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Developing Countries Spending Less Than Promised On Attaining MDGs, Report Says

“Countries are barely funding social protection, gender equality and climate change programs, crucial for meeting sustainable development goals after 2015, a report by Oxfam and Development Finance International (DFI) said on Thursday,” The Guardian reports. “Putting Progress at Risk, the first report to track what developing countries are spending on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), found most are spending much less than they promised, or has been estimated is needed by international organizations, on all the targets,” the newspaper writes, adding, “No spending target is on track: only one-third of developing countries are meeting promised or needed levels for health, one-quarter for education, and one-fifth for agriculture and water, sanitation and hygiene.”

“Although many had managed to increase spending in these areas, and in others such as education, this was funded by a large increase in borrowing,” The Guardian continues, noting, “Fears about rising debt, combined with recent aid cuts mean governments are now cutting back.” The newspaper writes, “Looking beyond 2015, the report noted that social protection, gender equality and climate change will be crucial areas if inequality is to be tackled,” adding, “U.N. experts last year mooted the idea of a $20 billion global fund to promote the creation of social safety nets for the most vulnerable people in poor countries.” In addition, “[t]he report suggested that developing countries needed to make data on MDG spending more accessible to their citizens, while donors were urged to report and repatriate illicit outflows, end laws and investment treaties that reduced poor countries’ revenue, increase innovative financing such as financial transaction and carbon taxes, and put more aid through developing country budgets” (Tran, 5/15).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.