Amid ongoing debate over governance of international development, UK considers scrapping International Development Minister post
According to several UK newspapers, the UK government is considering transferring management of the Department for International Development (DFID) to the UK’s foreign minister and dispensing with the cabinet post of International Development Minister. This differs from an earlier cited plan for a full merger DFID and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), which received considerable backlash.
Removing the International Development Minister post and giving the Foreign Minister dual responsibility for both departments is seen as preferable by many NGOs, as it allows DFID to retain its expert staff. There are, however, concerns that this change would link UK development assistance too closely to foreign policy, and commercial and political objectives could exert greater influence over development funding decisions.
The reforms are expected to be part of a wider shake-up. An official announcement is likely in February, following the scheduled departure of the UK from the European Union (EU) on January 31, 2020.