88. Press Release Issued by the Development Assistance Committee of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development1

Press A(64)51


Paris, 23rd-24th July, 1964

A total financial flow of $8.15 billion to less-developed countries was reported by the Members of the OECD Development Assistance [Page 246] Committee for 1963. This compares with $8.0 billion for 1962. High level government representatives of this Committee under the chairmanship of Willard L. Thorp completed their third annual meeting today at which they examined the results of the latest annual review of the development assistance efforts and policies of their Member Governments.
The Annual Aid Review which was completed with today’s meeting constitutes an important feature of the DAC’s work. During the Review which took place during the past three months each Member was subjected to vigorous questioning concerning its programme and performance and suggestions were made for its improvement. In the interest of promoting closer integration of financial assistance and technical assistance, this year’s Aid Review included consideration of technical co-operation programmes. The Committee also took stock of the progress made in other aspects of its work including the review of the development problems of certain individual less-developed countries and regions.

The Hon. Willard J. Thorp, Chairman of the DAC, presented a report on the major problems which have emerged from the review of Members’ policies.2 He drew attention, among other things to the need for further easing the financial terms [Page 247] and conditions of assistance provided and taking action to ensure a persistent upward trend in the flow of assistance. The Chairman put forward a number of recommendations under the following headings.

  • New initiatives to expand the assistance flow;
  • Improving the terms and conditions of aid;
  • Steps to increase the effectiveness of aid;
  • More effective international co-ordination;
  • More stress on performance of developing countries;
  • Improving technical co-operation;
  • Encouraging the efforts of the private sector;
  • Considering the proposals of UNCTAD regarding trade and development.

These recommendations are set out in full in the attached annex.3

The Committee examined the report in detail. The Members of the DAC agreed to take into account, in the light of their differing capabilities, the recommendations put forward by the Chairman.
The Members agreed to give particular attention in the coming months to the following major problems: 1. The requirements for assistance in the light of self-help measures by less-developed countries, and the adequacy of the supply of aid to meet these requirements. 2. Terms and conditions, indebtedness, suppliers’ credits and other short- and medium-term credits. 3. The co-ordination of various aid programmes. The DAC envisaged the possibility of holding a Ministerial Level Meeting early in 1965 to consider these problems.
In the discussions the government representatives expressed concern about the growing indebtedness of less-developed countries and the need to prevent an excessive growth in debt service requirements while meeting the needs of the developing countries for a continued flow of capital to finance sound development.
The recently held United Nations Conference on Trade and Development in Geneva provided further background to the discussions of the Development Assistance Committee.4 It was agreed to study the recommendations adopted by the United Nations Conference in view of the importance of this Conference for the work of DAC and government assistance policies.
The total financial flow to the less developed countries from the DAC of $8.1 billion in 1963 consisted of $5.7 billion of official bilateral flows, some $400 million official contributions to multilateral agencies and an estimated private capital flow of $2.0 billion. In 1963 the flow of funds to less-developed countries from multilateral agencies substantially exceeded payments made by DAC Members to these multilateral agencies. Thus the total flow of funds actually received by less-developed countries in 1963 was $8.4 billion as compared with $7.7 billion for 1962. There is a likelihood of a further increase in 1964. While new commitments were substantially above disbursements in 1963 they were somewhat lower than new commitments in 1962.

The Development Assistance Committee comprises the governments of Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany (F.R.), Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, the United States and the Commission of the European Economic Community. The meeting was also attended by observers from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the International Monetary Fund and the Inter-American Development Bank.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, AID 1. No classification marking. The source text is enclosure 1 to airgram CEDTO A–76 from Paris, August 1.
  2. Regarding Thorp’s draft report, see Document 87. No approved version of this report has been found.
  3. Not printed.
  4. The U.N. Conference on Trade and Development was held in Geneva March 23–June 16.