Government Ministers have urged British Prime Minister Theresa May to drop Britain’s commitment to spending 0.7 per cent of national income on helping poorer countries, and have proposed diverting money to a new combined defense and security budget.
The UK, the world’s third-biggest donor, spends £13 billion per year on aid, and the Prime Minister has stood by the spending commitment despite pressure to reduce it following a series of scandals over where the money goes.
Some ministers believe Britain is doing more than its fair share when it comes to helping poorer countries, and point to the fact that the average spend by other wealthy nations is just 0.4 per cent of GNI.
In fact, the USA spends just 0.18 per cent.
Mrs May, however, has made it clear that she is a supporter of the 0.7 per cent spending pledge and remains “fully committed” to it. Priti Patel, the International Development Secretary, also sees the commitment as a key part of the post-Brexit “global Britain” brand.
A Whitehall source explained: “A lot of the world’s biggest problems, such as disease, mass migration and terrorism, are incubated in countries affected by conflict, such as Somalia, Yemen and South Sudan.