Australian Foreign Minister Delivers Speech Discussing Country’s New Aid Policy, WHO, Multilateral Organizations

Devex: Australia puts WHO, multilaterals under the microscope with new aid policy
“Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne used an address to the Australian National University on June 16 to deliver criticism to the politics of the United Nations and World Health Organization, telling the audience the COVID-19 pandemic had ‘drawn attention to the strengths and the weaknesses of the U.N. system.’… The speech comes shortly after the release of Australia’s new aid policy in May which has transitioned the aid program to focus capacity on responding to COVID-19 in the Pacific, Timor-Leste, and Indonesia. Within Australia, the speech has been seen as cementing the country’s position as a middle power that can have more influence on the global stage. … But questions remain as to how the new aid policy will be operationalized, and whether multilateral institutions that do not meet Australian objectives will face budget cuts in an aid program that is not expected to see a boost from previous forecasts…” (Cornish, 6/18).