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Development assistance in South and West Asia

Stability in South Asia (Regional Program)


Australia is promoting broader stability and cohesion in South Asia through our work on regional cooperation and building people-to-people linkages. The regional South Asia Water Security Initiative (SAWASI) focuses on building health security and stability through providing access to safe and reliable water. Our Australia Awards program strengthens Australia’s people-to-people links by offering in-Australia study. We will continue to support efforts to end violence against women through Australia’s investment in the UN Women’s Essential Services Programme. This program builds partner government capacity to meet globally recognised best practice and standards for addressing gender-based violence.

Further details are contained in the South Asia Regional Development Cooperation Factsheet.

Related initiatives

Australia Awards in South Asia and Mongolia

$39.34million, 2021 to 2024

The Australia Awards in South Asia and Mongolia (AASAM) program offers emerging leaders the opportunity to undertake study, research and professional development with the support of the Australian Government. The program develops the skills, knowledge and networks of individuals to drive change and contribute to development in their own countries and regions while maintaining strong links to Australia.

Additional information on the Australia Awards in South Asia and Mongolia program.

Indian Ocean Regional

$6.9 million, 2015 to 2021

Through this program Australia invests in the Indian Ocean region including in the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA). These investments promote stability in the Indian Ocean region. Funding supports IORA’s key priorities, including sustainable fisheries and the blue economy, maritime safety and security, trade and investment facilitation, preparing academic courses on the Indian Ocean region, disaster risk management, tourism and cultural exchanges, and developing statistics to support gender sensitive policy. We also fund the secondment of an Australian director to the IORA Secretariat based in Mauritius.

South Asia Water Security Initiative

$20 million, 2020 to 2025 (with option to extend for 2 years)

The South Asia Water Security Initiative (SAWASI) aims to strengthen urban water governance and to improve access to safe water and sanitation services for disadvantaged communities in South Asia cities, particularly women and girls. SAWASI pilots projects in key cities focussing on addressing the needs of the urban poor living in informal settlements and strengthens climate and disaster resilience through better management of available water resources.

SAWASI promotes women’s participation in decision making on urban water management and in improved access to safe water and sanitation.

Related documents

Name of document Year published
South Asia Water Security Initiative (SAWASI) – Investment Design [PDF]  2020
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