Cutting UK overseas aid in the name of Covid fiscal prudence is pure nonsense

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In economic terms Rishi Sunak’s saving of up to £4bn is chickenfeed, stupendously bad value for money and hence politically inept

Britain is on course to borrow the thick end of £400bn this year and so, according to Rishi Sunak, the aid budget has to be cut. The UK will always be a good global citizen, the chancellor said last week, but times are tough. There’s a pandemic going on and so hard choices have to be made.

This argument failed to convince Andrew Mitchell, a well-regarded international development secretary under David Cameron, who is organising a rebellion among like-minded Conservative MPs. Rightly so, because it is utter nonsense.

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