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Aid Investment Plan Sub-Saharan Africa: 2015-2019

Strategic priorities and rationale

Australia has a clear national interest in the security, stability and prosperity of Sub-Saharan Africa. African countries are important in global economic and political terms, including in relation to addressing economic growth, trade liberalisation, agricultural productivity and food security, trans-national crime, disarmament, international terrorism and United Nations reform. Many African economies are prospering, presenting increasing opportunities for trade and investment-led development gains.

Australia has growing commercial interests in Africa, particularly in the extractives sector. The Australian public also cares about Africa – the Australian Council for International Development estimates that in 2012-13 approximately one third ($127 million) of all public donations made by Australians for development projects overseas were for Africa.

Sub-Saharan Africa is a diverse region: the development context and challenges faced differ dramatically between the 49 countries. However, many of the key constraints to economic growth are shared across the continent, including skills shortages; poor enabling environments for business and governance; food insecurity and low agricultural productivity; humanitarian crises; and gender and other inequalities.

Africa is at the bottom of almost every knowledge economy indicator, and many of its tertiary education systems are not capable of meeting the immediate skill needs or supporting sustained productivity-led growth. These skill shortages are particularly acute at the professional levels. In the public sector, these skill deficits hinder the capacity of governments to deliver services, support sustained growth and address development challenges.

Sustained economic growth and competitiveness requires more skilled labour and applied industry-related research. African governments and mining companies identify the most significant constraints they face in maximising the commercial and social benefits from mining as skills gaps in exploration; mine development and exploitation; and infrastructure planning and management. The low levels of female participation in formal employment and leadership roles also constrain economic growth and hinder good governance.

A solid poverty case could be made for development assistance to most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. As a relatively small donor in the region, it is important that Australia's aid contribution to Sub-Saharan Africa is carefully targeted for greatest impact. Our experience demonstrates that Australian aid has the capacity to make a difference and be recognised if we target sectors where Australian experience and knowledge visibly adds value; concentrate our efforts in fewer countries where we can also deepen our engagement; and continue to be a flexible and responsive donor within our chosen areas of expertise.

In the four year period 2015-19, Australia's Sub-Saharan Africa aid program (Africa program) will implement a consolidated program that aligns with the Government's aid policy, Australian aid: promoting prosperity, reducing poverty, enhancing stability. Australia's approach to providing aid to Africa will also complement the Australian Government's economic diplomacy and 'Aid for Trade' objectives.

The bulk of our investment will be directed to countries where we have the strongest national interests, and where we are able to leverage greatest results. This will be predominantly in Eastern and Southern Africa where we have historical program ties and presence, long-term Australian NGO experience, economic and security interests and diaspora links1. This is also consistent with the Indo-Pacific focus of the aid program.

Australia will focus on investments that support good governance and capacity building in the agriculture, extractives and public policy sectors, where Australia has particular expertise and the greatest potential to impact.

Australia Awards will form the flagship of the Africa aid program, offering Masters level scholarships, tailored short-courses, and an alumni program. Australia Awards are a development model in which Australia has considerable experience and a distinct comparative advantage, to help build the skills and capacities of Africa's future leaders in key sectors.

Australia Awards and other investment activities will help build skills and knowledge to contribute to Africa's development; boost agricultural productivity and markets; support the 'Blue Economy'; reduce gender inequality and promote women's economic empowerment; and improve the management of the extractives sector and its revenues. The Africa aid program will also continue to provide life-saving support in response to humanitarian emergencies and protracted crises in Sub-Saharan Africa.

We will transition out of major bilateral and sub-regional investments in food security, agriculture, water, sanitation and hygiene programs. Australia's support for these sectors will largely continue through the Australian Non-Government Cooperation Program (ANCP), Direct Assistance Program (DAP) and the Australia Africa Community Engagement Scheme (concluding in June 2016).

Strategic objectives

The goal of the Australian aid program in Sub-Saharan Africa is to assist African people to achieve more equitable access to the benefits of economic growth and to save lives through appropriate and effective humanitarian action. The Africa program has four primary objectives as outlined below.

Objective 1: Contribute to African leadership and human capacity development in areas of critical skills shortages specifically in the areas of extractives, agricultural and public policy, where Australia has extensive experience and expertise.

Australia will invest in human capacity and African leadership through a substantial but targeted Australia Awards program. Scholarships have been an integral part of Australia's aid program to Africa since the 1960s. In addition to building critical skills and knowledge, Australia Awards foster an engaged and influential network of leaders, reformers and advocates, and help promote valuable people-to-people links between Australia and Africa. The next phase of Australia Awards in Africa (2016-2020) will promote and support Australian development and economic diplomacy objectives in Sub-Saharan Africa. The program will help to address some of the key constraints to economic growth in Africa including skills shortages in the agricultural and extractives sectors; gender inequality; and the enabling environment for business and governance.

Australia Awards will be available to a select number of priority countries, consistent with the overall geographical and sectoral focus for Australian engagement in Africa. Masters level scholarships for study in Australia will be offered to high calibre future leaders across public, private and community sectors. Short Course Awards will offer formal courses of study and training of up to two months delivered by an Australian institution in Australia or Africa. The courses will be offered in areas where Australia is a world leader and where partners have requested assistance, namely agriculture (including ocean governance), extractives governance and public policy (including trade policy and negotiations and public-private infrastructure partnerships).

Australia Awards will continue its strong focus on equality, emphasising equity and inclusivity for women and people with disability. We aim for an equal number of women and men to receive awards, and will build on the current program's recognised work in ensuring people with disability (and people working in support of people with disability) have access to awards. We will strengthen our investment in alumni associations and activities, including ongoing professional development and networking opportunities for Australia Awards and other Australian alumni. The African Women in Leadership Network will continue to develop leadership and strategic management skills for both current awardees and alumni, thus supporting women in their role as key influencers for inclusive development.

Objective 2: Enhance agriculture's contribution to sustainable and inclusive economic growth and food security.

Low agricultural productivity and food insecurity are key constraints for economic growth and human development in Africa. Approximately 80 per cent of the food consumed in Sub-Saharan Africa is grown by smallholder farmers, a majority of whom are women. By investing in agriculture, Australia will contribute to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction and help empower both women and men economically. Australia has high-level agricultural expertise in a range of fields relevant to Africa, including in dry land farming and biosecurity.

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) will deliver projects in Eastern and Southern African countries, focused on increasing agricultural productivity through farming systems intensification. This includes the multi-year Sustainable Intensification of Maize-Legume cropping systems for food security in Eastern and Southern Africa (SIMLESA) and projects through the Australian International Food Security Research Centre based in Nairobi.

The final year (to October 2016) of an agricultural research partnership between the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Biosciences Eastern and Central Africa International Livestock Research Institute (BecA-ILRI) Hub will continue to address some of the key constraints of food insecurity, low agricultural productivity and skills shortages.

While we will not be investing in major new agricultural productivity programs, a range of our fully funded agriculture investments will continue implementation over the coming years. This includes Australia's support to the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF) through the Research into Business (RiB) and Zimbabwe windows. AECF enhances the livelihoods of the rural poor through job creation and better access to services by supporting innovative, commercially viable business ideas which benefit the poor. Australia's contribution to AECF will remain active until 2019.

Our legacy funding in Kenya also includes the Hunger Safety Net Program (HSNP), Index Based Livestock Insurance (IBLI) program, and the System for Land-based Emissions Estimation (SLEEK) program. HSNP will continue to provide much needed innovative social protection in the four poorest counties in Kenya, delivered in partnership with the Kenyan and UK Governments. IBLI will continue to provide a sharia-compliant insurance product designed to protect against prolonged forage scarcity. Australia has provided $24.7 million in funding for HSNP and IBLI until June 2016. SLEEK, managed through Australia's Department of Environment, will develop a robust and credible system for estimating land based emissions in Kenya. Australia has provided over $13.7 million to SLEEK until December 2017.

Through Australia's support for the Australia Africa Community Engagement Scheme (AACES) until June 2016 ($83 million from 2010-2016), Australian NGOs and their African partners will continue to work with the rural poor to increase their incomes and access to financial services by supporting agricultural productivity and diversified livelihoods. Australia will also continue to support the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program and AgResults.

Objective 3: Respond appropriately to humanitarian crises in Africa through working with effective humanitarian partners and supporting advocacy efforts for effective international humanitarian action.

Humanitarian needs in Africa are vast. Humanitarian crises generally involve the mass displacement of people and widespread loss of lives and livelihoods through conflict and natural disaster, significantly affecting the ability of communities to recover and build resilience to future shocks. The broad goal of the Africa Program's humanitarian assistance is to save lives, alleviate suffering and enhance the dignity of people faced with violent conflict, natural disasters and other humanitarian crises in Africa.

The Africa Program's humanitarian response will be consistent with funding allocations, the expectations of the Australian public, the scale of humanitarian need and our reputation as an active contributor to the UN and other multilateral institutions.
Building on our experience and assistance to date, the Africa humanitarian program will pay particular attention to crises in South Sudan and Somalia. These are large-scale, complex, protracted crises that have been priorities for Australian humanitarian assistance over a number of years and are also in line with broader national interest considerations.

Ongoing support for agriculture, food security and other community resilience programs will also help to build the resilience of communities to minimise the impact of natural disasters and conflicts.

Objective 4: Empower women and girls and improve gender equality outcomes.

Gender equality is both an important right and a powerful tool for development, economic growth, and stability. Australia's investments will give specific focus to enhancing women's economic participation and voice in decision making, particularly in the agriculture and extractive sectors. We will aim for gender equality in access to Australia Awards, including through addressing constraints to women's participation. Our Women in Leadership Network will provide ongoing professional development support to female awardees and alumni.

We will also provide advocacy and support for gender equality in negotiations with Africa partners. For example, we will use our grants programs, such as the Direct Aid Program, to provide targeted support to gender equality objectives and reducing violence against women. DFAT's Africa Gender Action Plan will also provide practical guidance and support to ensure gender equality considerations are strengthened in all of DFAT's work in Africa, including aid, foreign policy and economic diplomacy initiatives.

Other strategic priorities

Extractives sector

It is estimated that the extractives sector contributes 42 per cent of government revenues to African economies. In 2010, economic rents from mining were valued at almost four times total ODA to Sub-Saharan Africa. But the extent to which the economic growth benefits of mining are achieved depends upon a range of factors, including an adequately skilled workforce; and increased access for women in decision-making and employment opportunities.

Recognising the significant influence of Africa's extractives sector for the continent's economic growth and prosperity, Australia will continue to use its experience as a world leader in sustainable extractives to influence positive outcomes for African communities, including by using economic diplomacy to help forge links between the private sector and governments. We will provide extractives governance support through Australia Awards and support for global initiatives including:

  • ongoing mining governance activities (managed under the Australia Africa Partnership Facility until December 2015) amounting to more than $8 million in project support for 12 partner countries (Mozambique, Zambia, Kenya, Uganda, Malawi, South Sudan, DRC, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Africa, Ghana and Madagascar). The largest, the Infrastructure Skills for Development program (to December 2016), supports capacity building in project management along the priority infrastructure corridors across Africa identified in the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD).
  • the African Union's African Minerals Development Centre (AMDC) to June 2016 with a contribution of $5 million. The Centre provides a central strategic hub for implementing the Africa Mining Vision2 and coordinates technical support to AU member states who wish to better manage their extractive industries.
  • global contributions to Africa including through the Extractives Global Programmatic Support (EGPS), Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), the Extractive Industries Technical Assistance Fund (EI-TAF), and activities managed by the International Monetary Fund and the Managing Natural Resources Wealth Topical Trust Fund. These activities will help improve the governance of natural resources, assisting developing countries to maximise the benefits from their resource endowment.

Blue economy

Issues related to the governance and sustainable development of oceans are vital to the security and prosperity of many African countries. We will support African states to maximise opportunities from the 'blue economy', including through Australia Awards; regional and global initiatives in fisheries management; maritime governance; and anti-piracy efforts. The Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) will be a key forum for exploring these partnerships.

Aid For Trade

Australia will continue its support for trade related initiatives and engagement via a range of regional and multilateral forums, including the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the African Union. Our support will help to ensure enhanced benefits from Africa's trade reforms and participation in the global trading system (particularly in the agriculture and extractives sectors). Australia Awards scholarships will continue to be offered in trade facilitation and negotiation.

Peacebuilding and security

Australia supports peacebuilding and security efforts in Africa, including through: contributions to global funds; programs which combat food insecurity and enhance community resilience (which contributes to regional stability); policy dialogue; counter-terrorism activities; and expert deployments through the Australian Civilian Corps. Global initiatives funded by Australia will also promote peace and security in Africa, such as contributions to UN bodies, the UN Peacebuilding Fund, and the International Crisis Group. Peacebuilding will also be supported by working with civil society to promote dialogue; enhance accountability and transparency of the state; and strengthen the social contract between citizens and state.

Health, WASH and community resilience

We have established and fully funded investments in a number of water, sanitation and hygiene programs in Zimbabwe until 2017, supporting improved access to basic services. These programs include a Small Towns Water Sanitation and Hygiene Program ($28.9 million) and the Zimbabwe Multi-Donor Trust Fund until June 2017 ($20.1 million). Through supporting water and sanitation Australia's aid is also helping improve the business enabling and investment environment. Australia will remain a committed donor to multilateral funds, the benefits of which flow to many African countries. These include core contributions to the World Bank, global health funds (such as GAVI and the Global Fund) and humanitarian organisations (such as the World Food Program). These imputed flows to Africa are estimated to exceed $230 million in 2015-16. Other ongoing support to health, WASH, and community resilience projects through AACES, ANCP and DAP will also contribute to sustainable and inclusive economic growth in Africa.

Implementation approaches

One flagship program

The Africa program will be significantly consolidated, with the regional budget allocation primarily funding one flagship program: Australia Awards. It offers an effective and efficient modality to deliver Australia's assistance while supporting a range of strategic foreign policy, economic diplomacy and development objectives across key sectors.

An inclusive approach to gender

All investments, regardless of objectives, will effectively address gender issues in their design, implementation and monitoring and evaluation. Our investments will have robust gender strategies, gender budgets, and work with gender advisors in order to contribute to positive gender equality outcomes and women's economic empowerment. A comprehensive Gender Plan has been developed to ensure maximum effectiveness of the next phase of the Australia Awards in Africa program. DFAT's Gender Action Plan for our aid, economic diplomacy and foreign policy initiatives in Africa will also provide practical guidance and support to ensure gender equality considerations are strengthened in all of DFAT's work in Africa.

Flexibility through partnerships and innovation

The largest program, Australia Awards, will be managed and implemented by DFAT, with support from a managing contractor. DFAT will actively pursue innovative partnerships to expand the reach, depth and expertise of the Australia Awards program. These include: short course training delivery through Australian and African institutions; the piloting of split-site and distance learning Masters degrees; shared learning opportunities across the public, private and civil society sectors in the short courses; and increased engagement with the private sector through funding and delivery. The program will be able to adjust to budget variations, and respond to Australia's economic diplomacy objectives and partner country investment priorities. Robust mechanisms will be established for annual program planning, review and adjustment, with scalable contractual arrangements.

Humanitarian delivery through trusted partners

We will focus our humanitarian assistance on responding to urgent humanitarian needs, protection and food security and nutrition. Our humanitarian assistance will most often be directed through multilateral pooled funds managed by the UN, or international organisations best placed to assist (such as the International Committee of the Red Cross or international NGOs). African countries will also benefit from some of Australia's global humanitarian core funding disbursed through partners such as the United Nations, the World Food Program and the International Committee of the Red Cross.

The disproportionate impact of conflict and disasters on women and girls is of utmost concern. The Africa humanitarian program will advocate for better monitoring of gender and protection issues. Australia will advance the interests of affected populations and influence policy decisions in line with best-practice humanitarian principles.

Partnerships with Whole of Government, other Australian organisations and African regional organisations

'Legacy' and regional programs will comprise a mix of delivery mechanisms, including through other Australian Government partners (notably CSIRO and ACIAR), delegated cooperation agreements (predominately with the United Kingdom), multilateral organisations (mostly used for our humanitarian assistance) and NGOs (primarily through AACES and ANCP.

We will continue to work with regional and sub-regional organisations in Africa where they are useful mechanisms for building African capacity and supporting reform. We will maintain partnerships with the African Union and New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD), as organisations playing lead roles in regional approaches to extractives and infrastructure development. We will also coordinate closely with any successor to the International Mining for Development Centre.

NGO, multilateral and community partnerships

We will partner with Australian, African and international NGOs where they offer an effective delivery mechanism to achieve results. The primary vehicle for Australia's partnerships with NGOs will be through the ANCP and the DAP. Australia will also continue to fund Australian NGOs and their in-Africa partners through AACES until June 2016. We will also contribute to good democratic governance and an improved business-enabling environment in Zimbabwe through support to the Zimbabwe Transparency, Responsiveness, Accountability and Citizen Engagement Program (TRACE) in partnership with the UK's Department for International Development (DfID) and Denmark's DANIDA.

We will promote people to people links through a consolidated volunteer program in Tanzania and South Africa (deploying approximately 24 new volunteers annually)3. Volunteer placements will be aligned with priority areas for the aid program, including agricultural productivity, extractives governance, private sector development, and women's economic empowerment.

Policy dialogue

We will utilise our foreign policy, economic diplomacy and development resources to actively pursue our overall objectives in Africa and to maximise the impact of our aid investments. We will do this through policy dialogue with relevant governments and donor fora to ensure that our focus on equitable access to the benefits of growth and humanitarian support are pursued. Priorities include:

  • using our development assistance in agriculture, extractives and public policy to showcase Australia's expertise in these areas, and to leverage trade, investment and foreign policy objectives and opportunities for Australia and Africa.
  • promoting women's rights, gender equality and women's economic empowerment as a cornerstone of our aid program.
  • pursuing targeted engagement with relevant regional organisations to progress development, foreign policy and trade interests.
  • promoting innovative thinking on growth in Africa by sharing lessons learned with economic decision-makers/influencers in countries of accreditation.
  • supporting governments to promote active and effective coordination in sectors important to economic growth and investment where we have ongoing programs.
  • bringing a westward focus to Australian foreign policy settings including by helping develop and promote the Indian Ocean Rim Association.
  • using the Advisory Group for Africa Australia Relations (AGAAR) to maintain active Australia Africa dialogue and to inform aid investment and other policy priorities.

Performance management

Performance benchmarks

Aid objective: All objectives

Performance benchmark: Allocation of funding across Sub-Saharan Africa will be focussed in countries in Eastern and Southern Africa
2015-16 80 per cent
2016-17 90 per cent
2017-18 90 per cent
2018-19 90 per cent

Aid objective 1: Leadership and human capacity development

Performance benchmark: Australia Awards investment work towards achieving gender parity in its allocation of scholarships
2015-16 45 per cent of scholarships allocated to women
2016-17 50 per cent of scholarships allocated to women
2017-18 50 per cent of scholarships allocated to women
2018-19 50 per cent of scholarships allocated to women
Performance benchmark: Proportion of alumni using award-acquired skills and knowledge to contribute to development outcomes
2015-16 90 per cent
2016-17 90 per cent
2017-18 90 per cent
2018-19 90 per cent

Aid objective 2: Agricultural productivity

Performance benchmark: No. of poor women and men who increase their incomes
2015-16 620,000
2016-17 744,000
2017-18 812,200
2018-19 883,500
Performance benchmark: No. of poor women and men who increase their access to financial services
2015-16 620,000
2016-17 744,000
2017-18 812,200
2018-19 883,500

Aid objective 3: Humanitarian assistance

Performance benchmark: No. of vulnerable people provided with life saving assistance in conflict and crisis situations
2015-16 670,000
2016-17 670,000
2017-18 670,000
2018-19 670,000

Aid objective 4: Empower women and girls and improve gender equality outcomes

Performance benchmark: No. of vulnerable people provided with life saving assistance in conflict and crisis situations

80 percent of investments having a satisfactory or above score for gender equality (overall rating as well as for all sub-questions)

All investments collect, analyse and report sex-disaggregated data and have a strategy, informed by gender analysis, to improve gender equality outcomes.


82.5 percent of investments having a satisfactory or above score for gender equality (overall rating as well as for all sub-questions)

All investments collect, analyse and report sex-disaggregated data and have a strategy, informed by gender analysis, to improve gender equality outcomes.


85 percent of investments having a satisfactory or above score for gender equality (overall rating as well as for all sub-questions)

All investments collect, analyse and report sex-disaggregated data and have a strategy, informed by gender analysis, to improve gender equality outcomes.


90 percent of investments having a satisfactory or above score for gender equality (overall rating as well as for all sub-questions)

All investments collect, analyse and report sex-disaggregated data and have a strategy, informed by gender analysis, to improve gender equality outcomes.

Mutual obligations

The Africa aid program is a multi-country program with regional investments, and in many countries our funds are modest relative to the country's GDP and other donor support. While we align our work with the priorities of partner governments and Australia's national interest and expertise, we do not necessarily have formalised mutual obligations or shared priorities in the same way as a large bilateral program. Instead, Australia will ensure we deliver aid in line with the objectives of this Aid Investment Plan against the performance benchmarks identified.

We will partner with countries that have clearly stated development objectives and commitment to necessary reforms. We will track our partners' progress in the sectors that are of strategic importance to Australia – namely agricultural productivity, extractives and public policy.

Australia Awards student and institutional partners have a range of mutual obligations, including supporting extended leave, relevant placements and workplans on return, and ongoing professional development. These commitments help ensure the full benefits of the Australia Award are realised for the individual, the institution and the broader community.

Australia supports a number of global extractives initiatives including: the Extractives Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI); the Kimberley Process on conflict diamonds; and the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights. The African aid program will continue to engage its African partner governments and stakeholders to encourage all countries with natural resources to become compliant with the standards outlined in these initiatives. We will also continue to engage with the continent's primary political body, the African Union (AU), and monitor adherence to and support for the AU's Africa Mining Vision and African Minerals Development Centre.

Our work in agricultural productivity will continue to be aligned with and informed by the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP), which was endorsed by African leaders and sets out clear objectives for agriculture across the continent. ACIAR and CSIRO in their partnerships with African sub-regional organisations and international organisations align their investments with these objectives.

Monitoring, review and evaluation

The Africa aid program will monitor, review and evaluate its investments, including through annual reporting requirements such as the Investment Quality Reporting process and Aid Program Performance Report (APPR). The APPR will track our progress against performance benchmarks and objectives, and inform future programming decisions.

All investments valued at $10 million or more will be required to complete at least one independent evaluation during its lifetime. The major evaluations scheduled over the period of this Aid Investment Plan are outlined at Annex C. Australia will lead evaluations where we are the sole/major donor to a program. Evaluations of multi-donor programs will typically be led by a larger donor, with Australian engagement. Annual reporting processes will be used to identify key areas requiring improvement to enhance the likelihood of program outcomes and aid effectiveness.

Program management

Governance and resource management

The total ODA funding allocation for the Africa aid program is detailed in Annex A. The investment pipeline outlines new funding for Australia Awards and legacy programs in more detail in Annex B.

2015 and 2016 will be transition years for the Africa aid program, continuing our move to fewer investments. DFAT Canberra will lead aid program management in close consultation with the seven Sub-Saharan African Posts (Accra, Abuja, Addis Ababa, Harare, Nairobi, Port Louis and Pretoria). DFAT's aid management resources in Africa and Canberra have been reduced to reflect the changed scope and size of the aid portfolio. Given the regional nature of the Africa program, the First Assistant Secretary and Assistant Secretary for Africa will have overall responsibility for implementing the Aid Investment Plan and allocating budgets. Heads of Mission in the Africa Posts will be responsible for the strategic leadership of the development relationship in their countries of accreditation, and Post teams will lead on program monitoring. The flagship regional program, Australia Awards, will be managed by DFAT Canberra, with support from Africa Posts and the Managing Contractor.

Other Australian Government partners, including CSIRO, ACIAR and the Department of the Environment will lead implementation of their respective programs.

Risk management

The Africa aid program will be exposed to a range of political, fiduciary and performance-related risks. These include management risks related to having one single contractor implementing our largest investment; and management risks from budget and staff reductions.

Given the weak regulatory environment, many development projects entail risks of unintended social and environmental consequences. We will work with development partners to minimise this risk. This will include applying robust social and environment safeguards policies and processes (including child protection) and conducting additional monitoring when required.

Australia maintains a 'zero tolerance' approach to corruption and fraud in our aid program. Over the course of this Aid Investment Plan we will regularly monitor our systems and processes and make use of our comprehensive fraud control and risk management frameworks to help prevent, detect and control fraud. We will continue to engage with trusted and effective implementing partners, respected regional institutions and high performing NGOs and managing contractors.

The key strategic risks identified are recorded in more detail in the Program Risk Register (Annex D). The Program Risk Register will be managed centrally in Canberra, whilst Posts will maintain their own post specific risk registers and program managers will maintain investment specific risk registers.

We will regularly assess, monitor and manage risks in accordance with the table below.

Risk monitoring and communication

Process Frequency
Update of program-level risk register (Annex D) Quarterly
Update of sector-level risk registers (to be created and maintained by program managers) Quarterly
Update of investment level risk registers (to be created and maintained by program managers) Quarterly
Senior management team discussion on progress of risk treatments, escalation of country aid risks and any new risks Monthly
Newly identified risks communicated to Counsellors/lead Development Officers at Post or Directors in Canberra to add to the risk register Ongoing
Escalation of risks to Senior Management (AS, FAS, Dep Sec) in consultation with Counsellors/Directors Ongoing

1. Country targeting will be based on a range of factors including the Australian aid program's '4 tests': national interest, ability to impact, ability to measure results, and our value-add and leverage. Other factors included level of poverty and need; Indian Ocean orientation; past experience and successful partnerships; positive government reforms and development commitment; potential for strong economic growth; ongoing regional instability and insecurity concerns; humanitarian need; and location of our in-Africa personnel.

2. The Africa Mining Vision was adopted by Heads of State at the February 2009 African Union summit. It is Africa's own response to tackling the paradox of great mineral wealth existing side by side with pervasive poverty.

3. These countries have been chosen based on past performance of volunteer programs, geographic priorities and the provision of a safe and secure location for volunteers.

Last Updated: 22 September 2015
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