UN chief urges donor countries to honor pledge to double aid to Africa

By Xinhua,

United Nations : UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in remarks at the high-level meeting on Africa’s development needs on Monday, urged donor countries to implement their 2005 pledge to double their aid to Africa.

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“I appeal to all donors to implement the 2005 Gleneagles summit to more than double aid to Africa,” Ban said, referring to the summit meeting held at the Scottish town of Gleneagles by the Group of Eight — the United States, Japan, Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Canada and Russia.

Ban said he is convinced that through concerted action by African governments and their development partners, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) remain achievable in Africa.

“This is one of my highest priorities as secretary-general,” Ban said.

In a recent report, Ban said Africa remained “off track” in its request to achieve the MDGs and other development targets. He urged African countries and their international partners to turn existing pledges into reality and “vision into policy actions.”

In 2005, the Group of Eight summit meeting agreed to double their aid to Africa by 2010. However, by the following year, overall official development assistance to Africa had risen by only 8 percent and since then, “donors are falling behind.”

Monday’s meeting on Africa’s development came one day before UN General Assembly opens its annual general debate on Tuesday.