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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 21918

Increase in Overseas Aid

Photo of Howard, John

Howard, John

Period of Service: 11/03/1996 to 03/12/2007

More information about Howard, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 13/09/2005

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 21918

Australia's goal is to increase its overseas aid allocation to about A$4 billion a year by 2010. Such an increase would represent a doubling of Australia's overseas aid from 2004 levels.

The aid programme will continue to be the subject of annual review, taking into account the effectiveness of the application of additional resources.

The increase in aid will be conditional on strengthened governance and reduced corruption in recipient countries.

From 2000-01 to 2005-06, the Australian Government has provided close to A$12 billion in overseas development assistance (ODA). Australia has recorded a real increase in ODA over this period of more than 30 per cent.

This new decision reflects the Australian Government's commitment to continuing to meet its share of the aid burden, subject to the continued effective application of resources and the performance of partner governments and institutions.

Australia's aid programme will continue to have a particular focus on the Asia-Pacific region - home to two thirds of the world's poor.

Australia has a long and proud record of assisting developing countries, not only through aid, but importantly, through trade and investment liberalisation and through a proactive approach to security. Australia's commitment is also reflected in the spirit of generosity of the Australian people, especially those in dire need. This was displayed earlier this year in response to the tsunami tragedy.

Ultimately, more than aid, it is through genuine free and open multilateral trade and investment that developing countries will be able to attain sustained economic growth and self-sufficiency.

With aid comes the reciprocal responsibility of working to strengthen governance and promote institutional reform. There is also a need to continue addressing corruption to ensure the effective delivery of aid. These will remain key objectives of Australia's aid programme.

A White Paper on aid is currently being prepared and decisions about further aid allocation will need to take close account of the White Paper's conclusions about the effectiveness of Australia's aid programme and needs and priorities for the period ahead.

Transcript 21918