Dáil Éireann - Volume 634 - 21 March, 2007

Written Answers. - Overseas Development Aid.

Dr. Twomey asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if all Irish Aid spending from 2004 has been evaluated by the EAU; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10424/07]

Mr. G. Mitchell asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the number of projects funded by Irish Aid awaiting evaluation by the EAU; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10423/07]

Mr. P. McGrath asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if all Irish Aid spending from 2005 has been evaluated by the EAU; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10425/07]

  Mr. C. Lenihan:I propose to take Questions Nos. 124, 151 and 162 together.

In common with other major donors, Irish Aid evaluates spending on overseas development aid in a number of ways. The Evaluation and Audit Unit plans its evaluation work on the basis of a three-year rolling work plan and a detailed annual operational plan. The focus is on strategic evaluations across the entire development programme and priority is given to those that feed critical results into the policy and planning cycle. The Evaluation and Audit Unit’s work does not, however, cover all annual spending as this would not be feasible or cost-effective. The work plan is approved by the Senior Management Group in Irish Aid and endorsed by the Audit Committee.

In very large programmes where Irish Aid is one of a number of donors, it also undertakes joint evaluations with them. Recent examples of this approach included the response to the Tsunami and General Budget Support. In [238] addition, the Missions and development offices in the field undertake evaluations, specific to their needs.

During 2004, major evaluations included an evaluation of the Uganda Country Programme and the response of Irish NGOs to the 2002/03 drought in Malawi. In 2005, amongst the most important assignments undertaken were the evaluation of the support to five Irish NGOs through the Multi-annual Programme Scheme, a Value for Money Review of Irish Aid’s support to Basic Education in Uganda and Zambia and an evaluation of the Zambia Country Programme.

Major evaluations completed in 2006 included:

Evaluation of Mozambique Country Strategy (also a Value for Money Review)

Evaluation of South Africa Country Strategy

Value for Money Review of Tsunami Expenditure

Evaluation of Tigray Regional Programme, Ethiopia.

Major evaluations planned for 2007 include:

Ethiopia Country Programme

Irish Missionary Resource Service

Value for Money Review on HIV/AIDS Expenditure

Irish Aid Fellowship Scheme

Support to Education in Uganda

Evaluation of Irish Aid approach to Gender in Mozambique Country Programme.