We welcome the new law committing the UK to spend 0.7 per cent of national income on aid. This remarkable achievement illustrates the breadth of cross-party political support for international development.
UK aid already makes a major contribution to poverty reduction. With this new commitment, we can raise the level of ambition. It is vital that we ensure the aid budget is used to lift people out of deprivation, expand opportunities for health and education, and rebuild lives shattered by conflict.
At the same time we have to
recognise that international development is about more than aid. We live in an
increasingly interdependent world facing shared challenges, from climate
change, to cross-border crime, migration and international trade. The aid budget
should be seen as one element in a wider strategy for positioning Britain on
the international stage.
Kevin Watkins, Executive Director of the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) said “enshrining the UK’s aid commitment in law is significant, but there is more to development than aid, and the UK Government also needs to play a leading role in combatting tax evasion and climate change.”
Crucially, this law moves the aid debate from a question of quantity to a focus on the quality and effectiveness of aid.
To arrange an interview with Kevin Watkins, please contact Clare Price in ODI’s media team, on phone +44 (0)7808 791 265, or email: [email protected]
ODI is the UK’s leading think tank on development aid issues.