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20 Jul 2005 : Column 1845W—continued

Departmental Purchasing

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will list the companies from which his Department has purchased goods and services of a total value above £1 million in each of the last three years; and how much was spent in respect of each company. [11730]

Mr. Thomas: All contracts issued by DFID Headquarters are published on the DFID website. Significant IT purchases are made through the Office of Government Commerce (OGC) framework agreements and reported separately to the OGC. Collating expenditure figures for all DFID Departments would incur a disproportionate cost.

Departmental Staff

David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many full-time equivalents have worked for the Department for each of the last five financial years for which figures are available. [11486]

Mr. Thomas: The number of home civil service (HCS) full time equivalent staff that have worked for DFID in each of the past five years is as follows:
Number of HCS staff
20041,780
20031,600
20021,520
20011,260
20001,210

The figures given above, at 1 April each year, are published in Table C of Civil Service Statistics 2004—copies of which are available in the Libraries of the House. The comparable figure for 1 April 2005 is 1,830.

In addition to permanent and pensionable HCS staff, DFID also employs a number of staff on fixed term contracts (FTC) to work on development assistance programmes in the UK and overseas, as well as a large number of locally engaged staff, or staff appointed in country (SAIC), to work in its network of overseas offices. The corresponding figures for these categories of staff are as follows:
FTCSAIC
200540990
2004150910
2003260870
2002360740
2001540420
2000600400




Note:
All of the quoted figures above are rounded to the nearest 10.




Equatorial Guinea

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what aid his Department gave to Equatorial Guinea in 2004–05; and if he will make a statement; [12258]
 
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(2) if he will make a statement on the education system in Equatorial Guinea; [12180]

(3) what proportion of girls remained in education up to the age of 15 years in Equatorial Guinea in 2004; [12184]

(4) what assessment he has made of the health concerns facing the people of Equatorial Guinea; and if he will make a statement. [12183]

Hilary Benn: DFID does not have a bilateral development programme in Equatorial Guinea. Our assistance is provided through multilateral channels such as the European Commission, UN agencies and the World Bank. The UK share of the EC's official development assistance was £0.3 million in 2000, £0.3 million in 2001, £2.72 million in 2002, and £0.96 million in 2003. The figure for 2004 is not yet available.

The latest World Development Indicators show that the percentage of female pupils in secondary education was: 38 per cent. in 2000, 38 per cent. in 2001 and 41 per cent. in 2002. Total adult literacy in 2000 was 83 per cent.; 74 per cent. for females and 93 per cent. for males. The gross enrolment ratio of females as a percentage of males at secondary school between 1998–2002 was 58 per cent.

DFID has made no health assessment of Equatorial Guinea.

Fair Trade

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what agreements the G8 countries reached during the Gleneagles summit on promoting the sale of fair trade goods. [13080]

Hilary Benn: As stated in the G8 Africa Communique, the G8 'welcomed the growing market for fair trade goods and their positive effect in supporting livelihoods and increasing public awareness of the positive role of trade and development.' Paragraphs 22 (d) . In the UK, DFID has provided £750,000 over three years to the Fairtrade Foundation (FTF) in support of its development awareness and education campaigns. Through investing in the future of Fairtrade, DFID aims to help achieve sustained improvement in livelihoods of disadvantaged producers in the south.

G8 (Africa/Palestine)

Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much of the $25 billion in new money for development for Africa committed at the recent G8 meeting will be paid by (a) the UK and (b) the European Union; and over what time scale in each case. [11972]

Hilary Benn: Commitments made by the G8 and other donors will lead to an increase in official development assistance to Africa of $25 billion a year by 2010.

By 2010, the UK's contribution to the additional $25 billion is likely to be around $3.3 billion. In the period of the current spending review, we are committed to
 
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providing over £1.2 billion to Africa in financial years of 2007–08, which will increase to £2.10 billion ($3.3 billion) by 2010.

The EU has committed to double aid by 2010 from around $40 billion a year in 2004 to over $80 billion a year in 2010 and has agreed to allocate at least 50 per cent. of this increase to Africa. Therefore, by 2010, the EU will collectively provide $20 billion of the additional $25 billion.

Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much of the $25 billion in new money for development for Africa agreed at the recent G8 meeting is planned to be allocated to (a) caring for AIDS orphans, (b) eradicating polio, (c) primary education, (d) secondary education, (e) university and further education and (f) tackling (i) malaria, (ii) HIV/AIDS and (iii) tuberculosis; and by what mechanism the money will be distributed in each case. [11974]

Hilary Benn: As G8 leaders agreed at the Gleneagles summit,

This includes deciding how best to use resources to accelerate progress in achieving the Millennium Development Goals. These policy decisions cannot and should not be imposed by donors. The UK will therefore provide additional resources in support of national poverty reduction plans, where partners have shown that they are committed to poverty reduction, protecting human rights and improving public financial management. We will deliver this as far as possible through national budgets, with more than half of our country programmes as poverty reduction budget or programme support by 2007–08. We will encourage G8 partners to do the same.

There are a few cases where aid is earmarked for sectors at the global level and channelled through specific mechanisms. This is generally for reasons of international co-ordination or advocacy. For example, funding for polio will be channelled through the polio eradication initiative. The UK has committed £20 million to close the polio funding gap this year and the G8 has committed to ensuring that the $829 million needed for 2006–08 found. The G8 committed to replenish the global fund to fight AIDS, TB and malaria (which needs $7.18 billion for 2005–08) and ensure that the education for all fast track initiative has the resources necessary for countries to implement their education strategies (estimated to require $2.3 billion extra a year). In the case of the fast track initiative, resources may either be channelled through the initiative or directly to support national education strategies. For both AIDS and education, additional resources will be required beyond those channelled through these global mechanisms. These will largely be provided by donors in support of developing countries' national strategies.

Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much of the $3 billion aid package for the Palestinian Authority agreed by the G8 is intended for (a) Gaza and (b) the West Bank. [11975]


 
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Hilary Benn: The G8 expressed support at the Gleneagles summit for Mr. James Wolfensohn, Quartet Special Envoy for Disengagement, to stimulate a global financial contribution of up to $3 billion per year over the coming three years. This will assist Palestinian economic regeneration and further Palestinian governance reform following Israeli disengagement from Gaza and parts of the West Bank.

Mr. Wolfensohn is working closely with both the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Israel to assess what needs to be done. Priority areas for joint working include: freedom of movement for Palestinians to move and trade; the fate of settlement assets, houses and greenhouses; a link between Gaza and the West Bank; and the need for a Gaza airport and seaport. Reform priorities for the Palestinians are: fiscal stabilisation; preparation of a medium-term development plan; and funding a package of quick impact economic programmes. The UK is working with the PA and the World Bank to help develop the PA's integrated development plan for Gaza and the West Bank. DFID is looking for the best way to support this and Mr. Wolfensohn's plans.

Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much of the $3 billion aid package for the Palestinian authority agreed by the G8 is being contributed by the UK; and how it is to be distributed. [11977]

Hilary Benn: The G8 expressed support at the Gleneagles summit for Mr. James Wolfensohn, Quartet Special Envoy for Disengagement, to stimulate a global financial contribution of up to $3 billion per year over the coming three years. This will assist Palestinian economic regeneration and governance reform following Israeli disengagement from Gaza and parts of the West Bank. Details of how funding would be distributed have yet to be finalised. The UK is working closely with Mr. Wolfensohn and the Palestinian authority to help develop their plans and to ensure that our assistance is targeted at the highest priorities.

DFID's current plans are to spend £30 million per year on bilateral assistance to the Palestinians. DFID also contributes our share of European Community spending, amounting to a further £30 million last year. In 2004–05, the UK also contributed some £3.5 million through the Global Conflict Prevention Pool. This is jointly administered by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Ministry of Defence and DFID.

Mr. Clappison: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what measures have been taken to ensure transparency and accountability in the use of aid promised to the Palestinian Authority following the G8 summit. [12056]

Hilary Benn: The G8 expressed support at the Gleneagles summit for James Wolfensohn, Quartet Special Envoy for Disengagement, to stimulate a global financial contribution of up to $3 billion per year over the coming three years. This will assist the Palestinians following Israeli disengagement from Gaza and parts of the West Bank. International financial support will depend on the Palestinian Authority (PA) providing a credible financial plan for development, with guarantees of fiscal prudence and transparency.
 
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A significant proportion of UK aid to the PA is channelled through the World Bank-managed Public Financial Management Reform Trust Fund. Disbursement of funding is conditional on the PA's achievement of agreed reform benchmarks and is carefully monitored by the World Bank. Substantial improvements in the transparency and accountability of the PA's financial management systems have been made in recent years.

Mr. Clappison: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions took place in advance of the G8 summit between members of the G8 and the Palestinian Authority in respect of aid to the Authority; and what agreements have been entered into between the Authority and the G8 relating to aid. [12057]

Hilary Benn: Quartet Special Envoy for disengagement James Wolfensohn is working closely with both the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Israel to assess what needs to be done in order to support economic development and further Palestinian governance reform. Mr. Wolfensohn is leading in discussions with the PA, and has identified three key areas of reform: fiscal stabilisation; medium-term development planning; and quick impact economic programmes. He briefed the G8 fully at the Foreign Ministers' meeting on 23 June and at the summit in Gleneagles. G8 members support his excellent work. G8 members are also in contact with the PA bilaterally.

At the G8 summit in Gleneagles, the G8 expressed its support for Mr. Wolfensohn's intention to stimulate a global financial contribution of up to $3 billion per year from private and public sector sources for the next three years. No explicit agreements have yet been entered into. The UK, along with the rest of the international community, is considering how we can best support this. International financial support will be dependent on the PA providing a credible financial plan for development, with guarantees of fiscal prudence and transparency.


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