During my recent visit to Papua New Guinea, I constantly heard complaints about the absurd number of Western advisers who were coming to the country telling locals how to live their lives. It’s a form of neo-colonialism. This is therefore good news:
Australia’s international aid agency says it has now saved more than $US90 million by slashing the number of advisers it employs.
The Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd has been reducing the amount of money AusAID spends on technical advisers and contractors.
The agency says more than 320 adviser positions have now been cut.
AusAID’s director general Peter Baxter says the cuts and the cap on adviser salaries have saved substantial amounts of money.
“All up a bit over $90 million so it’s a serious amount of money and we’re re-investing that money into programs that provide more direct assistance to the poor,” he said.
“So PNG, we’re cutting the most number of advisers, so we sit down with the PNG Government and say where do we allocate this, to health, education, or elsewhere.”