Independent Review of Aid Effectiveness

Media release

16 November 2010

Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd today announced the first independent review of Australia's aid and development program since 1996. It will examine the effectiveness and efficiency of Australia's aid and guide the strategic direction of Australia's aid program.

To be undertaken over the next 5 months, the Independent Review of Aid Effectiveness is designed to maximise the effectiveness of the aid program, as Australia increases its Official Development Assistance to 0.5 per cent of Gross National Income by 2015-16.

"The aim of Australia's aid program is to reduce poverty through improved medical care, education, economic opportunities and governance," said Mr Rudd.

"In doing so, the program also aims to enable communities to generate their own long-term sustainable economic development, and increase stability within our region."

The Review will be conducted by an external panel chaired by Mr Sandy Hollway AO and builds on a range of existing measures to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the aid program.

Mr Hollway is a former secretary of two Australian Government departments and CEO of the Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games, a Deputy Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet with responsibility for foreign aid and other international matters.

The panel will also include:

Dr Stephen Howes

Dr Howes is the Director, International and Development Economics, Crawford School of Economics and Government at the ANU, and has previously worked as the Lead Economist for India for the World Bank and as Chief Economist at AusAID;

Ms Margaret Reid AO

Ms Reid has extensive experience with Australian non-government organisations (NGOs) working in international aid as the former President of the Executive Committee of the Australian Council for International Development. She is also a former President of the Senate.

Mr Bill Farmer AO

Mr Farmer is a former senior diplomat. Mr Farmer was Head of Mission in the two largest recipients of Australian aid, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. Mr Farmer was also the Deputy Permanent Representative of Australia to the United Nations;

Mr John Denton

Mr Denton is the CEO and Partner at Corrs Chambers Westgarth, is a Prime Ministerial appointee to the APEC Business Advisory Council and a member of the Boards of the Business Council of Australia and the Commonwealth Business Council. He is also Chairman of Australia for United Nations High Commission for Refugees.

The panel will consult with key stakeholders, including non-government organisations, relevant Australian government departments, partner governments in our region and bilateral and multilateral donors.

"The recommendations that come out of this review will improve the structure and delivery of our aid as we work with the international community to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)," said Mr Rudd.

The Terms of Reference and further details of the Review are available at

Media enquiries

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