OFFICIAL Development Assistance (ODA) disbursements significantly rose to US$2.44 billion in 2009, a 132 percent increase from last year's US$1.05 billion, according to the Preliminary CY 2009 ODA Loans Performance Report of the Project Monitoring Staff of the National Economic and Development Authority.

"The significant increase in disbursements is largely attributed to tranche releases of five program loans amounting to US$1.475 billion funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the World Bank (WB)," the report said.

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These programs include the Countercyclical Support Loan, the Development Policy Support Programme-Subprogram III, the Local Government Financing and Budget Reform Program-Subprogram 2 and Governance in Justice Sector Reform Program (Subprogram I) that are all funded by the ADB. Also included is WB's Global Food Crisis Response Program Development Policy Operation.

As of December 2009, ODA loans amounted to US$9.7 billion, which financed 100 programs and projects. Among them, 60 are ongoing, 20 closed, 15 newly effective within the year 2009, four newly effective and closed also within 2009, and one is still to be made effective.

Additionally, disbursements from project loans grew by 13 percent at US$0.79 billion from US$0.70 billion in 2008. The disbursement rate, which is the actual disbursements as a percentage of target disbursements for the period of January to December, also achieved 90 percent of their target disbursements for 2009 that is 12 percentage points higher than 78 percent of last year.

Both the availment rate and disbursement ratio registered significant increases. The availment rate rose to 86 percent in 2009 from 81 percent last year while disbursement ratio (the rate of actual disbursements to the net loan amount available during the year) stood at 42 percent, a 20 percentage point increase, from 22 percent registered in 2008.

The biggest donor of ODA for 2009 is the Government of Japan-Japan International Cooperation Agency (GOJ-JICA), having a share of 36 percent of total ODA Commitments. GOJ-JICA is followed by the ADB (23 percent), the WB (16 percent), and China (10 percent).

All other donors comprise 15 percent of total ODA. (Neda)