“With the Millennium Development Goals slated to reach their end point next year, I think 2014 is going to be a landmark year of sorts, in that we’re likely to see a new chapter being written in the discussion about overseas development aid,” explains Paul Dillon, senior associate at Baird’s CMC and a veteran in the fields of communications and development.
A number of countries will be meeting in April 2014 in Mexico, in order to discuss new commitments to improving the quality of aid and bring to life the post-2015 aid framework. “The global debate about what’s next after the MDGs conclude is already under way,” points out Paul. “The EU, for instance, which constitutes the world’s most generousaid donor, has been very proactive about taking initiatives to be prepared for this time. They are already engaged in a robust discussion about what the international community should be looking at over the next few years.”
In 2014, the European Commission presented a Communication titled “A Decent Life for All: Ending poverty and giving the world a sustainable future”, which called for merging the fight against poverty and environmental protection into a single framework for the future. The common approach covers the EU’s involvement in ongoing international processes related to the MDG review and follow-up to Rio +20.
“The Communication suggests there should be five key elements underlying future aid plans,” says Paul. “These would be essential to ensuring that the objectives they are including in their concept of a ‘decent life for all’ are met by 2030. The five priorities are basic living standards, including education, health and social protection; drivers for sustainable and inclusive growth; sustainable management of natural resources; equality, equity and justice, including human rights, democracy and other aspects of good governance; and peace and security. It seems that these will be the pillars that will set the agenda for the post-MDG approach.”
The coming year will witness the ground being laid for a future aid framework and the European Commission’s general principles being translated into more specific goals as the international discussion proceeds. Watch this space for updates!