This country portfolio review examines the relevance, coherence and effectiveness of the UK’s aid investment in Afghanistan from 2014, when the deteriorating security situation led the former Department for International Development (DFID) to close its office and programmes in Helmand Province, up to the international military withdrawal from Afghanistan in August 2021.
The review assesses how well the UK’s aid portfolio in Afghanistan delivered on its strategic objectives, as they evolved over the review period, with a particular focus on i) alleviating humanitarian need, ii) empowering women and girls, and iii) building core state functions.
It looks at the UK’s use of different delivery channels, its management of the risks associated with the challenging operating context and the quality of the UK’s partnerships. It also examines how the UK has learnt from other donors and passed on its own learning.
The review incorporates a factual account of how UK aid has been used in response to the humanitarian crisis that followed the Taliban takeover. The process of the UK’s withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021 was not funded by aid and therefore was not covered in the review.
We sought to answer the following review questions:
- How well did the UK aid portfolio respond to Afghanistan’s humanitarian and development needs and the UK’s strategic objectives?
- How effectively did the UK aid portfolio deliver against its strategic objectives in Afghanistan?
- How internally and externally coherent was UK support for Afghanistan?