Overview of Australia’s aid program to Nepal

How we are helping

2014/15 Bilateral Budget Estimate
$15.6 million

2015/16 Bilateral Budget Estimate
$15.6 million

2015/16 Total Australian ODA Estimate
$26.8 million

DFAT will manage an estimated $15.6 million in bilateral funding to Nepal in 2015-16.  Total Australian Official Development Assistance (ODA) to Nepal in 2015-16 will be an estimated $26.8 million.

Australia has a long history of supporting Nepal’s human development, as well as its economic development through micro-enterprise programs to lift people out of poverty. Australian ODA will continue to support high-performing investments to help achieve development objectives in Nepal.

Australia is committed to providing support for Nepal following the devastating April 2015 earthquake. Australia’s contribution of $10 million for Nepal’s long-term recovery (in addition to the $10 million provided for humanitarian response) will provide critical assistance to help people rebuild their lives.

Further information on current investments in Nepal can be found below.

Expand economic opportunities for the poor by promoting enterprise and job creation

Australia will enable private sector development through the Micro-Enterprise Development Program (MEDEP) which aims to foster an enabling environment for private sector employment creation. MEDEP is one of the few donor initiated programs in Nepal that has a strong Government of Nepal buy-in.

Expanding economic opportunities in Nepal

Promote Nepal's human development to expand participation and productivity of the poor

Investments in Nepal’s education and health sectors will contribute to a productive work force, and will include:

  • strengthening public education through the Nepalese Government’s School Sector Reform Program by improving quality and promoting inclusion of more than 3.8 million girls and boys from poor and marginalised communities, including children with disabilities
  • targeted scholarships to Nepalese for post-graduate studies and short-courses in Australia through the Australia Awards
  • improving nutrition, child survival rates and maternal health of the poor.

Improvements to governance are central to both objectives. Australia contributes to the World Bank’s Public Financial Management Multi Donor Trust Fund to support system reform.

Given the risk of natural disasters setting back development gains, disaster risk reduction (DRR) is another important cross-cutting issue. In its education activities, Australia has contributed some of its funding to retrofitting public school buildings so they are multi-hazard resistant.

Promoting human development opportunities in Nepal

Our results

Expand economic opportunities for the poor by promoting enterprise and job creation

In 2013-14, the Micro Enterprise Development Program enabled 8,727 beneficiaries to increase their income, 70 per cent of whom were poor women. Since 1998, the program has created more than 70,000 micro-entrepreneurs and through the micro-enterprises created more than 75,000 jobs. An impact assessment report (2010) found that 80 per cent of the micro-entrepreneurs established by MEDEP continue to be active in their profession.

Promote Nepal’s human development to expand participation and productivity of the poor

In education, the School Sector Reform Program has delivered good results including increasing enrolment in basic education from 73 per cent (2009) to 86.3 per cent (2014) and gender parity in basic education enrolment. In 2013-14, Australia’s funding ($4 million) directly supported an additional enrolment of approximately 50,000 students (25,269 girls) and delivered more than 300,000 textbooks. In 2013, 89 Australia Awards (35 scholarships and 54 fellowships) were also provided to assist Nepalese to study at a range of Australian tertiary institutions.

In health, the Australian-supported Nepal Health Sector Program has made good progress on many health indicators and Nepal remains on track to meet its MDG (4, 5 and 6) targets in health. In 2013 results include a maternal mortality rate of 192 (2015 target is 134), an infant mortality rate of 44 (2015 target is 32) and an under 5 mortality rate of 47 (2015 target is 38).


Tul Bahadur BK runs a furniture making business that has received electric tools as part of the MEDEP support (credit: DFAT).
Mother Nishal Thapa brings her child to a health clinic in Pokhara, Nepal (credit: DFAT).
A student at a primary school in Pokhara, Nepal (credit: DFAT).