The Department for International Development (DFID) provides support for companies to expand overseas or partner with local companies or suppliers to create growth, jobs and goods and services for poor people in specific countries such as in Sub-Saharan Africa, southern Asia and the Caribbean.
There are opportunities for businesses to help deliver DFID's international development programmes around the world. Every year, DFID advertises hundreds of new opportunities for contracts.
- Easy access for suppliers to tendering opportunities.
- Guidance on funds designed to encourage UK business to invest in development projects.
Supporting inclusive growth is a key part of helping countries to develop and graduate from aid. DFID spends nearly £1 billion a year on wealth creation programmes in poor countries and many of these are open to participation from businesses based anywhere in the world. These programmes include financing through grants, loans and other financial instruments and cover activities ranging from infrastructure to water, to agricultural development and to innovation. Awards are made on a competitive basis.
The Department for International Development (DFID) believes the private sector is the engine of economic growth that will reduce poverty in its 28 focus countries which include many in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.
Companies may not be investing in these markets to the same extent as to other markets and, for example, UK business Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to DFID countries is currently less than 10% of their overall total. DFID already works with the private sector on development programmes but wants to make it easier for business to access these programmes. It should be noted that all DFID programmes that business can access promote development and commercial outcomes.
DFID further supports programmes that have a measurable impact on reducing poverty which may include the following:
- Job creation for the poorest people at the bottom of the pyramid and particularly women, who are often excluded from the workforce.
- Access to affordable goods and services for poor consumers.
- Education and skills training or provision of healthcare services.
Contracts are open to any company or other body, anywhere in the world. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are particularly encouraged to bid.
DFID programmes are varied with some being focussed on specific geographies and some being targeted at key sectors important for economic development (eg, infrastructure, agriculture, extractives and healthcare). DFID programmes will often address specific in-country market failures.