Liberal Democrats manifesto – Bond reaction

Today, Monday 10 June, the Liberal Democrats have released their 2024 manifesto.  

The manifesto includes the following commitments on international development and civil society: 

  •  “Restore the UK’s reputation as an international development superpower, by returning spending to 0.7% of national income and re-establishing an independent international development department.” (Under 22. International)
  • “Restore the UK’s role as a global leader on climate change, by returning international development spending to 0.7% of national income, with tackling climate change a key priority for development spending.” (5. Climate and Energy)
  • “Ensuring that the use of the international development budget continues to be consistent with the OECD/DAC rules and guidelines, and with UK legislation, and in particular its primary purpose should remain the economic development of, and poverty reduction within, the partner country.”(Under 22. International)
  • “Putting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals at the heart of the UK’s international development policy.” (22. International) 
  • “Work to counter the global rise in authoritarianism by championing the liberal, rules-based international order and supporting international institutions such as the United Nations, the Commonwealth, NATO and the International Criminal Court.” (22. International)
  • “Scrap the Conservatives’ draconian anti-protest laws, restoring pre-existing protections for both peaceful assembly and public safety, and immediately halt the use of live facial recognition surveillance by the police and private companies.” (19. Rights and Equality)
  • “Champion the Human Rights Act and resist any attempts to weaken or repeal it.” (19. Rights and Equality)

    In reaction to the manifesto, Gideon Rabinowitz, Director of Policy and Advocacy at Bond, the UK network for NGOs, said: 

    We welcome the Liberal Democrats’ commitment to restoring the UK aid budget to 0.7% of Gross National Income with its primary focus on poverty reduction, alongside re-establishing an independent international development department and putting the SDGs at the heart of the UK’s international development policy. Any incoming government should commit to urgently increasing the UK aid budget and target places where it is most needed, with a key focus on poverty alleviation in lower-income countries.

    We are also encouraged by the Lib Dems’ commitments to reverse draconian anti-protest laws and restore pre-existing protections for both peaceful assembly and public safety. Protest is an essential part of democracy and in recent years these laws have created a hostile environment towards UK civil society.


      Notes for editors

      • The Bond UK International Development Sector 2024 Manifesto: ‘A Global System for People and Planet’ is available here
      • Bond is the UK network for organisations working in international development. Bond unites and supports a diverse network of over 350 civil society organisations from across the UK, and allies to help eradicate global poverty, inequality and injustice. 
      • For further information or interviews please contact Jess Salter at [email protected] or call 07493200979.