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Written Answers to Questions

Thursday 7 April 2005


Departmental Budget

Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what the planned (a) capital and (b) resource budget for his Department is for 2011–12. [223435]

Mr. Hain: Resource and capital departmental expenditure limit (DEL) budgets beyond 2007–08 will, as normal, be determined in future spending reviews.

Public Transport (Disabled Access)

Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions he has had with the National Assembly for Wales Secretary for Transport on disabled access on Welsh public transport. [224100]

Mr. Touhig: My right hon. Friend and I have regular discussions with Assembly Ministers on matters affecting Wales. Under the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 transport providers must take reasonable steps to remove physical barriers, to make their services accessible. As part of the Assembly's longer distance bus and coach strategy' a number of long-distance routes now operate accessible buses, as do many local services: buses with poor accessibility are to be phased out by 2017, and rail vehicles by 2020.


Millennium Ecosystem Assessment"

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment he has made of the implications for his Department of the study, Millennium Ecosystem Assessment", published by the United Nations and the World Bank on 30 March; what plans he has to liaise with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on the impact of the report on the implementation of climate change and sustainable development strategies; and if he will make a statement. [224695]

Hilary Benn: The Department for International Development (DFID) welcomes the launch of Millennium Ecosystem Assessment" (MA). The report provides a useful and comprehensive overview of recent trends in ecosystem function. The detailed findings of the MA will further strengthen the evidence base for addressing the linkages between poverty and environment. This includes specific consideration of the role of ecosystems in supporting the livelihoods of the poor and the implications of changes in ecosystem function for achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
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DFID officials have reviewed the main findings of the MA Synthesis Report. They welcome the MA's detailed overview of the status of ecosystems and the consideration of change under different scenarios. DFID's interests primarily relate to policies and actions that respond to environmental challenges while bringing financial and livelihood benefits to the poor. The MA responses of particular interest to DFID include those on: strengthening the integration of environmental considerations in development co-operation; developing markets and economic based incentives for more sustainable ecosystem use; and the research and application of appropriate technologies. This will support development and improvement of tools to better integrate environmental considerations into development co-operation. DFID is already active in many of these areas, for example in taking forward our commitments to support developing countries to integrate environmental considerations into Poverty Reduction Strategies; and work on payment for ecosystem services.

DFID will encourage the agencies involved in commissioning the report, including the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the Secretariats of the Conventions (in particular the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Framework Convention on Climate Change), to use the MA's analyses and results to inform their policy and implementation work.

DFID maintains strong working relationships with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, especially in the areas of climate change, biodiversity and sustainable development. DFID officials will continue to work closely with DEFRA on these issues, taking account of the relevant findings of the MA.

Aid Suspension

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development in relation to which countries the UK has suspended aid in the past four years; and what the reasons were in each case. [224693]

Hilary Benn: The only instance since 2001–02 where the UK has suspended its bilateral aid programme is in Zimbabwe. DFID, in line with most other donors, suspended traditional development assistance programmes in late 2001 because of the poor policies of the Government and their unwillingness to engage constructively with the international community on crucial issues of political and economic governance. Our assistance has been confined to humanitarian assistance and support for civil society and United Nations programmes to tackle HIV and AIDS.

Departmental Budget

Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the planned (a) capital and (b) resource budget for his Department is for 2011–12. [223442]

Hilary Benn: I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by the Financial Secretary to the Treasury on 4 April 2005, Official Report, column 1170W.
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Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many attacks there have been on British forces in Iraq in each month since April 2003. [210612]

Mr. Ingram [holding answer 24 January 2005]: I have been asked to reply.

The best data available giving the breakdown of attacks against UK forces are set out in the table:

Consolidated data are not available for April and May 2003.


Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will make a statement on the outcome of his Department's work with the World Health Organisation on the launch of the Global Tuberculosis Control Report. [224809]

Hilary Benn: The Global Tuberculosis Control Report was launched on 23 March by the Director General of the World Health Organisation at a press briefing in London co-hosted by DFID. The Report for 2005 says that global Tuberculosis (TB) prevalence has declined by more than 20 per cent. since 1990 and that incidence is now falling or stable in five of the six regions of the world. The exception is Africa, where TB is one of the most common illnesses among people with AIDS. TB incidence has tripled since 1990 in countries with high HIV prevalence and are still rising across the continent at a rate of 3–4 per cent. annually.

DFID supports bilateral TB programmes in some countries and sector support in others. On 23 March, DFID also pledged £5 million over the next three years to the Stop TB partnership, this will provide technical support to expand TB programmes in recipient
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countries. The UK will work through our presidencies of the G8, and the EU to secure the international commitment needed to scale up TB control. DFID has commenced a consultation on TB with NGOs, academic institutions and others with expertise on how the UK can best do this.

World Bank

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will list the World Bank projects and programmes which his Department is co-financing relating to (a) privatisation, (b) public sector restructuring and (c) agricultural liberalisation in (i) Mozambique, (ii) Uganda, (iii) Ghana, (iv) Tanzania, (v) India, (vi) Jamaica and (vii) Kyrgyzstan. [224692]

Hilary Benn: DFID is currently co-financing with the World Bank the following projects/programmes in the areas of privatisation, public sector restructuring and agricultural liberalisation:
CountryProject/Programme title
GhanaLand Administration Project
GhanaMulti-Donor Budget Support Programme
GhanaSupport to Government of Ghana Private Sector Development Strategy and Trade Programme
IndiaAndhra Pradesh Economic and Public Sector Reform Project
JamaicaNo projects/programmes currently being co-financed
KyrgyzstanRural Water Supply and Sanitation Project
MozambiqueReform of the Public Service
MozambiqueSupport to Reforms in Public Expenditure Management
TanzaniaSelective Accelerated Salary Enhancement Project
TanzaniaIntegrated Support to the Public Service Reform Programme
TanzaniaCommission for Parastatal Sector Reform
UgandaDecentralisation Support Programme

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