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Jersey taxpayers give over £10m a year to foreign aid

Jersey taxpayers give over £10m a year to foreign aid

Wednesday 12 October 2016

Jersey taxpayers give over £10m a year to foreign aid

Wednesday 12 October 2016

Overseas aid grants amounted to over £10million last year, around 25% of all grants handed out by the States in 2015.

The overseas grants are intended for humanitarian aid and in 2014 it was £9.7m. Last year that rose by £614,000 to £10,315,126 - over double the amount given in grants for any other organisation.

Chief Minister Ian Gorst said he was “very proud” of the foreign aid budget, which he said was targeted for some of the most vulnerable people in the world.

A list of States grants was published yesterday in response to a question from Deputy Sam Mezec. 

As well as the spend on overseas aid, it also shows that the Waterfront pool, run by Serco, received hundreds of thousands of pounds from the States each year, £400,972 in 2015 and £499,972 the previous year. 

Another Island attraction, aMaizin! Adventure Park, received £235,091 in grant aid last year in order to build a new indoor play barn. 

The total amount given in grants and subsidies last year was £43million, down from £45.5million in 2014.  

The Chief Minister said he was wholly in favour of the overseas aid grant, which is only 0.25% of gross national income in Jersey. In 1970, the United Nations adopted a target of 0.7%, which the UK reached in 2013. 

He said: “Overall, we have a £700m budget and it is very well spent. It is aid that is delivered to the most vulnerable in the world. Only last week the commission gave funding to the ‘winter-isation’ programme in Syria and I have been out myself to see the work that has gone ahead in Jordan. 

“People’s lives have been transformed in the refugee camps and we should be very proud of that money and the effect it has had on the most vulnerable people in the world.” 

Jersey is a signatory to Agenda 21 - a United Nations plan which commits to overseas aid, comparable with that of other nation states.  

As for funding for the Waterfront pool, the Chief Minister said: “It’s a contract that was set up many years ago when the pool was moved from Fort Regent and it is a contract that is negotiated by the Economic Development Department in order to reduce the cost to the public.”

The overseas aid grant dwarfed any other grants handed out by the States last year, with Jersey Finance next, having received £4.87m in 2015, followed by Jersey Heritage Trust and Visit Jersey, which were handed £2.8m and £2.58m respectively and Digital Jersey £1.25m. 

Two schools were given millions of pounds in grant aid, with Beaulieu receiving £2.05m and De La Salle College £1.85m.

The States handed over £360,000 last year - a rise of £62,000 from 2014 - to run the Channel Islands Brussels office, even though Jersey is not in the EU. 

A number of grants were heavily cut from 2014 to 2015 including the Government of Jersey London office (£461,000), Jersey Heritage Trust (£414,000) and the Association of Jersey Charities, which saw its grant fall by £657,000 from £1.1m to £453,000. 



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Posted by June OKeeffe on
this is very generous and very sad at the same time and yet they want more money from the tax payers to help the pensions???????????? whats that all about then
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