Iceland´s bilateral partner countries are two in Sub-Saharan Africa: Malawi and Uganda. Iceland´s cooperation with the countries aims to improve peoples´quality of life by means of empowerment, capacity building and transfer of knowledge. The long term objective is sustainable development, economic growth, equality, independence, democracy and the advocacy of human rights. Active local participation in emphasized all through the project cycle in order to increase local ownership and sustainability.
The support mainly consists of strengthening infrastructure and the basic pillars of society, focusing on human capital, education and capacity building. Furthermore, Iceland has supported the decentralisation of basic services, as well as improved local governance, as important instruments for better health, water and education services for the poor.
Bilateral development cooperation between Iceland and Uganda started in 2000. Opening of an Icelandic Embassy in June 2004 further strengthened the relations between the countries. The development cooperation between Iceland and Uganda follows a path charted by the first Country Strategy Paper (CSP) for the cooperation between Iceland and Uganda. The Strategy focus on fishing communities at the district level, continuing collaboration with Kalangala District Local Government in education and a new cooperation with Buikwe District Local Government focusing on water and sanitation and education.
Iceland and Malawi started bilateral development cooperation in 1989. From the outset, ICEIDA focuses its efforts on one district in Malawi: Mangochi. Current support, which started in July 2012 and will come to an end in 2021, aims to strengthen the delivery of basic services in the district through providing the Mangochi District Council with support in these areas: improved provision and use of basic services; in maternal health and family planning, primary education, water and sanitation, and community development, for men and women living in rural Mangochi District.