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Dr. Howells: The UN Department for Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), with the African Union (AU), is tasked with generating troops for the UN-AU Mission in Darfur (UNAMID). The DPKO has not yet confirmed the number of troops from each country that will deploy to UNAMID.
Dr. Howells: Ethiopia is contributing four light tactical helicopters to the UN-African Union peacekeeping Mission in Darfur. We understand that other countries have previously offered helicopters which lacked suitable capabilities for the mission, and there are no current provisional commitments. We continue to work closely with the UN to explore all possible options for helicopter provision.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment has been made of the effects of recent political events in Zimbabwe on refugee flows from the country; and if he will make a statement. 
We are not aware of further widespread emigration since the recent elections in Zimbabwe. However, post-election violence has created hundreds of internally displaced persons, mainly in
rural areas, with individuals seeking refuge with family in the cities or church groups. The UK is already providing support to the people of Zimbabwe, £49 million in 2007, targeting those most in need as a result of the economic mismanagement of the country.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has made to the Chinese authorities on arms sales to Zimbabwe; and if he will make a statement. 
David Miliband: We have lobbied the Chinese Government in Beijing not to supply arms to Zimbabwe on four occasions since a Chinese ship attempted to unload in Durban. The EU already has in place a ban on the sales of arms to Zimbabwe. We support a moratorium on arms sales until there is a return to democracy and good governance. We raised this with the support of other states in the UN Security Council.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether an estimate has been made of the numbers killed and injured in Zimbabwe as a result of politically-motivated violence since the 29 March election; and if he will make a statement. 
David Miliband: Since election day, at least 500 people have been injured, 120 hospitalised and two killed as a consequence of state-sponsored violence. Many have suffered torture. In addition, at least 7,000 people have been internally displaced by the violence.
Mr. Moore: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will place in the Library a copy of the Actis business plan of 19 March 2004, including the detailed breakdown of Actis' financial forecasts. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The CDC/Actis Umbrella agreement has already been placed in the Library of the House of Commons. This document includes the Actis business plan of 1 April 2004, which is not materially different from that of the 19 March 2004. It includes the detailed breakdown of Actis financial forecasts.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what representations he has received on rising food prices internationally, with particular reference to staples such as rice; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: Last month, the World Food Programme (WFP) launched an appeal for an additional $500 million to meet the increased costs of this year's programmesthe cost of rice has now risen to over $1,000 a tonne.
The UK Government are very concerned about the effect on developing countries, where the poorest can spend as much as 90 per cent. of their income on food. There are already 850 million people who don't get enough to eat, and as prices rise these numbers will increase. That is why the Government announced a £455 million aid package to provide assistance to those hardest hit and has taken the lead by calling for the international community to urgently develop a co-ordinated strategy to tackle this critical problem.
Mr. Moore: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much aid his Department has allocated to Kosovo for each of the next three financial years; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The Department for International Development (DFID) currently plans to spend £5 million in Kosovo in financial years 2008-09 and 2009-10, and £4 million in 2010-11. Together with funding from the Conflict Prevention Pool (this is managed jointly by DFID, the Ministry of Defence and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office), the UK Government are currently expecting to spend £23 million bilateral aid in total in Kosovo over the next three years.
Mr. Moore: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what (a) allowances, (b) travel costs and (c) accommodation costs have been provided to the staff seconded from his Department to support the work of (i) James Wolfensohn and (ii) Tony Blair in their roles as Quartet Representatives; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The Quartet Representative's staff, including Department for International Development (DFID) secondees, draw upon the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) fund for business related allowance and travel costs. It is a matter for UNDP to determine whether to publish details of costs.
DFID seconded one staff member to the Wolfensohn team and one to the Blair team. DFID has paid £75,080 directly to its secondees for accommodation, travel and expenses. We cannot provide greater detail of this expenditure for matters of personal privacy. All costs are checked to ensure they were essential to fulfilling the individual's duties as a secondee to the Office of the Quartet Special Representative.
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The UK Government are very concerned about the effect of rising food prices, including rice, on developing countries, where the poorest can spend as much as 90 per cent. of their income on food. Rice prices are now over $1,000 a tonne, in part due to additional demand as some governments seek to replenish strategic food reserves.
There are already 850 million people who don't get enough to eat, and as prices rise these numbers will increase. That is why the UK Government have announced a £455 million aid package to provide assistance to those hardest hit and taken the lead by calling for the international community to urgently develop a co-ordinated strategy to tackle this critical problem.
Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much his Department has spent on aid for Sri Lanka in each year since 1997; and to what Sri Lankan (a) governmental body, (b) non-governmental organisations and (b) inter-governmental organisations this funding was given. 
Mr. Malik: Between 1997-2007, the Department for International Development's (DFID) total bilateral programme aid to Sri Lanka was £71.4 million. This includes project aid, technical assistance, humanitarian aid, debt relief and Global Conflict Prevention Pool (GCPP) funds. DFID's bilateral programme to Sri Lanka ended in March 2007. DFID now works with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Ministry of Defence (MOD) to provide peace building support to Sri Lanka by pooling funds through the Conflict Prevention Pool (CPP). DFID's 2007-08 CPP contributions stand at £1.5 million. The breakdown of spend per year 1997-2007 is provided in the following table.
|DFID bilateral spend in Sri Lanka between 1997 and 2007|
|DFID spend on Sri Lanka|
DFID does not provide (and has not provided) Direct Budget Support to the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL). Support to the Government was
principally through debt relief during 1998-2000 and again in 2005-07. In spring 2007 the GoSL was unable to meet the criteria required for debt relief due to its violation of human rights and debt relief was suspended. DFID has provided some technical assistance to the Government through, for example, the GoSL/UNICEF Joint Strategy for Internally Displaced Peoples, the Government's education programme via the World Bank Education Trust Fund, and provision of training for the Sri Lankan police force.
Norwegian Refugee Council, Save the Children Fund UK, Oxfam, Islamic Relief, Centre for Poverty Analysis, ZOA Refugee Care, Mercy Corps, RedR, International Health Partners, Halo Trust, Christian Aid.
UNICEF, World Bank, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), International Committee for the Red Cross (ICRC), Commonwealth Scholarship Fellow Plan, Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Mr. Djanogly: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (1) which agencies of the Government are taking steps to counter the risk of illegal share sale boiler room operations; what mechanisms are in place to ensure inter-agency liaison and information-sharing; and if he will make a statement; 
The overall position is that the Government are delivering a multi-agency response to the threat posed by so-called boiler room frauds. These typically involve the use of high-pressure sales techniques by groups operating abroad to sell worthless or non-existent investments.
1. Strengthening prevention through greater education and advice to the public, with recent campaigns delivered by the
Financial Services Authority (FSA), the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and the city of London police;
2. A major enforcement-led initiative to target the key organisers of boiler room networks. This involved significant joint working between UK enforcement agencies and partners overseas;
3. Creating a more hostile environment for boiler room operations based in other EU member states by reinforcing the European framework for regulating the provision of investment advice.
In the future, action against boiler rooms will be strengthened further by the creation of the National Fraud Strategic Authority, which will have an explicit mandate to lead and coordinate national counter-fraud efforts, to ensure maximum impact against serious threats of fraud.
In parallel, the creation of a national fraud reporting centre will boost the ability of law enforcement agencies to take intelligence-led action against complex fraud networks, such as those responsible for boiler rooms.
The number of representations received from time to time by the various departments and agencies involved is low. These occasional representations are typically on behalf of individual constituents who have fallen victim to boiler room frauds.
No estimate of the losses incurred by consumers is available. However, a number of other reports seek to describe and quantify the problem. For example, a report published by the Office of Fair Trading in December 2006 on Research on impact of mass marketed scams discussed the nature and size of the problem of high-risk investment scams. That category covered, but was not confined to, what is usually understood by boiler room frauds. The FSA published the results of a study of boiler room victims who had contacted their consumer centre in June 2006. Any estimate of the extent or cost of the problem is affected by the reluctance of some people to report that they have been the victim of a boiler room fraud.
Prevention is an important part of any strategy to reduce the impact of boiler room frauds. That requires effective law enforcement action, and action to raise consumer awareness of the existence and nature of these frauds. Accordingly a number of agencies issue guidance and raise awareness about boiler room frauds. These include the FSA, the Home Office, the Metropolitan and city of London police forces, and the OFT. The FSA for example has recently engaged with
radio features and news programmes, television, regional and local radio, and various written media. In addition following FSA agreement with registrars existing shareholders will receive warnings about the threat of boiler rooms.
Damian Green: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what assessment his Department has made of the effect of immigration on the availability of training opportunities and apprenticeships to British workers. 
Bill Rammell: The Government are committed to up-skilling British workers to provide them with the skills required in a competitive labour market. Migrant workers from outside the European Union, not ordinarily resident in the UK for at least three years, are not eligible to Government funded training places such as apprenticeships. Apprenticeship starts have increased from 65,000 in 1996/97 to 180,000 in 2006/07. They are projected to grow to almost 210,000 by 2010/11. By 2013, we will ensure that an apprenticeship is available to all qualified young people. Train to Gain has engaged over 77,000 employers with more then 363,000 workers starting learning programmes. We have ambitious plans to expand Train to Gain with increased funding from around £520 million this year to over £1 billion in 2010.
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