Rich Countries Have No Excuse for Broken Aid Promises

Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)– Responding to OECD predictions that 2010 will see overseas aid stand at a staggering $21bn lower than promised, Head of Oxfam Campaign, Emma Seery said:

“This missing $21 billion could pay for every child to go to school, and could save the lives of 2 million of the poorest mothers and children, making this failure of the richest countries nothing short of a scandal.

Oxfam estimates it would cost $16bn each year to ensure that every child gets the chance to go to school and $5bn would provide improved medical care that would save the lives of about 2 million mothers and children.

“Rich countries have no excuse for failing to deliver the aid increases they promised – they have pledged to do more to save mothers’ lives but are falling short, making 2010 the year for them to put their money where their mouth is."

Seery said: “These figures demonstrate the scale of challenge the EU will be facing in adopting a rescue plan for European aid and the MDGs, to be discussed for the first time at the EU Development Ministers meeting in La Granja (Spain) this week.”

"Countries such as the UK, Spain and Belgium are demonstrating it is possible to show development leadership, and we still hope to see others like France, Germany and Italy stepping up and making a rescue plan a reality in 2010."

France, Germany and Italy are three of the countries who the OECD projections expect to miss targets. Collectively the EU-15 who are members of the OECD will miss their 0.51% aid target they committed to in 2005, with OECD projections putting them at just 0.48% average in 2010.

Nine out of ten Europeans believe strongly that their leaders must meet their aid promises, despite the economic downturn, according to a recent Eurobarometer study.

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Oxfam International is a confederation of 13 like-minded organizations working together and with partners and allies around the world to bring about lasting change. Oxfam works directly with communities and that seeks to influence the powerful to ensure that poor people can improve their lives and livelihoods and have a say in decisions that affect them.