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Food Requirements (Africa)

John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on the latest food aid requirements of (a) Zimbabwe, (b) Malawi, (c) Zambia, (d) Angola, (e) Mozambique, (f) Lesotho, (g) Swaziland and (f) Nambia. [75057]

Clare Short: The Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Vulnerability Assessment Committee of the Southern Africa Development Community recently estimated the following emergency cereal food requirements to the end of March 2003:

486,000 MT

237,000 MT

224,000 MT

36,000 MT

20,000 MT

In respect of Angola, the WFP appealed for funding to provide 305,598 MT to the end of 2003.

In respect of Namibia, the preliminary findings of a World Food Programme drought assessment indicate a high cereal deficit in the north of the country through to the end of April 2003. The Government of Namibia estimates that relief assistance of both food and non-food items will be required for 340,000 vulnerable people, and expects to be able to meet US$ 9.5 million of the estimated US$ 14 million cost from its own resources.


Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her Department's assessment is of the progress of reproductive health care in medical centres in Botswana. [74896]

Clare Short: Botswana has invested heavily in the delivery of basic services across the country, and is making significant progress in the provision of reproductive health care. The very high prevalence of HIV/AIDS will seriously affect progress towards all reproductive health goals. However, Botswana is making huge efforts to deliver good quality prevention programmes and medical care for those who are HIV+. This should help to strengthen reproductive health care systems more generally in the country's medical centres.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what percentage of UK assistance is spent on (a) care workers, (b) nurses, (c) medical centres and (d) HIV/AIDS programmes in Botswana. [74898]

Clare Short: The UK provides no direct support for care workers, nurses and medical centres in Botswana. Botswana, along with Lesotho, Swaziland and

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Namibia, benefits from a regional DFID HIV/AIDS programme worth over #7.5 million over five years. The programme has several strands, including strengthening the Ministry of Health's response in each country.

Developing Countries

John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions she has had with the (a) Serious Fraud Office, (b) National Criminal Intelligence Service and (c) Financial Services Authority regarding a sharing of expertise in the development of institutions to tackle corruption and money laundering within developing countries. [75075]

Clare Short: My Department is funding a dedicated post within the National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS) to provide technical assistance to developing countries, and countries in transition, for strengthening financial intelligence systems to combat money laundering. The post became operational in September 2002 and will be supported initially for three years. One responsibility of the post will be to develop training materials appropriate for use in developing countries.

DFID is also providing the necessary funds to enable NCIS to serve as the Secretariat for the Egmont Group, the international network of Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs). This support is for two years and commenced in October 2001. The Egmont Group plays a critical role in developing international collaboration in financial intelligence related to money laundering, including helping to establish new FIUs.

In May 2002, DFID organised a conference for representatives from 14 developing countries to provide advice on how they can seek assistance from the United Kingdom in investigating, freezing and confiscating assets of criminal origin that are believed to be located in this country. The Serious Fraud Office contributed significantly to this event.

John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what progress is being made towards the creation of a universal representative set of indicators for the determination of good governance in developing countries. [75071]

Clare Short: There is no universally agreed set of governance indicators. The Government is promoting the use of governance indicators where that will serve the objective of improving the quality of government in developing countries. We have supported the development of the governance assessments that will form part of the peer reviews of African countries in the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD). We have urged developing countries to improve the quality of their public expenditure and financial management, most recently at the annual meetings of the Washington institutions, and proposed the wider use of expenditure tracking indicators to measure their progress. These objectives and indicators are included in DFID's Service Delivery Agreement of its Public Service Agreement.


Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what funding the UK

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Government are providing to Nepalese authorities for a HIV/Aids strategy; and if she will make a statement. [75110]

Clare Short: Since January 2001 DFID has contributed #1.7 million to a short-term targeted response to stabilise and contain the concentrated HIV/AIDS epidemic among female sex workers, their clients and injecting drug users.

Part of this support has been used to assist with the development of the Government's national HIV/AIDS strategy which will set out priorities for actions over the next five years. The national HIV/AIDs strategy is expected to issue in the December 2002. I anticipate that DFID support to the strategy will amount to #15 million over 5 years or approximately 25 per cent. of the total cost of the national strategy.


Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what plans are in place to ensue that smallholder farmers in Malawi have access to adequate seed and fertiliser for the 2002–03 agricultural season. [74882]

Clare Short: The 2002–03 Targeted Inputs programme is supplying inputs to two million small-holder farmers across Malawi. This follows a 2002 winter input programme, which benefited 300,000 households. These programmes provide seed and fertiliser for maize and major legume crops. My Department is working with Government, other donors and civil society organisations to ensure co-ordination of these activities and additional programmes for inputs to crop diversification, tools for cultivation and irrigation.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions she has had with the Government of Malawi regarding plans about the decision to scale down the Universal Starter Pack programme. [74884]

Clare Short: The Starter Pack Scheme began in 1998–99 with universal provision of seeds and fertilisers to Malawian farmers. My Department agreed with the Government of Malawi that a Targeted Inputs Programme (TIP) should replace the Starter Pack Scheme from 2000/2001 to concentrate benefits on the poorest farmers. In 2002 the TIP has been doubled to provide for 2 million farming families as part of the co-ordinated response to the current food crisis. The number will be reviewed annually as part of a long-term National Food Security Strategy currently being developed by Government, donors and Civil Society.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her assessment is of the effectiveness of Food for Work programme in Malawi; and how many beneficiaries she estimates this has reached, since January 2002. [74879]

Clare Short: Programmes providing Food or Cash for work for the poor in Malawi are being supported by a number of agencies. Financial support is provided by the Malawi Government, donors and Civil Society Organisations. My Department plays a leading role in

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helping to ensure these programmes are effectively co-ordinated within a National Safety Nets Strategy. During 2002 DFID has supported a large number of government led initiatives aimed at the poorest members of rural communities, representing over 4 million days of employment.


Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will set out the allocation of development money allocated to the reconstruction of Afghanistan (a) in 2001–02, and (b) for each of the next three years; and if she will set out the total amount that has been spent for (i) 2001–02 and (ii) 2002–03. [75708]

Clare Short: At Tokyo in January we pledged #200 million over 5 years to Afghanistan, we did not divide this in to specific amounts for separate financial years. So far in the current financial year we have disbursed over #33 million of our budget of #55 million. In 2001–02 we gave approximately #60 million to Afghanistan for immediate humanitarian relief activities, including food aid and support for returning refugees. International support for such appeals has already provided some essential building blocks for longer term reconstruction: for example a polio vaccination programme has reached 6 million children and 3 million children are now back at school.

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