Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

NZ gives only half a tent to earthquake victims

Wednesday 26 October, 2005

Oxfam: New Zealand gives only half a tent to earthquake victims

New Zealand is failing to respond generously to the UN South Asian Earthquake appeal and must pledge more at the donor conference starting today (Wednesday), said international agency Oxfam.

Oxfam has compiled figures showing that New Zealand has given just over a half of its fair share to the emergency appeal, along with many other rich countries that have given much less than they are able, relative to the size of their economies.

As donor governments meet today (Wednesday) in Geneva to discuss the situation, Oxfam's figures show that:

- Despite Kofi Annan's urgent call for more aid last week, the UN appeal remains only 19% funded and if pledges are included (which are often not delivered) this only brings the total to 30%. ($90 million has been pledged out of the $312 million the UN requested).

- New Zealand has so far pledged, but not yet committed, 56% of their fair share.

- Only four countries (Sweden, Luxembourg, Netherlands and Denmark) have so far given more than their fair share to the appeal.
- Governments that have given less than one fifth of their fair share include, Japan (17%), Germany (14%), the US (9%) and Italy (7%).

- Seven rich country governments have so far given nothing at all to the UN appeal; Belgium, France, Austria, Finland, Greece, Portugal and Spain. By contrast much poorer countries such as Poland and Chile have given contributions to the appeal.

While some of these governments may have given resources outside of the UN appeal, Oxfam said that ensuring the UN appeal is met is vital to ensuring the aid effort is successful.

"Governments are once again failing to respond to an emergency appeal. The logistical nightmare in Pakistan is bad enough without having to worry about funding shortfalls as well. Governments meeting in Geneva today must put their hands in their pockets and pay their fair share. The New Zealand public will be disappointed that our government have not met their moral commitments to help those desperately in need," said Oxfam New Zealand’s Executive Director, Barry Coates.

The basic problem with under-funding from New Zealand is that our aid budget is low compared to most OECD countries, and despite the increase in the last budget, still less than half the UN agreed level. Increasing the amount in aid overall means more funds to respond to emergencies such as the South Asia earthquake. Oxfam is calling for this to be one of the priorities of the new government.

According to Oxfam's research, while high profile emergencies are generously funded (i.e. the UN appeal for Iraq in 2003 was over 90% funded and the Tsunami appeal received 80% of funding within 10 days) the low amounts pledged for this emergency are not exceptional:

- In 2004 donor governments provided less than two thirds of what the UN's emergency appeals asked for – leaving a black hole in emergency programs of US$1.3 billion. A similar shortfall existed in 2003.

- Most UN emergency appeals receive less than 30% of required funding in the first month.

- Other current UN appeals such as the one for Malawi remain similarly under funded.
"The slow response to the UN South Asia appeal is depressingly familiar. These delays can cost thousands of people their lives. People who have survived the earthquake will die while they wait for aid. What will it take for the well-off countries, like New Zealand, to learn this obvious lesson?” said Coates.

Oxfam New Zealand has been pleased with the public response to their appeal – but more is needed to meet the desperate need as winter sets in. The public can donate to the appeal now on the website www.oxfam.org.nz or by phone during work hours on toll-free 0800 400 666.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On The Rivals For The Covid Saliva Testing Dollar

If you want a good insight into what the limits of tiny, barely discernible steps to reduce poverty actually look like, delve into the latest Statistics Department figures on poverty in New Zealand Most of the nine measures utilised reveal little or no progress in combatting poverty over the 21 months to March 2020... More>>


 

Government: Reserve Bank To Take Account Of Housing In Decision Making

The Reserve Bank is now required to consider the impact on housing when making monetary and financial policy decisions, Grant Robertson announced today. Changes have been made to the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee’s remit requiring it to take into ... More>>

ALSO:


RNZ: Alert Levels Remain

There are no new community cases of Covid-19 today, the Ministry of Health has confirmed.
Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says at least half of the Papatoetoe High School community have been tested and the results that have come through so far have all been negative... More>>

ALSO:

Stats NZ: Latest Release Of Child Poverty Statistics

All measures of child poverty were trending downwards, prior to the COVID-19 lockdown, across the two years since year ended June 2018, Stats NZ said today. The COVID-19 lockdown in late March 2020 affected Stats NZ’s ability to collect data from households ... More>>

ALSO:


NZ Initiative: New Report Highlights How Our Housing Crisis Could Worsen If We Don’t Act Now

If New Zealand politicians thought the housing crisis in 2020 was bad, the worst is yet to come, warns a new report by The New Zealand Initiative. In The Need to Build: The demographic drivers of housing demand , Research Assistant Leonard Hong ... More>>

Parliament: Kiwi MPs Among The “Most Educated In The World”

New analysis of MP qualifications reveals New Zealand’s Parliament is one of the most educated and highest qualified in the world, and significantly more educated than Australia’s. The research, by Mark Blackham of BlacklandPR and Geoffrey Miller ... More>>

The Dig: An Illogical Ideological Struggle

Dig beneath all the trade wars and the arguments to the effect that the USA should not permit China to achieve economic and technological superiority, or even parity, and you find the real reason behind the conflict... More>>

Travel: Government Eases Visa Restrictions For Visitors In New Zealand

Visitor visa holders will be able to stay in New Zealand a little longer as the Government eases restrictions for those still here, the Minister of Immigration has announced. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels