The Beneficial Impacts of Foreign Aid on the World

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Mahatma Gandhi once claimed: “There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them in the form of bread.” All countries strive to be better developed than they already are; however, not all have the ability to develop themselves. In fact, some countries struggle to keep most of their population fed and educated. To lend a helping hand and encourage development, first world countries often decide to devote a small percentage of their national budgets to foreign aid.

Broadly speaking, foreign aid is anything that one country gives to or is provided for benefit of another country. Although many may think that foreign aid creates economic and political pressure, foreign aid is imperative because it saves lives, rebuilds livelihoods (encourages developments) and benefits the donor country.

Opponents of foreign aid may argue that omit aid doesn’t reach the hands of the people in need; however, for the country receiving, foreign aid provides means of saving lives by combating poverty and famine and assisting the country’s medical care system by cutting in half the unacceptable number of maternal and child deaths. Nevertheless, there are many indicators that show that the foreign aid being received by the country is enhancing the livelihoods of the people. For example, relationship between foreign aid and global poverty is a positive, effective one.

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One of the strongest examples of the potency goals, put and achieved by Millennium Development in 2015, is working towards lifting more than one billion people out of extreme poverty, making inroads against hunger, enabling more girls to attend school than ever before and protecting our planet. Their goals were evidently achieved; for example, “between 8.8 to 17.3 million of the lives were saved due to faster progress on child mortality” (World Bank, Sep 2013).Health aid in 1990 accounted for 4 percent of total foreign aid, it now amounts to 15 percent of all aid (Bendavid, Apr 21,2013). And it has become an important part of health budgets in recipient countries, accounting for 25-30 percent of all health-care spending in low-income countries. It's widely within the scope of knowledge that Africa had struggled with three major epidemics in 2000. AIDS was killing approximately two million yearly, malaria was surging, tuberculosis was also soaring because of the emergence of drug-resistant TB; in addition, and hundreds of women were dying in childbirth each year.

Yet, health aid’s successes can be seen on many fronts. Around 12 million children under five years old died in 1990. By 2010, this number had declined to around 7.6 million – still far too high, but definitely an historic improvement. Malaria deaths in children in Africa were cut from a peak of around 1 million in 2004 to around 700,000 by 2010, and worldwide deaths of pregnant women declined by almost half between 1990 and 2010, from an estimated 543,000 to 287,000 (Sachs, 30 May 2012). Bendavid claimed, “Health aid continues to be as effective as it has been, we estimate there will be 364,800 fewer deaths in children under 5. We are talking about $1 billion, which is a 5eshaid, has decreased child mortality to 7.6 million preventable deaths in 2010 from around 12 million in 1990. That's nearly twelve thousand lives saved everyday (Ezekiel J. Emmanuel, 2011). With aid, healthcare in countries that need it would definitively improve, and, with it, life expectancy would increase.

Critics of foreign aid propose that studies show that foreign aid actually benefits the donor country more than the recipient country; however, in the present economic climate that is the only motivation a government would have to not slash their foreign aid budget. The United States is by far the largest single foreign donor. Foreign aid is much like an investment; after World War II, U.S. foreign aid to Japan helped recover Japan’s infrastructure and highly contributed to the success of American companies like Microsoft (Ventura, June 22, 2018). As once stated by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, 'everyone is better off when there are more middle-income countries in the world.' With that being said, foreign aid provided by the U.S. benefits the donor country, boosting national security and helping the global economy.

As terrorism is such a buzzword in American politics today, preventing it is one of their most wanted points on their official to-do lists. Stability in developing countries is key in preventing future political issues from unfolding. The U.S. has defense agreements with 131 out of the 135 countries that it provides foreign aid to (Ventura, 2018). How does the U.S benefit from foreign aid to Papua New Guinea through trade relations? In 2016, the U.S. had a trade surplus with Papua New Guinea of $35 million. U.S. goods exports to Papua New Guinea totaled $127 million in 2016, while U.S. goods imports totaled $92 million. Key U.S. exports included machinery and mechanical appliances, cereals and aircraft (Maher, 2018). U.S. aid promotes global stability by preventing global epidemics and contributing to the resolving of wars. It also prevents refugee crises, by leading by example, this encourages the American people to adopt a more humanitarian mentality.

As a summary, foreign aid provides necessary resources for countries to fight local issues that may affect their quality of life, and it definitely provides many purposes for the donor country to provide foreign aid in its various types. Foreign aid can be a win-win for first world countries and the world. Let us heed the call of Scriptures to uplift the poor, save millions of lives, and give the world’s poorest the chance at a life of flourishing and abundance. We can stand for a commitment to a culture of life for every human being.

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