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Development Aid

Question for Treasury

UIN 82108, tabled on 25 November 2021

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will reverse his decision to reduce the Official Development Assistance budget from 7 per cent to 5 per cent of Gross National Income.

Answered on

3 December 2021

The Government remains committed to international development and providing support to the world's poorest. However, we face extraordinary fiscal circumstances as a result of our unprecedented support to the economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The United Kingdom remains one of the leading development doners in the world, providing over £10 billion this financial year towards our key international development priorities.

In July, the Chancellor set out the responsible fiscal circumstances under which we will return to spending 0.7% of GNI on ODA: when the independent Office for Budget Responsibility’s fiscal forecast confirms that, on a sustainable basis, the government is not borrowing for day-to-day spending and underlying debt is falling: https://questions-statements.parliament.uk/written-statements/detail/2021-07-12/hcws172.

Given the government’s careful stewardship of the public finances and the strength of the recovery, the ODA fiscal tests are now forecast to be met in 2024-25. As such, the 2021 Spending Review provisionally sets aside additional unallocated ODA funding for 2024-25, on top of departmental ODA settlements, to the value of the difference between 0.5% and 0.7% of GNI.

The government will continue to monitor future forecasts closely and, each year over this period, will review and confirm, in accordance with the International Development (Official Development Assistance Target) Act 2015 Act, whether a return to spending 0.7% of GNI on ODA is possible against the latest fiscal forecast.

Answered by

Treasury