Development MEPs urge EU countries to stick to foreign aid commitments
Development MEPs urged EU member countries to respect their Official Development Assistance (ODA) target of 0.7% of national income and to set timetables for reaching it by 2020. It also highlighted the need to mobilise domestic resources efficiently in developing countries and stressed the importance of private-sector contributions in a resolution on financing development adopted on Monday.
"Goals and targets mean nothing if they are not financed. The result of the vote is a sign that this House wants to send a strong political message about the future implementation and financing of the new global development agenda for the period 2015-2030. This report is an important contribution by the EP to the position of the EU in the July´s high-level conference on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa, which must be a success for better serving post-2015 development policies," said the rapporteur, Pedro Silva Pereira (S&D, PT).
Official Development Assistance (ODA)
The committee urges the EU to assert its political leadership throughout the process of defining the sustainable development framework and calls on the member states to re-commit to their ODA target of 0.7% of gross national income (GNI), with 50% of ODA and at least 0.2% of GNI being earmarked for least-developed countries (LDCs), and to present multiannual budget timetables for scaling up to these levels by 2020 "taking into account budgetary constraints".
Mobilising domestic resources
Domestic resource mobilisation is more predictable and sustainable than foreign assistance and must be a key source of financing, says the development committee. . It calls on the Commission to enhance its capacity-building assistance in the areas of tax administration, public financial management and anti-corruption and on the EU and its member states to "actively crack down on tax havens, tax evasion and illicit financial flows".
The role of the private sector
The MEPs recall that public aid alone is not sufficient to cover all investment needs in developing countries and call on the EU to set up a regulatory framework together with developing countries that "stimulates more responsible, transparent and accountable investment, contributing to the development of a socially conscious private sector in developing countries".
In 2005, EU member states committed themselves to raising their official development assistance (ODA) to 0.7% of their gross national income (GNI) by 2015. Member states that joined the EU in 2004 or later have pledged to strive to reach 0.33% by 2015.
The resolution was passed by 19 votes to 1, with 3 abstentions. It will be tabled in plenary at the May part-session in Strasbourg (18-21 May).