Children at So-Ava primary school near Cotonou, Benin. Credit: GPE /Chantal Rigaud
April 08, 2019
More than US$176 million approved in new grants to Benin, Burundi, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Tanzania and Uzbekistan.
Children raise their hands to answer the teacher's question at Bitiw Seye 1 Primary School in Tivaouane, Senegal. Credit: GPE/Chantal Rigaud
February 04, 2019
The extraordinary commitments made at the GPE Financing Conference in Dakar in February 2018 were the start of an eventful year. Let’s review some of the highlights, from additional funding to...
Teacher with student at Umdebekrat Basic School for Boys, Sudan. Credit: GPE/Kelley Lynch
November 19, 2018
In an opinion piece in Teacher Magazine, Julia Gillard shares her appreciation for teachers. As she puts it, teachars are and will always be the backbone of the education system. It is why they...
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Aid to education

Responsibility for defining French ODA policy is shared between the Ministry of Economy and Finance and the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs.

The Agence Française de Développement (AFD), a bilateral development finance institution, is technically an executing agency, but it has increasingly provided intellectual leadership on development issues.

In the context of development cooperation and implementing Agenda 2030, education is a high priority for France. Within the OECD, France is the fourth largest donor country to education. In 2016, France disbursed US$1.3 billion in education, which represents 11% of its total ODA. OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) member countries spend 8% on education on average.

France developed a new strategy for its external action on education, vocational training and insertion covering the years 2017-2021.

In February 2018, the French Inter-Ministerial Committee for International Cooperation and Development (CICID) re-emphasized these strategic goals and decided that France’s development policy with regards to education will focus on:

  • universal basic education
  • insertion of youth in the market place
  • women and girl’s empowerment
  • democratization of higher education, research, and innovation
  • support for la Francophonie to promote the French language.

France sees education as a key sector to improve employability and security in partner countries. In the context of the Sahel Alliance, which is pursuing development and security the G5 Sahel countries (Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger), France is a leading donor on education and youth employment.

Emmanuel Macron, President, French Republic. Photo credit: GPE/Heather Shuker
All citizens in countries in trouble should see the direct outcomes of the commitments made here. Where we see the risk of obscurantism there is only one response: education.
Emmanuel Macron
President, French Republic

France and GPE

France is part of the Donor 1 constituency on the GPE Board, together with Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

During the 2015-2017 period, France contributed a total of €17 million to the Global Partnership for Education.

President Macron, alongside President Macky Sall of Senegal, co-hosted GPE’s Financing Conference in Dakar in February 2018. At the conference, France pledged €200 million (US$260 million).

France remains an international leader on global education. In the context of its G7 Presidency in 2019, France has chosen “fighting inequality of opportunity, promoting in particular gender equality, access to education and high-quality health services” as one of the G7 program’s five goals for fighting inequality.

Last updated March 19, 2019