nijinsky · 07/04/2011 14:02
I'd rather help Portugal than some other countries. Not only do I like to holiday there, and will directly get something out of doing so, but its always been quite a poor country and struggled to get itself out of poverty. Its not had some of the advantages other countries have had who have got themselves into more trouble, nor done it multiple times.
Rhinestone · 07/04/2011 14:10
I generally have no problem with giving foreign aid but Pakistan is already an aid recipient and it seems that this £650 million is new money. And we're STILL giving foreign aid to India, a country with a space programme AND it's own foreign aid programme!!! I.e. India gives away some of it's own money in foreign aid!
holyShmoley · 07/04/2011 14:16
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Rhinestone · 07/04/2011 14:27
a) India collects enough in taxes to be able to fund a space programme AND a foreign aid programme.
b) They will never take responsibility for their poor people if we're stepping into the breach to do so.
Again, I am happy and proud that Britain has a foreign aid programme and I'm not a 'charity begins at home' type. I just think giving aid to a country with a space programme is obscene.
mathanxiety · 07/04/2011 15:48
I think I would have far more of a problem giving Pakistan money, as I think the problems there are due to incompetence, appalling corruption and priorities that are not necessarily the priorities of the West. I think the aid gets into the wrong hands and I think there's precious little actual education or infrastructure improvements to show for it. It's worth noting that the Mubarak regime in Egypt received billions in aid from the US, and that there are other middle eastern states in the same boat, with a dubious payoff -- a very poorly thought-put policy.
Far better to help out Portugal, whose financial woes will impact the UK directly as the EU (and the fate of the Euro) are directly connected to the economy of the UK. And there will be some accountability to the bailing out parties where Portugal is concerned, whereas with a place like Pakistan, all you get is that loud sucking sound and silence afterwards. Where are the schools? The roads? Irrigation? What there is is a nuclear programme (weapons and electricity) and the exportation of technology to North Korea.
mathanxiety · 07/04/2011 15:52
HolyShmoley I agree there is a huge difference between a blank cheque bailout and the loan that is actually envisioned. What will happen is more like the Portuguese department of Finance and Central bank will now co-operate closely with the Eurozone when it comes to all areas of policy that have any connection to public finances.
huddspur · 07/04/2011 23:15
YABU a crisis in the eurozone would be disastorous for this country and we're legally obliged to provide assistance anyway. Add to that Portugal is this country's oldest allies and the size of liabilities that the nationalised banks could face should Portugal default.
Familyguyfan · 08/04/2011 07:51
The reason we are helping Portugal practically is not simply because we are in the EU. There are 27 member states and not all are helping. The reason we are loaning Portugal the money is due to Alistair Darling signing us up to a Eurozone rescue package just after the election and before the coalition government was created. When thus temporary group become permanent, Britain will not be a member of it as the coalition govt have removed us from it. They cannot remove us from the temporary group due to the legalities.
The EU is not responsible in this case (as in many others where it gets blamed!) I'm afraid we have to look to our own politicians, Labour in this instance.
The reason we are helping Portugal and Ireland is because we trade so much with EU nations that the economic collapse of these nations would actually severely impact on us, so we're sort of doing it to help prop up our own economic situation.
Pakistan is a whole other issue, but Pakistan's links to, and war on, terrorism figure highly on the radar.
headfairy · 08/04/2011 16:16
I agree familyguyfan with this part of your post..."The reason we are helping Portugal and Ireland is because we trade so much with EU nations that the economic collapse of these nations would actually severely impact on us, so we're sort of doing it to help prop up our own economic situation"
Not sure about the rest, I'm not totally genned up on EU policy but I think if you're in for a penny in for a pound as it were and as a major player in the EU it was pretty much expected for us to be in the rescue package. So much of our economy depends on EU exports that to not be in the rescue package is a bit like shooting ourselves in the foot isn't it?
mathanxiety · 10/04/2011 20:19
The UK and Netherlands are apparently going to sue Iceland over their vote to refuse the terms of their bailout. A bailout is something of a ride on the back of a tiger for those doing the repayment. Your economy stays afloat but you had better not let go of the tiger.
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