20 May 2005

Aid organisations says New Zealand far from meeting commitments despite Budget increase

12:22 pm on 20 May 2005

The Council for International Development says it is disappointed in the money allocated for aid in the New Zealand budget released yesterday.

But the Minister in charge of overseas aid, Marian Hobbs is delighted, saying the aid provided is up by 21 percent or over 59-million New Zealand dollars, the largest increase in decades.

CID says it's a promising start but falls well short of New Zealand's obligation to meet a United Nations Millennium Goal by 2015.

That goal is to contribute point seven of one percent of Gross National Income toward overseas aid.

The CID deputy chair, Barry Coates, says the increase still leaves New Zealand near the bottom of developed countries in terms of assistance to developing nations, with it contributing just point two seven of a percent of GNI.

"We would have liked to have seen staged targets in order to meet the Millennium Development Goals and the important thing for us is that the government should set a timetable and a plan for how it's going to get to this United Nations agreed target."

CID deputy chair, Barry Coates.