Press release

PM calls on world leaders for more aid spending and more accountability

David Cameron is calling for governments to be held to account for the implementation of the Global Goals at a United Nations summit today.

Global goals graphic

The Prime Minister will call on fellow world leaders to meet their promises on aid spending and for governments to be held to account for the implementation of the Global Goals at a UN summit later today (27 September 2015).

Addressing the closing day of a 3-day UN summit to adopt the Goals, which aim to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change in the next 15 years, the PM is expected to say:

Achieving these Goals will take action, not words. I’m proud that the UK has met our 0.7% commitment, and I call on others to follow. This is so important for a number of reasons.

When times are darkest – like for the millions of Syrians forced from their homes – aid can offer hope. And we know that well-spent long-term aid works wonders. It’s no coincidence that malaria deaths in Africa have fallen dramatically in recent years - it’s a direct result, in part, of our investment.

But honouring our aid commitments isn’t just the right thing to do. It’s in all our interests to address the deepest causes of instability and insecurity in the world today.

So today I say to my fellow world leaders from developed countries: We’ve been making promises on aid for years. Now, let us deliver on those promises. The world is watching.

Let’s be candid. Eradicating extreme poverty isn’t just something that developed country governments can do. There’s a deep responsibility on the leaders of all countries.

The Prime Minister has led the way in the establishment of these Goals – chairing the UN High Level Panel alongside President Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia and former President of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, which helped to draw them together and ensure a focus on the actions that will really make a difference.

The Prime Minister now intends to turn his attention to the delivery of the goals, making sure that governments around the world deliver concrete progress for everyone. In this context, before attending the summit at the UN Headquarters, the Prime Minister will bring together other world leaders, NGOs and business representatives for an event focused on the global promise to ‘Leave No One Behind’ as countries take on the work of implementing the successor to the Millennium Development goals.

The Prime Minister will open the event, set out the promise that the world needs to keep to ensure no one is left behind and announce that the UK will join up with other supporting organisations behind Richard Curtis’ Project Everyone to ensure a global moment each year to celebrate the 17 Global Goals and shine a spotlight on performance and progress. With the participation of the UK government, Project Everyone and other organisations such as CIVICUS and Development Initiatives, the Partnership will sustain and build commitment over the next 15 years on leaving no one behind, celebrating success, reviewing progress and giving people that are being left behind a regular chance to have their voices heard. It will promote the sharing of data and evidence at a global level on progress, challenges and how different approaches and interventions help leave no one behind.

The Prime Minister also contributed a video message to the Global Citizen Festival that took place in New York’s Central Park yesterday [Saturday]. The Festival aims to promote the Goals to people around the world as part of Richard Curtis’ Project Everyone which is working to share the global goals with 7 billion people in 7 days.

Watch the Prime Minister’s message to the Global Citizen Festival

The PM decided to record the message during his recent visit to Lebanon so he could highlight just why these goals matter so much. He said:

I’m here in the Beeka Valley in Lebanon, at this refuge camp for people who fled war torn Syria. And the support we give to them and other refugees is absolutely vital. This is the biggest humanitarian crises of our lifetimes, and that’s why these global goals about fighting conflict and poverty are so important.

Now to fight poverty we need lots of things. We need to end corruption. We need to end conflict. We need to make sure the medicines are there. We need to make sure that kids can go to school. But we also need to make sure the money is there – the resources are there.

Britain is the only major country in the world that has kept its promise of spending 0.7% of our national income on aid. And that is absolutely vital. We need other countries to meet that pledge, to meet their promises. Because these were promises we made to the poorest people and the poorest countries in the world.

Britain has kept our promises and I want other countries to do the same. If Britain can do it, others can too.

Published 27 September 2015