April 28, 2021
In response to the global pandemic, international aid contributions from the thirty member states of the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee has gone up by 7% in absolute terms compared to 2019. The USA, Canada, France and Germany are among the countries to increase aid. 
This Is Absolutely The Wrong Time For Britain To Cut Foreign Aid
Sadly, the UK is not one of them. Instead Dominic Raab, our foreign secretary, announced last July a £2.9 billion cut to the UK’s aid commitment.
The government also announced the aid budget will be cut to 0.5% of gross national income (GNI) in view of the pandemic – even though 0.7% is enshrined in law. That hit is a double whammy: with a reduced GNI, the aid budget will be reduced, and with a reduced share, it will shrink even more. 
In absolute terms, Britain’s aid budget will shrink from £14.5 billion in 2020 to £10 billion in 2021. The government has been keen to point out that the UK is still the third largest donor in absolute terms, however the real question is whether rolling back on our legal commitments is right – in both rationale and timing – when developing countries are finding it hard to cope with Coronavirus. This move has been criticised by four former prime ministers, the UN secretary general, leading philanthropists like Bill Gates, and even prominent Conservatives, 2021 is a key year for Britain in the international development calendar. Alongside Kenya we are co-hosting the Global Partnership for Education, we host the G7 in June, and the landmark COP26 climate summit in November. This should have been the year to propel a new, post-Brexit Britain to a more prominent role on the global stage. Instead, official aid is being pivoted away from poverty reduction to areas of “national interests” and “national security”.
The recently formed Foreign, Commonwealth and Development office – which came to life last summer when the Department for International Development was merged into the Foreign Office – manages only a little over 70% of the reduced aid budget, with diplomatic and security interests playing a more pivotal role in determining how our official development assistance (ODA) budgets are allocated. Meanwhile, more funding has been made available for nuclear weapons.
In a pandemic-ravaged world, we need visionary leadership. This is absolutely the wrong time for Britain to choose to recede from its leadership role. 
It is no wonder then, that this move has been criticised by four former prime ministers, the UN secretary general, leading philanthropists like Bill Gates, and even prominent Conservatives such as Andrew Mitchell, Rory Stewart and Baroness Sugg. For us at STiR Education, working in partnership with education systems in India and Uganda to embed the foundations of lifelong learning, the impact has been devastating. On 2 March, we were given just three weeks’ notice that our contract with FCDO would be cancelled due to budget cuts – a loss of £828,000 over the period April 2021 to June 2022. Worse still, we were given this information by phone call, with no rationale or apology, and asked not to discuss it publicly, even with our counterparts in the Ugandan government. 
Keeping silent is however not an option and we need to speak out on something that is legally and ethically wrong. This cut risks our primary education programme in Uganda, where over the past four years we have been working with 3,500 schools, 46,000 teachers and nearly two million children. We have had to significantly scale back our programme, with major cost savings and some staff redundancies. This means children from poor and marginalised families being further disadvantaged from accessing quality education and opportunities for life.
We consider ourselves to be very fortunate to have support from private donors, without whom this work could not continue at all. The prime minister continues to profess his personal commitment to girls’ education, yet his government is cutting funding to a programme that reaches nearly a million girls from some of the poorest communities in Uganda.  A country with over £2 trillion GDP should have been more generous, not less. We are not the only ones affected. Cuts to the FCDO will fall sharply on some of the poorest countries, especially in Africa, and some of the worst affected by conflict: Yemen, Syria, Somalia and South Sudan. Details of the cuts are not yet made public, so it is only now that recipients of the aid budget are starting to find out what awaits them. 
We are struggling, and we know that others will too. More aid is likely to be pivoted to promote Britain’s interest on trade and security. We will see a hugely reduced role for Britain on the global development stage, even as the world struggles to meet its commitments to the SDG 2030 targets. 
We don’t know if or when Britain will restore its 0.7% GNI commitment. Boris Johnson has said that it will happen when the fiscal situation allows, but that commitment means nothing without a specific timeline. And that means that millions of people most in need around the world will face the devastating impact of a government decision to cut £4.5 billion from the aid budget. 
A country with over £2 trillion GDP should have been more generous, not less. To do anything else is to balance our books on the backs of the poor.
Girish Menon is chief executive of STiR Education. Follow him on Twitter at @GirishMenonSTiRRelated...Can Labour Capitalise On ‘Tory Sleaze’ In Time For The May 6 Elections?Raab 'Sneaks Out' Announcement Slashing Aid For Girls' EducationTheresa May Says Sacking Gavin Williamson Allowed Spy Chiefs To 'Speak Freely' Again
Related Stories
Latest News
Top news around the world
Coronavirus Disease

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

Around the World

Celebrity News

> Latest News in Media

Watch It
Jennifer Lawrence Debuts GOLDEN Baby Bump at "Don't Look Up" Premiere
December 06, 2021
ZKGM3ahFJtk
"Selling Sunset" Love Triangle With Christine Quinn & Emma Hernan | Daily Pop | E! News
December 06, 2021
Obuw6WBbBxU
"Vanderpump Rules" Stars James Kennedy & Raquel Leviss SPLIT | E! News
December 05, 2021
Hz9M69Iy7vA
Tristan Thompson Allegedly Expecting Baby 3, Woman Sues for Child Support | TMZ TV
December 06, 2021
tQ8ZJe1JrEA
LEBRON JAMES YOUNGEST SON DUNKS FOR 1ST TIME ... Dad's Proud!!! | TMZ TV
December 06, 2021
KObriIQ4p8Y
Lil Wayne Cops Called Over Alleged Gun Incident | The TMZ Podcast
December 06, 2021
LKs_PTjnUFo
Scott Disick parties with women, pals at Art Basel | Page Six Celebrity News
December 06, 2021
TP4TcoYo2fs
Luann de Lesseps, aka ‘Countess Lu,’ is releasing a rap single | Page Six Celebrity News
December 06, 2021
KoF_FT8eGLs
Why Shannon Beador regrets telling ‘RHOC’ co-stars about Dubrow lawsuit drama | Page Six
December 06, 2021
a9Ma7hi07qY
BTS Sends a Heartfelt Message Via Video At Variety Hitmakers
December 06, 2021
4XBexjgWaxQ
VIP+ Exchange: The Future of Addressable Advertising
December 06, 2021
la03aixkBq0
Watch John Mayer Try Out His Best Standup Routine at Variety’s Hitmakers Event
December 05, 2021
rEEG-E1pMis
TV Schedule
Late Night Show
Watch the latest shows of U.S. top comedians

Sports

Latest sport results, news, videos, interviews and comments
Latest Events
19
Nov
ASIAN CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group H
Sydney FC - Shanghai SIPG
17
Nov
UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE A: Group Stage
Spain - Germany
14
Nov
UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE A: Group Stage
Germany - Ukraine
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester City - Liverpool
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - Aston Villa
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Valencia - Real Madrid
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
AC Milan - Verona
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
West Bromwich Albion - Tottenham Hotspur
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Bologna - Napoli
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Genoa - Roma
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Atalanta - Inter Milan
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Lazio - Juventus
08
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Bayer Leverkusen - Borussia Monchengladbach
08
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Leicester City - Wolves
08
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Wolfsburg - Hoffenheim
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Valladolid - Athletic Bilbao
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Levante - Alaves
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Sociedad - Granada CF
08
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Torino - Crotone
08
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Getafe - Villarreal
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Borussia Dortmund - Bayern Munich
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Everton - Manchester United
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Chelsea - Sheffield United
07
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Cadiz
07
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Barcelona - Real Betis
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Augsburg - Hertha Berlin
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
Stuttgart - Eintracht Frankfurt
07
Nov
GERMANY: Bundesliga
RB Leipzig - SC Freiburg
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Rotherham - Preston NE
07
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Parma - Fiorentina
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Watford - Coventry
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Norwich City - Swansea City
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Blackburn - QPR
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Derby County - Barnsley
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Huddersfield - Luton
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Nottingham Forest - Wycombe Wanderers
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
West Ham United - Fulham
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Sheffield Wednesday - Millwall
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Brentford - Middlesbrough
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Championship
Birmingham - Bournemouth
07
Nov
SPAIN: La Liga
Sevilla - Osasuna
07
Nov
ITALY: Serie A
Benevento - Spezia
07
Nov
ENGLAND: Premier League
Crystal Palace - Leeds
04
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group G
Ferencvaros - Juventus
04
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group G
Barcelona - Dynamo K.
03
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group A
Salzburg - Bayern Munich
03
Nov
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Group stage, Group D
Atalanta - Liverpool
Find us on Instagram
at @feedimo to stay up to date with the latest.
Featured Video You Might Like
zWJ3MxW_HWA L1eLanNeZKg i1XRgbyUtOo -g9Qziqbif8 0vmRhiLHE2U JFCZUoa6MYE UfN5PCF5EUo 2PV55f3-UAg W3y9zuI_F64 -7qCxIccihU pQ9gcOoH9R8 g5MRDEXRk4k
Copyright © 2020 Feedimo. All Rights Reserved.