Australia has failed the Global South and it is time to reimagine international aid.
Countries in the Global South are facing the climate crisis, a public health crisis, and an economic crisis. As a wealthy, colonial country, Australia has a responsibility to contribute its fair share of aid, and pay reparations for its role in the climate crisis and the ongoing damage caused by Western imperialism.
But how can international aid be reimagined?
As part of our plan to decolonise international aid, The Greens will:
- Increase Australia’s aid budget to 0.7% of GNI by 2030 and establish an independent development oversight agency
- Provide climate finance and reparations of $4.5 billion from 2022-2025, more than tripling Australia’s current commitment. This will be made up of $3 billion to renew and increase our commitment to the Green Climate Fund, and climate reparations of $1.5 billion over the next three years.
- Cancel debt in the Global South by cancelling future loan repayments from countries who owe debt directly to Australia and advocating for financial institutions and foreign governments to also cancel any outstanding debt payments.
- Place the human rights and self determination of women and girls at the centre of Australian development assistance programs.
Let’s reimagine aid not simply as charity but as an issue of global justice.
Aid should never be a way to further our national ambitions or greedy trade interests. Aid programs should work to right historical wrongs and build communities in parts of the world that have been left destitute. Australia must decolonise international aid and reset its thinking about debt, obligation and global poverty. The ongoing impacts of the legacy of colonialism means aid and reparations are a debt owed, not a favour bestowed.