​‘Astounding lack of oversight’: UK foreign aid decried by NGOs, cautioned by watchdog

The UK government has been criticized for the increasingly close relationships it has encouraged between businesses, aid delivery and development following an audit by a development watchdog.

While the Independent
Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) was broadly supportive of the
close relationship between business and development, a number of
NGOs were highly critical of the trend.

The ICAI said that the government’s Department for International
Development (DFID) must “work with businesses that want to
invest in developing countries in such a way as to maximize
benefits for the poor.

It also gave the DFID an “amber-red” rating, the second lowest
available.

[DfID has] clearly stated their intention to work more with
business and there are great potential benefits for the poor from
this collaboration,
” ICAI commissioner Graham Ward told The
Guardian.

We are concerned, however, about how DfID will translate
these goals into practical actions without more strategic
oversight of business engagement activities and without concrete
targets,
” he said.

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