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Ethiopia

Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much (a) funding for

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humanitarian assistance and (b) food her Department is providing to Ethiopia (i) bilaterally and (ii) through the World Food Programme. [82076]

Clare Short: So far we have made food and non-food humanitarian commitments of some £12.3 million in calendar year 2002 for Ethiopia. The food aid element of this figure is £2.4 million, which is made up of a £1.4 million bilateral contribution through Save the Children UK and £1 million through the World Food Programme. In addition we have contributed to the ICRC 2002 Appeal, which is delivering food aid in Afar region. We have also contributed to a GOAL intervention to provide supplementary food to malnourished children in Afar and are supporting Medecins sans Frontieres in similar work in Amhara region.

In October the EC made available 23 million for 97,000 metric tonnes of food aid to cover food needs until the end of 2002. In addition to the food aid provision the EC has approved a 4 million programme of humanitarian aid for the victims of drought. Nearly 20 per cent. of the EC support is funded by the UK.

We are keeping under close review the need to provide more food aid in coming weeks.

EU Aid

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what volume of aid in the EU's aid budget has been unallocated in each of the last five years for (a) Africa, (b) Central America, (c) the Caribbean, (d) South America, (e) the Middle East, (f) South Asia, (g) the Far East, (h) the Central Asian Republics, and (i) Europe; and if she will make a statement on underspend in the EU aid budget. [80605]

Clare Short: The European Commission organises its budget through annual commitment and payment appropriations. Regional budget lines for these funds are set out in the following table. Unallocated funds refers to any part of the initial budget that has not been committed to a project within the financial year.

The first of the following tables gives information about all overseas development assistance from the European Commission Budget for the areas requested. This information has been taken from the reports of the European Court of Auditors and appears as in the reports.

The second table gives information regarding payments from the European Development Fund (EDF). This is a non-budget voluntary fund for development programmes in Africa, Caribbean and Pacific countries which operates on a multiannual basis. The information provided has been taken from the 2001 Court of Auditors Report.

The Commission has recognised the importance of resolving the problems caused by outstanding commitments in Category 4 of the budget. It is taking steps to progressively reduce this backlog within the

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overall reform context. This is proving to be a difficult task. We expect improvements to show once the deconcentration process has reached the majority of

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delegations. It is important that increased rates of spend are matched with evidence of improved effectiveness and impact.

Amounts and proportion of total European Commission aid unallocated between 1997 and 2001

1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
Budge line and descriptionAmount unallocated% of totalAmount Unallocated% of totalAmount unallocated% of totalAmount unallocated% of totalAmount unallocated% of total
B7—3 Co-operation with developing countries in Asia, Latin America and southern Africa, including South Africa4.6137.25190.022103.31175.38
B7—4 Co-operation with Mediterranean third countries and the Middle East22.7273.3665.06137.2120.00
B7—5 Co-operation with countries of central and eastern Europe, the new independent States and Central Asia31.3246.320.000.0038.73

Note:

This table gives figures for external aid from the European Commission Fund. This does not include the EFF.

Amounts in the table are given in millions of euros for all years from 1999–2001. For 1998 and 1997 amounts are given in millions of Ecu.

Source:

European Court of Auditors Report annual reports for the financial years 1997–2001.


Primary and secondary commitments from the EDF from 1997–2001 (euro million)

YearPrimary commitmentsSecondary commitmentsAmount unallocated Percentage of total
199760095000
19982,3002,05025011
19992,7001,4001,30048
20003,7502,3501,40037
20011,5502,25000

Note:

Figures have been rounded to the nearest 50 million.

Source:

European Court of Auditors Report for the financial year 2001


EU Aid Projects

Tony Worthington: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development when the European Union plans to issue calls for projects in 2002 for budget line B7–6312 Aid for Population and Reproductive Health in Developing Countries. [82807]

Clare Short: Calls for proposals for budget line B7–6312 will be issued by the end of January 2003.

Sierra Leone

John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assistance she has allocated for (a) police training, (b) investment in security communications equipment, and (c) police vehicles in Sierra Leone. [82659]

Clare Short: We assist the Sierra Leone Police through the Commonwealth Community Safety and Security Project (CCSSP), which has been carrying out extensive police reform since August 2000 with the aim of improving safety and security and respect for the rights of people, especially the poor, by re-establishing the Sierra Leone Police as an effective and accountable civilian police service. This project has allocated £1.5 million to provide training for over 9,000 officers. Two senior officers have successfully completed the Strategic Command Course at Bramshill Police Staff College, and 28 officers will have successfully completed the International Commanders Programme there by the end of 2002. With the exception of these two courses, all training has been carried out within Sierra Leone.

We have provided £1.25 million for an extensive nationwide police communications network to be installed based on VHP and HF technology. Major cities and towns are linked over HF radio. Over 1,000 personal and vehicle radios are in use, and a modern command and control centre has been developed in Freetown. The system is supported by expert advice and training, spares supply and maintenance procedures.

We have allocated £3.5 million for 155 Land Rovers, 158 motor cycles, 47 medium carriers, 24 large carriers, 10 ambulances/closed vans and 10 cars for the Sierra Leone Police. In addition spare parts for these vehicles and extensive support has been given in areas of fleet management, fuel control and mechanical training.

John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps she is taking to tackle the funding shortfall of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Sierra Leone. [82660]

Mr. Rammell: I have been asked to reply.

We are concerned by the shortfall in funding for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The UK has contributed some £500,000, including £250,000 in set-up

costs.

We have pressed other donors to support its work; at the World Bank Consultative Group Meeting on Sierra Leone in Paris on 13–14 November.

PRIME MINISTER

Honours

Andrew George: To ask the Prime Minister (1) if he will list the names of people within the Honours Nomination and Ceremonial Units who (a) make

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decisions, (b) make recommendations, and (c) are regularly consulted in respect of gallantry and honours awards; [80757]

The Prime Minister: I am responsible for recommending civilian gallantry and honours awards to Her Majesty The Queen. The George Cross Committee recommends gallantry awards to me. The Committee is chaired by the Head of the Home Civil Service; its other members are The Queen's Private Secretary and my appointments Secretary. The Secretary of the Committee puts forward recommendations to the Committee.

For honours, I am assisted by assessment committees, whose members include outside experts as well as civil servants. The membership of these committees has remained confidential as under successive administrations. These committees make careful and informed judgements on the merits of all cases put to them. Lists of awards made are published in the London Gazette and are usually fully described in the media.

The Ceremonial Secretariat incorporates both the Honours Unit and the Nominations Unit. The Secretariat is headed by a senior civil servant, Gay Catto, who is supported by a team of civil servants within the Cabinet Office.


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