Tag Archives: Aid

“Don’t Cut Aid,” ONE (S) and int’l civil society tell Japan

As Japan prepared to host an international meeting on the Millennium Development Goals, ONE (SINGAPORE) joined with civil society groups in Japan and from across the world to call on the Japanese government to honour its international aid and development commitments.

Following the March earthquake and tsunami, Tokyo announced that it would cut overseas aid in order to concentrate on relief and reconstruction at home. These cuts – including a 100% reduction in funding to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria – will cost lives and reverse gains made towards the achievement of the MDGs.

“The Japanese government must not abandon its commitments to eradicate poverty and disease in impoverished countries,” says Masaki Inaba of GCAP Japan. “My colleagues and I were shocked to see our government cut assistance to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Global poverty is a ‘silent tsunami’ which Japanese aid has been fighting. Pitting domestic reconstruction against overseas aid is the wrong approach. Japan must be do both.”

“Much as we understand the rationale behind these cuts, we urge the Japanese government not to abandon its commitments to eradicate poverty and disease in impoverished countries,” adds ONE (SINGAPORE) President Vernetta Lopez and co-founder Michael Switow in a letter to Japan’s Ambassador to Singapore, Mr Yoichi Suzuki. “By taking action now, Japan can save lives and set a prime example of commitment and solidarity for the protection of people’s lives and the elimination of disease, poverty and conflict.”

Read the full text of ONE (SINGAPORE)’s letter as well as a letter to Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan signed by the co-chairs of the Global Call to Action Against Poverty.


The G8’s Aid Report Card

Condemnation and commendation: G8 countries show mixed results in efforts to meet aid targets

20 May 2011 (1)

In 2005, the G8 and EU made a set of historic commitments to help sub-Saharan Africa meet the Millennium Development Goals.  As the G8 prepares to meet in Deauville, France on 26-27 May, we would like to share a report with you from ONE in the United States about how the G8 countries are doing on their commitments.

Here are the main findings of the 2011 DATA Report:

  1. Collectively the G7 delivered 61% of the increased aid they promised in 2005 to sub-Saharan Africa by 2010. The increases were largely a result of the UK making commendable progress towards its very ambitious target and the US, Japan and Canada surpassing their relatively modest targets. Italy’s performance is condemnable, falling far short of its promises to the world’s poorest people. France and Germany have also failed to meet their ambitious targets.
  2. The failure of the G8 to keep their promises deprived the world’s poorest people of $7bn in financing for effective and life-changing programmes in 2010 alone.
  3. Despite the overall shortfall, there have been historic increases in aid to sub-Saharan Africa since 2000, and especially since 2005 and the promises of the Gleneagles G8 Summit which was a response to the global Make Poverty History campaign.
  4. Much of this smart aid went towards programmes that are delivering real results in sub-Saharan Africa. Together with African efforts, aid has helped to avert the deaths of 750,000 children from malaria; allowed 46.5 million children to enroll in school for the first time; provided 4 million Africans with anti-AIDS drugs; and helped boost agricultural productivity by 50% in 17 African countries.
  5. Emerging economies such as Brazil, India, China and Russia have been steadily increasing their aid to sub-Saharan Africa in recent years, along with increased trade and investment with African countries.

20 May 2011 (2)

France, Germany and Italy “must urgently get back on track by setting out clear timetables to meet the promises they made to give 0.7% of their national incomes as overseas aid by 2015,” says ONE Executive Director Jamie Drummond. “At the same time, non-European G8 countries like the US, Canada and Japan should set new, ambitious commitments for aid to sub-Saharan Africa.”

However even if G8 donors meet all their existing and future promises on aid, much more money needs to be invested in developing countries if we are to reach the Millennium Development Goals and pull millions of people out of poverty.  Innovative financing measures — like a Robin Hood Tax and African diaspora bonds — need to be adopted.

“We welcome the momentum on innovative finance for development at the G20,” adds Mr. Drummond, “even though there are some questions over whether President Sarkozy’s new focus on this area is in part an attempt to divert attention away from France’s failure to meet its fair share of Europe’s aid targets. That is why we are calling for real and measurable progress to be made before the end of 2011.”