For­eign aid tar­get may need cut­ting, says Clare Short

The Daily Telegraph - - News -

BRI­TAIN needs a “se­ri­ous de­bate” about the for­eign aid spend­ing tar­get, a for­mer in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment sec­re­tary has said.

Clare Short, the first min­is­ter to be put in charge of the new depart­ment un­der Tony Blair, warned it may not be pos­si­ble to keep the UK’S com­mit­ment to spend 0.7 per cent of GDP on aid.

Ms Short told Prospect mag­a­zine: “I am afraid that the depart­ment has lost ca­pac­ity… Money is use­ful if it is well spent, not in it­self.”

Jack Straw, Labour’s for­mer for­eign sec­re­tary, added that the depart­ment has be­come “sloppy” be­cause it does not have to jus­tify the money it re­ceives from tax­pay­ers.

“An aw­ful lot of money goes to spend on jobs for mid­dle-class whites,” he said.

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