The Partnerships Fund is available for New Zealand organisations to contribute ideas, knowledge and skills to activities that achieve sustainable economic development in developing countries.


Please note that if you have any issues accessing any links or documents on this page, please email the Partnerships and Funds Team at

The Partnerships Fund supports partnerships led by New Zealand-based organisations to develop and deliver locally owned responses to development challenges in countries as identified in the New Zealand Aid Programme Strategic Plan. The Partnerships Fund has a core focus on sustainable economic development with a focus on the Pacific.

The Partnerships Fund is contestable – applicants must apply for funding by presenting a case or ‘concept’.  Activities have to be in keeping with the strategy and priorities of the New Zealand Aid Programme, and must include partnerships with local organisations in the developing country (in-country partners).

The Partnerships Fund is available to New Zealand non-government organisations (i.e. registered charities or other not for profit organisations), private sector and state sector organisations. Applications must meet a number of criteria, including alignment with the New Zealand Aid Programme’s country-specific investment priorities, development goals, and demonstrate the New Zealand contribution.

A number of people are involved in appraising applications to the Partnerships Fund, including the International Development Advisory and Selection Panel, an independent group that provides advice to the New Zealand Aid Programme.

There are two funding rounds every year. Interested organisations are encouraged to discuss their proposed concept with MFAT’s Partnerships and Funds Team at an early stage.

Read about the criteria for the Partnerships Fund (external link)

Case studies of development activities  (external link)

Important dates 2017/ 2018

Round 11

  • Outcomes of Round 11 of the Partnerships Fund have been communicated to applicants.

Round 12

  • Friday 2 March, midday – closing date for Round 12 Draft Partnerships Fund Concept applications. For Partners who would like to receive high level feedback on their application, prior to submitting it to the Round.
  • Tuesday 3rd April, midday – closing date for Round 12 Partnerships Fund Concept applications.

For any queries get in touch with the Partnerships and Funds Team at 

Partnerships Fund Evaluation 2017

An Evaluation of the Partnerships Fund for International Development is currently under way. The evaluation involves analysis of data on currently funded activities, interviews with New Zealand partners and stakeholders, and in country visits. Findings of the report will be made public in early 2018. 

Please note the key dates for Round 12 of the Partnerships Fund above closing on the 3rd April 2018.  Any changes to the Partnerships Fund as a result of the evaluation will be communicated to existing partners, and via our website. If you have any questions please contact

Accreditation to the Fund

All non-government and private sector organisations must be accredited before applying to the Partnerships Fund. Accreditation is an organisational health check to ensure organisations have the capacity and capability to undertake development activities successfully. 


Please note that due to the Partnerships Fund Evaluation, we are no longer accepting accreditation applications to the Partnerships Fund. Any changes to the Partnerships Fund accreditation process as a result of the evaluation will be communicated to existing partners, and via our website


Pacific Private Sector Window update.

The final round of the Pacific Private Sector Window pilot closed on Friday 15 September 2017.  MFAT is currently considering an alternative approach to working in partnership with the private sector to solve development challenges. Decisions on this new approach are expected in early 2018.  In the meantime, private sector firms that are looking to invest in new or expanded business activities in the Pacific that will also deliver important development benefits such as essential goods and services, and increased quality employment in Pacific countries, should contact

Innovation Window Pilot

The final round of the Innovation Window closed on Friday 25th of August. MFAT is currently assessing the Innovation Window pilot within the Partnerships Fund Evaluation. The outcomes of this will be made public in early 2018. If you have any questions on the Innovation Window, please contact

Partnerships Fund Guidelines

Interested organisations are encouraged to read the full Partnerships Fund Guidelines before making a decision to apply to the Partnerships Fund. The guidelines provide detailed information about the criteria, who may apply, and how the application and selection process work.

Partnerships Fund Guidelines  - April 2017 (external link) [PDF, 557 KB]

Interested organisations are also encouraged to read the New Zealand Aid Programme Strategic Plan which provides information on the strategic direction, country programmes and investment priorities of the Aid Programme.

New Zealand Aid Programme Strategic Plan (external link) [PDF, 3.4 MB]

Support in applying to the Partnerships Fund

We encourage organisations considering applying to the fund to get in touch with MFAT’s Partnerships and Funds Team at an early stage to discuss their proposed concept. The team can provide further information and guidance in applying to the fund. Organisations should also use their own New Zealand and in-country networks to identify and discuss the concept with relevant stakeholders.

Email us at

Use our tools, templates and guides to help you (external link)