Examination of Witnesses (Questions 40
MONDAY 29 JANUARY 2001
MP, MR DAVID
40. No, we did not receive that.
(Clare Short) We shall certainly supply you with one.
We delivered it but for some reason it was not made available
to Members for some hours and there was some sort of problem with
the arrangements in the House.
41. What has been the reaction of other bilateral
and multilateral donors to the White Paper and what has been the
reaction of NGOs? The fact that you have run out of copies and
have to reprint says something but have you had any reaction directly
(Clare Short) Yes, we have had a lot of feedback,
very, very high levels of interest, quite a lot of embarrassingly
effusive praise, very speedy distribution. The last White Paper
was put into French as well as English. This time we are going
to do more languages.
(Mr Batt) Spanish, Portuguese and German.
(Clare Short) My own view is that it is not so much
that we want people to sign up to every single proposal we make
but to get the more informed debate on how we shape globalisation
is really important and the more people read it and argue over
it the better I think. In terms of NGOs, we were pleased by the
response. I have had a meeting with BOAG directors, which was
very positive indeed. Obviously there is a bit of negative comment
from World Development Movement, but most of the others welcomed
it very strongly and then made some comments about some elements
of it. I am not trying to get everyone to sign up to every single
thing we say, but to get a positive informed debate about how
together we can get the international system to manage globalisation
which makes sure poor people in countries are not marginalised.
I think the White Paper is beginning to generate a more informed
positive debate. It is also circulating in quite big numbers in
developing countries, which is good. When I go I do seminars and
things to try to have that shared debate much more openly.
Chairman: I am sure that it will in fact
promote a great deal of debate, both in this country and overseas
and in the multilateral institutions. We are most interested and
should like to thank you and David Batt and Richard Manning who
have worked so hard with you to produce it. May I thank you for
coming and spending your time with us? We shall obviously go into
a lot more of these issues if time permits before we get to an
election. Thank you very much indeed.
4 Not printed. Back