UN urges wealthy nations to boost development aidSeptember 5th, 2008 - 6:32 am ICT by IANS
New York, Sep 5 (DPA) UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called on wealthy nations to increase thier development aid to $18 billion a year if they wish the world to remain on track to achieving a set of anti-poverty goals by 2015.Ban’s comments came ahead of the Sep 25 high-level meeting in New York on stepping up global efforts to reach the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which countries have committed to achieve by 2015,
“While there has been progress on several counts, delivery on commitments made by member states has been deficient, and has fallen behind schedule,” he told a news conference Thursday.
An assessment report titled “Delivering on the Global Partnership for Achieving the Millennium Development Goals” was also presented at the conference.
Stating that the report sounded “a strong alarm”, Ban said: “We are already in the second half of our contest against poverty. We are running out of time.”
The report said that although donor countries increased development assistance in the last eight years, the flow of aid has actually declined - by 4.7 percent in 2006 and a further 8.4 percent in 2007.
Last year, there was a shortfall of $10 billion, Ban said. The total aid from wealthier nations was only 0.28 percent of their combined Gross National Income, as opposed to the UN target of 0.7 percent.
“If we are to meet the 2010 target set at the G-8 Summit in 2005, ODA (official development assistance) will have to increase by $18 billion a year. Of that, $7.3 billion would have to go to Africa,” the secretary general said.
The eight MDGs call for eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education and promoting gender equality by 2015. Other goals call for reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, combating HIV/AIDS and malaria, ensuring environmental sustainability and creating a global partnership for development by that date.