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Biafra to Lomé: The Evolution of Irish Government Policy on Official Development Assistance, 1969-75

Kevin O'Sullivan
Irish Studies in International Affairs
Vol. 18 (2007), pp. 91-107
Published by: Royal Irish Academy
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25469818
Page Count: 17
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Biafra to Lomé: The Evolution of Irish Government Policy on Official Development Assistance, 1969-75
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Abstract

The Nigerian civil war (1967-70) represented a significant benchmark in Irish involvement with the developing world. The huge humanitarian effort to mitigate the famine caused by the war changed the environment in which Irish official development assistance (ODA) policy was made. By 1975 Ireland had a structured programme in place and significantly increased its ODA contributions. During its first presidency of the EEC in the same year, the Irish government presided over the Lomé negotiations between the Community and the developing world. This article examines the evolution of Irish ODA policy from the end of the war in Nigeria to the conclusion of the Lomé agreement. It looks at the different the approaches of successive Irish governments to ODA, analysing the domestic and international pressures that influenced the creation of ODA policy. In that context, the article focuses on the significance of Garret FitzGerald's appointment as minister for foreign affairs in 1973, and the impact he had on Irish ODA policy.

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