The Hudson Institute Center for Global Prosperity discusses the role of the private sector, both for profit and non-profit “in the creation of economic growth and prosperity in the developing world.”  Their 2008 Index of Global Philanthropy is an excellent resource to understand global philanthropy’s effect on developing countries.

Many countries including Canada have committed to spend at least 0.7 percent of their gross national income (GNI) to assist developing countries every year.  Sweden, Luxembourg, Norway, Netherlands, and Denmark were all at 0.8 and above.  Canada was at 0.29 and the US was at 0.18.  This is pretty pitiful.  However, it is actually worse as Canada and the US count debt relief in their ODA, which artificially inflates what they are ostensbily providing as much of that debt was lent to ruthless dictators and is unrecoverable anyway.

In 2006 in terms of helping developing countries and their people, Canada’s ODA was $3.68 billion.  Private Philanthropy was $1.1billion.  Remittances were $6.8 billion.  In total if you add them all together Canada spends 0.91 percent of GNI or $11.6 billion.  Thank god for their being people in Canada, many poor, remitting funds to relatives and friends abroad.  If it was not for remittances Canada would look even worse.  In fact, people in Canada by remitting $6.8 billion made Canada the 2nd largest remitter after the US.  Private giving in Canada was $1.1 billion for developing countries, while in the US it was $34.8 billion.  As I have written elsewhere Canadian charities spent about $2.3 billion outside of Canada and if these numbers hold up then less than half of charitable spending outside of Canada is on developing countries.

To read the complete report you can visit: was created by Mark Blumberg, a lawyer at Blumberg Segal LLP in Toronto, Ontario.  If you have legal questions about non-profit organizations or charities in Canada he can be contacted at or at 416-361-1982 x. 237. To find out more about legal services that Blumbergs provides to Canadian charities and non-profits please visit the Blumbergs’ Non-Profit and Charities page at or