THE US AND EU CRASH OUT OF
TRADE TALKS (AGAIN)
In 2005 G8 leaders promised to ‘make trade work for Africa’, but this year, just weeks after instructing their negotiators to reach an agreement within one month, talks have again collapsed with no progress for Africa. The US and EU must now do everything they can to make trade work for the poorest continent, with or without a Doha deal.
DATA ON GERMAN G8
17 July 2006. German G8 must make promises happen Next year in Heiligendamm Chancellor Merkel and the German people have an extraordinary opportunity to build a grand global coalition to fight AIDS and extreme poverty. Read more here.
G8 STALL ON AID PROMISES TO AFRICA
17 July 2006. According to DATA, at the end of the first day of negotiations at the G8, giant leaps are needed to ensure promises to Africa are kept. Read more here.
TRAVIS STICK GIANT POST-IT NOTE TO THE DOOR OF NO. 10
Scottish rock band Travis stuck a giant post-it note to the door of No. 10 to remind Tony Blair to keep his promises at the G8. Click here for more.
DATA URGES G8 TO KEEP AID PROMISES TO AFRICA
13th July 2006. DATA says the G8 must get serious on aid promises to Africa. Read more here.
MAKE PROMISES HAPPEN ON MYSPACE
Click here to see the LIVE 8 Make Promises Happen myspace page.
– 'YOU ASK THE QUESTIONS' SPECIAL
Bob Geldof replied to questions from the public in The Independent, 10th July 2006. Click here to read more.
President Putin answered questions from the public in an interactive webcast on Thursday July 6th. Click here to read more.
PRIME MINISTER TONY BLAIR’S SPEECH
– A YEAR AFTER GLENEAGLES
Prime Minister Tony Blair gave a speech at King’s College London on June 26th. The speech was about Africa, the challenge of climate change, and the progress made since the Gleneagles G8 Summit in July 2005.
To read the Prime Minister’s speech in full, click here.
ActionAid released a new report on 26th June. Entitled ‘Mission Unaccomplished’, it asks if one year on from Gleneagles the G8 is hitting its targets on debt, trade and aid.
Read the full report here.
As the G8 Finance Ministers met in St. Petersburg on 9th-10th June 2006, DATA said that last year’s promises to Africa are already in danger of being broken.
DATA is analysing G8 performance against the commitments made at Gleneagles, and will be releasing its findings ahead of the LIVE 8 anniversary and 2006 summit in July.
The report will cover key indicators drawn from the Gleneagles communiqué, and provide detailed analysis of the contribution of each G8 country.
THE VIEW FROM THE SUMMIT –
GLENEAGLES G8 ONE YEAR ON
A report from Oxfam, released 9th June 2006, shows that decisions made at last year's G8 have led to real improvement in the lives of some of the world's poorest people. But there is still much more to do.
Read the full report here.
The HIV/AIDS pandemic is having a staggering impact.
To date more than 20 million people have died from AIDS, and another 40 million people are living with HIV. As these numbers escalate, children’s lives will be among the most profoundly affected. Around 700,000 children will become infected with HIV this year, nearly all of them in developing countries. Millions more will lose their parents.
8 out of 10 AIDS orphans live in sub-Saharan Africa, and over 18 million African children will have lost one or both parents to HIV/AIDS by the end of this decade. There are an estimated 25 million AIDS orphans worldwide. Treatments are available which could have helped keep their parents alive, but cost keeps them out of reach. Millions of people are literally too poor to live.
In sub-Saharan Africa only 17% of the people who need treatment are getting it. The Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria has called for new grants from governments to continue the struggle against these diseases by providing treatment and support, especially for women and children living with AIDS.
The World Bank has agreed to cancel $37 billion of poor countries’ debts as part of the overall package promised by the G8 last year. So far 17 countries have benefited and their debts will be cleared from July 2006.
The Bank's previous plan would have forced poor countries to wait up to 15 months after qualifying for their debt cancellation to kick in. In March the World Bank's Executive Board overturned this plan, and now the longest any country will have to wait is 3 months.
But there are at least 20 more countries that urgently need debt cancellation, and are waiting for approval.
We need to keep the pressure on the G8 to make sure they keep their promises on debt relief for the world’s poorest countries.
In April 2006 the UK Chancellor Gordon Brown went to Mozambique. He was joined there by Nelson Mandela, who made the exceptional decision to come out of retirement because he believes passionately that every child in the world should have the opportunity to go to school.
There are currently 100 million children worldwide who have never been to school, and for most of them no education means a life of poverty. Gordon Brown has promised £8.5 billion from the UK to help meet the G8 promise to have every child in school by 2015, but he must also keep the pressure on other G8 finance ministers to fund worldwide education for all.
Enabling Africans to trade fairly with the rest of the world is the key to poverty alleviation in the longer term, but at the moment, African goods struggle to gain a foothold on international markets. There are many reasons for this, from poor infrastructure in Africa itself to subsidies paid to producers in rich countries that make it impossible for African products to compete.
Trade negotiations that could help lift poor nations out of poverty have stalled and the chances of a deal being done are now very slim. World Trade Organisation members missed an April deadline for new proposals, and now need to get agreement by July if the latest round of talks, known as the Doha Round, is to succeed.
International aid agency Oxfam says a new trade deal is urgently needed, but current offers are not good enough and poor countries would be better off missing the 2006 deadline and holding out for better offers.
See Oxfam’s report A Recipe for Disaster to find out more.
HORN OF AFRICA FOOD CRISIS
The Horn of Africa, which includes Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Sudan, is facing severe food and water shortages due to the prolonged drought throughout the region. The crisis is affecting more than 15 million people.
Lack of water and sanitation and people fleeing their homes increases the risk of communicable diseases such as cholera, typhoid fever, diarrhoea, acute respiratory infections and measles.
All across the region, the areas most severely affected by the drought are the poorest. They are suffering from the highest disease rate, the weakest health care systems, and the lowest rates of immunisation. According to the World Health Organisation, malnutrition in Kenya, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Djibouti and Somalia is affecting 20% of children.
The UN launched a regional appeal for the Horn of Africa in April, asking for $443 million to support the urgent needs of more than 8 million people. To date, the Appeal has received pledges and contributions of only $95 million. Make sure your government gives more.