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Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what development programmes and financial support have been provided to Nepal in the last five years; and if she will make a statement. [57178]

Clare Short: UK development assistance to Nepal in each of the last five years is as follows:



The figure for 2001–02 is provisional

This development assistance has been spent on programmes to:

The worsening conflict situation in Nepal has restricted some development activities, though work is continuing in many areas. Over the past six months my officials have been developing a number of short-term initiatives to deliver development benefits to people in conflict-affected areas.

Illegal Logging

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what financial support she gives to developing countries to help them combat illegal logging. [55292]

Clare Short [holding answer 16 May 2002]: Worldwide we spend just under £20 million from DFID's country programme budgets on helping countries improve their forest governance and move towards more equitable and sustainable forest management. This strengthens the capacity of Governments, NGOs and local communities to enforce forest law.

Roughly 5 per cent. of this support specifically targets better documentation and understanding of the problem of illegal logging, as well as the establishment of improved monitoring and transparency in countries.

Over the past three years we have also contributed a total of about £450,000 from our central policy budget to supporting global dialogue and information exchange on the underlying causes of deforestation, some of which is caused by illegal logging, and helping countries come together to agree policy action.

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We are providing £300,000 to Global Forest Watch, which is based in the World Resources Institute. Last year we were active in sponsoring, jointly with the US State Department and the World Bank institute, a regional ministerial conference on forest law enforcement and governance in Indonesia, where the private sector, East Asia Governments and civil society came together to generate political will and agree policy action. We contributed £39,464 to the costs. We will jointly sponsor similar initiatives in Africa and Latin America over the coming two years.


Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will place in the Library the report from UNMAS on their programme of visits to sites where cluster bombs were dropped in Afghanistan; and if she will make a statement. [57699]

Clare Short [holding answer 20 May 2002]: We understand from the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) that there is no specific report currently available on its programme of visits. Field survey data is currently being collected on behalf of UNMAS as access becomes available. This information is available to humanitarian demining personnel in Afghanistan on the Mine Action Centre for Afghanistan (MACA) database.

Middle East

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the UK contribution to European Union and World Bank activities in Israel has been for each of the past 10 years (a) by monetary value, (b) in terms of percentage of activity total and (c) in terms of percentage of her Department's annual spending total; and if she will make a statement. [58294]

Clare Short: Israel's level of economic development is relatively high. Israel is not therefore a recipient of UK, EC or World Bank development assistance.


Unpaid Advisers

Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to the answer of 10 April, Official Report, column 6W, what the (a) names and (b) responsibilities are of unpaid advisers who have assisted the work of his Department since June 1997 but are not included in the Cabinet Office's annual report 'Task Forces, Ad Hoc Advisory Groups and Reviews 2000–01'. [57035]

Mr. Paul Murphy: My Department came into existence on 1 July 1999. It has not had any assistance from unpaid advisers.


Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what the estimated level of losses to fraud and corruption was in (a) his Department's Vote 1 budget and (b) his Department's Vote 2 budget for (i) 1999–2000 and (ii) 2000–01. [54706]

Mr. Paul Murphy: No losses have been identified for these years.

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Access to Information

Tony Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the administrative manuals and internal guidance which his Department has made public as required by Part 1 of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information; and which of these were first made available after May 1997. [45443]

Mr. Paul Murphy: The Wales Office has very few executive functions and so has published no supplementary material. It is producing a Publication Scheme under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.



Affordable Housing

15. Ms Oona King: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what measures he is taking to increase the supply of affordable housing in London. [55541]

Ms Keeble: Increasing the supply of affordable housing is a key priority of the Government, and the problem in London is of particular concern.

The Government has recently announced that the Housing Corporation's Approved Development Programme (ADP) allocation for London will be £545 million. This includes an additional £95 million which will fund an extra 1,363 units. London will also receive £146 million of the Starter Home Initiative funding, which will help 4,600 of London's key workers.

Abandoned Properties

10. Dr. Ladyman: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what plans he has to help local authorities deal with privately owned abandoned properties. [55536]

Ms Keeble: The Government are taking action to deal with empty and abandoned properties in areas of both high and low demand. The measures in place, which are set out in detail in our recent response to the Select Committee report on empty homes, include: funding the Empty Homes Agency to help local authorities bring empty properties back into use; reforming private sector renewal legislation; and introducing pathfinder projects, backed by £25 million of investment, to tackle low demand where the problem is most acute.

Parish Councils

11. Mr. Robathan: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what recent representations he has received concerning the new arrangements for registration of interests by parish councillors. [55537]

25. Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what recent representations he has had from parish councils about the introduction of the new code of conduct. [55554]

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Dr. Whitehead: Since the New Year, there have been 268 representations received by my Department about the model code of conduct for parishes.

Mr. Mark Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what measures the Government are undertaking to encourage public participation in parish councils. [57328]

Dr. Whitehead: The Government are encouraging public engagement with, and participation in local democracy across, all tiers of local government, including parish councils.

The consultation paper on Quality Parish and Town councils took forward a key aim of the rural White Paper "Our Countryside: the Future—a Fair Deal for Rural England", that is to help parish councils develop a new role in giving the communities they serve the opportunity to help shape their future. In order to gain quality status, we are proposing that parish councils will need to pass six tests, for instance to show that their seats have been filled by members who have been democratically elected and that they are holding a minimum number of open council meetings.

The Government are also providing £5 million to help 1,000 rural communities develop town or village plans that will set out the facilities and services they need.

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