LONDON Jun 17 (APP):Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday announced to merger of Department for International Development (DFID) and Foreign Office to unite development and diplomacy at single platform.
According to a statement of Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street, issued here, Boris Johnson has announced that DFID and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) will merge, uniting development and diplomacy in one new department that brings together Britain’s international effort.
The Department for International Development (DFID) was responsible for administering overseas aid and aimed to promote sustainable development and eliminate world poverty.
“Work will begin immediately on the merger. The new department – the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office – will be established in early September and will be led by the Foreign Secretary”, the statement said.
The statement added that the merger was an opportunity for the UK to have even greater impact and influence on the world stage as we recover from the coronavirus pandemic and prepare to hold the G7 presidency and host COP26 next year.
It said that the UK aid will be given new prominence within our ambitious international policy.
The Foreign Secretary will be empowered to make decisions on aid spending in line with the UK’s priorities overseas, harnessing the skills, expertise and evidence that have earned our reputation as a leader in the international development community, the statement said.
The UK is the only G7 country to spend 0.7% of GNI on overseas development and the Government remains committed to this target, which is enshrined in law.
Announcing the new department, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“This is exactly the moment when we must mobilise every one of our national assets, including our aid budget and expertise, to safeguard British interests and values overseas.
And the best possible instrument for doing that will be a new department charged with using all the tools of British influence to seize the opportunities ahead”.
The Prime Minister has also announced that the UK’s Trade Commissioners will come under the authority of UK Ambassadors overseas, bringing more coherence to our international presence.