CAFOD urges G8 not to water down promises

 Ahead of G8 meeting today, CAFOD calls on leaders not to water down their promises to poorest in the world: Director Chris Bain, said: "G8 leaders need to keep their promises, most of their promises are off track in their commitments on aid to the developing world. In the midst of a global food crisis and during an economic slow down, the needs of the poor are even greater. This is not the time for G8 leaders to water down their promises to the poorest in the world. In 2005 the G8 promised to increase annual aid provision by $50 billion by 2010; on current trends they will miss their own target by $30 billion "Climate change is a growing threat. Industrialised countries have produced the vast majority of carbon emissions but climate change is already hitting people in the poorest countries hardest. Over the past year we have witnessed the devastating affects of cyclones in Bangladesh and Burma, as the world heats up more extreme weather patterns are predicted." "We want to see G8 leaders make new funding available so developing countries don't have to pick up the bill for adapting to climate change. And G8 countries need to make significant commitments to reduce carbon emissions in their own countries." In 2007, total (OECD) aid amounted to US$103.7bn, 8.4 per cent less than in 2006. Aid from the G8 dropped even more. In 2007, the G8 gave US$69.4bn to poor countries, down by 14.1 per cent from 2006. If the UK is to meet its aid promise, it must increase its aid by half between now and 2010. The G8 Leaders Summit is an annual meeting for the leaders of eight of the richest and most powerful countries. The presidency, and therefore the location, rotates every year and this year the summit is being held in Hokkaido in Japan. This year's summit is chaired by the Prime Minister of Japan Yasuo Fukuda. The G8 countries are: Japan, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, The United Kingdom, The USA.

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