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It is not time to back down with aid

Recently, the financing of development assistance has been a current theme in both Sweden and the world. On 13 April, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published statistics showing that Sweden takes the lead in the development assistance phase with 1,14% of GNI for 2020. Thus, Sweden is the largest donor in the world in percentage terms. At the same time, the one percent target is being debated at home by, among others, SD and the Moderates, who want to reduce development assistance. Own domestic problems are weighed against the global goals and the fact that Sweden is one of the world's most well-developed countries, in the question of whether it is reasonable for Sweden to be the world's most generous donor.

Sweden's one percent target has a long tradition and has been included in the budget bill since 1968, with the exception of the period 1993 to 2005. But we also have good development assistance and development assistance that makes a difference. The OECD confirms that Sweden is a skilled, results-oriented and experienced donor. This is something we should be proud of. That Page at times exhibits deficiencies is obviously not something you should shrug your shoulders at. But neither does Sida, but they have proven to be an authority that constantly strives for improvement. To some extent, it is inevitable that problems arise and criticism is directed at an authority which is in a world of icerapid development. This does not change the good results of Swedish development assistance in general.

"Big problems at home" 

The Moderates and the Sweden Democrats want Sweden's aid to be reduced to 0,7 percent. The motivation for this cut is above all that the money is needed in Sweden. The corona pandemic is used as an argument and their message is "reduce aid, we have big problems at home." Of course, Sweden, like most other countries, has challenges to work with, for that purpose the remaining 99 percent is in the budget. In response to the moderates' proposal, Minister for Development Aid Per Olsson Fridh asked on Twitter:

"Is it girls' opportunity for safe abortions, refugee children's right to schooling, farmers' opportunity to survive despite recurring droughts or journalists' protection from violence that smokes then". 

I also want to know that. When did we forget how good we are?

No way to back off 

UN Secretary-General António Guterres During its opening speech by the Financing for Development Forum on 12 April, emphasized the importance of putting in the next gear to continue working on Agenda 2030. The pandemic has caused a major setback for global development, but even before the pandemic broke out, we did not keep the course to achieve the global goals for sustainable development. Aid is more important than ever, not least in the fight against covid-19 and its catastrophic consequences. The pandemic is a perfect example of how intertwined we are in the world. For those who do not support aid from a solidarity perspective, the pandemic should be an eye-opener for how the world's problems can quickly become even their own. 

One of the world's most well - developed countries

Sweden is one of the world's most well - developed countries, regardless of covid-19 or not. According to the UN index for human development, by 2020 we will be the world's seventh most developed country. Even in other measures, such as GDP / population, competitiveness or human happiness, Sweden is always at the top. Thus, it is more than reasonable that Sweden raises the aid bar high compared to the rest of the world. If we who have the best are not the most generous, then who should be?

This is a chronicle. The author is responsible for analysis and opinions in the text.

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