International development

Lawson comments on EU

Nigel Lawson: David Cameron’s aid policy is doing more harm than good

6 February 2014 12:58

Earlier this week, George Osborne named Lord Lawson as one of the economic thinkers who had influenced him. But the Chancellor’s mentor isn’t quite so impressed with some of his… Continue reading


Shock as Government agrees with Bill Cash

11 December 2013 16:36

Something extraordinary happened on the Committee corridor in Parliament today. A government Secretary of State turned up to a session led by veteran troublemaker Bill Cash to accept a bill… Continue reading


What can the international community do to restore law and order in the Philippines?

12 November 2013 7:52

Britain is to deploy one warship, the Type 45 destroyer HMS Daring, which is currently on station near Singapore, and RAF support aircraft, including one Boeing C17 transporter, to the… Continue reading


Why can’t Justine Greening pretend to enjoy her job?

29 September 2013 16:11

Does Justine Greening enjoy being International Development Secretary? I ask only because while the text of her speech to the Conservative party conference contained a lengthy defence of aid spending,… Continue reading

Nigeria wants to join the space club. (JIJI PRESS/AFP/Getty Images)

To infinity and beyond!

11 August 2013 10:41

Let’s hear it for Nigeria, which has just joined the space race. The country plans to launch a rocket by 2028, although nobody has explained where the rocket will be… Continue reading

Godfrey Bloom MEP in full flow in the European Parliament. (FREDERICK FLORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

Are people really that offended by Godfrey Bloom’s comments?

7 August 2013 14:39

Lots of people are hating on Ukip’s Godfrey Bloom after he featured on the Today programme attacking foreign aid, which he said was used ‘to buy Ray-Ban sunglasses, apartments in… Continue reading

Godfrey Bloom MEP hard at work in the European Parliament. (FREDERICK FLORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

Full transcript: Godfrey Bloom’s ‘Bongo Bongo land’ interview with Jim Naughtie on Today

7 August 2013 8:38

Listen to Godfrey Bloom discuss his comments with Jim Naughtie on the Today programme: listen to ‘Godfrey Bloom discusses ‘bongo bongo land’ remarks on Radio 4 Today’ on Audioboo Godfrey… Continue reading

Image: Getty

Andrew Mitchell, friend of the civil service

10 June 2013 13:17

Tensions between some ministers and the civil service are at boiling point, with vicious briefings taking place on both sides. Seemingly keen to keep the pen-pushers sweet, former Chief Whip… Continue reading

Mexico Obama Canada

The Miracle of Globalisation: Most of the World has Never Had It So Good

30 April 2013 12:03

Could life in Bangladesh be better? Of course it could. Is life in Bangladesh getting better? Of course it is. The horrific death toll after a factory building collapsed in… Continue reading


What’s wrong with foreign aid?

3 January 2013 12:58

Justine Greening is a robust politician and bean counter who reportedly used extremely fruity language when told she was being reshuffled to the International Development Department. Even though the new… Continue reading

Andrew Mitchell gives evidence to the International Development select committee.

Andrew Mitchell: ‘Rogue minister’ claims on Rwanda aid ‘offensive’

8 November 2012 12:58

Andrew Mitchell emerged from his post-resignation exile on the backbenches this morning to defend his decision to sign off on a £16 million aid cheque to Rwanda on his last… Continue reading

Conservative Party Conference - Day 3

The UK pays salaries to terrorists

26 October 2012 12:22

Why are UK taxpayers paying salaries to terrorists? The answer, as I explain in this morning’s Wall Street Journal, is Alan Duncan. The International Development Minister has been told repeatedly… Continue reading

Andrew Mitchell

Justine Greening is a reluctant contestant on Mitchell’s Millions

17 September 2012 10:03

The reshuffle allowed David Cameron to place what many ministers (and sacked ministers in particular) are calling ‘Osborne’s spies’ in each government department to help the Chancellor rein in spending.… Continue reading


Justine Greening may be tighter on international aid

8 September 2012 15:05

Sending an ex-accountant to run the International Development department was always a bit of a risk, given that its remit – to spend as much as it can – inverts… Continue reading

Argentine President Cristina Kirchner de

Stop funding Argentina

8 June 2012 16:15

One of the justifications for Britain’s large, and rapidly growing, international development budget is that it promotes our national interests. Politicians are wary of appealing to a public sceptical of… Continue reading

President Obama Dines In New York City

Do we really need the upcoming G20?

6 June 2012 16:00

We’re all familiar with the eurozone boom-bust news cycle by now. First, there are reports of more European banks in trouble, then news of governments seeking bailouts, closely followed by… Continue reading


Three Cheers for Canada

2 May 2012 12:18

And for Honduras too. Ottawa and Tegucicalpa are considering founding a Charter City in Honduras. As Paul Romer – the NYU professor at the head of the Charter City movement… Continue reading


Fox fires a shot across the aid budget’s bows

27 April 2012 10:40

As Pete says, Liam Fox’s piece this morning calling for more supply-side reform is broadly helpful to the Chancellor and has been written with his approval. Strikingly, the former defence… Continue reading


Storm in an Indian teacup

5 February 2012 14:19

So, does India want the UK’s aid or not? If you believe the Indian finance minister, Pranab Mukherjee, the funds are unnecessary, ‘peanuts’ even. The Daily Telegraph reports that British… Continue reading


Moving on up

31 January 2012 15:35

If Muhammad won’t come to the mountain, the mountain must come to Muhammad. Or so goes a saying popularised by Francis Bacon. It seems Andrew Mitchell, the Development Secretary, has… Continue reading


Debate report: Britain must cut its overseas aid budget now

3 November 2011 15:48

Last night, as we mentioned yesterday and the day before, was The Spectator’s debate on whether Britain should cut its overseas aid budget. Here, for CoffeeHousers who couldn’t attend the… Continue reading


Right to reply: Aid is one of the government’s greatest endeavours

2 November 2011 17:00

Peter Kellner recently explained that the BBC licence fee becomes less popular if you describe it as an annual cost rather than as a daily cost. When people are told… Continue reading


Right to reply: The aid debate we need to have

2 November 2011 11:06

As Fraser pointed out yesterday, the Spectator’s debate on international aid is tonight (all CoffeeHousers welcome, tickets available here). To further set the stage for that debate, here’s a response… Continue reading


International aid in the dock

1 November 2011 11:23

The pledge to almost double Britain’s international aid budget was made in the boom years, when the government actually had money. In the bust, there is something deeply strange —… Continue reading


Should most orphanages be shut down?

13 October 2011 15:00

The Spectator’s deputy editor, Mary Wakefield, recently visited Rwanda to investigate the work a charity called Hope and Homes for Children. Her article on the subject appeared in last week’s… Continue reading