kinshasa, Goma, Bukavu and Lubumbashi and in the regions of South Kivu and Bas-Congo.

The indicators for poverty reduction show no improvement in living conditions. They remain a challenge to the government and the international community as most of the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s population still lives in absolute poverty.

Following the ” Declaration of Paris “, the Congolese government has tried since 2008 to steer and coordinate development work in the country more closely. This is to be implemented by the Ministry of Planning (Ministère du Plan de la République Démocratique du Congo). However, the self-interests of the individual ministries and local administrative structures make the necessary cooperation more difficult. The excessive bureaucracy often blocks the necessary planning and action.

Humanitarian aid and emergency aid is managed by the OCHA (United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affaires). This is the most extensive program from OCHA worldwide.

Democratic Republic of Congo Overview

Democratic Republic of Congo Overview

German development and aid organizations in the country

In 1992 the federal government stopped its development cooperation (DC) due to ongoing manipulation of the democratization process. Other donor countries followed suit, with the exception of France. However, church and non-governmental development organizations such as Bread for the World, Misereor and Deutsche Welthungerhilfe, which worked with civil society partners and especially with church structures in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, remained on site.

Consultations between representatives of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Federal Republic of Germany took place in December 2014. As part of bilateral cooperation, the Democratic Republic of the Congo received EUR 45 million at the time. Of this, around EUR 20 million should be used for the national peace fund.

Government negotiations were planned for 2017, but these were suspended in response to the postponement of the elections. Since then, development cooperation on the German side has been oriented away from the government in such a way that it now directly benefits the population. Since 2018, the BMZ has been expanding its commitment to peace and security through personnel and financing.

The focal points of the German-Congolese cooperation are water supply and wastewater disposal, the protection and sustainable use of natural resources and sustainable economic development. Issues relating to peace and security are given particular importance as they are a prerequisite for sustainable development work. At the international level, we work particularly closely with the African Union.

An important activity of the partnership program (BMZ-UNHCR-GIZ) is the repatriation of refugees and internally displaced people and their sustainable integration.

In addition to the government implementing organizations GIZ and KfW, other German development cooperation actors are active in the Democratic Republic of the Congo:

Political Foundations

  • Hanns Seidel Foundation (HSS)
  • Konrad Adenauer Foundation (KAS)

Non-governmental organizations or church and humanitarian organizations

  • Working Group for Development Aid (AGEH)
  • bread for the World
  • Caritas
  • Christoffel Mission for the Blind (CBM)
  • German World Hunger Aid
  • Diakonie Katastrophenhilfe
  • Johanniter foreign aid
  • Maltese International
  • Misereor
  • Architects across borders / well construction school in Kikwit
  • Goethe Institute

The work carried out within the framework of German development and emergency aid was evaluated in a detailed study in 2011. This study makes an important contribution to improving humanitarian aid.

In addition to bilateral aid, Germany is involved in multilateral organizations and within the EU for the DR Congo:

  • EU – European Union
  • IMF – International Monetary Fund
  • WB – World Bank
  • AfDB – African Development Bank
  • UN – United Nations and its various sub-organizations

International development cooperation

About 35% of the budget of the Congolese government (approx. 7.3 billion US dollars in 2011) is financed by international donors. The country is not a recipient of direct budget support.

Almost all donor countries are represented in bilateral development cooperation with the DR Congo and all major multilateral organizations support programs in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The European Union and the United States of America have the issues of ” good governance ” and “building democratic and administrative structures” as cross-cutting issues in their cooperation.

The most important bilateral donors (Germany: see previous chapter):

  • United States
  • Great Britain
  • Japan
  • France

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has a special relationship with France through Francophonie. One focus is on cooperation in the fields of art and culture.

It should be noted that Belgium has so far made a remarkable contribution of 25 million euros to development work in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The massive human rights violations that existed there have prompted the Belgian government to change course since 2017. Since 2018 it has only supported non-governmental organizations. The government of the DR Congo accuses the Belgian government of manipulating information. There are massive tensions between the international donor community and the government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The most important multilateral actors are the IMF and World Bank, the European Union and the UNDP.

Due to the crisis situation in the east of the country and the catastrophic technical and social infrastructure, the planning and implementation of extensive international humanitarian aid is of great importance. The UN office is the central coordination point for humanitarian aid in emergency and disaster relief.

As a “heavily indebted, poor country”, the DR Congo qualified for the HIPC debt relief initiative. Significant debt relief was agreed in early July 2010 when the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and a few countries in the DR Congo waived $ 12.3 billion. Implementation was postponed three months later due to controversial government decisions and suspected corruption in connection with the extraction of raw materials.

Like many other African countries, the DR Congo is slipping into a new debt crisis. A central reason for this is the “cheap money” on the capital markets. In 2016, the World Bank and the IMF determined the DR Congo’s new national debt in the amount of US $ 6.5 billion, which corresponds to 16% of the gross national product. It is feared that it could rise to between US $ 9.5 billion and US $ 12.5 billion in the coming years.