World leaders have been at the UN in New York this week to assess, and hopefully breathe new life into, efforts to achieve the so-called Millennium Development Goals (MDG). Most of the goals are in danger of being missed. Is there a way to jumpstart efforts to make the deadline by 2015?
With the crisis still unfolding, can governments meet their agreed development aid targets? Total net official development assistance (ODA) from donor countries in the OECD Development Assistance Committee came to $119.6 billion in 2009, which is a real increase of 0.7% from 2008. If debt forgiveness is excluded, the real increase jumps to 6.8%. In fact, development aid rose by some 30% in real terms between 2004 and 2009, and continued to grow during the crisis, unlike other financial flows to developing countries, which have fallen sharply. Nonetheless, more aid effort is needed.