The future of aid after DfID: Shocking development projects supported by the UK
With the government having recently announced plans to abolish the Department for International Development (DfID) and give control of UK aid policy to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), many are wondering how the change is likely to affect the type of projects that receive development funds in the future.
Fortunately we already have some idea of what this will look like by analysing investments made by CDC Group, the UK’s development bank. While the total aid budget is set to fall next year due to the fall in GNI during the Covid-19 pandemic, CDC is set to receive more funds from governemnt and, as a result, will grow as a proportion of UK aid.
It is therefore crucial that we understand the problems with how CDC invests and are able to hold it to account. In this briefing, we have summarise some of the most shocking examples of how CDC has invested in recent years including:
- Investments in private schools and hospitals
- Money given to corporate hotels and retail chains
- Investments in fossil fuel infrastructure in the global south
For more on CDC, see our report Doing More Harm Than Good.
Unless we act now, this corporate takeover of aid will continue unabetted. Although the DfID merger now looks almost certain to go ahead this September, we continue to call for strong aid scrutiny, reforms to how CDC invests, and a new, progressive vision of development for the 21st century.
Sign our petition: Tell Boris Johnson to stop hijacking the aid budget