G8 get mixed marks on meeting 2005 Africa aid plans


The Group of Eight leading industrial nations delivered only 61 percent of the increased aid they promised to sub-Saharan Africa by 2010 in their 2005 summit, a study showed.

The anti-poverty group ONE criticized France, Germany and Italy for failing to meet targets set for them at the 2005 G8 Gleneagles summit. It commended Britain for progress on an ambitious target and said the United States, Japan and Canada had surpassed their relatively modest targets.
“The failure of the G8 to keep their promises deprived the world’s poorest people of $7 billion in financing for effective and life-changing programs in 2010 alone,” the group said in a statement, Reuters reports.

ONE Executive Director Jamie Drummond said Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi had “abjectly failed” to deliver on aid promises for Africa while Germany’s performance was “hugely disappointing” for a country that had weathered the global financial crisis so well.
“We continue to call for Italy to be at least temporarily removed from the G8 for this reason,” he said in a statement.
“It’s worrying that President (Nicolas) Sarkozy and France are so far behind in a year when so much is expected of them as hosts of the G8 and G20, and at a time when African development, peace and democracy is at the top of the global agenda,” Drummond added.

Drummond said Rome, Paris and Brelin “must urgently get back on track” with new timetables to meet their promises to give 0.7 percent of their national incomes in overseas aid by 2015.
“At the same time, non-European G8 countries like the U.S., Canada and Japan should set new, ambitious commitments for aid to sub-Saharan Africa,” he said.

The report noted that emerging economies such as Brazil, India, China and Russia have been steadily increasing their aid, trade and investment with African countries.

Those countries did not report aid flows to the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee, the report said, encouraging them to do so in order to increase transparency and allow citizens of African countries to keep track of the money their governments are receiving.