Published On: Thu, Aug 22nd, 2013

Q&A: Australia’s foreign aid policy

MDG : Australia Aid : Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr speaks with school children of Sri Lanka With a federal election approaching, the Australian government is in caretaker mode. Yet the debate about foreign aid – inflamed by recent decisions to delay planned budget increases and spend more aid money on asylum seekers in Australia and in Papua New Guinea – is far from over. How much does Australia spend on foreign aid? In 2012, Australia reported spending $5.4bn (£3.2m) on official development assistance (ODA), making it the eighth-largest aid donor in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) group of rich countries, and just ahead of Sweden ($5.2bn). As a percentage of gross national income (GNI), Australia seems far less generous and was closer to reaching the international target to spend 0.7% of GNI on aid in the 1960s and 70s than it is today. Charities point out that foreign aid accounts for just 1.4% of Australia’s federal budget and that it has suffered [Read More]

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