The policies of austerity are still negatively impacting upon hard pressed Jersey families in the financial decisions they are able to make, the quality and quantity of services they are able to access and the futures they can look forward to.
Despite which, we believe that it is right to increase Jersey’s Overseas Aid budget (currently around £9.701 million) to assist with the additional challenges presented by the current Syrian crisis. We also believe that when this crisis is over, levels should fall to a more sustainable £6 million per annum.
We believe that the work carried out and the leadership shown by Deputy Carolyn Labey has been truly outstanding. She and her staff should be commended for every one of their remarkable achievements. We support wholeheartedly the work she and her staff are doing in for example the Zaatari Refugee Camp.
We believe that future focus should be on encouraging trade and economic development, providing expert advice and assistance in business development and entrepreneurship, and offering access to Jersey’s markets, something we are free to do from outside of the EU.
Africa has received over US$ 500 billion in Aid over the last 50 years and yet despite these huge inflows, the continent remains mired in poverty, disease, and systemic corruption. Aid may make Western politicians feel good about themselves but according to the Zambian economist Dambisa Moyo, in her book Dead Aid, that Western assistance has also given rise to a dependency culture in developing countries, “encouraged corruption and ultimately perpetuated poor governance and poverty”.
We believe that all project expenditure must have clear, definable outcomes and future spending priorities should focus on; emergency relief, healthcare, inoculation against preventable diseases as well as clean water and sanitation programmes.
Furthermore, we believe Jersey should make a firm commitment that that application of Aid should target first and foremost those people around the world being subjected to genocide in particular those in the Darfur region of South Sudan and the Yazidi people.