Today ONE has published new research that shows the impact UK aid spending will have on the lives of some of the poorest people in the world. The UK has committed to hit the UN target to spend 0.7% of national income on aid from 2013, something Chancellor George Osborne is expected to confirm when he delivers the annual budget on Wednesday.
Our report – “Small Change: Big Difference” – shows that by the government sticking to its commitments on aid, the UK will:
- Put 15.9 million children in school
- Provide over 80 million children with vaccines against life-threatening diseases, saving an estimated 1.4 million lives
- Help 44.9 million people participate in freer and fairer elections
- Support over 40 million people with prevention or treatment for malaria, including distributing 26.6 million bed nets
- Provide access to safe drinking water to over 17 million people
- Help 77.6 million people access formal financial services, such as bank accounts or credit, which are the basics needed to start a business
- Ensure 5.8 million births take place in a safe environment, saving the lives of over 50,000 mothers
- Provide 633,000 people with life-saving treatment for HIV
- Ensure better nutrition for 9.6 million people
It’s easy to get lost in such large numbers – but the overall picture is clear. Both through country offices of the Department for International Development and supporting effective multilateral organisations like the Global Fund for AIDS, TB and Malaria, the UK is having a transformational impact on the lives of millions of poor people.
ONE’s Europe Director Adrian Lovett said:
Britain’s aid costs less than a penny in each pound of national income, and this analysis reveals for the first time just how much every penny counts. For many millions of poor people, what happens to our aid budget is a matter of life or death.
In tough economic times, keeping our aid promise is more important than ever. No other budget achieves so much for so little. The UK is proven to spend aid effectively. It is an investment now that will save and transform lives, boost Britain’s own economic prospects and bring forward the day when aid is no longer needed.