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Private sector development

Private sector development

2023-24 total Australian ODA [budget estimate]
$1,337.0 million
2022-23 total Australian ODA [budget estimate]
$1,246.8 million
2021-22 total Australian ODA [actual]
$1,224.8 million

Responding to COVID-19

The COVID-19 global pandemic is currently the over-riding challenge for the Indo-Pacific region with significant social and economic impacts across a large number of countries.

The Australian Government's development policy Partnerships for Recovery – Australia's COVID-19 Development Responseand performance framework, outline Australia's approach to tackling COVID-19 in our region focussed on health security, stability and economic recovery. Under this policy, DFAT is pivoting existing private sector programs to support economic recovery. We are working with businesses to create livelihood opportunities, support inclusive business practices, enhance gender equality and support countries to build back better and strengthen resilient economic recovery.

Australia's Partnerships for Recovery policy recognises that the private sector will be an essential partner in economic recovery. The private sector will be a source of economic growth, incomes and jobs; and as a partner with whom we can work to achieve faster and more sustainable development outcomes. Private sector development refers to DFAT's work to support the growth of the private sector in developing countries.

How we provide development assistance

Australia's development investments in the private sector seek to achieve three objectives:

  • Building better business and investment environments: For example, reform of business registration processes, contracting laws, customs and trade regulation, enabling access to finance, and supporting the provision of essential hard and soft infrastructure.
  • Supporting growth in specific markets: For example, facilitating new business opportunities and removing barriers to efficient market operation, creating market incentives, improving the functioning of value and supply chains, supporting provision of key economic infrastructure through technical expertise and risk management, and providing anchor funding for market builders.
  • Maximising the development impact of businesses: For example, partnering with businesses to implement business models that serve the poor as consumers, producers or employees.

In addition to the Partnerships for Recovery policy, Australia's investments in private sector development are guided by the Operational Framework for Private Sector Engagement in Australia's Aid Program and the Ministerial Statement on Engaging the Private Sector in Aid and Development

To find out more about DFAT's work with the private sector, or if you are a business interested in working with DFAT's development program, visit our private sector partnerships webpage or contact

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