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Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development which countries he expects to receive EU funding following the completion of national sugar action plans, as referred to in the answer of 8 October 2007, Official Report, columns 8-9W, on ACP and developing countries: common sugar regime. 
Mr. Thomas: The Sugar Protocol was signed between the European Union and 18 African, Caribbean and Pacific countries: Barbados, Belize, Republic of Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Fiji, Guyana, Jamaica, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, St. Kitts and Nevis, Swaziland, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
According to the European Commission all 18 countries will benefit from the transitional assistance for sugar, although the amount allocated to each country will vary. The amount allocated to each country is based on two criteria: the impact of the sugar reform on the sugar sector of the country concerned and the importance of the sugar sector to the economy. The countries were required to draw up a national sugar adaptation strategy to show how they will spend their allocation.
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what estimate he has made of the likely decline in value of African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, as referred to in the answer of 8 October 2007, Official Report, columns 8-9W, on ACP and developing countries: common sugar regime preferences. 
Mr. Thomas: DFID has commissioned a number of independent studies looking at the impact of the reform of the European Union (EU) sugar market on the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries that export sugar to the EU. The studies show that the impact of the sugar reform will not fall uniformly on the sugar protocol countries. Some countries will benefit with the opportunity to increase the volume of their sugar export to the EU market under the duty free and quota free market access offer. In other countries sugar may not continue to be an economic industry. Indeed some ACP countries have already taken that decision and are withdrawing from sugar production. We have always been clear that such countries will require transitional assistance. It is not possible to estimate the size of the impact on the individual ACP countries. This will depend on other decisions that they make in response to the reform.
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development which African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) nations have received technical and financial support from his Department to assist in drawing up their individual sugar action plans as referred to in the answer of 8 October 2007, Official Report, columns 8-9W, on ACP and developing countries: common sugar regime. 
Mr. Thomas: DFID provided financial support totalling £200,000 for six Caribbean countries: Barbados, Belize, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Kitts and Nevis and Jamaica to draw up their national sugar action plans.
Mr. Malik: DFID is very concerned about the humanitarian situation in Iraq and among refugees in the wider region. Many Iraqis are denied adequate protection and access to basic services. There is a lack of reliable information about the situation. However, the UN estimates that over two million people are internally displaced, with a further two million displaced across the region, 80 per cent. of whom are in Syria and Jordan. UNHCR is investigating reports of increased refugee returns from Syria, and the reasons behind such returns. We await the outcome of this work.
DFID is supporting the delivery of emergency relief and protection through contributions to internationally mandated humanitarian agencies. We have recently allocated an additional £5 million to these efforts, bringing our overall humanitarian commitment for Iraq to over £130 million since 2003 and £15 million this year.
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many contracts were awarded by his Department to Opinion Leader Research in each year since 1997; and what was (a) the title and purpose, (b) the cost to the public purse and (c) the dates of (i) tender, (ii) award, (iii) operation and (iv) completion and its report to the Department in each case. 
Mr. Malik: In 1998, DFID commissioned Opinion Leader Research (OLR) to undertake baseline focus group research among the UK public at a cost of £43,000. In 2002, we funded a project with OLR and the BBC, which involved use of focus groups in the UK to analyse public understanding of international news stories at a cost of £38,247. In 2003, DFID commissioned OLR to undertake further focus group research to explore ways of increasing understanding and support for international development in the UK at a cost of £50,309.
No subsequent contracts were awarded to OLR. Specific dates when contracts were tendered, let, carried out and completed are not held centrally, and could not be obtained without incurring disproportionate cost.
Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment he has made of the likely effect of proposed EU Economic Partnership Agreements on the Government's targets to reduce global poverty. 
Mr. Thomas: Growth is important for poverty reduction. Economic Partnership Agreements can deliver growth and development and help countries trade their way out of poverty. In recent years, many of the fastest growing countries, in east Asia particularly, have opened up their borders to international trade. EPAs can increase access for developing country exports into European Union (EU) markets, which is one of their largest export markets. EPAs should also increase trading opportunities and collaboration with the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) regions themselves and promote integration into the global economy.
Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many adults (a) enrolled in adult and community learning programmes and (b) participated in further education in each (i) borough and (ii) region in each year since 1997. 
Mr. Lammy: Figures for adults (aged 19 and above) participating in further education (FE) and adult and community learning (ACL) programmes can be derived from the Learning and Skills Councils (LSC) Individualised Learner Record (ILR). The FE ILR was collated for the first time in 2002-03 and figures are given from that time. Regional and local authority breakdowns for learners on ACL programmes could be provided only at disproportionate cost and are therefore not included.
|Adult learner numbers in further education by region1 and local authority( 1)|
|(1) Regional and local authority breakdowns are based on learner home postcode prior to enrolment.|
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