Deputy Minister Lapo Pistelli, 800 million people are still going hungry, but UN data do show some progress.
«There is much work still to be done; we know that the Millennium Goals now coming to term have not been fully met. Too much optimism would be out of place, but a virtuous dynamic has been generated that places the private sector alongside conventional public aid. In some areas considerable growth processes have been activated».
Some countries - Brazil, Malawi, Madagascar – have adopted successful policies. Are these models replicable?
«An primary factor is the recognition that aid policies need a precise context in order to be effective – institutional, political and human rights frameworks. And then, some of these countries have also adopted policies for reducing internal inequalities, which is a progressive approach that the Italian government supports and that we are trying to insert into the European stance.
When governments activate mechanisms for reducing social inequality there are positive results. The case of Brazil, from this point of view, is exceptional, a winning model».
Are you also having to deal with the cutbacks called for by Renzi? Will you manage to salvage development funding?
«In the space of two years we have succeeded in increasing those resources, bringing Italy back to more appropriate levels after they had fallen. Development spending is an investment in the nation’s international image and in neighbour relations. I am confident that stability legislation will consider this a decisive aspect. I am optimistic, this is foreign policy today».