Let us use overseas aid budget for Hurricane Irma victims, Britain pleads

Let us use overseas aid budget for Hurricane Irma victims, Britain pleads

But the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris, which decides what officially constitutes foreign aid, says the islands are too rich to qualify. Priti Patel, the global development secretary, has written to the OECD demanding an urgent review.

BY ruling that Britain can not use its overseas aid budget to help victims of Hurricane Irma in the Caribbean, the OECD - the meddlesome Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development - is making it even harder to justify 0.7 per cent of this country's hard-earned GDP being allocated to the world's most needy.

The spokesman said the OECD rules do not "stop Britain dedicating the money needed for the hurricane recovery and reconstruction effort".

And Downing Street today confirmed that if the OECD does not agree to tear up its existing aid criteria then the Government will simply seek to change domestic law so that the budget can be spent as ministers see fit.

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The government has pledged £57 million in assistance for the islands and has drawn on the resources of the Department for... Countries are ranked according to need, which is meant to ensure the poorest countries take priority.

"The manifesto said while Britain is proud to meet the 0.7 per cent target for overseas aid spending, there are still ways we can improve the way taxpayers money is used and to help the world's most vulnerable people".

The Prime Minister's spokesman said: "We began detailed work after the election to change the rules to prevent precisely these kind of scenarios". He rejected claims that the United Kingdom had been slow to react.