The objective of the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI) is poverty reduction in developing countries. Other aims are to achieve the internationally agreed Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the post-2015 agenda for sustainable development and to consolidate and support democracy and human rights.

The DCI includes geographical and thematic programmes. Geographical programmes are implemented in 47 countries. They are directly bilaterally negotiated with the respective country. Three country priorities for EU funding are identified. Those can be accessed via the country strategy programmes, for example, on the website of the European Delegation in the country or via the country profiles at the External Action Service.

Two thematic programmes are included in the DCI – the Programme on Global Public Goods and Challenges (GPGC) and the Programme on Civil Society Organisations and Local Authorities (CSO-LA). Furthermore, a new pan-African programme makes up a small part of the DCI.


Geographical criteria:

The DCI covers all countries on the ODA list of the OECD DAC except those countries covered by the other geographical instruments (EDF, ENI or IPA). This means that it is the EU’s instrument for development cooperation with Latin America, Asia, Central Asia, the Gulf States and South Africa.

Eligible entities:

  • local authorities;
  • private organisations;
  • non-state actors;
  • independent political foundations;
  • non-profit making actors, such as trade unions, foundations, etc.