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G8 outcomes

A list of the Gleneagles documents is available at the link.

The question is what the Gleneagles event achieved apart from encouraging the reformation of Pink Floyd.

On Debt the HIPC (see earlier) agreement continues. This was the agreement come to on 11th June. It basically means that the countries which cannot pay the debt won't have to as long as they behave.

There is an interesting report on the global economy and oil. This basically says we need more oil and countries with oil should allow other countries to invest to find and produce the oil. I presume they are assuming the USGS report on oil availability is valid. I have studied the assumptions in USGS. They basically assume that lots of new oil will be found. (new discoveries and reserve growth)

The Africa Report recognises some of the issues of governance in Africa, but does not fully take on board the Justice and Equity agenda. Item 18 (g) is interesting it says:
Working with African countries to scale up action against malaria to reach
85% of the vulnerable populations with the key interventions that will save
600,000 children’s lives a year by 2015 and reduce the drag on African
economies from this preventable and treatable disease. By contributing to
the additional $1.5bn a year needed annually to help ensure access to antimalaria
insecticide-treated mosquito nets, adequate and sustainable supplies
of Combination Therapies including Artemisin, presumptive treatment for
pregnant women and babies, household residual spraying and the capacity
in African health services to effectively use them, we can reduce the burden
of malaria as a major killer of children in sub-Saharan Africa.

This is a typically blairite type of statement. They will pay something towards the additional $1.5bn, not actually pay $1.5bn. The precision of the targets makes readers feel a real commitment. Indeed Malaria is a good thing to aim to handle.
However, as usual the spin exaggerates the commitment.

Annex II includes the details on aid. Remember that aid includes debt relief:

Financing commitments (as submitted by individual G8 members)
• The EU has pledged to reach 0.7 per cent ODA/GNI by 2015 with a new interim
collective target of 0.56 per cent ODA/GNI by 2010. The EU will nearly double its
ODA between 2004 and 2010 from € 34.5 billion to € 67 billion. At least 50% of this
increase should go to sub-Saharan Africa.
• Germany (supported by innovative instruments) has undertaken to reach 0.51 per cent
ODA/GNI in 2010 and 0.7 per cent ODA/GNI in 2015.
• Italy has undertaken to reach 0.51 per cent ODA/GNI in 2010 and 0.7% ODA/GNI in
• France has announced a timetable to reach 0.5 per cent ODA/GNI in 2007, of which
2/3 for Africa, – representing at least a doubling of ODA since 2000 - and 0.7 per
cent ODA/GNI in 2012.
• The UK has announced a timetable to reach 0.7 per cent ODA/GNI by 2013 and will
double its bilateral spending in Africa between 2003/04 and 2007/08.
• A group of the countries above firmly believe that innovative financing mechanisms
can help deliver and bring forward the financing needed to achieve the Millennium
Development Goals. They will continue to consider the International Financing
Facility (IFF), a pilot IFF for Immunisation and a solidarity contribution on plane
tickets to finance development projects, in particular in the health sector, and to
finance the IFF. A working group will consider the implementation of these
• The US proposes to double aid to Sub-Saharan Africa between 2004 and 2010. It has
launched the Millennium Challenge Account, with the aim of providing up to $5
billion a year, the $15 billion Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, an initiative to
address Humanitarian Emergencies in Africa of more than $2 billion in 2005, and a
new $1.2 billion malaria initiative. The US will continue to work to prevent and
mitigate conflict, including through the 5-year, $660 million Global Peace Operations
• Japan intends to increase its ODA volume by $10 billion in aggregate over the next
five years. Japan has committed to double its ODA to Africa over the next three
years and launched the $5 billion ‘Health and Development Initiative’ over the next
five years. For the “Enhanced Private Sector Assistance (EPSA) for Africa” facility,
Japan will provide more than $1 billion over 5 years in partnership with the AfDB.
• Canada will double its international assistance from 2001 to 2010, with assistance to Africa doubling from 2003/4 to 2008/9. As well, the 2005 Budget provided an
additional C$342 million to fight diseases that mainly afflict Africa. The C$200
million Canada Investment Fund for Africa, will provide public-private risk capital
for private investments and Canada will provide C$190 million to support the AU’s
efforts in Darfur, as well as C$90 million for humanitarian needs.
• Russia has cancelled and committed to cancel $11.3 billion worth of debts owed by
African countries, including $2.2 billion of debt relief to the HIPC Initiative. On top of this, Russia is considering writing off the entire stock of HIPC countries’ debts on non-ODA loans. This will add $750m to those countries debt relief.

Although this should not be ridiculed, it does show the spin that is being used to argue the case that the summit has achieved something. The Africa Commission called for an extra $25bn. Noone is, of course, providing figures that allow anyone to calculate how this will actually be achieved.

The press release in April on debt relief says:
Building on the way forward on development we agreed in London, we made progress in preparation for the Gleneagles Summit, including on a case-by-case analysis of HIPC countries, based on our willingness to provide as much as 100% reduction of HIPC countries’ IDA and African Fund debt without reducing the resources available to the poorest countries through these institutions.
So no actual change there then.

The statements on climate change are also nothing to write home about.


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