UK to host its first Global Disability Summit in London in July 2018

In her first speech since becoming UK Secretary of State for International Development, Penny Mordaunt announced that the UK will host a Global Disability Summit in London in 2018. The summit aims to gather global leaders, companies, and civil society around the issue and commit to giving people with disabilities full access to opportunities in order to realize their full potential. Additional information is expected to be released in the coming months.

Mordaunt highlighted disability inclusion as a key priority for her time in office.

Press release - Government of the UK

United Kingdom

BOND publishes insights on UK public's discontent towards development cooperation

NGO umbrella group BOND has published insights on the UK public's - specifically, readers of the 'Daily Mail' - questions about development cooperation. The survey found that there is a public perception that 'nothing is changing'. The key questions that the UK public most asked were around CEO salaries, accountability, and traceability of their donations, as well as what tangible difference is being made. The study recommends that charitable organizations reframe their communications strategy in order to emphasize shared values.  

News article - BOND

United Kingdom

UK Secretary of State warns that funding for Rohingya crisis will "run out" in 100 days

UK Secretary of State Penny Mordaunt has pledged an additional £12 million (US$18 million) to support the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. During a visit to Cox’s Bazaar, where 620,000 Rohingyan men, women, and children have sought refuge from violence in neighboring Myanmar, she warned that funding for the crisis would run out in 100 days unless further support was pledged. The UK has given a total of £59 million (US$90 million) to the crisis since August 2017.

Mordaunt also announced a separate £12-million (US$18 million) package of UK assistance to support the needs of women and girls in multiple countries, from which Bangladesh could stand to benefit.

Press release - Government of the UK

United Kingdom

New UK Parliament Committee report calls for GPE support

The UK parliament’s International Development Committee (IDC) has issued a new report that calls for the need for a higher share of UK’s development aid budget to focus on education. Among other things, the IDC'S report also recommends that DFID should “agree to the full financial contribution requested” by the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) for the funding period 2018-2020.

This report comes at a crucial time with the recent change in DFID leadership and a July announcement from DFID to undertake an education policy refresh.

Press Release - IDC

United Kingdom

UK publishes 2016 report on ODA spending

The UK’s  Office for National Statistics and the Department for International Development (DFID) published their 2016 annual statistical report on ODA spending. The report includes:

  • Total 2016 UK spending on international development;
  • Trends in spending from 2012 to 2016;
  • Data disaggregated by recipient country or organization, type of assistance, and purpose; 
  • Comparisons with ODA spending of other countries. 

Publication - Government of the UK

United Kingdom

New UK development secretary makes first public statement on importance of development cooperation

Writing in the Daily Telegraph Newspaper, the UK's new Secretary of State for International Development, Penny Mordaunt, stated that she “believes in aid” and promised to remind the British public of its value and effectiveness. Members of the development community have responded with "cautious optimism", with insiders saying that her pro-development stance comes as a breath of fresh air for the Department for International Development (DFID), which has been under attack in recent months by right-wing politicians and some media outlets. 

Mordaunt replaces Priti Patel, who was forced to resign in November 2017 following revelations regarding unauthorized meetings she held with Israeli officials while on holiday. 

Blog - DFID

News article -  Devex

United Kingdom

Conservative MP Penny Mordaunt replaces Priti Patel as UK’s international development secretary

Following the sudden resignation of Priti Patel, Prime Minister Theresa May has appointed Penny Mordaunt as Secretary of State for International Development. Mordaunt formerly served as director of strategy, policy, and partnerships at Diabetes UK and has worked at the Community Fund and the Big Lottery Fund. As an MP, she was most recently Minister of State for Disabled People, Health and Work in the Department of Work and Pensions. She also voted in favor of the UK’s continued commitment to meeting the target of spending 0.7% of gross national income on international development.

Patel was forced to resign following revelations about unauthorized meetings she held with senior officials in Israel while on holiday.

Press release - Government of the UK

United Kingdom

UK development secretary Patel resigns

UK Secretary of State for International Development, Priti Patel, has resigned following revelations that she took undisclosed meetings with Israeli officials while on personal holiday. The BBC first revealed last week that Patel, a conservative MP, in effect conducted government business in secret during her August 2017 trip. After this trip, she suggested some of  UK development assistance should go to the Israeli military and to support humanitarian operations led by Israel in Golan Heights. It was later revealed by media that Secretary Patel took further undisclosed meetings with Israeli officials in September 2017. She apologized, but was still called back from an official trip to Africa and announced her resignation shortly thereafter.

News report - BBC 

United Kingdom

UK withdraws proposal for ODA rule change at OECD

During an Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) High Level Meeting, the UK was forced to withdraw its proposal for a three-year waiver to allow countries hit by natural disaster to qualify for ODA regardless of economic status. While consensus for the proposal was lacking, OECD members did discuss ways for countries to be reclassified or de-graduated following crises, which would allow for previous recipients of ODA to receive assistance again. The UK’s Department for International Development has considered this a step forward under British leadership.

News report – Devex

Press release – UK government

Global United Kingdom

UK parliament launches inquiry into ODA definition

The UK’s parliamentary International Development Committee (IDC) is questioning whether the UK government is right to pursue changes to the definition of OSA. The inquiry was launched the day after the OECD’s High Level Meeting in Paris, where members of the Development Assistance Committee agreed to various changes to how ODA is counted.

The IDC, which monitors the policy, administration, and spending of the Department for International Development (DFID), requests written submission from interested parties by December 15, 2017. Members of parliament are particularly interested in opinions regarding the UK’s proposed changes to ODA rules and how effective the administration of UK assistance is by departments other than DFID, as well as through cross-government funds.

Press release – IDC  

United Kingdom