World Vision responds to G8 commitments
to the poor
Commitments must be fulfilled to save lives
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 10, 2008
—At the close of this year’s Group of Eight summit in Japan, World Vision commends the G8 leaders for retaining their 2005 financial commitments to fight global poverty. However, more still needs to be done to ensure the Millennium Development Goals are met by 2015.
Of special note was the U.S. government’s push for a timetable from each country detailing their increase in African aid in the next five years in order to meet the $60 billion goal. Although the extended five-year deadline delays the accrual of aid for Africa until 2012, this renewed commitment indicates concerted progress in the fight against global poverty.
“Although the reaffirmation of these promises is certainly a step in the right direction, it is disappointing that earlier drafts of the communiqué even considered backtracking on the 2005 commitments,” said Robert Zachritz, director of advocacy and government relations for World Vision in the U.S. “It is commendable that the U.S. government and other G8 leaders pushed to establish a timetable to monitor commitments over the next five years, yet it remains a tragedy that these commitments are still not enough to meet the MDGs by 2015.”
In its policy paper released earlier this year, World Vision called on G8 governments and other donor countries to publish a detailed timetable, with annual targets, that provides increases in aid toward their promised 2010 aid levels.
World Vision also commends the G8 leaders for a cooperative pledge to train new health care workers and battle malaria by providing Africa with 100 million long-lasting insecticide-treated bed nets by 2010.
The G8 addressed the escalating global food crisis as well. World Vision welcomes the $10 billion pledged by G8 nations since January 2008 to combat the food crisis. While the promise to provide emergency food shipments is praiseworthy, more must be done to tackle the food crisis on a long-term scale, such as creating sustainable agricultural development, increasing access to fertilizers and seed for poor farmers, and improving water management and irrigation.
“While the renewed focus on accountability is a positive outcome from the summit, World Vision calls for the transformation of these promises into concrete realities,” declared Zachritz. “Now, G8 leaders must follow through and increase their commitments to ensure that preventable childhood deaths are either drastically reduced or eliminated.”
For copies of the paper and letter, and to schedule a media interview with an expert from World Vision, contact Cynthia Colin at firstname.lastname@example.org