Kate Osamor's keynote speech on International Development at ODI

Kate Osamor MP gave a keynote speech on Thursday 2nd November at the Overseas Development Institute followed by a Q&A session in which she outlined Labour’s vision for international development. Osamor began with a moving account of her experience in Dominica and Barbuda and committed to effective and transparent spending to show the public not only how UK aid is spent, but on what and where.

  • ​A call for action against climate change

In a passionate call to no longer appease climate change deniers, Osamor emphasised the fact that small states are the lowest polluters whilst facing the greatest risks and warned of “predatory investors” in the rebuilding of such islands as Dominica and Barbuda.

  • A concentration on SDG goal 10 - leave no one behind

Poverty eradication remains a priority for the Shadow Secretary however, Osamor emphasised the need to focus on inequality both within states and globally. She criticised multinational corporations for tax avoidance and called for “public, country-by-country reporting of multi-national business affairs” in order to tackle this.

  • Increased funding for civil society

Whilst noting that multi-national businesses tax could help to bridge the funding gap, Ms Osamor also called for greater funding and support for international civil society groups, notably in the global south.

  • “it is time to stop using UK aid only as a sticking plaster”

Osamor identified the global economic system as the root cause of global inequality and poverty and called for a radical change of the narrative by shifting the moral argument from that of charity to both charity and fairness. She also stated that current government policies are inadequate and a cross-governmental approach is necessary to avoid conflicts within government to build a comprehensive and coherent policy.

Whilst promising to build a world for the many, not the few, Osamor announced a new international development taskforce, comprised of sector workers and experts, and pledged to publish a paper on their new approach in Spring 2018.

Watch the full speech here

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