31 May 2017

New Zealand well poised to lead Pacific aid

1:54 pm on 31 May 2017

In a world of shrinking aid budgets and closing borders New Zealand is well poised to show global leadership according to this country's umbrella body for non-government organisations.

Aid workers and the Royal New Zealand Air Force personnel loading supplies

Photo: NZDF

The New Zealand government effectively has an 18 percent increase in aid available in the coming year after two consecutive years of underspending in the three year funding cycle implemented by former foreign minister Murray McCully.

It's not yet clear how much of the additional money will be spent in the Pacific.

But the director of the Council for International Development, Josie Pagani, said given cuts by Australia to its aid budget and Donald Trump's proposals to do the same for the US, New Zealand can assert some international leadership.

"You know we can be thought leaders across the world in this. We can be an example of what it is like not to close your borders what it is like to reach out and work with others and feel that it is our job to do something to make the world a better place," said Josie Pagani.