Budget 2019 Increases Canadian Investment in International Development

Key Highlights for CanWaCH Members and the International Development Sector

The Canadian Partnership for Women and Children’s Health (CanWaCH) welcomes increases to Canada’s funding for international development as announced today in this year’s federal budget.

Building upon new funding for international development announced in the 2018 budget, these investments by the Government of Canada, coupled with commitments to advance gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, reflect that Canadians care about Canada’s leadership role in advancing the lives of the world’s most vulnerable populations.

Canada, led by the Women Deliver 2019 Mobilization Canada, is preparing to welcome the world to the Women Deliver Conference in June 2019. During this exciting period, CanWaCH looks forward to advancing ongoing discussions between the government and Canada’s leading global health organizations on the adoption of the Thrive Agenda, an ambitious and bold vision for the next phase of Canadian leadership in women and children’s health.

Highlights of Budget 2019:

  • New funding of $100M to the International Assistance Envelope (IAE) in 2023-24 plus $600M from previous federal fall statements and budgets were allocated to the IAE for a total of $700M for 2023-24. (Reference: pages 188, 210, 307)

  • $968M in new funding over 5 years beginning in 2019 to support Canada’s Middle East Strategy which will include humanitarian, development, stabilization and security, and diplomatic activities, plus a $426M from existing IAE resources. (Reference: pages 190, 210, 305, 307, 308) [1] 

  • Canada’s international assistance efforts will be presented in a single consolidated report seeking to help Canadians more easily understand Canada’s international assistance efforts, and promote greater transparency and accountability. This report is to provide a clearer and more comprehensive update on progress in implementing the Feminist International Assistance Policy. (Reference: page 189) 

  • Budget 2019 included a Gender Equality statement reaffirming Canada’s commitment to moving forward decisively on an agenda that advances gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls at home and around the globe. (Reference: page 211)

  • On March 19, 2019, to complement the tabling of Budget 2019, the Department for Women and Gender Equality launched the Gender Results Framework Portal. The Framework, outlined in the budget, identifies six key areas where change is required to advance gender equality, one of which is “Gender equality around the world.” Under this key area is a list of Key Gender Results Indicators, a summary of recent actions and Budget 2019 actions. (Reference: pages 211, 242-245)

Advancing the Thrive Agenda

CanWaCH is mobilizing with our members and sector partners, alongside the Women Deliver 2019 Mobilization Canada, to ensure real and lasting change results from Canada's hosting of the Women Deliver 2019 Conference. We are calling on decision-makers to commit to long-term, sustainable and increased health investments to fill critical gaps.

In 2020, Canada’s current commitment to women, adolescent and children’s global health will end and the world’s most vulnerable populations cannot afford a gap in our efforts. The Thrive Agenda is a comprehensive and integrated approach to health and rights that places the woman, adolescent, child and newborn at the centre and unlocks her access to the full spectrum of interventions needed throughout her lifecycle to reach her full potential. The journey to women’s empowerment starts early, and it starts with her right to good health.

Building on our proud reputation, the Thrive Agenda calls on Canada to renew current annual commitments of $1 billion with an additional investment of $400 million annually, for 10 years, beginning in 2020. This investment includes $500 million dedicated each year to the neglected areas of SRHR. 

For more information on the Thrive Agenda, please contact Megan Aikens, Senior Stakeholder Engagement Advisor.


[1] New Funding for Middle East Strategy allocated as follows: $500M to Global Affairs Canada; $17M to the Canadian Security Intelligence Service; $9M to the Communications Security Establishment Canada; $442M to National Defence.