Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
Switzerland invests about CHF 2.2 billion a year to combat poverty and promote economic development in countries of the developing world and Eastern Europe. Two federal offices coordinate international development cooperation on behalf of the Swiss Confederation: the Swiss Agency for Development adn Cooperation (SDC) and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).
The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) is Switzerland’s international cooperation agency within the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). In operating with other federal offices concerned, SDC is responsible for the overall coordination of development activities and cooperation with Eastern Europe, as well as for the humanitarian aid delivered by the Swiss Confederation. The goal of development cooperation is that of reducing poverty. It is meant to foster economic self-reliance and state autonomy, to contribute to the improvement of production conditions, to help in finding solutions to environmental problems, and to provide better access to education and basic healthcare services. SDC carries out its activities with an annual budget of CHF 1.57 billion (2010) and a staff of some 600 people in Switzerland and abroad, as well as 1000 local employees. The Agency engages in direct operations, supports programmes of multilateral organizations, and helps to finance programmes run by Swiss and international relief organizations. For more information about SDC visit www.sdc.admin.ch
The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) is the Swiss Confederation’s competence center for all the core issues related to economic policy. Its aim is to create basic regulatory and economic policy conditions to enable business to flourish and benefit all. SECO also represents Switzerland in large multilateral trade organizations and international negotiations, and is involved in efforts to reduce poverty and help developing countries with transition economies build sustainable democratic societies and viable market economies.
In Macedonia, SDC and SECO are represented by the Swiss Cooperation Office in Macedonia. For more information about the Swiss Cooperation Office in Macedonia visit www.swiss-cooperation.admin.ch/macedonia.