Iceland Cuts Funds to Foreign Aid Skip to content

Iceland Cuts Funds to Foreign Aid

Iceland’s Foreign Minister Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir presented yesterday a strategy for limiting expenses at her ministry in light of the economic depression, including cutting funds to development assistance.

“We encouraged [the ministry] to fulfill the goal of the United Nations like our neighboring countries while we were a nation among nations,” Gudrún Dögg Gudmundsdóttir, managing director of the Icelandic Human Rights Center, told Morgunbladid.

“Now the situation is of course different,” Gudmundsdóttir added. “If the economy is in trouble it is understandable that we have to save there like everywhere else.”

Iceland’s expenses to international development work will be reduced to 0.24 percent of gross national product (GNP), although according to the budget bill, Iceland was going to contribute 0.35 of its GNP to foreign aid next year.

The UN recommends Western countries contribute 0.70 percent of their GNP to development assistance.

Jacques Diouf, director-general of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN, recently encouraged the world’s governments not to decrease their assistance to development countries because it might cause food shortage.

Copyright of photo of Foreign Minister Gísladóttir: Icelandic Photo Agency.

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