Swiss official development assistance

Switzerland’s official development assistance (ODA) comprises contributions from the federal government, cantons and communes that are meant to facilitate the economic and social development of recipient countries. ODA is recorded in accordance with the international directives of the OECD's Development Assistance Committee (DAC).

Switzerland's ODA 2021

In 2021, Switzerland spent CHF 3.576 billion on ODA, CHF 230 million more than in the previous year. As a share of gross national income (GNI), Swiss ODA totalled 0.50%, compared with 0.49% in 2020.

Parliament approved two supplementary credits: CHF 226 million for Switzerland's international cooperation response to the health crisis and CHF 23 million for humanitarian aid to the people of Afghanistan. In addition, Switzerland donated stocks of unused SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and medical supplies to developing countries (CHF 45 million in Swiss ODA reporting). These additional measures represent 0.04% of GNI. 

Composition and development of Swiss ODA


Evolution of Swiss ODA ratio per Federal Department and Office


Switzerland's international cooperation is implemented mainly by the SDC and SECO’s Economic Cooperation and Development Division, the two bodies which are charged with executing the Federal Act on International Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid and the Federal Act on Cooperation with Eastern European Countries. Spending by the SDC and SECO accounted for almost 80% of ODA expenditure in 2021.

In accordance with DAC reporting rules, Switzerland also declares as ODA the costs of receiving asylum seekers, temporarily admitted persons and refugees from developing countries during their first 12 months in Switzerland. These costs include the flat rate contributions paid by the State Secretariat for Migration to the cantons (CHF 98 million), the occupation programmes and the costs of the Swiss Confederation's registration centres (CHF 205 million), legal representation fees (CHF 24 million), interpreters/translators (CHF 8 million) and the costs borne by the cantons for the education of the children of asylum seekers (CHF 2 million). These costs amounted to 9% of Swiss ODA in 2021.

Other federal bodies are also involved in Switzerland's international cooperation, including the FDFA’s Peace and Human Rights Division and the Federal Office for the Environment.

The part of Switzerland’s ODA expenditure provided by the cantons and communes remained flat at 2%.