News / Africa

World Vision: Past G8 Promises Still Unfulfilled

From left, US President Barack Obama, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and French President Nicolas Sarkozy wave as they arrive for a lunch meeting at the Villa le Cercle during the G8 summit in Deauville, France, Thursday, May 26, 2011. G8 leaders, in a
From left, US President Barack Obama, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and French President Nicolas Sarkozy wave as they arrive for a lunch meeting at the Villa le Cercle during the G8 summit in Deauville, France, Thursday, May 26, 2011. G8 leaders, in a

Related Articles

Multimedia

Audio
  • De Capua interview with Robert Zachritz of World Vision

Joe DeCapua

With the closing of the G8 summit in Deauville, France, aid groups are once again saying leaders have failed to fully meet past promises.

World Vision, a Christian humanitarian organization, and other NGOs say the G8 is falling behind on commitments to development, health and hunger.

Deauville summit report card

“I’d probably give it a B minus,” said Robert Zachritz, World Vision’s government relations director, who’s in Deauville.

“They initially sought to inspire around the issues of freedom and democracy, but they really needed to be much stronger around the humanitarian values,” he said.

Zachritz praises the G8 for its honesty about past promises.

“They recognize that they’ve fallen about $19 billion short. They’ve made commitments around global AIDS, TB and malaria. Made commitments around global hunger…and child and maternal health. So, the good thing has been they’re being accountable for that,” he said, but added, “They need to be doing better.”

He warned of a pending food crisis and said thousands of young children are still dying every day from preventable causes. “There’s an urgency to those issues.”

Recession

The Deauville summit was held as the world continues to recover from a global recession.

“I think you need to recognize that,” said Zachritz, “but at the same time you can make commitments and you can make a difference. And the interventions for these items are very cost effective, even in tight economic times.”

These include low-cost interventions for malaria, such as bed nets, and immunizations for childhood diseases.

This week the G8 Research Group at the University of Toronto gave G8 nations a grade of B in keeping their promises. It said higher grades might be unrealistic until the world economy improves. The group also said NGOs naturally demand higher grades because their job is to advocate for their causes.

At the L’Aquila summit in 2009, the G8 pledged $22 billion for agricultural investment. It was in response to the 2007/2008 global food crisis, which brought soaring prices and tight supplies.

“They say they are committed to continually following through with that commitment, which is good. I think their disbursements are low. I think about 25 percent of those commitments have come forward,” he said.

At the earlier summit in Gleneagles, Scotland, leaders pledged universal access to AIDS prevention and treatment programs by 2010.

MDGs

The U.N. Millennium Development Goals are due in 2015. Many NGOs say without G8 funds, it will be difficult to achieve them on time.

“Clearly, that will have an impact,” said Zachritz, “And I think there weren’t really new commitments at this G8 around the Millennium Development Goals. But they were affirmed both in the main communiqué and in the joint statement with African leaders. So the commitment is there, which is good. And they’re not backing away from their past commitments even though they’re falling short.”

Still relevant

The importance of the G20 is now clear, as emerging nations take their place on the world stage. So, is the G8 still relevant?

“The G20 clearly has become the dominant group on the world economy. They recognized that at the G20 summit in Pittsburgh and so that was a change,” he said, “The G8 countries still give the majority of global development assistance. So, it’s still an important body.”

Zachritz said the G8 recognizes the need for new partners and new commitments. The next G20 summit is scheduled for November in Cannes, France.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs