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International Aid Assistance

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what her estimate is of UK spending on international aid assistance as a percentage of gross national product, in each year from 1980–81 to 2004–05 (planned); and if she will make a statement. [95831]

Clare Short: The record of UK spending on development assistance as a percentage of gross national income since 1980 is as follows:


Her Majesty's Government committed in the 2002 spending review to reach 0.40 per cent. of GNI by 2005–06. We are also committed to reaching the UN target of 0.7 per cent. of GNI for oda, but no timetable has been set for achieving this. Levels of oda after 2005 will depend on the outcome of future spending reviews.

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Patrick Mercer: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what measures are being taken to make the oil for food programme in Iraq more effective. [95166]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: I have been asked to reply.

We continue to do all we can to make the Oil For Food (OFF) programme more effective in order to improve the humanitarian situation for the Iraqi people. The Goods Review List (GRL), a UK initiative implemented in July 2002, has significantly improved the flow of civilian goods to Iraq. Only military-related goods are now subject to review by the UN Sanctions Committee. But the Iraqi regime regularly attempts to hamper the programme. It has, for example, failed to spend over $3.8 billion of humanitarian funds lying unallocated in the UN account, and has delayed delivery of up to $2.3 billion worth of goods already approved by the UN.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether she will make it her policy to fund contingency preparations by humanitarian agencies in the event of war with Iraq. [96131]

Clare Short: My Department's regular funding to the UN and other humanitarian agencies includes provision for emergency preparedness for a variety of contingencies across the world. Following recent discussions with UN OCHA and other donors, I am supplementing this funding with an additional £3.5 million contribution to support UN humanitarian contingency planning for Iraq. This money will be allocated to a range of UN agencies likely to include UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, WHO and UNSECOORD. UN agencies are planning for a variety of contingencies. We are keeping this situation under regular review and maintain close contact with UN agencies and other donors.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many third country nationals she estimates will leave Iraq in the event of military conflict, broken down by country of origin. [96163]

Clare Short: Refugee agencies have made a range of estimates, based on different scenarios, for the number of third country nationals who could be affected in the event of conflict in Iraq. If there is a conflict, we will work with others to minimise massive movements of people and provide support through the UN for those in need.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what level of funding the UNHCR has provided for support to Iraqi refugees in Iran in each of the last 12 years; and what the United Kingdom contribution has been in each year. [96168]

Clare Short: UNHCR fund specific refugee groups or specific regions when donors earmark their funding accordingly. If no earmarked funding is available for

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specific programmes, UNHCR use funds earmarked for that region, or, if no regional funds have been earmarked, from completely unearmarked funds.

UNHCR's earmarked funding for Iraqis in Iran since 1990 is as follows:


There has been no earmarked funding for Iraqis in Iran since 1992.

UNHCR's earmarked funding for south-west Asia, which may have partly been used to fund Iraqis in Iran, is as follows:


None of the above funds were provided by the UK.

DFID is not currently providing funding to UNHCR for the Iraqi refugees in Iran. DFID's funding has been channelled through the AMAR International Charitable Foundation, a London based NGO.

DFID has provided £2.25 million in funding to AMAR over the last three years in support of their health care and water and sanitation interventions to the 95,000 Marsh Arabs and refugees. Further support for the future is under consideration. Support has focused on the provision of medical care and the improvement of sanitary conditions.

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment her Department has made of the adequacy of (a) shelter and (b) food for Iraqi citizens fleeing to (i) Turkey, (ii) Saudi Arabia, (iii) Kuwait, (iv) Jordan and (v) Syria in next three months. [96167]

Clare Short: Responsibility for such assessments rests with UNHCR and WFP, who are engaging in planning for a range of contingencies. My Department is in regular contact with these and other UN agencies, and I am confident their planning is as good as it can be given the uncertainties and difficulties involved.

Ivory Coast

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment she has made of the political situation in the Ivory Coast, with particular reference to the recent peace deal. [96149]

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Clare Short: Her Majesty's Government welcomes the agreement signed by the Ivorian political forces in Linas-Marcoussis on 24 January 2003and approved by the subsequent Conference of Heads of State, which we consider provides a basis for a peaceful resolution to the crisis. However the situation in Cote d'lvoire remains unstable and it is vital that the different sides take the necessary steps to implement the agreement without delay, to avoid further deterioration. We are continuing to monitor the humanitarian impacts of the situation closely.

Jammu and Kashmir (Funding)

Mr. Tony Clarke: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions her Department has had with (a) the administration in Jammu and Kashmir and (b) the Government of India regarding funding by her Department for projects in Jammu and Kashmir. [95983]

Clare Short: When I visited India in December last year I discussed the development needs of the state of Jammu and Kashmir with the Minister of External Affairs, Mr. Yashwant Sinha, and the Minister of Finance, Mr. Jaswant Singh. My officials have since written and spoken to officials from the Ministry of Finance, emphasising my Department's willingness to support the social and economic development of the state. The most recent of these meetings took place on 7 February, when it was agreed that they should meet with members of a special task force that has been set up by the Government of India to co-ordinate international assistance to the state.

In December last year officials from my Department met with the Finance and the Planning Secretaries of the state. In January the Head of DFID's India Office accompanied the British high commissioner on a visit to Jammu and Kashmir and met with senior politicians and officials. DFID officials have subsequently met with the Resident Commissioner for Jammu and Kashmir in New Delhi.


Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent representations she has made to the Government of Botswana regarding their policy of relocating San Bushmen of the Kalahari. [96158]

Clare Short: The British High Commissioner to Botswana most recently discussed the relocation of San communities with the Government of Botswana in December 2002. This was the most recent in a series of discussions in which we have consistently expressed concerns over this issue.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what conditions were imposed on Botswana with regard to the receipt of aid from the EU for the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR); and what assessment her Department has made of these conditions. [96159]

Clare Short: Conditions for release of EC resources are agreed between the EC and recipient governments for individual projects and programmes, and normally relate to project implementation issues. The EC/

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Botswana Wildlife Conservation and Management Programme has two objectives: (i) conservation and sustainable use of natural resources in four protected areas and adjacent wildlife management areas, and (ii) to enable local communities to develop sustainable use of wildlife and natural resources within these areas. The programme contains one element which foresees possible activities in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR). The Programme began only recently and the EC advise that so far all conditions have been met.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much aid the EU has provided to support the Central Kalahari Game Reserve in each of the last five years. [96160]

Clare Short: In the past five years the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR) has been the object of two EU environmental programmes: (i) the Wildlife Conservation and Utilisation in central and southern Botswana started in 1995. It aims to achieve a sustainable pattern of natural resources utilisation in four protected areas in central/southern Botswana, including the CKGR, through support to management, infrastructure, equipment, training and community projects. The EU contribution is Euro6.500.000; (ii) the Wildlife Conservation and Management Programme began in September 2002. Its aims are summarised in my reply to question 4847. The EU contribution is Euro14.000.000. It is not possible to break these two figures down to an annual expenditure purely on the CKGR.

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