Thursday, September 15, 2011

Real Aid Does The Magic!

This piece of information is for those who are skeptical about foreign aid. According to the recent report by international NGO ActionAid, some of the world’s poorest countries, including Ghana and Mozambique, have become less dependent on foreign aid in the past 10 years. The report that measures how dependent developing countries are on outside assistance comments that providing more “real aid” that “has few strings attached” puts developing countries “in the driving seat of their own development.” The organization explains that “to qualify as real aid, the aid must be targeted at the poorest and the recipient country must be given the space to own and lead its own development plans. Real aid is not tied, is administered efficiently and is used in the recipient country.” The NGO also praises the United Kingdom, Denmark and Ireland for their focus on real aid.

There has been growing recognition among donors and other members of the international community for the need to change how aid is provided to some of the world’s poorest countries. The report also shows that the donors are focusing more on value for money now and getting positive results which are contributing to a reduction in developing countries’ aid dependency. But still there are some countries who have not adopted the real aid approach yet, such as, Germany and France. U.K. on the other hand has redesigned their aid structure in order to get better results. ActionAid’s head of economic and social development, Anna Thomas said, “Our research shows that more developing countries are becoming less dependent on aid and are able to rely increasingly on their own resources to deliver essential services. These results show we’re moving in the right direction — and means that good quality aid — real aid — is working.”

We all hope that real aid continues to work, and donor nations shift their focus more on real aid and less on substandard aid.

-Nisha Noor