Skip to main content

Minister Costello Meets with Committee on Foreign Affairs for Review of White Paper

Minister for Trade and Development Joe Costello, TD, today met with the Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade to discuss the Review of the White Paper on Irish Aid.

Minister Costello outlined the progress which has been made since the White Paper on Irish Aid was published in 2006 and discussed emerging challenges such as rising food prices and climate change. The committee also discussed the key issues which have emerged during the public consultation phase of the Review of the White Paper.   

Some 800 people have attended public meetings in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Sligo since the launch of the consultation process in February.

Speaking ahead of the meeting today, Minister Costello said:

“Irish Aid is recognised as a world leader in delivering a high quality aid programme which delivers clear results for the world’s poorest people.  Ireland has taken a leadership role in the fight against global hunger; in responding to humanitarian emergencies and developing strong systems of accountability. In recent visits to Ethiopia and Malawi I saw for myself the impact of our aid programme.

However, we must also adapt to emerging challenges such as rising food and energy prices, climate change and the global economic crisis.  During the review process we have identified key issues that we will need to consider, such as hunger, climate change and poverty in particularly fragile states; as well as good governance and human rights.

I look forward to discussing these pressing issues with members of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade, who have engaged very strongly with the Irish Aid programme over the past year.”

Tomorrow the Minister will meet with the Joint Oireachtas Committee on European Affairs for his final official meeting to discuss the Review of the White Paper on Irish Aid.

The closing date for written submissions by the public is April 25th. Later this year a Review Report will be published to set out the future priorities for Irish Aid.

For further information on Irish Aid visit www.irishaid.ie or contact Fionnuala Quinlan, Press Officer, Irish Aid, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on 087-9099975. 

Notes to Editor:

-          Irish Aid is the Government’s programme for overseas development. It is managed by the Development Cooperation Directorate of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

-          The Review of the White Paper on Irish Aid was announced in June 2011, following a commitment set down in the Programme for Government.   

-          Members of the public can contribute to the review process in writing or by email. Full details of the options for responding are available at http://www.irishaid.ie/whitepaper/

-          The Irish Aid Expert Advisory Group (EAG) will offer independent advice to the Minister throughout its duration. For further information about the EAG please go to http://www.irishaid.ie/article.asp?article=1795

-          A consultation paper for the review of the White Paper on Irish Aid is also available online: http://www.irishaid.ie/whitepaper/. 

-          The consultation process has also included meetings with Non Governmental Organisations, the private sector, and Ireland’s partner countries.

-          Committee proceedings can be followed live at: http://bit.ly/24YmPI.