U.S. is famous for its generous donations in foreign aid, and this list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US will tell you where the majority of the American foreign aid funds go.
The first U.S. aid program developed after World War II when George Marshall provided significant aid to Europe to assist its stabilization, rebuilding the infrastructure and recovering from the war. Most of the foreign aid money (American and from other countries as well) goes to developing countries. Currently, the country that receives the most foreign aid is Egypt, followed by Afghanistan and Vietnam.
Since then America has taken a number one spot when it comes to foreign aid, and it is the country that gives the most foreign aid. U.S. foreign aid compared to other countries can be seen on our list of 10 countries that spend the most on foreign aid. The U.S. foreign aid is always a hot topic with many wondering if America should be involved in the aid-giving business at all and what is the overall effect of its assistance. According to an article published by LA Times, many Americans believe that U.S. spends around 25% of the Federal budget on foreign aid. This is not true, and the amount is actually only 1%, although the sums of money seem pretty large. Data for U.S. foreign aid by country in 2016 shows that the largest amount went to Israel ($3.10 billion) just as it was the case in 2015.
Most frequent type of foreign aid includes giving financial aid and goods. Bilateral aid is aid given by the U.S. government directly to another country with a purpose of promoting economic progress and stability in developing countries. Humanitarian assistance is directed toward addressing emergencies such as natural disasters or problems resulting from conflict zones. Another type of foreign aid includes military aid which enables U.S. allies to acquire American military equipment and training. You might be surprised when you see which countries receive most military aid from the U.S. This is usually the aspect which many people question. If you are wondering which nations have the strongest military take a look at our list of top 21 strongest most powerful military nations in the world in 2017. You must be wondering how much foreign aid does the U.S. receive (if at all)? Technically the USA does not receive foreign aid because it is among the most developed countries in the world. Frankly, there is no need for that. However, after major catastrophes that hit the USA (such as 9/11, hurricane Katrina and the Gulf oil spill), other countries were very quick to offer help. Help was offered in money, oil (which could be sold for money) and even paramedics and doctors. Surprisingly, Bangladesh and Pakistan offered their help despite being economically weak countries (when compared to the USA or UK).
Compiling this list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US was not that hard since data about U.S. foreign aid is transparent and easily available. I’ve used data acquired from Foreign Assistance (data for 2017) and The Washington Posts’ comprehensive article on U.S. foreign aid. I’ve consulted Congressional Budget Justification data to get precise information. Countries are ranked according to the amount of received foreign aid, from the lowest to the highest amount. This list will show data about U.S. foreign aid given by country, using the newest information about 2017 budget. Top 10 countries will differ from those published by The Washington Post despite the fact that we used the same data. While their chart states that Iraq will receive/received $1.14 billion from the U.S., data from Foreign Assistance shows much smaller amount ($510.36 million) which means that Iraq is nowhere near the top ten. All other data seems to be identical.
So, let’s see the foreign aid statistics on our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US.
U.S. Foreign aid: $207.88 million
Bangladesh’s economy continues to grow rapidly, and it is a country that is a key international player in climate change and global food security. 36% of U.S. foreign aid to Bangladesh focuses on economic development and 41% on health. The rest is divided into sectors of education, democracy and human rights and peace and security.
14. South Sudan
U.S. Foreign aid: $225.17 million
U.S. government’s prime focus in South Sudan is mitigating devastating costs of war, especially assisting marginalized populations. The USA is the largest foreign aid donor to South Sudan with the majority of funds dedicated to peace and security, education, social services, and health.
U.S. Foreign aid: $238.47 million
Up next in our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US is Syria that has been in the spotlight all over the world, and we’ve witnessed images of numerous innocent men, women, and children being killed there. The United States is the single largest global donor of humanitarian aid to those affected by the conflict in Syria and neighboring countries. Half of the U.S. foreign aid funds go to improving peace and security and the other half towards democracy, human rights and governance in Syria. With the amount of $238.47 million, Syria takes the 13th place among the top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the U.S.
12. The Democratic Republic of Congo
U.S. Foreign aid: $313.15 million
We are continuing our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US with the Democratic Republic of Congo is experiencing insecurity in various fields. In June 2017 it was estimated that around 7.7 million people experience acute food insecurity and are constantly exposed to various diseases. Due to its size, location and role in the Great Lakes of Africa, this country holds a strategic priority to the United States, and it comes as a no surprise that the U.S. is providing support to it. The majority of U.S. foreign aid in Congo, 67% to be exact, is directed towards improving health aspect, especially fighting HIV/AIDS and malaria.
U.S. Foreign aid: $401.71 million
The U.S. invests a considerable amount of money in Mozambique with 92% focusing on health. If you take a look at the precise data under this category, you will see that 81% of the money (in the category of health) goes to the prevention and treatment of HIV.
U.S. Foreign aid: $510.36 million
This might come as a surprise due to the history of relations between the U.S. and Iraq, but their mutual goal is secure and stable Iraq. 38% of U.S. foreign aid is provided for peace and security in the region. Interestingly, data published by The Washington Post also shows that Iraq is among top 10 countries when it comes to U.S. arms sales ($1.8 billion).
U.S. Foreign aid: $513.7 million
Ethiopia ranks 9th on our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US. It is one of the largest recipients of foreign aid in modern times. All of the U.S. foreign assistance is directed towards economic and developmental assistance. Article published by BBC states that Ethiopia showed some progress due to the foreign aid it receives. GDP growth in 1984 was -2.85% (falling), and in 2013 it was 10.5%. The number of child deaths was reduced from 227 deaths per 1,000 in 1984 to 64 in 2013. While this shows that foreign aid brings positive results, it is obvious that Ethiopians are still living in poverty and that the financial help will be needed for quite some time, making sure it will stay among the top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the U.S. for many years.
U.S. Foreign aid: $575.3 million
Up next in our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US is Tanzania that is one of the fastest-growing African countries with GDP growth of almost 7% annually. Widespread poverty still persists and more than 46% of Tanzania’s population lives with under $1,90 per day. Tanzania is a favored recipient of financial aid, and the U.S. government is Tanzania’s largest bilateral donor.
U.S. Foreign aid: $606.1 million
Around 65% out of 186 million citizens in Nigeria live in extreme poverty. Northeast Nigeria is at the center of the humanitarian crisis due to the violence of Boko Haram. U.S. assistance aims to improve stability and quality of life in this region.
U.S. Foreign aid: $626.4 million
For more than 50 years, the U.S. government has been working with the Kenyan government in order to improve living conditions in this country. U.S. foreign aid is directed mostly towards improving the quality of health (86%), water and sanitation and educating of youth.
U.S. Foreign aid: $742.2 million
Countries that we mentioned so far on our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US receive U.S. foreign aid that focuses on economic and developmental assistance while the rest of the countries receive both economic and developmental assistance as well as security assistance. Pakistan supports the U.S. counterterrorism efforts and regional economic integration and development. Through security assistance (46%) the U.S. is helping Pakistan in addressing counterterrorism, and the rest of the funds are focused on improvement of infrastructure, economic growth, and stabilization of areas most prone to terrorism.
U.S. Foreign aid: $1 billion
The government of Jordan is a critical partner to the United States when it comes to fighting the threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) and pursuing peace in the Middle East. U.S. assistance helps Jordan deal with the surge of refugees from Syria and Iraq and common goals for the future include strengthening Jordan’s ability to provide health, education and water services to its residents, enhance gender equality, accelerate economic development, etc.
U.S. Foreign aid: $1.46 billion
We are continuing our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US with Egypt that is another country that acts as an ally to U.S. in defeating Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) which explains why 90% of U.S. foreign aid in Egypt is focused on peace and security in the region. Economic growth projects include securing food security in agriculture and promoting education.
U.S. Foreign aid: $3.1 billion
You might be surprised that all of the U.S. foreign aid that goes to Israel is focusing on peace and security. The United States is committed to ensuring Israel’s ability to defend against possible threats since this country is a “longstanding cornerstone of U.S. policy in the Middle East“. And now, let see what country receives the most foreign aid from the United States. Click next!
U.S. Foreign aid: $4.7 billion
In 2017, the country that receives the most U.S. foreign aid is Afghanistan. Afghanistan is also helping the USA in fighting international terrorism, and 76% of US foreign aid in Afghanistan is directed towards peace and security. 14% is directed towards improving the state of human rights and democracy in Afghanistan while the rest is used to improve health and economic development of the country. We’ve reached the end of our list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US, and it is incredible how much money the USA gives to international causes.