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Pharmaceutical Provision

14. Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps she is taking to improve pharmaceutical provision in the developing world. [62481]

Clare Short: The Government are committed to addressing the four key factors which are recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as affecting the provision of pharmaceuticals in the developing world. These are sustainable financing, affordable pricing, reliable health and supply systems and the rational selection and use of existing drugs.

On sustainable financing, we have pledged $200 million over five years to the Global fund to fight AIDS, TB and malaria. The fund will support increased coverage of proven interventions for these diseases by providing developing countries with resources to purchase key commodities, and strengthen systems to procure and deliver them.

The Working Group on Access to Medicines, which I chair, is working with the pharmaceutical industry and foundations, developing countries, the World Health Organisation, the World Trade Organisation and the European Commission to bring about more affordable pricing. The Group will report to the Prime Minister after its final meeting in July.

We have committed over £1 billion since 1997 to strengthening developing countries' health systems, building their capacity both to deliver medicines to the poor and to make effective choices about the selection and use of drugs.


15. Mr. Blunt: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether UK development assistance to Zimbabwe is administered by Zimbabwe Government authorities. [62482]

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Clare Short: UK development assistance is delivered through international, non-Government and parastatal organisations. Some commodities provided through our HIV/AIDS and emergency medical supplies programmes are distributed through public health service outlets. The bulk of our assistance is for food aid which is delivered outside Government channels.

Sustainable Development Summit

16. Mr. Tom Clarke: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what she aims to achieve at the world summit on sustainable development in Johannesburg in respect of reduction of poverty. [62483]

Clare Short: The UK's strategic objective is to make globalisation work for sustainable development, especially for the poorest. At the summit, the UK would like to build on other processes, including the Doha Development Agenda and Financing for Development conference in Monterrey, to focus the efforts of Governments, international institutions, business and civil society on delivering the sustainable development necessary to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. The summit is a critical opportunity to bring the development and environment movements together in a systematic attempt to both reduce poverty and pursue sustainable development. I also refer my right hon. Friend to the speech I gave on the summit in London on 20 June, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House.

UN Aid Target

19. Kevin Brennan: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what progress she has made since June 2001 towards meeting the UN target for percentage of gross domestic product devoted to international aid. [62486]

Clare Short: In 2001, UK official development assistance was 0.32 per cent. of gross national income (GNI)—up from 0.26 per cent. in 1997. The Government are committed to the target of raising development assistance to 0.7 per cent. of national income, and will significantly raise the amount of our development assistance and its share in national income, in the next spending round. This will be announced soon, and will cover the years up to 2005–06.

The UK played a major role in securing the commitment by the European Union at the Financing for Development conference in Monterrey to raise its average official development assistance as a share of national income to 0.39 per cent. (from 0.32 per cent.) by 2006. This will mean an extra $7 billion of official development assistance per year from Europe.

EU Development Assistance

21. Mr. David Stewart: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on her role in achieving a sharper poverty focus in EU development assistance. [62489]

Clare Short: DFID has worked hard since 1997 to improve the overall effectiveness of EC development assistance in contributing to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals by improving its poverty focus and quality. There have been some steps in response

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to our efforts to reform EC development assistance. We are pressing the EC to pursue its reform efforts vigorously in order to implement the November 2000 EC Development Policy, which for the first time makes poverty reduction the central objective of EC development programmes. We are also working for agreement that a much greater share of EC aid should be allocated to low income countries where it will have the greatest impact on poverty reduction. In 2000, only 38 per cent. of EC aid was spent in low-income countries compared to 70 per cent. in 1990. Last year we secured a substantial increase in the external actions budget for Asia. This year we hope to see the budget share for Asia maintained and further increased where possible.

Great Lakes

22. Ann McKechin: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what Britain's contribution is towards the UN OCHA appeal for aid across the Great Lakes region. [62490]

Clare Short: DFlD's contribution to the 2002 OCHA appeals for the Great Lakes are as follows:


OCHA Emergency Humanitarian Initiative500,000
OCHA Coordination400,000
Office for the High Commission of Human Rights250,000
UN Security400,000
UN OCHA Emergency Humanitarian Initiative(1)500,000

(1) Part of the United Nations Flash Appeal for the Goma eruption.

Former Yugoslavia

23. Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what plans she has to increase aid to former Yugoslavia for reconstruction. [62491]

Clare Short: From 1991 to 2000, the UK's total contribution to the former Yugoslavia, comprising our share of EC funding and bilateral aid, including humanitarian aid, was £972 million.

EC aid committed to the states of the former Yugoslavia through the CARDS and other programmes between 2000 and 2006 is £3.19 billion, of which the UK share, which is funded from DFlD's budget, is £600 million. In addition, we are providing support to economic and social reform through our bilateral programmes, through which we are providing £16.1 million this year. We also contribute to the other multilateral agencies assisting the states of the former Yugoslavia, including the World bank and EBRD.

We do not propose to increase these commitments.


25. Valerie Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development when she expects a response from the Civil Aviation Authority in respect of its assessment of Tanzania's military air traffic control system. [62493]

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Clare Short: The International Civil Aviation Organisation has produced a report looking at the Government of Tanzania's (GoT) civil air navigation requirements. This is now being considered by the GoT and we are awaiting their response.


26. Mr. John Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussion she has had with the Ministry of Defence about co-ordinating activities in supporting nation building in Afghanistan. [62494]

Clare Short: A reformed security sector is vital to the future stability of Afghanistan.

My Department, in consultation with both the Ministry of Defence and Foreign and Commonwealth Office, is contributing to the creation of accountable national military and police forces subject to the rule of law and under central and civilian control; anti-narcotics activities; and the re-establishment of an appropriate judicial system. The UK has in principle committed £22 million to this process for this financial year. My Department has worked closely with British forces serving in the International Security Assistance Force on the identification and implementation of quick impact projects in Kabul and its environs. These projects contribute to stability, thus allowing political processes and development activities to take root.

Health Services

27. Mr. Khabra: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on her support for basic health services for poor people. [62495]

Clare Short: My Department is engaged in efforts to strengthen developing countries' health systems to deliver effective services for poor people and to address the priority health problems of the poor. Since 1997, the Government have committed over £1 billion to health systems strengthening. The UK has also committed $200 million over five years to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and malaria, which will help pay for increased coverage of proven interventions for these diseases and some associated health systems strengthening to ensure drugs and commodities are delivered safely, effectively and equitably.

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