This petition was submitted during the 2015–2017 Conservative government

Petition Stop spending a fixed 0.7 per cent slice of our national wealth on Foreign Aid

Despite spending cuts at home the Government is committed to hand over 0.7% of national income in overseas aid, regardless of need. The Mail on Sunday believes voters do not want this and instead, we should provide money only for truly deserving causes, on a case-by-case basis.

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A bill passed in 2015 required the Government to spend a fixed 0.7% of gross national income on foreign aid. UK handouts will rise from current £12bn to £16bn by 2020. This is by far the highest rate of any G20 nation and is leading to huge waste and corruption. We believe this is the wrong approach because it fuels waste by focussing on targets, not outcomes. Foreign aid should provide money for the job, not jobs for the money.

This petition is closed This petition ran for 6 months

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Parliament debated this topic

This topic was debated on 13 June 2016

Government responded

This response was given on 12 April 2016

The UK’s aid commitment means we can be proud to be a country that not only meets its responsibilities to the world’s poorest, but in doing so best serves and protects its own security and interests.

Read the response in full

The UK’s commitments on overseas aid were part of the 2015 manifesto on which the government was elected. The government is keeping its promise to the electorate, tackling global challenges in the national interest.

Britain faces a simple choice: either we wait for the problems of the world to arrive on our doorstep, or we take action to tackle them at source.

UK aid, whether it is helping to prevent deadly diseases like Ebola from coming to the UK from West Africa, or enabling Syrian refugees and other would-be migrants to stay in their home region, is about creating a more stable and secure world.

Over the last five years, UK aid has been life-saving and life-changing for millions of the poorest people around the world. We have supported 11 million children through school. We have helped more than 60 million people get access to clean water, better sanitation and improved hygiene conditions. We are leading the global effort to save millions of girls from child marriage and Female Genital Mutilation.

UK aid is spent where it is most needed and is subject to rigorous internal and external checks and scrutiny at all stages. The UK’s aid programmes are scrutinised by the Independent Commission for Aid Impact, the International Development Select Committee and Public Accounts Committee in Parliament, and the National Audit Office. This is in addition to internal monitoring and evaluation to ensure projects stay on track and deliver value for taxpayers’ money.

The government has realigned the UK’s aid strategy, cutting wasteful programmes and making sure spending is firmly in the UK’s national interest. Alongside an increased defence budget and the UK’s world class diplomatic service, our aid programme is helping to create a more prosperous and stable world in which the UK can stand tall and flourish.

Britain’s aid strategy recognises that tackling poverty overseas means tackling the root causes of global problems that affect all of us, such as disease, migration, and terrorism. The Department for International Development is the UK’s primary channel for aid, but to respond to the changing world, more aid will be administered by other government departments, such as the Home Office, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Department of Health, and Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, drawing on their complementary skills.

The government will invest more through its aid programme to tackle the causes of instability, insecurity and conflict, and to tackle crime and corruption. DFID is already working with the Metropolitan Police, National Crime Agency, and HMRC to recover funds stolen from developing countries, and help countries build proper tax systems and robust institutions so they can stand on their own two feet.

This is an approach that works; as well as delivering humanitarian aid to crisis zones and targeting the root causes of the migration crisis, it is increasing economic prospects in fragile states to help counter extremism, and helping build our future trading partners.

You can the read the full UK aid strategy here:

Department for International Development

MPs want to hear your views about UK foreign aid spending

MPs want to hear your views about UK aid spending before they debate this petition in Parliament.

On Monday 13 June Steve Double MP and Stephen Twigg MP will be on Twitter to ask the public what they think about UK aid spending.

Join the debate from 12 to 1pm on Twitter using the hashtag #UKAidDebate

More about the MPs involved:

Steve Double MP is a member of a cross-party group of MPs called the Petitions Committee. The Petitions Committee scheduled the debate. Mr Double is leading the debate in Parliament which means he will start it.

You can find out more about Steve Double MP on the Parliament website:

You can find out more about the Petitions Committee on its website:

Stephen Twigg MP is the Chair of a cross-party group of MPs called the International Development Committee.

You can find out more about Stephen Twigg MP on the Parliament website:

The International Development Committee looks at and questions how the Government Department for International Development:

  • is run
  • spends money
  • decides on its policies

You can find out more about the International Development Committee on its website:

The Petitions Committee and International Development Committees are independent from Government. They are "Select Committees". Find out how Select Committees work:

More about the Parliamentary debate:

On Monday 13 June you will be able to watch the petition debate live from 4.30pm on Parliament TV: