Micah Australia lobby ALP Conference for aid commitment
Alongside Labor for Aid and APHEDA (Union Aid abroad), Micah held two key events at the ALP National Conference. These included a panel exploring the topic, ‘Australian Aid for a Safer World for All’ and a drinks event, ‘Friends of Aid and Development with Minister Pay Conroy.’
The events had over 220 guests, including Members of Parliament, conference delegates, fringe delegates, and union leaders.
According to organisers, Micah also took part in negotiations to ensure the ALP’s Platform retained and built on its commitment to direct 0.5 percent of GNI to Australian aid.
On 18 August, delegates to the conference passed a motion that calls on the Albanese Government to commit to a pathway to 0.5 percent of GNI going to the foreign aid budget.
“Labor will increase aid as a percentage of Gross National income every year that we are in office starting with our first budget,” the motion said.
The Australian Council For International Development (ACFID) is the peak body for the aid sector. The organisation welcomed the motion.
ACFID has called on the Government to formulate its plan, setting out increases over the forward estimates.
Marc Purcell is ACFID’s CEO.
“Australian aid is a vital tool for building better relationships with friends in the region and further afield, and not just talking about it,” he said.
“We want to see the Labor Government build on its new development policy by providing a clear plan for increasing the budget over time.”
“Currently we’re at the bottom of the league ladder. We know that the Government can and wants to do better. We now need to see their plan in getting there.”
In the October 2022 Budget, the Government announced an increase of $1.4 billion over four years, which brought the overall annual amount to $4.67 billion per year, or 0.19 percent of Australia’s GNI.
Australia currently sits at 27th of 30 OECD countries that are listed as aid donors (Development Assistance Committee members, or DAC), despite being the 10th richest country in the world.
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals call on developed nations to achieve ODA contributions of 0.7 percent of GNI, and to work to eliminate extreme poverty by 2030.