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18 Dec 2008 : Column 951Wcontinued
Mr. Betts: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will provide support to the Football Association for its Respect campaign; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Sutcliffe: Football is one of the most high profile sports in the world and footballers are not just sportsmen and women, they are role models for young people.
While passion must remain at the heart of the game, it is also crucial that players, coaches, officials and spectators respect each other. I have therefore already publicly supported The Football Association's Respect campaign.
I will continue to encourage an on-going commitment to change at all levels of sport, and I am grateful to the FA for leading the way.
Hugh Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what discussions he plans to have with the Football Association on the implementation of the remaining conclusions of the Burns Review; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Sutcliffe [holding answer 16 December 2008]: The Government continue to work closely with the Football Association (FA) on a number of important issues within the game including governance and regulation.
Many of Lord Burns independent review recommendations designed to reform the FAs decision-making structure in order to make it a more modern, effective and representative governing body for football have been implemented by the FA, and I will continue to regularly discuss progress.
As part of the monitoring process of that report, the FA will review the changes they have put in place at Council, Board and Football Regulatory Authority level by 2012.
Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the recommendations relevant to his Departments policy responsibilities made in the Foresight report on Mental Capacity and Well-Being; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Sutcliffe: The Department was pleased to read the Foresight report and will be considering it with a view to taking up any relevant findings.
Part of that process will involve an assessment of what the report might mean for DCMS policy on the impacts of engaging with culture and sport and the Department will report on this in due course.
Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) when representatives of the Welcome to Britain Group last met (a) the Public Diplomacy Partners Group and (b) the Public Diplomacy Board; 
(2) how many VisitBritain staff work on the Welcome to Britain Group; 
(3) on what dates the Welcome to Britain Group has met; and when the group next plans to meet; 
(4) on what dates (a) Ministers and (b) officials from his Department have met the Welcome to Britain Group in the last 12 months. 
Barbara Follett [holding answer 11 December 2008]: VisitBritain (VB) have advised that the Welcome to Britain Steering Group (WTBSG) have held quarterly meetings over the last 18 months and will meet again in February 2009. WTBSG last met on 1 December 2008. Members of the Public Diplomacy Partners Group (PDPG) attend these meetings. However, lead responsibility for the PDPG will shortly be passing to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
VisitBritain provide Welcome to Britain with one full-time head of project, one full-time manager and a small internal working group of between six to eight staff who meet bimonthly. VisitBritain is currently chair of the WTBSG.
The WTB initiative is an integral part of the DCMS 2012 tourism strategy and as such is fully integrated within that. Although no meetings with Ministers have taken place, the most recent meeting with the Tourism Ministerial Advisory Group was on 28 October 2008 at the House of Commons.
Mr. Andrew Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions took place (a) between his Department and CDC in 2005 and 2007 and (b) with the Treasury in 2007, regarding the possibility of extracting resources from CDC, as referred to on page 15 of the National Audit Office Report, Investing for Development: DFID's oversight of CDC Group Plc, HC (2008-09) 18. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: No discussions took place between DFID and CDC in 2005 regarding the possibility of extracting resources from CDC.
During 2007 DFID had preliminary discussions with both CDC and the Treasury regarding the possibility of extracting resources from CDC in the shape of a dividend. These discussions took place within the context of the wider discussion around CDC's strategic direction. This contributed to the development of CDC's new investment policy, about which I made a written ministerial statement on 3 November 2008, Official Report, column 5WS.
Mr. Andrew Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what representations the Government have made to the UN in respect of the setting up of the UN Police Training and Advisory Mission MINURCAT 2 in Chad. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The UK Government, through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, has been in regular contact with the United Nations (UN) authorities on this issue. UN Security Council discussions on 24 September 2008 led to the adoption of Resolution 1834, which expresses the intention to deploy a United Nations military component to follow EUFOR. A UN policing mission, MINURCAT, is already in place alongside EUFOR. Since 24 September, on-going discussions have taken place between member states and the UN, including with the Department of Peacekeeping Organisations. The precise nature of the force has not yet been decided and the mandate remains under discussion.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what support his Department has provided for rehabilitation of child soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: The UK has contributed U$35 million to the World Bank led Multi-Country Demobilisation and Reintegration Programme (MDRP), which supports the demobilisation and reintegration of ex-combatants in the greater Great Lakes region of central Africa. The largest programme of its kind in the world, the MDRP, with a budget of U$ 500 million, targeted an estimated 450,000 ex-combatants in seven countries, including the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The MDRP has enabled 30,219 children to be released from armed forces in DRC and to receive services from child protection agencies, including UNICEF. Projects targeting children have primarily focused on tracing their families, facilitating family reunion and providing either vocational training or income generating activities.
Going forward, a new single trust fund has been set up by the World Bank to which the UK (from Africa Conflict Prevention Pool funds) has contributed £1 million. The children component is implemented by Save the Children. This child protection agency has a project targeting for the moment 2,500 children associated with armed forces in eastern DRC.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much the UK has contributed to security sector reform in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 2003; and what assessment has been made of the effectiveness of the reforms initiated. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: Since 2003, the UK has made a bilateral contribution of £24.3 million to security sector reform in the Democratic Republic of Congo, comprising interventions by the Department for International Development (DFID) and the Ministry of Defence. These reforms include support for Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) processes, police reform and support to the Justice sector.
Police reform is DFID's priority, having provided technical assistance for early strategy development and we are currently supporting the national police reform committee's work to develop what we consider will be an effective police reform plan.
While the police reform process is at an early stage, progress has been made to improve police capacity in service delivery and to strengthen accountability and oversight mechanisms.
Sammy Wilson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much aid the Government (a) have provided and (b) plans to provide to those displaced by violence and conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Department for International Development (DFID) is at the forefront of the humanitarian effort in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and has provided £42 million in 2008 for humanitarian needs, much of which was used to meet the needs of displaced people. This includes £5 million allocated after the latest crisis in North Kivu in October for food, health care, shelter and water and sanitation support for displaced people through UNICEF, the World Food Programme, Oxfam and the International Rescue Committee.
The DFID humanitarian team continue to work closely with the United Nations (UN) and non-governmental organisations (NGO) partners on the ground to determine needs. We are keeping the need for further funds under review. DFID will aim to make funds available for the 2009 Humanitarian Action Plan in January and we expect to commit at least £35 million for humanitarian needs in 2009.
Mr. Andrew Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how many personal, non-work-related flights were taken by staff in his Department with money released by downgrades from business class to economy class for work-related flights under his Department's flexible travel scheme in (a) 2006-07 and (b) 2007-08; and how much was spent on each flight in each such year. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: This question cannot be answered without incurring disproportionate cost.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development with reference to the answer of 6 October 2008, Official Report, columns 105-08W, on departmental public expenditure, what the reasons were for overspends against the country budgets for (a) Sudan, (b) Rwanda, (c) Ghana, (d) Sierra Leone, (e) Bangladesh, (f) Nepal and (g) the Palestinian Authority in 2007-08. 
Mr. Douglas Alexander: Overspends against country budgets do not reflect unplanned excess spending, but reflect approved re-prioritisations of resources in response to events occurring during that financial year.
Specific reasons for the variances in the countries identified are:
(a) Sudan: we increased our contribution to the Common Humanitarian Fund by £5 million and invested an extra £7 million in the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) schools programmes and the World Food Programme (WFP) rural roads programme.
(b) Rwanda: we provided extra funds to a Health Sector Support project.
(c) Ghana: we brought forward our General Budget Support contribution from 2008-09 to 2007-08 in order to meet the Government of Ghana's request for all budget support to be paid in the first quarter of their financial year (January to December).
(d) Sierra Leone: we brought forward our support contribution for the 2008 local government elections, which covered procurement and delivery of key elections materials, so as to enable Sierra Leone to meet its Constitution deadline of 5 July 2008. We also brought forward our funding of the completion of the Bumbuna hydro-electric dam to enable the completion of necessary works to allow the dam to be filled during the annual rains which began in May 2008.
(e) Bangladesh: we spent additional amounts on flood and cyclone relief following Cyclone Sidr which struck Bangladesh in November 2007.
(f) Nepal: additional resources were allocated to Nepal at a critical moment in its peace process, to help fund areas of the peace agreements, including support to elections, and to accelerate delivery of development.
(g) Palestinian Authority: in response to a personal request from the Palestinian Prime Minister Fayyad, DFID agreed to frontload part of its three-year pledge made at the Paris donor conference by moving money from calendar financial year 2010 to 2008 in order to meet critical funding gaps in the recurrent Palestinian Authority budget and to signal strong political commitment to the Annapolis peace process.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what proportion of UK funds of the $1.4 billion for global food security has already been disbursed; and how disbursements of such funding are allocated for the purposes of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development DAC creditor reporting system. 
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development (DFID) has committed £865 million to respond to global food security. Of this £206 million, or 24 per cent., has been disbursed.
Final allocations for the reporting of projects counting towards the commitment to the Creditor Reporting System (CRS) will be made after quality assurance of project coding within DFID and within the Development Assistance Committee.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what proportion of his Department's $1.4 billion funding allocation to improve global food security will be delivered through (a) international institutions, (b) non-governmental organisations and (c) direct funding for national governments. 
Mr. Michael Foster: Of the £865 million new commitments to improve global food security, £364 million, or 42 per cent., will be disbursed through international institutions such as the United Nations (UN) World Food Programme and the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research.
£5 million, less than 1 per cent., will be disbursed directly through non-governmental organisations (NGOs). However, NGOs are often the implementing agents and therefore in-direct beneficiaries of funds to, for example, the social protection programme in Bangladesh (£83.5 million) and the UN Horn of Africa Humanitarian Appeal (£42 million).
£295.5 million, or 34 per cent., will be disbursed to governments through budget support and funding to government sector programmes.
A further £200 million, or 23 per cent., for agriculture research will be disbursed through regional research organisations, the UK's Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and public-private partnerships, for example, the Global Alliance for Livestock, Vaccines and Medicines.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much of the $1.4 billion committed by his Department to improve global food security will be released in each of the five years of the disbursement period. 
Mr. Michael Foster: The Department for International Development (DFID) has committed £865 million to respond to global food security in the short, medium and long term. Short-term responses were primarily for support to humanitarian actions such as food aid and nutrition support and these will mainly be disbursed this and early next year. Further humanitarian funding for short-term needs will be committed depending on need.
Medium to long-term actions such as funding social protection programmes are multi-annual. In Bangladesh, the £70 million commitment over six years will be spread evenly and average approximately £12 million per annum, and in Mozambique, our support to social protection is £2 million per annum. However, DFID understands there is a need to be flexible within programme plans and, if there are unforeseen events, budgets can be moved between financial years.
The annual disbursement of the £400 million for agricultural research is set to increase from the budget for this financial year of £46 million to £57 million in 2009-10, and to over £72 million in 2010-11. Spending levels from 2011-12 are to be determined.
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