Condition for exercise of power to increase limit: Sustainable Development Goals

Part of Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:45 pm on 6 December 2016.

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Photo of Rory Stewart Rory Stewart The Minister of State, Department for International Development 3:45, 6 December 2016

This is an example of a clause where we strongly agree that SDGs are central to what the CDC should be doing. We are already delivering on these things. In 2015 alone, 326 women received jobs through the CDC investments; that is SDG 5. We provided 56,000 GW of electricity; that is SDG 7. SDG 8 on economic growth is, of course, central to everything the CDC does.

The bigger argument is that, as the SDGs were presented, people talked about a $2.5 trillion demand per annum for investment in the world’s poorest countries. The CDC is the major instrument that will be used by the British Government to deliver that kind of investment into the private sector.

However, to respond to the shadow Minister’s point, I think this is a good way of focusing the Department’s mind and making sure that, as we develop the strategy for the CDC going forward over the next five years, the SDGs are baked into that process. We take the SNP spokesman’s suggestion that it is important to understand the SDGs as a holistic set: that we do not simply look at them goal by goal, but that we group them together.