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Cameroon

Ms Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will commission during the United Kingdom Presidency an environmental and social impact assessment of the EC decision to fund the upgrading of roads in the rainforests of Cameroon. [25886]

Clare Short: The EC will be assessing the environmental and social aspects of the proposed road maintenance project as part of its standard project preparation procedures. The project will be considered by the European Development Fund Committee on which my Departments sits. There are no plans to commission a separate assessment.

Non-career Civil Servants

Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many non-career civil servants have been appointed to her Department since 1 May 1997. [25851]

Clare Short: The number of people appointed to the Department for International Development on fixed term contracts or as casuals since 1 May 1997 is 88.

Civil Service Staff

Mr. Rhodri Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what proportion of Civil Service staff of grade 5 and above within her Department (a) have spent their entire civil service career within her Department or its predecessor Departments, (b) have had secondments to (i) the private sector and (ii) other Departments and (c) have come from other Departments. [26038]

Clare Short: Of the 52 Senior Civil Service staff currently employed by DFID:


Non-governmental Organisations

Mr. Flight: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many projects funded under the UK aid programme are administered by non-governmental organisations. [23781]

Clare Short: About 1,800 UK NGO development projects are funded through the Joint Funding Scheme. A list giving details of these projects by country is available in the Library.

29 Jan 1998 : Column: 365

Indonesia

Mr. Flight: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on assistance given by her Department to Indonesia. [23780]

Clare Short: I refer the hon. Member to my answer given to the right hon. Member for Eddisbury (Sir A. Goodlad) on 21 January 1998, Official Report, columns 560-61.

Kenya

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what training has been provided to the Kenyan military, security and police units in riot control or internal security; and which private companies have been licensed to provide such training in the last three years. [25130]

Clare Short: A project to provide training from UK development assistance to the Kenyan Police was approved in 1995. The project has funded the training of trainers and helped to develop the syllabus for a Senior Command Course which is being delivered by Kenyan police trainers in Kenya. The syllabus includes a section on the management of civil disturbances based on the philosophy of minimum force and the rule of law. The first course was evaluated by an independent consultant in September 1997. Course participants were invited to submit recommendations to the Commissioner of Police following the course. A key theme identified by the trainees was the need to change from a police 'force' to a police 'service'. This was reinforced by recommendations for the wider introduction of community policing and a less confrontational approach to the management of civil disturbances.

In 1996, as part of the International Commanders Programme, three Kenyan Police Officers attended the Hounslow training centre for half a day to observe UK training methods in public order management. The objective was for the overseas officers to observe how the police response in this country is governed by the principles of minimum use of force within the context of policing by consent. This visit was complemented by a presentation by Bramshill Police Training College on the UK's approach to conflict resolution by peaceful means.

In 1997, an Assistant Commissioner of Police from Kenya attended the Strategic Command Course at Bramshill. This course focuses on the strategic management and leadership of a police service including a component dealing with the management of public order and civil disasters.

No training in riot control or internal security has been provided under development assistance to the Kenyan military or security units. No new financial commitments for police training in Kenya have been made under the development assistance programme since 1 May 1997.

International Development Association

Mr. Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps have been taken to lift the procurement restrictions placed on the International Development Association Interim Trust Fund following the US Administration's clearance of their arrears to the tenth replenishment of the IDA. [26916]

29 Jan 1998 : Column: 366

Clare Short: Under the arrangements agreed by the International Development Association (IDA) Deputies in February 1997, it was agreed that the use of uncommitted resources of SDR700 million ($1 billion) under the Interim Trust Fund would be determined following consideration of decisions by the United States authorities on the payment of the amount needed to clear the United States' arrears to the IDA tenth replenishment, and the first tranche of its pledge to the IDA eleventh replenishment.

The United States Foreign Appropriations Act, which became law on 26 November 1997, provides $1,034.5 million for IDA to clear IDA-10 arrears and for the first tranche of IDA-11 contributions. IDA Executive Directors therefore approved, on 23 December 1997, a recommendation from the World Bank's President to amend the Resolution establishing the Interim Trust Fund to lift the procurement restrictions against SDR700 million ($1 billion) of uncommitted ITF funds. Any credits funded from the SDR700 million will now be open to procurement from countries with the IDA contributors (including the US) and eligible borrowers.

EDUCATION AND EMPLOYMENT

New Deal Pathfinders

19. Mr. Hutton: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what assessment he has made of the progress of the new deal pathfinder in Barrow and Furness. [24200]

Mr. Andrew Smith: It is, of course, early days for this ambitious undertaking, but I am encouraged by the impressive start to New Deal Pathfinders including the one in Cumbria. In the first three weeks, 3,000 young people have had Gateway interviews including 166 in Cumbria. The response from young people and employers alike has been extremely positive and over 440 employer agreements have been signed in the Pathfinder Districts.

34. Mr. Rammell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will make a statement on the progress of the New Deal in Pathfinder areas. [24216]

Mr. Blunkett: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave earlier to my hon. Friend the Member for Lancaster and Wyre (Mr. Dawson).

Ms Atherton: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what stage preparations have reached for the private sector-led New Deal Pathfinder areas. [24187]

Mr. Andrew Smith: Private sector lead organisations have been selected for each area. Detailed delivery arrangements are now being developed in discussion with local partners, including the Employment Service. New Deal delivery will commence shortly in both of the localities involved.

29 Jan 1998 : Column: 367

Learning Disabilities

20. Mr. Rhodri Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what steps will be taken to ensure that young people with learning disabilities will be able to take advantage of the New Deal. [24201]

Mr. Alan Howarth: We are committed to ensuring that the New Deal meets the individual needs of all young people including those with learning and other disabilities. They are eligible for early entry, specialist help through tailored Gateway provision and support throughout the New Deal option of their choice.

Young Unemployed

21. Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what assistance New Deal participants aged over 25 years and unemployed for more than two years will receive during the period before their six month placement begins. [24202]

Mr. Andrew Smith: My right hon. Friend and I are currently considering arrangements to ensure that long term unemployed people receive help to prepare for the New Deal. We will announce details as soon as possible.

22. Dr. Brand: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many people aged between 18 and 24 years and unemployed for over six months, will benefit from the new deal. [24203]

Mr. Andrew Smith: It is not possible to provide precise estimates of the total numbers of young people who will require help from the New Deal. We will offer help to every 18 to 24-year-old who becomes eligible for the New Deal, and sufficient places will be available to meet this commitment. In October 1997, just over 120,000 18 to 24-year-olds had been claimant unemployed for six months or more; every month about 15,000 to 20,000 young people reach six months' unemployment.


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