UK To End South Africa Financial Aid

Britain is to end its direct financial support to South Africa by 2015.

The UK bilateral development programme has been in operation for over twenty years since the end of apartheid, but will now be stopped, according to International Development Secretary Justine Greening.

Speaking at an international conference of business leaders and African Ministers in London, Ms Greening claimed the change would help to boost trade across the region and support South Africa’s role as a "development partner of countries across the continent".

The aim is to create a new relationship between the UK and South Africa "based on sharing skills and knowledge, not on development funding."

The Department for International Development says the changes are a result of South Africa's "economic success".

The country now accounts for over a third of sub-Saharan Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) and is a member of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) group of emerging economies and the G20.

The UK’s bilateral programme in the country is currently worth £19m a year.

In 2003, it was worth over £40m.

The project will now focus on finishing projects that are already underway.

From 2015, the UK’s development role in South Africa will focus on technical assistance, sharing skills and knowledge in an effort to combat poverty and inequality, the Department said.

Justine Greening added: "South Africa has made enormous progress over the past two decades, to the extent that it is now the region’s economic powerhouse and Britain’s biggest trading partner in Africa.

"We are proud of the work the UK has done in partnership with the South African government, helping the country’s transition from apartheid to a flourishing, growing democracy.

"I have agreed with my South African counterparts that South Africa is now in a position to fund its own development. It is right that our relationship changes to one of mutual cooperation and trade, one that is focused on delivering benefits for the people of Britain and South Africa as well as for Africa as a whole."


Related UK National News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

08 December 2010
Man Arrested On Behalf Of South African Authorities
Officers from the Metropolitan Police Service's Extradition Unit yesterday, arrested Shrien Prakash Dewani, 30, on behalf of the South African authorities. Mr Dewani surrendered himself at a Bristol police station and was arrested at 10.
30 September 2003
South African man charged with cannabis smuggling
A South African man has been charged today with smuggling around 15kgs of cannabis, worth an estimated £46,000, from South Africa to Belfast. Jacobus Frederick Engelbrecht, (24), was intercepted by Customs mobile detection officers at Belfast City Airport, when he arrived from Johannesburg via Heathrow on Sunday evening.
13 January 2005
Thatcher steers clear of jail after admitting guilt
Sir Mark Thatcher, son of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, has successfully plea-bargained for a non-custodial sentence in a South African court. He was charged under South Africa's anti-mercenary legislation for his part in an alleged plot to overthrow the government of oil-rich Equatorial Guinea.
25 August 2003
South Africa power ahead in test series
England have crashed to a 191-run defeat in the fourth npower test match to leave South Africa 2-1 ahead in the series. Overnight watchmen Mark Butcher and Andrew Flintoff, the remnants of the home side's frontline batting order, were both dismissed within two overs – the rest of the team followed them back to the pavilion within an hour.
14 March 2005
Boateng appointed High Commissioner to South Africa
Paul Boateng will become the next High Commissioner to Pretoria, South Africa, the government has announced.