The UK imposed a “devastating” cut of around 85% in aid to a family planning program in the world’s poorest countries – money that could have helped prevent 250,000 maternal deaths and infantile, Sky News can reveal.
Britain is the biggest donor to the initiative, run by the United Nations Agency for Sexual and Reproductive Health (UNFPA), which also seeks to reduce unwanted pregnancies and unsafe abortions.
But an initial commitment to spend £ 155million this year – cash that was expected and spending plans – has now been reduced to just £ 23million, according to UNFPA.
It is estimated that around £ 130 million – the amount that is being reduced – for UNFPA’s procurement program would have helped prevent around 250,000 maternal and infant deaths, 14.6 million unintended pregnancies and 4.3 million unsafe abortions, UNFPA told Sky News.
The program provides essential supplies such as condoms and other forms of contraception, as well as medicines for maternal health.
“It will have a devastating impact on women, girls and their families around the world,” the agency said.
UNFPA – which stands for United Nations Population Fund – is the latest organization to reveal the impact of a decision taken last November by Boris Johnson’s government to reduce the UK’s spending target on aid to abroad to 0.5% of national income against 0.7% – in violation of a clear commitment.
This reduction translates into a loss of over £ 4 billion in UK aid spending on programs around the world.
Mr Johnson reported that his hand was forced due to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the UK economy.
But the move sparked an outcry from lawmakers, peers and aid organizations, with experts noting that other world powers are increasing spending on aid to the poorest because their needs are increasing given the global health crisis. .
On Tuesday it emerged that almost all UK funding will be cut for life-saving water projects in developing countries and …
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This notice was published: 2021-04-28 20:48:00