London, 16 May 2022 – In response to today’s publication of the Government’s International Development Strategy, please find below a statement from Save the Children.
Gwen Hines, CEO of Save the Children, said:
“The new International Development Strategy includes much that’s welcome, not least rolling back on previous cuts to support for women and girls and recognition that there should be a recommitment to spending 0.7% of gross national income on UK aid. It’s right to say that aid for the most vulnerable should be prioritised alongside policies that create better conditions for trade with less wealthy countries.
“Yet while economic growth is undoubtedly the biggest lever available in tackling poverty, the strategy prioritises private sector investment over other critical areas. And as we face an unprecedented global hunger crisis caused by climate change, conflict, and COVID-19, it does not even mention malnutrition. Aid spending is most effective when it’s directed towards making the biggest impact for the poorest people, such as strengthening health and education systems.”
“It’s tough to see the UK as a “trusted strategic partner” when it has broken so many commitments lately. Deep budget cuts have already done real damage; the UK’s humanitarian support is a fraction of what it was, despite unprecedented levels of need and compounding urgent challenges – at this moment, 350,000 children’s lives are on the line in Somalia alone.”
“The strategy makes some clear declarations of intent. We are hopeful. But the real test will be in its execution.”
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