Australia and the UK commit to new framework to strengthen development cooperation

Joint media release

Minister for Foreign Affairs - The Hon Julie Bishop MP
UK Secretary of State for International Development - Rt Hon Justine Greening MP

Australia's Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop and the United Kingdom's Secretary of State for International Development, Justine Greening, have announced that Australia and the UK have signed a Partnership Arrangement to ramp up their joint international development efforts at ensuring more coordinated, effective and sustainable results.

"This Partnership Arrangement reinforces the commitment of our two countries to work together to achieve effective development results and to promote sustainable economic growth and reduce poverty in developing countries," Ms Bishop said.

"The Prime Minister has made it clear that aid effectiveness, transparency and accountability are top priorities for the UK Government alongside measures to protect women and girls from violence and gender inequality. This new arrangement means that Australia and the UK will be able to drive forward progress on these shared goals together and I look forward to working with our Australian counterparts to deliver them" said Ms Greening.

The Arrangement, signed in London between the heads of Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and the UK's Department for International Development (DFID), provides a framework for DFAT and DFID to focus on shared development goals.

It commits both agencies to strengthening their collaboration in four priority areas in 2014: economic growth and development, including leveraging the private sector and aid for trade; gender equality and women's empowerment; humanitarian response; and coordination on key global development policy agendas, including the post-2015 development framework and G20.

Underlining their commitment to this increased collaboration, Ms Bishop and Ms Greening also announced new initiatives in two of the four priority areas.

Specifically, the UK will contribute £3 million, complementing Australia's existing $4 million commitment, to improve the implementation of laws designed to protect women and girls affected by violence in Afghanistan. The program will also work with communities to reduce the acceptance of violence against women and to help victims access legal services.

At the same time, recognising the important role of private-sector development in reducing poverty in developing countries, Australia will provide a further $5 million to the Private Infrastructure Development Group, and an additional $2 million to the World Bank-managed Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility, entities to which the UK is a major donor.

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