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Wednesday, 16 August 2017
Page: 5836


Senator McGRATH (QueenslandAssistant Minister to the Prime Minister) (15:40): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator McGRATH: The world is facing unprecedented humanitarian need. Australia continues to respond strongly, with funding of $399.7 million in 2017-18, an increase of $60 million from last year. This includes increasing our emergency fund to $150 million to provide timely, life-saving assistance to those in need, particularly in our region. Australia has committed over $800 million in humanitarian assistance since 2014 to help meet the needs of the 65 million displaced people worldwide, including Syrians and Iraqis affected by the current conflict. Calls to increase aid funding should describe which existing programs should be cut or which taxes raised to fund this.

Question agreed to.