What do you think is the better deal: three meals out with cockroaches scurrying round your feet and burnt food on the menu, or one meal out with a pool-side view, Michelin starred food, and great company? The second, of course, because I would imagine that you would not be fooled into thinking that quantity superseded quality. Yet this perspective has been lost in the recent foreign aid discussions. The omission of the core evaluation question we need to ask about with the donation of money has misled many people into focusing on the arbitrary figure over the more important questions.
Last week, the Prime Minister set out the case for temporarily reducing the UK international aid budget from 0.7 per cent of gross national income to 0.5 per cent – a roughly £4.4 billion reduction due to the colossal domestic deficit resulting from the over £400 billion Covid-19 spending. It was voted in.