Chancellor George Osborne confirmed in today’s budget speech that the UK would continue to meet its “obligations to the world’s poorest” people. The chart shows what is widely expected to be confirmed by official figures on 2 April: that Britain will be the first G7 country to reach 0.7%.
New growth forecasts released today suggest that UK national income was only slightly higher than last December’s Autumn Statement forecast. This suggests that the 0.7% target is likely to have been met, as last year’s aid has already been provided. DI will be providing analysis when the official figures are published on 2 April.
The government also reconfirmed 0.7% would be maintained in 2014.* More positive economic growth projections suggest that if the 0.7% target is maintained from 2013 to 2018 then this will mean an additional £423 million in UK aid because gross national income (GNI) is higher than expected.
The official data to be published in two weeks’ time will also confirm whether the share of aid coming from departments other than the Department for International Development (DFID) has risen by almost a third (from 13.4% to 18.2%).**
DFID aid is currently more transparent than that of other departments, because of its comprehensive reporting to the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI). The more other UK government departments follow DFID’s example and report spending transparently to IATI, the more we will know, more quickly, about all of UK aid.
* HM Treasury, 2014 Budget report, para 2.12
** The 2012 estimate of 13.4% for non-DFID ODA is from DFID, Statistics on International Development 2013, figure 6, p23); the 2013 estimate of 18.2% is from National Audit Office, Briefing to support the International Development Committee’s inquiry into the DFID Annual Report 2012-13, figure 11, page 24
Development Initiatives’ calculations using OECD DAC database (donor ODA and GNI data) and Office for Budget Responsibility, Economic & fiscal outlook supplementary economy tables (March 2014) (UK gross national income)