The New Zealand Aid Programme has worked with Latin America since the 1970s. Our priority there is agricultural development. In 2013, we began to work in the Caribbean, focusing on energy (particularly geothermal), disaster preparedness, and tertiary and vocational training.

Image showing total aid for the Caribbean 2015/16

Total aid to Latin America and the Caribbean is made up of programme funding for country-specific activities in these regions, as well as other funding which can include scholarships, regional initiatives, activities supported through the Partnerships Fund, and humanitarian response.

What we're supporting

In Latin America and the Caribbean we partner with governments, regional organisations, the private and non-profit sectors to deliver aid activities.

Priority Country Activities and outcomes

Increase economic and food security benefits from agriculture

Colombia  Working with The AgriBusiness Group and Colombian government partners to help develop a profitable and competitive dairy farming sector in the Colombian high tropical region. Target results include improved productivity and incomes for small and medium-size dairy farmers.
Ecuador Implementing a rural development project through AgResearch, with Ecuadorean partners, to reduce plant protection costs and add value to crops.
Colombia and Ecuador Implementing a rural development project through Landcare Research, with Ecuadorean and Colombian partners, to improve catchment-based water and land resource management. 
Uruguay Working with AgResearch and the Uruguay government to improve the profitability and viability of family farms by introducing environmentally sound farming practices and technologies.
Chile Implementing an agricultural industry training project through Agricultural Services Limited with Chilean government partners. The project will develop training strategies and improve training and services to small farmers. This will lead to improved productivity as well as improved incomes and careers for farmers and rural workers.

Supporting an initiative to improve farmer production and access to finance and markets. This is being implemented by the Paraguayan Ministry of Agriculture with the International Fund for Agricultural Development.

Caribbean regional

Working with the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) to improve production in the small ruminants (sheep and goats) sector.

Expand access to affordable, reliable and clean energy
Eastern Caribbean States Support, including technical assistance, for geothermal development. Activities range from surface exploration studies to providing peer review and advisory services. 

Strengthen resilience

Caribbean regional Supporting the University of West Indies Seismic Research Centre to develop its volcanic monitoring capability and stakeholder systems. 

Education  Improve knowledge, skills and basic education 

Regional 40 Latin American and Caribbean students are currently studying in New Zealand on aid programme scholarships.

Find out more about New Zealand Aid Programme activities in Latin America and the Caribbean [PDF, 273 KB]

Recent achievements




Expand access to affordable, reliable and clean energy

Caribbean regional Co-hosted a workshop with the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), to address the challenges facing the region in developing geothermal resources. Government officials, technical experts, development partners and financing institutions attended the workshop, held in Dominica in March 2014. 
Increase economic and food security benefits from agriculture 

342 'small' farmers were given sheep sector training through the the Chilean Agricultural Development Institute (INDAP) and the National Training and Employment Service in 2014. 34 INDAP staff and consultants also received training.

Ecuador Funded work by Landcare Research (2008-12) in Cotopaxi Province to support rural inhabitants and local governments to manage their natural resource base in a sustainable way. The project led to improved production, increased incomes, and better preparedness for the effects of climate change in páramo areas and associated watersheds.
Ecuador Supported AgResearch's work (2009-13) to increase rural incomes and improve quality of life for Andean farming families by providing safe, bio-control alternatives to chemical pesticides. The project, with country partner INIAP, helped Ecuador to establish a laboratory for bio-control product development and its first centre for quality control of biological products. Reduced pesticide use has allowed farmers to sell their produce to higher value, organic and chemical-residue-sensitive markets. 
Peru and Ecuador Supported the International Potato Centre project to increase innovation and reduce poverty in the Andes. As a result, over 200 producers in Peru have increased the profit on their products by an average of 26%, and over 200 producers in Ecuador received increased prices for milk and potato crops. This concluded in 2011.

Improve knowledge, skills and basic education 


Various Since 2012, 49 Latin American and Caribbean students have completed post-graduate qualifications supported by New Zealand Aid Programme scholarships.
Peru Supported 16 Peruvian officials to complete an English language training programme in New Zealand in preparation for hosting APEC in 2016.