Tokyo: Ministers from the richest nations and the fastest growing economies started talks on 6 April on developing specific measures to reduce poverty in Africa and other areas under a 2000 UN agreement.
The talks are the second day of meetings between development ministers from the Group of Eight industrialised nations and emerging donor nations -- Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, South Korea and South Africa.
G8 nations are to issue a summary on 6 April on how to bolster their efforts in foreign development aid. African development is expected to be high on the agenda at the next G8 summit in July in northern Japan.
Late on 5 April, the ministers agreed on “increasing the credibility and transparency of aid policy,” officials said. Officials have privately admitted that G8 countries hope to coax China and other emerging donors to place greater emphasis on human rights when awarding aid.
China has recently made major diplomatic and economic inroads in mostly resource-rich nations in Africa and Latin America by giving aid without imposing any conditions.
This strategy contrasts with that of the United States, European Union and Japan as well as the World Bank and the IMF, which usually use aid as leverage to improve human rights and implement other reforms in recipient nations.
The ministers have pledged in Tokyo to further work to achieve the Millennium Development Goals -- halving extreme poverty, halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing primary education in poor countries by the target year of 2015.
The talks are focusing on concrete measures for achieving the goals, officials said.