22 May 2010

Oxfam says NZ should give more aid to poorer countries

9:41 pm on 22 May 2010

The aid agency, Oxfam, says the Government should aim to double the amount of aid set aside to help poorer countries.

The organisation's executive director, Barry Coates, has welcomed an increase in overseas development aid in the Budget, from $500 million to $525m.

But he says New Zealand needs to increase funding rapidly if it wants to help meet a United Nations target for reducing world poverty in five years' time.

Mr Coates says the current and previous governments have not allocated enough money, and New Zealand is not as generous as most people think in terms of overseas aid.

He says New Zealand's level of overseas development aid is just over 0.3% percent of gross national income, while the United Nations target is 0.7%.