Responding to the G8 Communiqué, Simeon Mitchell of MRDF commented:
‘At the G8, world leaders were challenged to respond to the ludicrously ambitious but utterly gospel-driven demand: enough food for everyone. These morsels from the G8’s table are welcome, but offer only a foretaste of the benefits to come if they are followed through in word and deed.’
Commenting on the detailed outcomes of the summit and the UK G8 Presidency, Simeon added:
‘The G8 made encouraging commitments to tackle tax dodging, agreeing to shine a light on phantom firms and support a new standard on tax information exchange that could benefit all. In a world where 1 in 8 people are hungry this will help secure vital tax revenue that could build a more secure food system, and provide funding for much needed investment in infrastructure, agriculture, education and healthcare in developing countries.
‘We are encouraged that David Cameron has asked Britain’s Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories to sign up to share information with more countries. If fulfilled, these promises would make a substantial difference, but there is still a lot to be done and a clear timeline for action needs to be agreed.
‘For the first time land grabs made it onto the G8 agenda and we are pleased to see a commitment to establishing key partnerships with the private sector, farmers, civil society and land governance programmes to tackle the issue. We hope that these partnerships will lead to greater transparency and increased support for the development of good land governance systems as promised, but believe that it is also essential to regulate G8-based companies involved in land deals.
‘One of the other achievements of the UK G8 Presidency was to secure more funding to tackle malnutrition. At the Nutrition for Growth event held ahead of the summit, an impressive $4.1 billion was pledged by participants. We share some of the concerns of civil society groups in Africa about the role and expansion of the New Alliance as part of this, but the additional money will undoubtedly save millions of lives.’
The participants in the Nutrition for Growth event signed a Global Nutrition for Growth Compact, and committed their countries and organisations by 2020 to:
improving the nutrition of 500 million pregnant women and young children
reducing the number of children under five who are stunted by an additional 20 million
saving the lives of at least 1.7 million children by preventing stunting, increasing breastfeeding and better treatment of severe and acute malnutrition.
The controversial New Alliance for Food and Nutrition Security was launched at the last G8 and promises to increase investment in agriculture through partnerships with private sector food giants such as Unilever and Monsanto.
MRDF is a member of the ‘Enough Food for Everyone… IF’ campaign which brought together over 100 charities and faith groups to put hunger issues on the G8’s agenda in 2013. Read the IF campaign’s response to the communiqué.
Maurice Adams, Chief Executive of MRDF, congratulated everyone who had been involved in raising their voices in advance of the G8:
‘On behalf of our collaborating partners around the world who see poverty as a daily reality we would like to thank all MRDF supporters who took action, tweeted, came to the rallies and spread the word about these critical global issues and particularly the IF campaign ahead of the G8. The actions of campaigners like you helped to put tax, land grabs, aid and malnutrition at the top of the political agenda and the leaders have listened. We know that there is more that can be done but let us be encouraged with the progress made during the G8: MRDF supports every step forward to end the outrage and injustice of hunger.’
Find out more
Read the full G8 Communiqué
Find out about our other campaigns