17.1 Netherlands has been extending economic assistance to India since 1962-63 mainly in the form of general purpose credits, debt relief assistance and suppliers credit. The total value of loan assistance provided by the Netherlands upto 31-03-99 amounts to DFL 2555.30 million including DFL 12 million out of Industrial Development Fund. The total general purpose and specific programme extended by the Netherlands upto 31.3.99 amounts to DFL 2365.03 million. Apart from financial assistance Netherlands also provides technical assistance grants for expert services, for appraisal of projects and training. The Technical assistance is not reflected in the budget.
17.2 From 1985, the Netherlands have provided Official Development Assistance (ODA) under a system whereby aid commitments are made on the basis of a four year rolling plan, with annual disbursement ceilings. The Netherlands earlier provided assistance under an annual cash ceiling (calendar year basis) which upto 1991 amounted to DFL 200 million, which was divided into loans and grants on roughly 50:50 basis. From 1992 onwards, the Netherlands assistance is completely in the form of grants and disbursements against earlier loan commitments which will be disbursed out of grant funds.
17.3 The major sectors in which Dutch assistance is received are Environment, Drinking Water Supply, Irrigation and Water Transport. Dutch assistance is concentrated in the states of U.P., Kerala, A.P., Gujarat and Karnataka. Dutch assistance can be used for financing imports from the Netherlands and for local costs projects mutually approved in the social sectors aimed at benefiting target groups comprising the economically weaker and deprived sections of the society. A substantial part of the assistance accounts for financing local costs of rural drinking water supply projects and import of equipment in the shipping sector.
17.4 Due to recent changes in the policy of the Netherlands Government, henceforth the Dutch assistance will be focussed in a few States of India. In addition, a sectoral approach to development cooperation will replace the Project Approach. The Sectors selected will be in consultation with the State Governments.
17.5 The details of loans & Grants are given in Annexure I and II respectively.