Botswana is one of Africa's success stories and a model for the use of natural resources for development. After independence in 1966, it has evolved from one of the ten least-developed countries to a middle-income country, characterised by sustained economic growth, anchored in good governance, peace, political stability and sound macroeconomic management. However, in spite of the country's positive trends, income disparities remain and achievements are seriously threatened by HIV/AIDS rates that rank amongst the highest worldwide.
Economic diversification and global competitiveness remain major challenges to sustain development growth. In Botswana there is a need to accelerate the pace of economic reform to ensure effective implementation of policies promoting foreign direct investment and private sector development as well as to improve productivity and competitiveness of human resources. For this reason, the EC’s co-operation strategy with Botswana under the 10th EDF, presented in the Country Strategy Paper for Botswana , has singled out human resources development as priority sector for the period 2008-2013. The sector is being supported with an amount of €72.5 million through sector budget support and technical assistance. Additional support focuses on empowering civil society to become a more meaningful partner in the development process.
The multi-annual indicative programme for Botswana under the 10th EDF amounts to €98.1 million to address these priorities.
EC interventions in Botswana also take account of cross-cutting issues, in particular gender equality, environmental sustainability, the fight against HIV/AIDS as well as democracy, good governance and human rights, especially with regard to rights of children and indigenous people.
In former years, Botswana has benefitted from EC funded support for private sector development and training as well as natural resources utilisation and conservation. The Country Strategy Paper for Botswana for the 9th EDF already adopted education and training as priority sector for funding for the period 2002-2007. The sector budget support provided under the Education and Training Sector Policy Support Programme (€51.4 million) assisted the Government to effectively finance and manage the education and training sector as well as to expand equitable access to quality education and training, especially at primary and secondary level. These measures have helped to promote economic diversification and growth, increased employment and have thereby contributed to a reduction of poverty and inequity in Botswana.
For further details on projects and programmes in Botswana funded from the European Development Fund (EDF) and the general budget of the EU, please visit the project's section of the website of the Delegation of the European Union to Botswana.
Other sources of information
More information on EU relations with Botswana is available on the pages of pages of the Delegation of the European Union to Botswana, which is also responsible for co-operation activities in the country.