Sarah Champion, Chair of the International Development Select Committee and Labour MP for Rotherham
Ian Mitchell, Co-Director, Development Cooperation in Europe and Senior Policy Fellow at CGD
[Streamed on Wednesday June 7th, at 1.30pm BST, UK time]
Recent decisions on how to spend the aid budget have meant that more than ever is being spent inside the UK. And with a general election fast approaching, now is the time that crucial decisions about future policy must be considered.
“What I need is a ring fenced budget and policy and a seat at the top table. [...] extreme poverty for me has to be the absolute core of everything that we are doing. And then the secondary thing is how do we make sure the voice of the people that we're trying to serve is absolutely central to everything we do. [...] if we get those core things right, then I genuinely think we can get back to being one of the global superpowers when it comes to development”
We had the pleasure of hosting Sarah Champion, Chair of the International Development Select Committee & MP for Rotherham, for a conversation with Ian Mitchell, Senior Policy Fellow and Co-Director at the Center for Global Development. After three years as the Chair of the UK’s International Development Committee, and with more than a decade of experience as an MP, Ms. Champion offers a valuable perspective on development policy of recent years, and what the future might hold.
“If your goal is to end extreme poverty, then go and ask the people in extreme poverty what they need and how we can best support them in doing that.”
To achieve a successful development policy, Ms. Champion stressed the importance of remaining focused on overall objectives and priorities, and spending as much as makes sense to meet goals, not simply hitting a target for the sake of it.
She praised the work of current Minister of State for Development and Africa of the United Kingdom , Andrew Mitchell in reestablishing the consensus on development and trying to make some sense of a department disrupted by the merger of the Department for International Development (DFID) with the Foreign Office
Ms. Champion denounced the use of Official Development Assistance for the costs of housing refugees within the UK.