Development: Short `appalled' by EU aid policy

THE SECRETARY of State for International Development, Clare Short, accused the European Union yesterday of diverting much-needed aid away from the poorest countries. She spoke out as she released figures showing that some Mediterranean nations received more than 10 times the level of aid given to poorer states.

The figures, available for the first time, prove that countries, such as Morocco, receive eight times more EU aid per head than Bangladesh and Ethiopia. In terms of European development aid per head in 1996, Jordan got pounds 15.56 compared to 53p in Ethiopia and 6p in India.

Ms Short also said that it was "extraordinary" that wealthy countries such as Brunei, Kuwait and the Bahamas were receiving aid.

She told the Commons Select Committee on International Development that the UK would be pressing for an overhaul of Europe's overseas aid budget to ensure that the money went to the poorest nations. Politics rather than genuine poverty had distorted the budget.

It was "truly appalling" that the EU gave only 53 per cent of its pounds 4bn budget to poor nations in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, compared to 75 per cent 10 years ago. The UK contributes about 15 per cent of the aid resources spent by the EU.

Many middle-income states in Latin America and the Middle East received far larger sums than India, Bangladesh and Vietnam.

Ms Short said that the EU should follow the example of the UK, which directs more than 80 per cent of its development funds to the poorest countries.

"Spending is often political. The rhetoric says poverty, the reality is, `We're worried about North Africa, bung them some money,' and the effect is unprincipled application," she said.

The European Commission's budget management was "totally inefficient", with some allocations remaining unspent, and the UK would argue for a freeze in coming negotiations. Ministers from EU member states allocate the cash. The Commission administers the spending. A recent report by the OECD showed that for every pounds 1 allocated, 27p was left unspent, largely due to inefficiency by Commission staff.

News
Emma Watson has become the latest target of the 4Chan nude hacking scandal
peopleThreats follows actress' speech on feminism and equality at the UN
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
Life and Style
tech
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
tech
Life and Style
Alan Turing, who was convicted of gross indecency in 1952, was granted a royal pardon last year
life
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
News
i100
Life and Style
life
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

IT Systems Manager

£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...

IT Application Support Engineer - Immediate Start

£28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Software Application Support Analyst - Imm...

Year 2 Teacher needed (Mat Cover)- Bognor Regis!

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: Year 2 Teacher currently need...

Data Analyst / Marketing Database Analyst

£24000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits