While polls show that clear majorities believe the aid budget to be too high, they continue to pour their own money into international development charities.
He replies to Soubry’s call to expel him, argues aid should be “investment rather than expenditure”, and reveals what it’s like to face “poser” masked thugs.
“We have to demonstrate that the money is not just being spent well, but could not be spent better”.
We are not just helping them – we are empowering them to help themselves. That transforms individual lives and helps the region to stabilise.
Overseas development spending will never fulfil its soft-power potential if DfID is allowed to pursue what amounts to its own foreign policy.
The challenge for aid donors and recipients alike is to work together to improve its efficiency and effectiveness.
The Task Force dispatched in response to Hurricane Irma was a remarkable achievement. If the rumoured cuts go ahead, we will not be able to repeat it.
Patel got a lot done – in particular, improving international rules about emergency spending. Now her successor must work on an aid policy for Global Britain.
While we still have a commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of our GDP on foreign aid, I would much rather see such funds allocated to our Overseas Territories.
Our commitment to overseas development is under constant political pressure, but it enhances British soft power around the world.
“A society that does not judge you for where you come from or your background or how you live your life provided you do no harm to others that is the syncretic genius of our country.”
“Of course sometimes the exchanges are tough, but that is to be expected…because the prizes for success are enormous. As are the consequences of failure.”
I left feeling proud that as a UK taxpayer my money is being put to such good use, but we mustn’t pat ourselves on the back just yet. Our work is not done.
Cameron’s insistence on binding Britain to the OECD has undermined not just May’s vision for overseas development, but his own.
Plus: I miss the Liberal Democrat conference. I miss the beards. I miss the sandals. I miss being asked for a discount on a 50p postcard…