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Manifestos: International Development

Manifestos: International Development De Visu
Where do the parties stand on international aid and development?

CONSERVATIVE

• Continue to meet the 0.7 per cent target, maintain an independent Department for International Development (DFID) and keep aid untied.

• By 2020, aim to save 1.4 million children’s lives by immunising 76 million children against ‘killer diseases’.

• Help at least 11 million children in the poorest countries gain a decent education, improve nutrition for at least 50 million people, and help at least 60 million people get access to clean water and sanitation, to prevent diseases.

• Will lead ‘a major new global programme’ to accelerate the development of vaccines and drugs to eliminate the world’s deadliest infectious diseases, while investing to save lives from malaria and working to end preventable child and maternal deaths.

LABOUR

• Work in fragile and conflict-affected states to improve the lives of those affected by violence, prioritising the protection and education of women and children.

• Rebalance the budget to focus funding on the world’s poorest countries.

• Work with other countries at this year’s Sustainable Development Goals Summit to unite the world to eradicate extreme poverty, tackle growing economic inequality, and place human rights at the heart of development.

• Establish a Centre for Universal Health Coverage to provide the support, encouragement, and global partnerships needed to help countries provide free healthcare. Will ‘lead efforts’ to reshape the UN humanitarian system to better equip it to save lives.

• Extend the sharing of tax information to developing countries, increase DFID’s help to governments to collect more of their own taxes, tackle corruption, and ensure good governance.

• Work with companies to ensure they have sustainable supply chains that are free from slavery, treat their workers fairly, and pay taxes where they are due.

 aid4(Image: DFID)

LIBERAL DEMOCRATS

• Maintain commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of UK Gross National Income (GNI) on overseas development. Will adhere to the OECD’s definition of what activities qualify.

• Build on defence cooperation with France, the Netherlands, the Nordic states and other European countries ‘as the most reliable basis for British security’.

• Develop a ‘whole-government’ approach to development.

• Continue to promote private sector economic development, ensuring this benefits local people and small businesses not just multinational corporations.

• Lead international action to ensure global companies pay fair taxes in the developing countries in which they operate and tighten anti-tax haven rules. This will require large companies to publish their tax payments and profits for each country in which they operate.

• Conduct a full Bilateral and Multilateral Aid Review to ensure that the DFID continues to work in the right places and through the right channels.

• Continue building the resilience of poorer countries to resist future disasters, investing in healthcare, infrastructure and training emergency response volunteers. Will respond generously to humanitarian crises wherever they may occur.

• Work to ensure the Sustainable Development Goals to: Safeguard the sustainability of the planet; Leave no one behind, helping the most vulnerable as well as improving average living standards; Ensure people do not suffer discrimination or disadvantage because of gender, sexual orientation, disability or ethnic origin; Eliminate absolute poverty by 2030.

• Invest to eliminate within a generation preventable diseases like TB, HIV and malaria and explore new ways to support public and private research and development into treatment for these and other deadly diseases and infections.

• Create a new civil society partnership scheme to build links between peoples in rich and poor countries, including partnerships between communities, trade unions or emergency services.

GREEN PARTY

• Look to increase the overseas aid budget from 0.7 per cent of GDP to 1.0 per cent of GDP over the Parliament, costing around £6billion a year in 2019. Aid will not be tied, and will be distributed in ways that are focused on poverty eradication, supporting grassroots initiatives, women’s rights and environmental sustainability while respecting local priorities.

• Advocate for ambitious sustainable development goals, including a commitment to end AIDS, TB and malaria; action to eliminate violence against women and girls; and practical measures to eradicate poverty and reduce inequality.

• Support global efforts to develop a fairer global tax system and take action to end tax evasion and avoidance and transfer mispricing by transnational corporations ‘which steals resources especially from poorer countries’.

• Stop the corporate takeover of African food by ending UK funding of the G8’s New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition.

• Promote fair trade, in particular seeking to ensure that workers in poor countries receive decent pay and conditions within International Labour Organization (ILO) standards.

• Initiate democratic discussions, alongside international trade unions, citizen groups and the ILO, to investigate the potential for a global minimum wage to address in-work poverty and exploitation.

• Ensure UK companies operating abroad respect international human rights and environmental standards and do not encourage corruption, enforcing the UN Convention against Corruption and the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention, and reporting fully upon their activities.

• Ensure that every country has the political space to make its own democratic choices, without pressure to prise open its economy for ‘free’ trade.

• Ensure that trade deals allow poor countries to control their economies; take the UK out of trade agreements that go against this.

• Support the rights of indigenous people to control their own lands and resources.

• Fight for the writing-off of international debts for the poorest countries and limiting repayments for other low-income countries, to ensure they can fund decent public services for their people.

• Help poorer countries to fund climate change adaptation and build resilient communities through the UN Adaptation Fund.

aid3(Image: DFID)

UKIP

• Repeal recent legislation committing aid spending to 0.7 per cent of GNI.

• Provided the UK leaves the EU, UKIP will ‘provide sustainable livelihoods for the world’s poorest people, by giving them free access to the British market’.

• Close DFID and merge its essential functions into the Foreign Office, retaining a single Minister for Overseas Development.

SCOTTISH NATIONAL PARTY

• Support the United Nations target to spend 0.7 per cent of Gross National Income (GNI) on international development and continue to support UK spending at this level – which must be calculated on current, not former, measurements of GNI.

• A belief that overseas aid funding should not be used for defence-related expenditure and should not undermine public services in developing countries.

• Support an audit of outstanding debt owed by developing countries, with debt relief provided as appropriate.

PLAID CYMRU

• Support legislation to underpin the 0.7 per cent gross national product that should be provided in international aid. Wants it to be monitored by independent organisations in order to prevent misuse.

• Following the millennium development goals, Plaid Cymru wants strong post-2015 goals to be set which also recognise the impacts of climate change upon poverty and the importance of sanitation.

• Ensure that Wales provides humanitarian aid to the best of its ability whenever required and accept displaced persons where possible and appropriate.

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