Finance: Aid schemes 'to bring in millions'

An international development charity has calculated that new finance schemes will raise more than £537.3m of development aid in the next year.

Stamp out Poverty, which campaigns for additional sources of revenue to boost aid to the developing world, included in its estimate the first ever 'development tax', a levy on air tickets to be launched by the United Nations in September. The levy, which is backed by the UK, is expected to raise $300m (£160m) for drugs to combat Aids and malaria.

The Government is also launching its own Finance Facility for Immunisation this summer, which should raise $500m (£270m). And, by the end of the year, France will be piloting a new global lottery, which it hopes will net $400m (£215m).

Stamp Out Poverty claims that policy-makers are finally realising the potential of innovative sources of finance. David Hillman, the charity's campaign co-ordinator, said this was because of a fundamental policy shift towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

"We have had a series of meetings with Treasury officials, and their attitude has changed markedly," he said. "Until recently, the Treasury had considered small finance schemes to be competitive with each other - now, however, they are increasingly being seen as complementary.

"Instead of looking for huge solutions, government is now pursuing a number of smaller-scale initiatives."

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