Yesterday, Foreign Policy published an article by Alexander Betts about Tanzania’s withdrawal from the so-called Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF), a centrepiece of the UN’s plans to reform the refugee system. The apparent sticking point for Tanzanian President John Magufuli was that the country would have to borrow money from the World Bank in order to support greater opportunities for refugees.
Tanzania currently hosts over 350,000 refugees and has hosted refugees continuously since 1959. Betts comments, “Tanzania, having consistently upheld its end of the bargain, has been disappointed by donor states not delivering on their funding commitments” – currently less than 40% of the humanitarian budget for refugees in Tanzania is being met. He states, “Tanzania’s announcement is a reminder that if the refugee system is to be sustainable, distant donor states must listen more attentively to the concerns of host countries.”
Betts argues that while “the World Bank’s role in responding to refugee crises should be welcomed… asking Tanzania to borrow in order to assist refugees is a mistake.” He suggests that “debt forgiveness would be a better way to support host states.”
Read the article 'Don’t make African nations borrow money to support refugees' here >>