What should the new government’s top 3 priorities be for the Australian aid program?

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In Australia, aid programs are traditionally reinvented every time there is a changing of the guard. And over the weekend, Australians flocked to the polls to do just that: return the conservatives to power for the first time in six years.

Matthew Maury, national director of TEAR Australia, cautions the new government against following “the historic practice” of revamping the country’s aid program. Maury, and most of the other CEOs and directors of Australian aid groups that Devex reached out to, agree the new government should instead keep the bipartisan commitment to increase the country’s aid budget to 0.5 percent of gross national income, and eventually boost this further to 0.7 percent of GNI.

World Vision Australia CEO Tim Costello and Oxfam Australia Chief Executive Helen Szoke, meanwhile, called on the incoming Coalition government to stop diverting “aid funds to asylum seeker costs.”

Apart from Maury, Costello and Szoke, Devex sought the opinions of Plan Australia CEO Ian Wishart, Micah Challenge National Coordinator John Beckett, UNICEF Australia CEO Norman Gillespie, Australian Council for International Development Executive Director Marc Purcell and Oaktree Foundation CEO Viv Benjamin.

Check out their wish list for Prime Minister-elect Tony Abbott and his incoming Coalition government in this slideshow.

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About the author

  • Lorenzo Piccio

    Lorenzo is a former contributing analyst for Devex. Previously Devex's senior analyst for development finance in Manila.

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