THE HON TANYA PLIBERSEK MP
DEPUTY LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT
MEMBER FOR SYDNEY
ABBOTT GOVERNMENT'S ‘NEW PARADIGM’ ON AID IS CODE FOR CUTS
WEDNESDAY 30 APRIL 2014
The 'new paradigm' on overseas aid announced by the Abbott Government last night is just code for massive cuts.
These cuts will affect some of the poorest nations and people on earth.
So far, the Abbott Government's cuts to overseas aid total around $18 billion.
The announcement of a 'new paradigm' is clearly softening the ground for more.
The Abbott Government says one thing on aid, but does the opposite.
The Abbott Government said it would provide certainty on aid funding. Instead, it's cutting it by $18 billion.
The Abbott Government said it would focus aid on our region. Instead, it's cut $250 million in aid from the Asia-Pacific.
Abbott Government slogans like 'new paradigm' and 'economic diplomacy’ are designed to obscure the Government’s cuts to the aid program.
The Abbott Government's 'aid for trade' agenda must not come at the expense of support for education, health, water and sanitation, gender equality, infrastructure and governance. The aid budget must not become a trade budget.
Australia’s aid and development program is in our national interest. It enhances our international influence, helps to prevent conflict and terrorism and builds our relationships of the future.
The Abbott Government's cuts to aid jumped from $4.5 billion to $18 billion after Mr Abbott abandoned the commitment to increase aid funding from 2017-18 that was detailed in his Government’s own Budget update.
In contrast, the former Labor Government nearly doubled the aid Budget and introduced internationally recognised aid accountability and effectiveness measures.