Whoever wins the 2017 UK general election will be in power until 2022 – halfway to the 2030 deadline for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Therefore the commitments made in the party manifestos really matter for the future of UK – and global – aid policy. So what do the manifestos say about the SDGs?
“British aid helps millions and is a powerful statement of Global Britain’s place in the world. It protects our interests: by building a safer, healthier, more prosperous world, we can protect our own people from disease, conflict and instability. This is the right ambition for a country with a global outlook, so we will maintain the commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of our gross national income on assistance to developing nations and international emergencies. We will continue to use our aid budget in alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals, to end extreme poverty, save children’s lives, and provide an education for girls. We will work to end the subjugation and mutilation of women, to combat the brutal slave trade in fellow human beings and to prevent catastrophic environmental degradation. And we will continue to lead global efforts to tackle sexual violence in conflict.”
“We fully support the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed globally to eradicate poverty and protect the environment. Labour will develop a cross-government strategy for ensuring the SDGs are implemented, and report annually to Parliament on our performance. In the wake of Brexit, to fulfil our national obligations under the SDGs, Labour will guarantee the least developed countries continued access to the UK market to protect vital export revenues.”
Liberal Democrat Manifesto
“Liberal Democrats have always been – and remain – strongly committed to ensuring justice and equity for poor people around the world. We believe that the UK must continue to play a leading role in ending poverty and promoting environmentally sustainable development, through implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”