Gernot Erler, Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office, today (17 September) met representatives of the Association of German Development NGOs VENRO for an exchange of views on the Millennium Development Goals in particular. In this connection the VENRO representatives handed over a so-called shadow report on Germany's efforts to achieve these goals.
The Minister took the opportunity to pay tribute to the splendid work being done by German development NGOs. He pointed out that
"Germany is currently the second largest provider of official development assistance. Over the past two budget cycles we have increased our development aid funding by 1.5 billion euro.
In future, too, the German Government will strive hard to ensure the international development goals are realized. That is why we want to see next week's High-Level Event on the Millennium Development Goals in New York send a strong message of commitment and support."
Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier will represent the German Government at the meeting, which will take place on 25 September during the General Debate at the 63rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
The report presented by VENRO examines the progress to date on the Millennium Development Goals and the German Government's activities in this connection. It commends the German Government's efforts to tackle the current food crisis, for example, and grant debt relief notably to the poorest developing countries. The report also urges the importance of meeting all international commitments and calls for an overall increase in the German Government's funding for this purpose.