SENATOR THE HON PENNY WONG

LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION IN THE SENATE

SHADOW MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS

LABOR SENATOR FOR SOUTH AUSTRALIA

SENATOR CLAIRE MOORE

SHADOW MINISTER FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND THE PACIFIC

SENATOR FOR QUEENSLAND

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

13 February 2018

LABOR TO REBUILD AUSTRALIA’S INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

A Shorten Labor Government will rebuild Australia’s international development assistance program and increase aid investment beyond current levels.

The Abbott and Turnbull Governments have abandoned Australia’s bipartisan commitment to aid funding and slashed well over $11 billion from our International Development Assistance Budget.

At the same time as it committed to a $65 billion tax cut to big business, the 2016-17 Budget delivered the weakest levels of Australian development assistance in history, spending just 22 cents in every $100 of our national income on foreign aid.

These cuts are a source of international embarrassment for Australia, and are at odds with the generous spirit of the Australian people.

Australia has a deep interest in contributing to global poverty alleviation, and our international development program supports security and stability in our region.

Labor has repeatedly urged the Turnbull Government to return to a properly bipartisan approach to international development assistance.

Labor will, to the fullest extent that financial circumstances allow, rebuild and grow the Australian aid program in a timely manner.

A Shorten Labor Government will contribute more to international development assistance than the current Government. And we will ensure more of it gets to the people who it is meant to be assisting.