Last week Justin Welby co-signed a letter urging countries to keep their aid promises, and encouraged the UK to use it's G8 presidency to make more progress on reducing poverty. With 1000 days to go (well, one or two less now) until the 2015 deadline for the Millenium Development Goals, it's good to be part of a country that has kept its pledges, and hit the 0.7% GDP target for overseas aid. One thing we seldom do is celebrate what's been achieved so far, so this vid from Bono (Ht Mark Meynell) gives some striking stats on the amazing achievements of the last generation. I was waiting for him to click his fingers, but no.
Here's a bit from the letter
As religious leaders from across the G8 we recommend that our Heads of Government take the following actions when they meet in June. First, fulfil existing commitments to spend 0.7% of national income on aid. Secondly, launch a G8 Convention on Tax Transparency committing signatory countries to prevent individuals and companies from hiding wealth so that it’s untraceable. Thirdly, press for greater financial transparency from governments of developing countries so that the citizens of these countries can hold their governments to account for the money they spend.
Reaching a purposeful consensus on these areas won’t be easy. But, if the political will and moral leadership is forthcoming, this year’s G8 could help to create an environment that encourages the conditions for inclusive, equitable and sustainable economic growth – conditions that are desperately needed if we are to realise the MDGs and even greater things beyond.
Political will and moral leadership. Everyone is talking about these things in the wake of Margaret Thatchers death. Politics has become much more pragmatic post-Thatcher, but here is one area where conviction and moral purpose are really needed.