The UK has fallen in the latest Aid Transparency Index, an independent measure of aid transparency among the world’s major donors.
Published today (13 July), the table, a ranking system launched by the Publish What You Fund campaign, reveals that the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) has performed significantly worse than the Department for International Development (DfID) did in the last Index in 2020. Before its merger with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office in 2020, which created the FCDO, DfID achieved the highest score for transparency.
The Index shows the FCDO in 16th place, although still in the ‘Good’ category, with no UK aid-spending department making it into the top (‘Very Good’) category. This is the first time this has been the case since the Index launched in 2012. By comparison, more funders around the world than ever before have scored ‘Very Good’ or ‘Good’ in the 2022 Index.
Stephanie Draper, CEO at Bond, said in response:
“The loss of transparency of UK aid is a blow for the marginalised communities we work with and the British public, who need to be able to see how it’s spent. To ensure value for money and to achieve the goal of alleviating poverty, UK aid must be transparent and accountable. This fall in UK standing must be addressed.
“This is an opportunity for the foreign secretary to show leadership by doubling down on the department’s transparency, which starts with publishing both departmental and cross-government UK aid budgets annually.”
Altogether, three organisations dropped out of the ‘Very Good’ category: The Global Fund, Global Affairs Canada and the FCDO. The Global Fund was the biggest faller, scoring almost 19 points below its 2020 score and dropping 14 places in the rankings. Global Affairs Canada scored almost 10 points less than in 2020 and is now in the middle of the ‘Good’ category.