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Is Foreign Aid Responsive to Environmental Needs and Performance of Developing Countries? Case Study of the Czech Republic.

  • Opršal, Zdeněk
  • Harmáček, Jaromír
Publication Date
Jan 14, 2019
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This paper examines the responsiveness of foreign aid to environmental needs and performance of developing countries using, as an example, the Czech Republic. It focuses on the environmental component of foreign aid, which is defined as the development intervention of the Czech Government, which can be expected to have positive environmental impacts in target countries. The provision of environmental aid is based on the assumption that the Czech Republic has practical, transferable experience of qualitative improvements in the environment following the collapse of communist regime. Flows of environmental aid were determined by analyzing and categorizing individual development aid projects in the period 2000 to 2015. Regression analyses were employed to explain the pattern of Czech environmental aid allocations. The results show relatively limited reflection of the recipient’s environmental needs in the distribution of Czech environmental aid. Only two environmental objectives were significantly echoed in actual aid flows. The first was transfer of advanced environmental technologies and reductions in energy consumption, approximated by carbon dioxide emissions per capita. The second was protection of biodiversity, represented by the extinction risk of sets of species. The other five objectives did not play significant roles in environmental aid allocations. Above that, other factors not related to the environmental needs and performance of recipient countries affected Czech environmental aid. Among them, historical ties to other former communist countries were of high significance. The findings call into question the environmental objectives of Czech foreign aid and point to the need for transparent criteria for the allocation of environmental aid.

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