Magazine article New Internationalist

The Fall and Fall of British Aid: Scrooge Economics

Magazine article New Internationalist

The Fall and Fall of British Aid: Scrooge Economics

Article excerpt

ALANDMARK for British relationships with the Third World in 1990 was the record inflow of "Symbol not transcribed"6,847 million ($10,612 million) from repayments on previous debts by developing countries. It meant a net inflow of funds from the poor world after overseas aid and investments had been deducted of "Symbol not transcribed"2,600 million ($4,030 million). This was the first time for the UK that repayments on past loans exceeded official aid and new loans.

As a percentage of gross national product, Britain has halved its aid to developing countries in the last 30 years. In 1960 the British government gave 0.56 per cent of GNP in development aid; in 1990 it gave 0.27 per cent. In both years a Conservative government was in power. Between 1960 and 1990 the standard of living measured in terms of GNP per head roughly doubled. …

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