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Sida's work in Democratic Republic of the Congo

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is one of the world's poorest countries, despite its rich natural resources, and has been marked by decades of armed conflict. Sida's work aims to contribute to peace, strengthen resilience to crises and bring long-term improvement to the population. Women's rights are a high-profile issue. Sida also provides humanitarian aid to those who are most in need.

Sida’s support in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

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Progress has been made

More people are being convicted

Some progress has been made in the fight against impunity. In recent years, for example, several high-ranking politicians and public officials have been put on trial for corruption. The number of soldiers, police officers and members of armed groups convicted of human rights violations has increased compared to the past.1

Child mortality has been halved

The number of children dying before the age of five has fallen from 161 per 1,000 live births in 2000 to 81 children in 2020.2

Gender equality reforms have been introduced

Several important gender equality reforms have been implemented in recent years, including women’s rights to decide whether to work, take bank loans, take parental leave and retire. However, the DRC remains one of the least gender-equal countries in the world, ranking 150th out of 162 countries in 2021.3

Challenges remain

One of the world’s poorest countries

More than three out of four people live in extreme poverty on less than US$1.90 a day, making the country one of the world’s poorest. The DRC ranks 175th out of 189 countries on the UN Human Development Index.4

Promoting democratic development

Democratic development has improved slightly since the first peaceful transition of power in the country’s history in 2019. The situation is fragile and human rights are frequently violated. Corruption is widespread. The DRC is a non-functioning democracy and ranks among the least democratic countries in the world.5

Armed groups and deadly violence

In the eastern part of the country there are over a hundred different armed groups, several of which commit horrific abuses against the civilian population. In recent years, the number of civilians killed has been counted in the thousands each year; in 2021, over 3,000 people lost their lives.6

Two types of aid in Democratic Republic of the Congo

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sida implements development cooperation to contribute to long-term development of the country. We also provide humanitarian assistance to save lives and alleviate suffering in emergency situations.

Updated: October 3, 2022