(Reuters) – New British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is considering freezing the country’s foreign aid budget for another two years, the Daily Telegraph reported on Friday, citing sources.
UK foreign aid spending is set at 0.5% of national income. The government cut foreign aid spending two years ago as the country faced a huge blow to public finances due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The then finance minister, Sunak, said last year that foreign spending should recover to 0.7% of economic output by 2024- .
However, according to the Daily Telegraph, officials are considering extending foreign aid spending cuts for another two years to 2026-2027.
The report adds that there is room for further cuts over the next three years, as well as the option to tie foreign aid spending to inflation.
The report comes as the government is drawing up spending cuts and scrapping tax cuts as rising mortgage, food, fuel and heating costs squeeze many household budgets.
UK Treasury There was no immediate response to a request for comment.