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Government must honour commitments on Overseas Development Aid

17 October, 2004

Sinn Féin MEP Mary Lou McDonald speaking in Dublin this afternoon called on the Irish government to honour their commitment to achieve the UN target of spending 0.7% of GNP on Overseas Development Aid by 2007.

Ms McDonald said:

"The Irish Government has pledged to increase ODA spending to the UN target of 0.7% of GNP by 2007. Instead of achieving this, Government inaction has effectively seen ODA spending frozen at 2002 levels (0.41%) leaving us well behind many of our European neighbours. Five have already reached and exceeded the UN target. Luxembourg and Norway have committed to increase their spend to 1% GNP by 2005 and Sweden has committed to reach 1% by 2006.

"Development Cooperation Ireland and Dóchas have recommended managed ODA spending growth in the form of an incremental increase each year until the target is reached: 0.48% in 2004; 0.5% in 2005; 0.62% in 2006; and 0.7% in 2007. Sinn Féin endorses this approach.

"The Irish government need to honour the commitment which the Taoiseach made at the UN Millennium Summit in 2000 and they need to urgently set out how they intend to achieve the 0.7% spending on ODA by 2007."ENDS

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