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).

Official development assistance (ODA) as % of gross national income (GNI)


Switzerland's ODA in 2023

In 2023, Swiss official development assistance (ODA) totalled CHF 4,640 million, CHF 347 million more than in the previous year (2022: CHF 4,293 million).

As a proportion of gross national income (GNI), Switzerland's ODA increased to 0.60% (2022: 0.56%) and is now at an all-time high. The increase compared to the previous year is mainly due to asylum-related costs in Switzerland borne by the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) and extraordinary expenditure in the area of international cooperation relating to the war in Ukraine and the conflict in the Middle East.  

Asylum-related costs in Switzerland eligible to be recorded as ODA increased between 2022 and 2023, reaching CHF 1,311 million (2022: CHF 1,206 million). The ODA/GNI ratio excluding asylum costs thus reached 0.43% in 2023, compared to 0.40% the previous year. 

Composition and development of Swiss ODA


Switzerland's international cooperation is implemented mainly by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) at the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA), the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) at the EAER and the FDFA’s Peace and Human Rights Division (PHRD). In 2023, their expenditure accounted for 65% of total ODA.  

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. They consist of the flat-rate contributions made by the SEM to the cantons (CHF 772 million), the schooling of children of asylum seekers in registration centres (CHF 9 million), as well as the costs of the Swiss Confederation's registration centres (CHF 457 million), the costs of legal representation during proceedings (CHF 57 million) and the costs for interpreters (CHF 15 million). These costs constitute 28% of the total ODA for 2023 (as in 2022).

International cooperation activities are supplemented by expenditure eligible to be recorded as ODA from other federal offices, including DETEC's Federal Office for the Environment and contributions from Swiss cantons and municipalities.