DFID white paper consultation launched

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DFID has launched the consultation process for their new white paper on international development. They have partnered with The Guardian as their media partner for the process, who report that later tonight UK international development secretary, Hilary Benn, will criticize the Make Poverty History campaign for its anti-business stance:

The Make Poverty History and other campaigns last year focused on more and better aid, debt relief and international obstacles to trade - on education, on HIV/Aids - all critical and where we have made considerable progress. But many of these campaigns say little explicitly about the creation of more and better jobs for poor people. There is little real debate about growth...

Among some there is even hostility to the idea of international integration into the global economy. Some argue that globalisation is a race to the bottom. Among others, there is a mistrust of the private sector. This is not in the interests of poor people...

Ask poor people where the best prospect for escaping poverty lies - they'll tell you it is through self-employment or business - a good job. Making poverty history will not be possible without more and better jobs in poor countries. And by ignoring job creation and growth, poor countries will be relying on aid indefinitely. And that's in no one's interest.

Of course, at the same time others are asking that this new white paper question the governments support for privatization in developing countries. Others will also certainly question Benn's strategy of criticizing the Make Poverty History campaign.

Future DFID-Guardian collaboration will be here.

Update: Full text of Benn's speech.

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