Documents to download

The UK Government is committed to spending 0.7 percent of the UK’s gross national income (GNI) on overseas aid; the target is written into the International Development (Official Development Assistance Target) Act 2015. The Government uses the definition of overseas aid developed by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, who use the term Overseas Development Assistance (ODA).

In 2016, the UK spent £13.4 billion on ODA. The UK channelled approximately £1.5 billion of ODA through the European Development Fund (EDF) and the development section of the EU budget. This represents approximately 11 percent of all UK ODA.

Following speculation in the wake of the 2016 referendum the Prime Minister, Theresa May, confirmed in April 2017 that the target of 0.7 percent on ODA would remain, but argued that the Government would need to “look at how that money will be spent and make sure that we are able to spend that money in the most effective way”.  The Government will need to decide how to spend approximately £1.5 billion of ODA which is currently channelled through the EU. The implications for the EU, which faces a substantial drop in development resources post-Brexit are also the subject of some debate. Some commentators have suggested the UK could continue to play a role in EU development policy, for example through continued voluntary contributions to the EDF. The UK Government has stated that it would seek “a deep and special partnership with the EU that goes beyond existing third country arrangements” and would seek to collaborate on “a case-by-case basis […] [with aid] subject to UK’s standards on full transparency, accountability, risk and assurance, results and value for money”.


Documents to download

Related posts

  • The next round of UK-EU negotiations is due to start on 28 September 2020. The House of Lords is due to hold a take-note debate on the UK’s approach to negotiating the future relationship with the EU on 23 September 2020. This article gives an overview of the UK’s approach to its future relationship with the EU and the progress of negotiations so far.

  • In May 2019, the House of Lords EU Committee published a report into the future of UK-EU surface transport links. Continuing disagreement between UK and EU negotiators over aspects of the future relationship in transport matters has helped put the brakes on progress in the current negotiations, with talks on the future of road haulage rights in particular reportedly at a standstill.

  • After the Brexit transition period, the UK will no longer participate in the Dublin system, an EU arrangement for dealing with asylum applications. This article looks at the findings of a House of Lords committee report that considered the impact of Brexit on refugee and asylum policy, and sets out what has happened since the report was published in October 2019.