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John Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment his Department has made of the impact of rising fuel prices on maintaining levels of relief assistance to Burma; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: Prices of food, construction materials, boats and other commodities have risen significantly in Burma since the Cyclone struck in May. This is in line with increased demand and limited supply locally. The added factor, however, is the substantial increase in global fuel prices. The costs of the relief operation are directly affected by both these factors.
It is expected that the revised appeal for funds, due to be issued by the United Nations on 10 July, will reflect this increase in prices. DFID has pledged £17.5 million to this appeal, bringing the total of UK funding to Burma since the cyclone to £40 million.
Mr. Walter: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps the Government plan to take to implement the findings of the International Assessment of Agriculture Technology for Development. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD) presents findings and a range of options for different stakeholders (governments, private sector, academics and civil society) to consider. These findings are neither prescriptive nor legally binding on any party. We are assessing these in taking forward the Government's support to developing countries on agricultural knowledge science and technology (AKST).
The Department for International Development is already taking action in line with IAASTD's findings. In April I announced that DFID will increase its investment in agricultural research to £400 million over five years. This investment will include research on environmentally sustainable solutions, focus on the needs of farmers, address gender issues, look to build public-private partnerships, look at the impact of markets on poor farmers, and support traditional and modern technologies.
John Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what estimate his Department has made of likely economic growth in (a) India, (b) China, (c) Brazil and (d) Venezuela in (i) 2008-09, (ii) 2009-10 and (iii) 2010-11. 
Mr. Malik: The Department for International Development (DFID) does not perform its own growth forecasting. To inform its policies, DFID relies upon the economic analysis of the international financial institutions, especially the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The 2008 IMF World Economic Outlook report has the following projections:
These figures represent the estimated annual per cent. change of each countrys gross domestic product. I have provided projections from 2008 to 2011 because the IMF reports by calendar year rather than UK financial year.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will make a statement on food shortages in the Horn of Africa; and what assistance his Department is offering to those countries affected. 
In Ethiopia, the Government and UN agencies estimate that at least 4.6 million people will require food aid from June to November. DFID has committed £25 million to addressing the crisis. These funds will be allocated as follows:
Up to £10 million through the UN World Food Programme (WFP) for emergency food aid operations.
£9 million through the UN's Humanitarian Response Fund to support supplementary and emergency feeding programmes.
£5 million for the Productive Safety Net Programme. This is additional to £22 million DFID provided in January as our regular annual payment. This government-led programme delivers predictable food and cash transfers to seven million food insecure people and has been successful in reducing the potential scale of the humanitarian crisis.
At least £1 million to Medecins sans Frontieres for emergency feeding programmes.
In Somalia, the humanitarian situation is deteriorating alarmingly due to increasing conflict, soaring food prices, deepening drought and a poor start to the April to June season rains. Cereal prices have increased by between 110 per cent. and 375 per cent. in the last year. The UN estimates that the number of people in need of assistance in Somalia has increased to 2.6 million people. This figure could rise to 3.5 million (50 per cent. of the entire population) by the end of the year. DFID has provided £12 million to the UN World Food Programme's operations, which aim to stabilise the worsening nutrition situation for 2.4 million people.
John Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what proportion of financial aid from his Department to developing countries is for (a) education, (b) health, (c) earthquake reconstruction, (d) agriculture development and (e) encouraging job creation in 2008-09. 
Mr. Malik: Information on Department for International Development (DFID) aid allocations for 2008-09 are available in annex 2, table 4, page 245 of the DFID publication Development: Making it Happen, DFIDs 2008 annual report. This publication is available online at www.dfid.gov.uk and in the Library of the House.
It is not yet possible to provide aggregate estimates of total spending in particular sectors across the DFID programme for 2008-09. By 2010-11 we plan to increase our education spend from to £1 billion a year to enable us to meet our commitment to spend £8.5 billion on education in the 10 years leading up to 2015. We have also recently announced plans to spend £6 billion on strengthening health systems and services over the seven years to 2015.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what work his Department has commissioned on social protection systems; in which countries his Department has engaged in work on social protection issues; and if he will make a statement. 
Gillian Merron: The Department for International Development (DFID) has commissioned a range of work to inform the international debate on the role of social protection in the fight against poverty in developing countries, and to provide guidance for the implementation of social assistance tools. Analytical and evidence building work includes studies on the cost, affordability and financing of social assistance, its impact on poverty and the links to growth. This work will contribute to policy analysis and advice, to help inform country partners and the international community. DFID is also in the process of commissioning longer term research on a range of technical and political economy aspects of the design and implementation of social transfer programmes.
DFID is working in different ways in over 20 countries. In Pakistan, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia this means supporting the development of national social protection strategies. In Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Kenya we are funding major social transfer programmes while in other countries such as Ghana we have helped support smaller pilot projects. We are also helping Brazil and South Africa to share their experience of using social protection to reduce poverty with other developing countries.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what payments his Department has made to Progressio in each year since 1997-98; how much is planned for 2008-09; what restrictions his Department places on the use of such funds; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Malik: Levels of DFID funding to Progressio in each year since 1997-98 are laid out in the following table. Current plans for 2008-09 amount to £3.28 million. Current funding is provided within the usual terms of the International Development Act 2002. No further specific restrictions have been placed on the use of these funds.
|Levels of DFID funding to Progressio|
|Financial year||DFID funding (£ million)|
John Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what (a) type and (b) level of assistance his Department is providing to increase agricultural outputs in Ukraine in 2008-09; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Malik: The Department for International Development (DFID) closed its bilateral programme in March 2008 in recognition of Ukraines Middle Income Country status and progress in reducing poverty. As a result we are not contributing directly to increasing agricultural outputs in the Ukraine. However, we continue to support the countrys development through our membership of multilaterals, particularly the European Union and World Bank.
Gillian Merron: It is very difficult to estimate the number of Zimbabweans who have left the country by regular and irregular means since the March 2008 elections. Many of those who have fled Zimbabwe will not have refugee status in their host countries and, therefore, will not be recorded as Zimbabwean refugees. In terms of officially recorded refugee figures, reports from humanitarian agencies would suggest the following break down:
Botswana: 538 granted refugee status, a further 214 being processed;
Zambia: 18 granted refugee status, a further 25 being processed;
Mozambique: 68 applications for refugee status are being processed.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will place in the Library copies of representations received by his Department from interested parties used in the preparation of the partial regulatory impact assessment of the Prohibition of Abortion (England and Wales) Bill of Session 2005-06; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: Copies of written representations received from interested parties used in the preparation of the partial regulatory impact assessment of the Prohibition of Abortion (England and Wales) Bill of Session 2005-06 have been placed in the Library. Discussions were also held with a number of organisations, including some of those who made written representations, but a written record of these is not available.
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