Global ranking shows Australia could do better

Members of Kiama Catalyst present the Report to Fiona Phillips MP

If you were to guess where Australia ranked out of the world’s twenty richest OECD countries on tax, CO2 emissions and foreign aid contributions, where would you place us?

A recent study compiled by Baptist World Aid answers this and outlines Australia’s position on another 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs).

Members of Kiama Catalyst (a global social justice advocacy group) has met with the Member for Gilmore, Fiona Phillips, to present her with a copy of the Global Neighbour Index report, which grades Australia’s contribution in achieving the SDGs against its peers.

These nations, among the most influential industrialised nations in the world, have the capacity and resources to most significantly assist in achieving the SDGs worldwide.

Each nation’s contribution is assessed using a set of ten indicators that allows ranking against the five SDG pillars: People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnership.

“Australia is not a laggard, but neither is it a leader in its contribution to seeing these goals achieved,” says Kiama Catalyst’s Jenny Dundas.

“Overall on the Global Neighbour Index, Australia ranks 11th out of 20. While we excel in some areas, we do quite poorly in others.”

Ms Philips engaged in discussion with the Catalyst group around the most urgent recommendations in the report, some of which are:

  • substantially increasing refugee intake and working with our global neighbours to process and resettle refugees from our region
  • developing and implementing policies to decarbonize our economy by 2050, including an upwards revision of the 2030 reductions target
  • setting a timetabled commitment to investing 0.7% of gross national income in overseas development assistance in line with our international commitments.

“The recommendations in the report, if acted upon by the government, would not only see Australia’s ranking improve but more importantly, a greater contribution towards achieving a fairer and more just world,” says Ms Dundas.

If you tried to guess our ranking, how did you fare? On tax, Australia ranks 6th out of 20. On CO2 emissions we are 18th and for our giving of foreign aid Australia is 19th out of 20.
The USA ranked 20th overall in the Index, while Sweden, Norway and Denmark hold the top three places respectively.

Details: More information and the full report can be found at the Baptist world aide website.

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