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Paris: Is the folding of CIDA into DFAIT the end or a fresh start for Canadian international development?

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30 March, 2013
By: Erna Paris
Award-winning author, journalist, and historian

Some commentators are examining the folding of CIDA into DEFAIT in isolation, which is a mistake in my view. The move to close down CIDA should be seen within a broader context; as the Harper government’s latest attempt to consolidate power in the PMO. Anyone who hoped this shift might possibly lead to new policies related to addressing poverty in the world would have been disabused the very next day when Canada unilaterally pulled out of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, in defiance of world opinion. If anything is likely to worsen poverty and exacerbate hunger, it will be creeping desertification.

Information didn’t exactly flow out of CIDA, but with this latest consolidation we can look forward to learning even less about our government’s international development agenda, let alone have the capacity to debate it.

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