10 days of action on hunger: what's been achieved?
It’s been 10 incredible days of action on hunger. Thousands of you have come together as part of the Enough Food For Everyone…If campaign. As a result world leaders have listened and acted. Here are some of the wins so far, which you helped make happen.
What happened and what was achieved:
8 June: Big IF G8 Rally and Nutrition for Growth Event, London
Over 3,500 people attended an ecumenical service in Westminster then walked in the blazing sunshine to join 45,000 more at the Big IF G8 Rally in Hyde Park. The enthusiasm and passion from the crowd overflowed as inspirational speakers took to the main stage, including Bill Gates, the former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, CAFOD Ambassador David Harewood and many more.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister David Cameron met with other rich countries at the Nutrition for Growth event. The meeting secured £2.7 billion to tackle malnutrition between now and 2020.
However, commitments on agriculture were disappointing. According to the UN, support to small farmers provides the single biggest opportunity to reduce hunger, poverty and increase productivity. The 8 June was another missed opportunity to invest in those who feed a third of the world’s population.
Our Hungry for Change campaign will continue into 2014, hoping to secure investment in small-scale farmers.
12 June: EU Transparency Directive, Brussels
It was 10 years in the making, but new EU legislation means it will finally be possible to know who benefits from the activities of multi-national oil, gas and mining companies in local communities.
Although not directly part of the IF campaign, it was a huge win on transparency which set the tone for further developments during this crucial period of action. The legislation requires extractives companies to publish payments they make to access natural resources, broken down by country and project. This was major stride forward, clamping down on corruption and ensuring local people benefit from their country’s natural resources.
We now need this to become a global standard. Announcements from Canada and Switzerland indicate this is starting to happen, and transparency in extractives is becoming the global norm.
15 June: Open for Growth Event, London
On 15 June, David Cameron and other world leaders met for the Open for Growth event on tax, trade and transparency, which secured a solid win on tax havens.
Overseas territories, such as the Cayman Islands, and Crown dependencies, such as Jersey and the Isle of Man, have agreed to sign up to new standards for exchanging tax information. This will mean, if delivered to the letter, developing countries can collect the money they are owed by companies operating within their borders, to use on infrastructure investment including agriculture.
17 and 18 June: G8 Summit, Lough Erne
The Declaration from the G8 summit in Lough Erne brought tax and transparency issues firmly onto the global agenda, with commitments that could mean the beginning of significant changes that will help the 870million who go hungry every day.
The commitment by the UK at the Open to Growth Event to a register of beneficial owners - which will require companies to supply information on who really owns, controls and benefits from companies - was a good step forward. And the G8 decision to back access to this information signals that an era of secrecy is coming to an end.
We now need to work hard to push for this information to be in the public domain to ensure companies can be fully held to account.
And the UK’s positive announcement on tax havens from last week's tax, transparency and trade event in London was acknowledged by G8 leaders, which again signals the opening of previously closed doors on information exchange.
We now need any global deal on information sharing to include developing nations so they can hold companies working in their countries to account.
Transparency and access to information for the people CAFOD works for in the poorest countries will mean they have the chance to ensure companies and governments can be held to account, increasing pressure for money flows to deliver for the poorest communities and to support changes in the global food system that at present keeps 1 in 8 people hungry.
This is a good news day! In only a few months we’ve seen leaders take significant action on global hunger. Your support helped make this happen.
We hope you’ll continue to keep the pressure on as we campaign on issues such as agriculture, climate and transparency through our Hungry For Change campaign this summer.