Journal Article

Why Donors of Foreign Aid Do Not Coordinate: The Role of Competition for Export Markets and Political Support


  • Fuchs
  • A.
  • Nunnenkamp
  • P.
  • Öhler
  • H.
Publication Date

Development assistance has been criticized for a lack of coordination between aid donors. This paper argues that competition for export markets and political support prevents donor countries from coordinating their aid activities between one another. To test these hypotheses, we perform logit and fractional logit estimations for a large sample of recipient countries and aid activities since the early 1970s. Our empirical results reveal that export competition between donors is a major impediment to aid coordination. Though less conclusive, we also find some evidence that donors’ competition over political support prevents them from coordinating aid activities more closely.

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JEL Classification
F35, F42, F53

Key Words

  • Development aid
  • donor coordination
  • export similarity
  • trade interests
  • UN voting