Justin Trudeau has promised $47 million in aid for Yemen as a recent effort in foreign aid.

“Canada’s support in Yemen is driven by our desire to end a terrible situation that has caused the suffering of so many people — especially women and children who bear the brunt of the crisis,” Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland and Marie-Claude Bibeau, minister of international development, said in a statement.

“The human cost of the ongoing conflict in Yemen is dire.”

Recent figures show African countries received the largest regional share of Canada’s international assistance at 43.8%, followed by Asia (Where Yemen falls) (38.7%), the Americas (14.2%), Europe (2.8%) and Oceania (0.5%). This is only international assistance that has been coded to a region (86.4% of total).

The largest recipient in 2017 was Afghanistan (CAD$233 million), followed by Ethiopia (CAD$193 million), Jordan (CAD$157 million), Haiti (CAD$127 million), and Mali (CAD$126 million).

The nearly five-year war, which has killed tens of thousands of people, and the country’s ensuing economic collapse have left 16 million facing severe hunger. While a deadly cholera epidemic in 2017 was stalled, aid agencies say the threat still remains due to water supply and sanitation concerns.

Canada has previously committed $130 million in aid for Yemen overall since 2015.

An estimated 85,000 children under age five may have died of hunger and disease since the outbreak of war in Yemen three years ago, an international aid group said Wednesday.

Save the Children based its figures on mortality rates for untreated cases of severe malnutrition in young children. The United Nations says more than 1.3 million children have suffered from severe malnutrition since a Saudi-led coalition went to war with Yemen’s Houthi rebels in March 2015.

The total amount of foreign aid that was spent by recent figures in 2017 showed that Canada’s international assistance spending increased by 3.7% to CAD$5.6 billion in 2017, up from CAD$5.4 billion in 2016.

International assistance accounts for approx. 1.7% of 2017 federal budget spending  – unchanged from last years  1.7% budget expenditure in 2016

Foreign aid is a topic that has been under the spotlight recently, as many are now pointing to it as a source of wasted expenditure. The idea of giving away taxpayer dollars has been heavily scrutinized as of late.

Those against the concept argue that a large portion of foreign aid flowing from developed to 3rd world countries is a waste, and that it only increases unproductive public consumption.

Corrupt governments and bureaucratic failures in these undeveloped nations are often cited as reasons for the less than stellar results.

Foreign aid is often regarded as being too pricey in a lot of cases, and is considered a waste of money to fund corrupt recipient governments despite good intentions from donor countries.