In striving to achieve the main development cooperation goals, namely, to eradicate poverty in the world and to expand long-term and sustainable development of developing countries, international organisations and international financial institutions play an important role. Lithuania contributes to the efforts of the international community to strengthen and coordinate common activities in the areas of trade, environmental protection and climate change, taxes, fight against corruption, migration, security, equality of men and women, etc., by supporting the development cooperation programmes and projects implemented by these organisations.
Lithuania provides multilateral development assistance through obligatory and voluntary contributions and payments to the funds, international organisations and international financial institutions carrying out or coordinating development cooperation activities, including the EU budget part. Thus, Lithuania supports the world’s poorest countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and other regions.
Lithuania participates in the operations of the following international funds engaged in development cooperation:
The European Development Fund ( hereinafter referred to as the “EDF” or the “Fund”) was created in 1957 by the Treaty of Rome and launched in 1959. The first Fund covered the 1959–1964 period. This Fund is the European Union’s (hereinafter referred to as the “EU”) main instrument for providing development aid to the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries. The EDF provides funds to the African, Caribbean and Pacific countries for the following areas: economic development, social and human development, regional cooperation and integration. It is financed by direct contributions from EU Member States according to a certain contribution key. The Fund has its rules and procedures. The Fund is administered by the European Commission (hereinafter referred to as the “EC”) and is supervised by the special committee, i.e. the European Development Fund Committee. The Fund is concluded for a certain period linked to the cycle of the partnership between the EU and the African, Caribbean and Pacific countries (6–7 years). The 10th Fund covered the 2008–2013 period with the total funding of EUR 22.682 billion. The 11th Fund covers the 2014–2020 period and has a budget of EUR 30.506 billion. The major portion, i.e. EUR 29.089 billion (over 95%), is intended for development of the African, Caribbean and Pacific countries, EUR 364.5 million is allocated to the EU’s Overseas Countries and Territories, and EUR 1,052.5 million is scheduled to cover the EC administration programming and Fund administration expenses.
On 24 June 2013, the Representatives of the Governments of EU Member States signed the 11th Fund Internal Agreement. The European Council approved the 11th Fund, the agreed total amount and the contribution keys of EU Member States. Lithuania’s financial commitment to pay regular contributions to this Fund stems from the Internal Agreement of EU Member States, which was ratified by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania on 5 April 2007 (Official Gazette Valstybės Žinios, 8 11 2007, No. 114–4623).
Since 2011 Lithuania has been paying its contributions to the Fund. The EC calculates the annual contribution of EU Member States according to the need for the Fund’s payments for programmes and projects. Lithuania’s contribution to the 10th Fund amounts to EUR 27,218,400, and its contribution to the 11th Fund equals EUR 55,145,696.
All EU Member States must ratify the 11th Fund Internal Agreement. Lithuanian ratified it on 15 May 2014 (Register of Legal Acts, 21 May 2014, No. 2014–05568). The 11th Fund Internal Agreement should enter into effect at the beginning of 2015.
Established in 2004, the Anna Lindh Foundation (hereinafter referred to as the “ALF” / “Foundation”) seeks to promote dialogue between Europe and the Mediterranean Region. It operates as a network of civil society organisations. The purpose of the Foundation is to bring together people and organizations, to recognise the identity of different cultures, and to create a common future. The operations of the Foundation cover the following areas: youth education, culture and arts, urban development and migrant integration, religious dialogues, peace and coexistence, and media strengthening activities.
The Foundation is conceived as a Network of National Networks established in 43 countries and bringing together around 4,000 civil society organizations, including non-governmental organizations, individuals, foundations, public institutions, local and regional authorities, etc.
The Lithuanian National Network is composed of around 30 civil society organizations, which actively contribute to the promotion of intercultural dialogue, and in particular in the areas of international relations, media, and culture. Using the funding received from the Foundation, Lithuanian civil society organizations have already participated in joint programmes with Egypt, Jordan and Tunisia, the Mediterranean campaigns “1001 actions for dialogue”, “Restore trust, rebuild bridge”, etc. Being involved in the Foundation’s operations, Lithuania has the possibility of sharing its European experience through projects with the countries of the North Africa and Near East region. Lithuanian civil society organizations participate in the Foundation’s programmes, take advantage of networking opportunities and obtain co-financing for projects implemented in the homeland and other countries. Through its participation in the Foundation’s operations, Lithuania is able to raise more public awareness of global processes and support for development cooperation policy.
The Foundation is co-financed by the European Commission and EU Member States allocating voluntary contributions.
The Asia–Europe Foundation (hereinafter referred to as the “ASEF” / “Foundation”) is a non-profit organisation established in Singapore in 1997 as a financial instrument of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) for promoting greater mutual understanding between Asia and Europe through intellectual, cultural and people-to-people exchanges. The ASEM has 53 partners: 28 EU Member States and the EC, 17 Asian countries (Bangladesh, Brunei, the Philippines, India, Indonesia, Japan, Cambodia, China, Laos, South Korea, Malaysia, Myanmar/Burma, Mongolia, Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam), and the ASEAN Secretariat. The ASEM was joined by Australia, New Zealand and Russia in 2010, Bangladesh, Norway and Switzerland in 2012, and Croatia and Kazakhstan in 2014.
In the Foundation’s projects, the developed ASEM members share their experience with the developing ASEM members. Projects are intended to promote democratic processes in developing countries and cover such topics as democracy, supremacy of law, human rights, good governance, environmental protection and sustainable development, economics and society, public health, arts and culture, education and academic cooperation, etc. The Foundation’s projects are organised together with institutions of ASEM partner countries, such as parliaments, public institutions, research institutes, educational institutions, student and youth, cultural and heritage protection organizations, business representatives, non-governmental organizations, and trade unions. The Foundation works with more than 500 partners in Europe and Asia. The Foundation has implemented over 600 projects, engaging over 17,000 participants and reaching out to a much wider audience in Europe and Asia.
The projects implemented by the Foundation in Lithuania raise public awareness of global processes, contribute to the promotion of public support for development cooperation policy and engagement (in particular of non-governmental institutions) into specific development cooperation activities.
The operations of the Foundation are funded only by voluntary contributions from ASEM partners.
The Lifeline: Embattled Civil Society Organizations Assistance Fund was launched in Vilnius in 2011 on the margins of the Community of Democracies Ministerial, on the initiative of the U.S. Department of State. The Fund provides financial assistance to non-governmental organisations and individuals protecting human rights and fighting for democracy and thus suffering restrictions on their activities in their own countries worldwide. The Fund also provides advocacy support responding to broader threats to civil society, i.e. it supports civil society organisations (human rights organisations, media associations, student groups, labour unions, independent research institutes, etc.) that promote and protect human rights and act in a watchdog capacity.
Lifeline currently has 17 donors, including Lithuania.
The European Endowment for Democracy (EED) is a private law foundation that is not an EU structure but it is supported by the EU, created on the initiative of Poland during its 2011 Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
By providing support, the Foundation seeks to promote democratic processes in societies and countries in political transition. The Funds supports local democratic initiatives/processes implemented in the EU’s Eastern and Southern neighbourhood as well as by international partners and civil society organisations.
The target recipient group is organisations and individuals who have difficulties in obtaining support from other sources/instruments The Foundation operates on the basis of the principle of speedy and flexible decision-making having regard to current political issues.
Its priorities are as follows:
- support to structures operating under repression/expulsion conditions (individuals, organizations);
- support to non-registered civil society organizations (CSO) which otherwise would not qualify for funding through EU and other international or bilateral instruments;
- support to youth / local communities, democratic movements and initiatives;
- support to independent media, NGO and CSO active in promoting democracy;
- promotion of democracy (strengthening the authority of and confidence in pro-democracy movements; raising youth awareness of democracy transformations (and increasing the notoriety of leaders, activists); increase of networking among regional and EU organizations, accumulation of good practices and knowledge).
The Foundation is financed by the European Commission and through voluntary contributions from EU Member States.