Turkey’s foreign aid for development projects, ranging from building schools to providing clean water in 121 countries, reached $3.4 billion in 2012, an official report has shown.
“Turkey is no longer the hand that receives, but the hand that gives, due to political and economic success under the AK Party’s [Justice and Development Party] rule,” Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ said regarding the report prepared by the Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA). “After the 98 percent increase, aid figures exceeded 2 billion dollars for the first time,” notes the report.
The most obvious reason behind the aid increase is the shelter and supplies provided across eight provinces to Syrians who have fled the civil war in their country. Approximately 979 million dollars in aid was supplied to Syrians, according to calculations. The loans and budget support granted to developing countries also accounts for a portion of the increase.
The Middle East received 46.6 percent of the development aid, while 31 percent of the aid went to Africa, 18 percent to south and central Asia, and 3 percent to the Balkans and Eastern Europe. The countries that were officially granted the most Turkish development assistance were Syria, Egypt, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Somalia, Sudan, Tunisia, Palestine, Kazakhstan and Bosnia and Herzegovina, respectively.