Today [Tuesday, 5th June], the International Development Committee (IDC) published the results of an inquiry into aid spending across Whitehall, including by departments other than DFID.
The report found that aid spent by these other departments was less effective and less poverty focused than DFID spending, and also that levels of transparency and value for money on aid delivered by two of largest cross-government funds* were comparatively lacking.
Based upon its findings, the committee has called for reviews of both funds, and no increases in the share of aid spent through these funds until improvements are made.
Romilly Greenhill, UK Director of The ONE Campaign, welcomed the tough stance of the IDC:
“The IDC is right to call-out aid that doesn’t meet its core purpose of fighting poverty. Their recommendation that DFID – with its world-leading expertise in using aid effectively – be given final sign-off of UK aid spent anywhere in Whitehall is spot on.
Greenhill also welcomed the IDC’s recommendation that the Government should make systematic improvements to coherence, transparency and the poverty focus of cross-government funds before increasing their share of UK ODA any further.
Greenhill continued: “The IDC’s recommendation that funds which fall short of meeting these standards should not see any increase in their share of UK aid is smart. The British Taxpayer rightly expects any part of government responsible for delivering UK aid to ensure it is transparent, effective and focused on the job it’s intended for: reducing poverty.”
*The cross-government funds in question are the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) and Prosperity fund.