About the Collective Resilience Plan

The Collective Resilience Plan is a roadmap for building a strong global community through New Zealand’s overseas aid and climate action.
In May 2021, the government will announce a new three-year funding cycle for overseas aid climate action. Within that, the Collective Resilience Plan calls for:

·      a 20% boost to the overseas aid budget

o   focusing aid spending on healthcare, social protection and resilience

o   including a budget line for upfront, multi-year humanitarian funding for the world’s worst protracted crises.

·       a doubling of finance for climate action overseas

o   sourced from new and additional funds in order to get us closer to delivering our fair share of support for our Pacific neighbours and other frontline countries tackling climate change, including our Pacific neighbours

o   a commitment for at least 50% to be spent on adaptation measures.

·       a timeline for getting overall international development spending to 0.7% of New Zealand’s gross national income by 2030

Frequently asked questions

The coronavirus is accelerating its attack on humanity across the world. Without action there is the potential for up to 40 million people to die – that's the population of New Zealand eight times over.


Decades of progress to end global poverty and discrimination are being unravelled. The United Nations University estimates that as many as half a billion more people could fall back into poverty because of the coronavirus pandemic and the economic recession it has caused.


Before the coronavirus hit, the climate crisis was already harming people. If we’re unable to keep global heating below 1.5°C, poverty and discrimination will expand further. Right now, over 2 billion people do not have enough food each day to meet their nutrition needs. This will only get worse.

All of us. The problems that confront our world today are bigger than any one person or community or country. The coronavirus, economic recession and climate breakdown are problems that impact on us all, wherever we are.  


However, it is the people who already endure the indignity of poverty and discrimination who are being hurt the most. Over 700 million people live on less than US$1.90 a day – the official global extreme poverty line. Millions more live on less than US$5 a day. These are the mums and dads who cannot get their sick children to a doctor or nurse, and who do not get sick pay or wage subsidies during lockdowns.


To solve these problems, we need every single person on the planet to be able to offer their unique contribution. And that means every person needs to get decent health care to survive the coronavirus and other illnesses, an education so they can gain skills and knowledge, and support when things go wrong and they can’t work to pay the bills.  

New Zealand’s aid and climate finance helps to build a thriving global community. In places where poverty and discrimination lock down people’s potential, our support opens critical pathways towards people’s well-being, allowing them to offer their unique contribution to the world. In times of need, New Zealand’s aid and climate finance nurtures buoyant communities across the world, supporting our neighbours to adapt in the face of adversity and join with others to solve the problems affecting us all.


New Zealand’s overseas aid and climate action includes support for

  • strong healthcare systems that can get us all through global pandemics
  • social safety nets, in places without them, for when people lose their income
  • renewable energy and adaptive farming on the frontlines of the climate crisis
  • humanitarian support for when disaster strikes. 

To get through the coronavirus pandemic and economic recession, the United Nations has called for a US$2.5 trillion emergency package to assist developing countries, including shoring up failing health systems and providing social protection measures worth US$500bn – a quarter of the last decade’s missing Offical development assistance (ODA). This would be the equivalent of all developed countries giving 0.7% of their GNI as ODA – something they have pledged for decades but only a handful have achieved. Oxfam calculates New Zealand’s fair share of this amount as $3 billion.


On top of this, at least $157 billion a year is needed for climate finance.

In response to our earlier call for immediate humanitarian funding to stop the coronavirus the government pledged $7 million to help people living in refugee camps and war zones. The government also gave $7 million to support vaccines, including for the coronavirus vaccine. $50 million was allocated to several Pacific Island Countries, to help them prepare for the pandemic and economic challenges.  


None of this was new money. It doesn’t make sense to take money from ongoing work to build functioning health systems, to provide emergency support to stop the coronavirus. We must do both. New Zealand can do more. 

Aid is officially called ‘Overseas Development Assistance’. It is the money provided by governments like New Zealand with the “promotion of the economic development and welfare of developing countries as its main objective”. To count as ‘aid’ the funding must be either given as a grant, or if a loan, have a specific concessional element to it. (https://one.oecd.org/document/DCD/DAC/STAT(2018)9/FINAL/en/pdf, p. 17)


The Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) monitors members’ aid expenditure. Members, such as New Zealand, have to report to the DAC on their aid expenditure.


Every four to five years the DAC also conducts a peer review of members Aid Programmes. New Zealand’s last review was in late 2015. The next review will be in 2021

50 years ago, New Zealand committed alongside other wealthy governments to provide 0.7% of its Gross National Income to overseas aid. But New Zealand has never come close to reaching this target.


We are currently providing 0.3% of GNI in overseas aid. New Zealand allocates its aid budget in three-year blocks. From 2018 to 2021 New Zealand’s aid allocation is $2.2 billion dollars. In 2020/2021, aid is about $870 million, which is less than one dollar for every one hundred dollars our government spends.


While our collective voice and action is moving successive governments in the right direction, New Zealand is still at the back of the pack in terms of its contribution to stopping poverty and discrimination.  Now is our opportunity to deliver on past promises. 


New Zealand Aid


OECD DAC Donors Aid as a Percent of GNI, 2018 

Source: Data extracted on 02 Mar 2020 00:26 UTC (GMT) from OECD.Stat: https://stats.oecd.org/Index.aspx?datasetcode=TABLE1

Along with other wealthy countries, New Zealand is obligated under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change to provide support to help countries that are poor to reduce emissions and adapt to global heating (called climate finance). New Zealand has committed to helping mobilise a total $151 billion a year of climate finance under the Paris Agreement. Oxfam estimates New Zealand’s fair share of this to be between $301.5 million and $540 million per year.


In 2018, New Zealand gave $63.7 million in ‘climate-specific’ finance. 


New Zealand was ranked 19th out of 23 OECD countries for its climate finance contributions, at $11 dollars per person provided in 2018. New Zealand’s position improves slightly to 14th when adjusted for grant and grant-equivalent contributions – but is still far below countries of comparable size such as Ireland and Denmark. New Zealand is not a generous climate finance donor. That’s why we’re asking for $500 million in new and additional funding for global climate action over the next three years (2021-24).


New Zealand Climate Finance

What we’re asking for is a combined $1 billion extra over three years, or approximately $333 million a year. To put this into perspective, this is less than 40 cents for every 100 dollars the government spends a year – or about 0.40%. By comparison, the government announced a $50 billion COVID-19 Response and Recovery Funding (CRRF) focused on the domestic response to coronavirus in its 2020 Budget.


It can feel hard to believe, but New Zealand is one of the wealthiest countries in the world. We can afford to share our resources with people in countries that aren’t as well-off as New Zealand. It is a question of priorities. We have enough resources to address our social and environmental problems in New Zealand, while also helping people locked in poverty and discrimination in countries that are poor. What we need to do is share our resources better to make sure all families have safe water to drink, a warm home to live in, and enough nutritious food each day. 

Climate finance is described in Article 9 of the Paris Declaration, p. 25, to which New Zealand is a signatory. Article 9 says that developed countries like New Zealand will provide financial resources to assist developing countries to adapt to, and mitigate, climate change. Climate finance should come from a variety of sources, with a crucial role for public finance, and expand on previous finances provided.


At least 50 percent of climate finance should go towards supporting countries to adapt to the changing conditions the climate crisis causes

Currently, New Zealand’s climate finance to other countries is counted as part of New Zealand’s aid. Most governments that give aid do this.


This means that it can be difficult to understand precisely how much aid and climate finance countries are providing. Different donors account for their climate finance in different ways. There is now a voluntary accounting standard but not all donors follow this.


Civil society organisations want governments like New Zealand to separate climate finance out from aid. For decades, high income countries have pledged to support other countries to overcome their development challenges. The problems aid is for have not gone away. Yet now the impacts of runaway global heating are exacerbating these problems for low- and middle-income countries. High income countries have helped cause both development and climate problems, and they must transparently live up to the promises they have made to give both aid and climate finance, and not attempt to shirk their responsibilities through double-counting.

The majority of New Zealand’s aid and climate finance is spent bilaterally. This means it is provided from the New Zealand government directly to a partner country. Usually, the funds are provided to the partner government, but sometimes they go to non-state actors, such as civil society and private sector organisations. In 2019, 82 percent of New Zealand’s aid was spent bilaterally.


The remaining 18 percent was provided to a range of multilateral institutions, such as the United Nations Development Programme, the World Food Programme, the Global Climate Fund or the World Bank. (https://stats.oecd.org/Index.aspx?datasetcode=TABLE1#; Data extracted on 19 Oct 2020 00:13 UTC (GMT) from OECD.Stat)

New Zealand spends its aid on a diverse range of activities. These get grouped under particular sectors. In 2018, New Zealand spent 44 percent of its aid on economic and productive sectors – things like roads, ports, private sector support agriculture, fisheries, energy and tourism. Education took-up 21 percent of the aid budget, and much of this went towards tertiary education. Health received 10% of New Zealand’s aid, in areas such as child and maternal health.

(Data extracted on 29 Feb 2020 21:36 UTC (GMT) from OECD.Stat, https://stats.oecd.org/Index.aspx?datasetcode=TABLE5#)

International development NGOs in New Zealand can access the Partnerships for Impact (P4I) fund to support their work overseas. This is approximately NZ$76 million a year out of an overall government aid budget of $860 million. To be able to apply to the P4I fund, INGOs have to go through a detailed due diligence and capability assessement, and provide matched funding that they raise themselves. There are tight restrictions about how much of this funding can be used for INGO administrative and staff costs, and in many cases the allowable limits are far below what other aid contractors, such as universities and the private sector, are eligible to receive.


About the Big Hearts, Connected World campaign

The Big Hearts, Connected World campaign is coordinated by Oxfam New Zealand, working closely with World Vision, Christian World Service and The Anglican Diocese of Wellington. 

We want everyone who supports the Collective Resilience Plan to join us.
Are you an individual who wants to get involved in the campaign? Sign up at www.bighearts.org.nz
Are you an organisation who wants to support the campaign? Get in touch via the contact form below.