International relations: The Grand Duchy has scored highly in an American think tank’s new comparison of rich country support for the developing world.
Luxembourg placed 4th out of the 27 countries reviewed in the Center for Global Development’s annual Commitment to Development Index, which was released last week. It was the first time the Grand Duchy was included in the 10 year old ratings report, which “scores wealthy governments on helping poor countries” in seven fields.
Luxembourg ranked behind first-placed Denmark, Norway and Sweden, and just ahead of Austria and the Netherlands. The bottom ranked countries were Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Poland, Japan and last placed South Korea.
“Luxembourg’s largest contribution to developing countries is its high quality foreign assistance program and large share of aid as a proportion of GDP,” a spokeswoman for the think tank told Delano. Indeed, the Grand Duchy took top place in this ratings category, ahead of Norway, Sweden and Denmark.
“It also scores well in migration due to a large increase of unskilled migrants from developing countries as a proportion of its population during the 1990s,” the spokeswoman noted. In this category, the Grand Duchy was 7th best, ranked between Germany and New Zealand.
“However, Luxembourg performs poorly on trade, investment, environment and technology,” the group’s spokeswoman continued. “It has large agricultural subsidies that hamper developing country exports, weak support for extractive industry transparency initiatives, low gas taxes and high greenhouse gas emissions, and little support for research and development.”
The Grand Duchy’s reputation for being a leader in international aid and cooperation is one reason it has seen strong support from the developing world for its UN Security Council bid, Luxembourg foreign minister Jean Asselborn told Delano in September.
The Center for Global Development is a Washington-based policy research institute focused on reducing global poverty and inequity. It is supported by NGOs such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and George Soros’ Open Society Institute, the World Bank, as well as the governments of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the UK.