Previous Section Index Home Page

10 Feb 2005 : Column 1640W—continued

In-house Magazines

Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much has been spent on the production of in-house magazines in the Department in each year since 1997. [213631]

Hilary Benn: DFID has an electronic equivalent of an in-house" magazine though our internal Intranet" since 2004. This replaced a printed newsletter, which had been defunct since the late 1990s. The costs of the electronic magazine are subsumed within the running costs of the Intranet team and could not be separated out without disproportionate cost.


Tom Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what assessment his Department has made of how many people have returned to live permanently in Fallujah since the recent military action in the city; and if he will make a statement; [213451]

(2) how many people living in Fallujah have access to water and electricity; [213452]

(3) how many hospitals are open and treating patients in Fallujah; and if he will make a statement; [213453]

(4) how many schools in Fallujah are open and are teaching pupils; and if he will make a statement; [213485]

(5) what recent visits have been made by officials from his Department to Fallujah; when each visit took place; what reports have been sent to him following such visits; and if he will make a statement. [213494]

Hilary Benn: The Multi-National Force Iraq estimates that around 30,000 people have now returned to live in Fallujah.

Safe drinking water is available to everyone living and working in Fallujah from standing water tanks which are filled daily. Bottled water is also available for all citizens at humanitarian assistance sites. Piped water supplies are being restored.

Reconstruction of power transmission and distribution is continuing. Mains electricity and street lighting have been reconnected in some areas. However, most residences are not connected. Power is being supplied to hospitals from stand-alone generators.

Fallujah general hospital and the Jordanian hospital on the outskirts of Fallujah are open and treating patients. Three primary care clinics and one mobile clinic are also in operation.

15 schools are open in Fallujah, with around 670 pupils as of 7 February. The Iraqi Ministry of Education is increasing efforts to publicise the opening of schools in order to encourage greater attendance.

DFID staff and consultants based in Baghdad have been visiting Fallujah regularly since military operations concluded, to participate in weekly co-ordination meetings and monitor the situation on the ground. The first meeting in Fallujah attended by DFID took place on 6 December and the most recent on
10 Feb 2005 : Column 1641W
7 February. DFID humanitarian and conflict advisers have also visited the city. Reporting and analysis based on these visits are provided regularly to London.

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment his Department has made of levels of mental illness in Iraq (a) before and (b) since March 2003; and what assistance his Department is providing for mental health services in Iraq. [214420]

Mr. Gareth Thomas: In its 'Health in Iraq' report of September 2004, the Iraqi Ministry of Health (MoH) states that accurate data on mental disorders are scarce. However, the MoH notes that clinical impressions suggest a substantial problem, especially in relation to post-traumatic stress. It also notes the lack of mental health services and that new approaches to community mental health are needed. A national workshop, conducted by the MoH in June 2004, discussed priorities for mental health promotion and strengthening of services.

Improving all types of health services in Iraq will take time. However, steady progress is being made. The MoH has produced Planning Guidelines for 2005, with support from donors. The UN and World Bank managed multi-donor trusts funds, to which DFID has contributed £70 million, provide support to the health sector. DFID has also provided technical assistance to the MoH, directly and through the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment his Department has made of the numbers of livestock owned by Fallujah residents that were killed in recent military action in Fallujah; and what steps his Department is taking to assist residents of Fallujah who have lost their livelihood as a result of military action. [214510]

Mr. Gareth Thomas: Information about numbers of livestock killed in Fallujah is not available.

Since the end of hostilities in Fallujah, DFID has been providing technical advice to the Iraqi Government's Fallujah Core Coordination Group (CCG) which has led on humanitarian and reconstruction work in Fallujah. The CCG is working closely with military forces and local leaders to ensure that compensation payments are made and essential services restored to enable normal life and economic activity to resume. Financial resources for reconstruction are being made available from the Iraqi budget and United States' sources.

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to his answer of 2 February 2005, Official Report, column 911W, on Iraq, whether his Department has undertaken research to assess whether cash payments to the poor and unemployed rise at a similar level as prices for food, in circumstances where cash payments have replaced food rationing; what assessment he has made of whether this will happen in Iraq; and if he will make a statement. [215172]

Hilary Benn: DFID has not undertaken research specifically into the issue referred to in the question. DFID is at present researching best practice towards
10 Feb 2005 : Column 1642W
social welfare protection measures generally in developing countries, and aims to produce a policy paper in October 2005.

In Iraq, DFID is providing technical assistance to help prepare for future decisions by the Iraqi Government on the reform of the public distribution system for food. Our aim is to enable the Iraqi Government to establish a welfare system targeted at the poor and unemployed, which ensures that families in need are properly supported while removing the economic distortions and inefficiency created by the present system. The actual levels of cash welfare payments at any time will be for the Iraqi Government to decide in view of prevailing circumstances.


Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the total expenditure by his Department on (a) advertising and (b) advertising and publicity was in (i) 1996–97, (ii) 1997–98 and (iii) 2003–04; and what the estimate of cost of each will be in (A) 2004–05, (B) 2005–06, (C) 2006–07 and (D) 2007–08. [211660]

Hilary Benn: Publicity forms part of our effort to raise awareness and understanding of international development issues in the UK. DFID does not hold a separate advertising budget. The majority of advertising relates to recruitment advertising in newspapers and journals.

Expenditure on publicity was as follows:
(i) 1996–97579,916
(ii) 1997–98399,755
(iii) 2003–04708,580

Estimated expenditure on publicity for 2004–05 is £1 million.

In addition, a one-off publication, the 'Rough Guide To A Better World' has been produced in 2004–05. This innovative project aims to raise awareness of international development and the efforts to which everyone can contribute to improve the lives of people in developing countries. The cost of this publication has been shared between the budgets of Publicity and Development Awareness. The total cost of this production is expected to be £900,000 of which Publicity has contributed £500,000.

Due to reorganisation of the Human Resources Division we do not hold figures for recruitment advertising for the period 1996–98. Advertising expenditure for 2003–04 was £339,173. Estimated expenditure for 2004–05 is £600,000 due to a larger number of posts being advertised.

Budget allocation figures for 2005–08 for publicity and advertising are subject to discussion and are therefore not yet available.
10 Feb 2005 : Column 1643W

Next Section Index Home Page