News Room / News and Events
The British Government Should Call on The EU to Increase its Humanitarian Aid Budget
14 November 2011
"The British government, which is a leading humanitarian donor, should push for the EU budget to be adequately funded so that the EU is ready to respond to these future humanitarian needs."
Humanitarian needs around the world are on the increase. In 2011 the UN’s Consolidated Appeal (CAP) was € 5.7 billion – it’s largest ever - and in 2010 natural disasters alone affected over 30 million people. It's also expected that in future the world will experience more conflicts and natural disasters as a result of population growth, climate change and resource scarcity.
But despite this, the amount of funds allocated to humanitarian aid in the European Union’s (EU) proposal for the next EU budget decreases over time. This will have a direct impact on millions of people’s lives. The British government - which is a leading humanitarian donor - should push for the EU budget to be adequately funded so that the EU is ready to respond to these future humanitarian needs. It should insist on a number of things:
Firstly, the level of humanitarian funding should be increased over the period covered by the next budget – which is from 2014 to 2020 – and a separate budget line should be established to ensure that the EU’s aid remains independent from its other areas of concern. This is essential to ensuring that EU humanitarian aid is seen as being free from political agendas.
Secondly, the EU already focuses on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR); it works to help communities vulnerable to disasters to prepare for future crises. But not only should it continue this support, it should also enable money earmarked for development programmes to be used for DRR initiatives.
Thirdly, the EU should make sure that its financial instruments are flexible enough to make the transition from different phases of the humanitarian response more effective.
EU humanitarian aid is an effective way to help people most in need and
it creates the conditions necessary for sustainable development. It is
also good value for money because it funds a diverse range of
humanitarian actors, like the Red Cross and the UN, that reach myriad
communities caught up in humanitarian crises.
In the future we will see an increasing number of humanitarian crises and the EU needs to be able to respond to them effectively. The British government should do everything in its power to ensure that the EU is ready to do so.