Written evidence from Mr Andrew Tyrie
BBC WORLD SERVICE:
You reminded me that your Committee is running an
inquiry into the implications of the BBC World Service cuts and
suggested that I submit my letter to the FAC as evidence. I attach
In the letter, I suggest a way in which the Government
can spare the World Service from the draconian cuts it announced
on 26 January 2011. The full value of the cuts in cash terms can
and should be found from within the DfID budget. This can be achieved
without prejudicing the coalition's commitment to increase aid
to 0.7 per cent of GNI from 2013.
I would be happy to discuss this further with you.
2 March 2011
Letter from Mr Andrew Tyrie MP to the
Rt Hon William Hague MP
King Charles Street
London SW1A 2AH
21 February 2011
I very much hope that you will reconsider your decision
to cut the BBC World Service budget by sixteen per cent by 2013/14
in real terms.
These cuts are not required as a contribution to
deficit reduction. The full value of the cuts in cash terms,
of £28 million, can and should be found from the DfID budget.
Furthermore, this can be achieved without prejudicing the coalition's
commitment to increase aid to 0.7 per cent of GNI from 2013.
This is because, under OECD definitions, much of the value of
World Service activity can be legitimately scored as aid. The
relevant OECD definition of Official Development Assistance is:
"Flows of official financing administered with the promotion
of the economic development and welfare of developing countries
as a main objective."
The total value of DfID's budget is planned to be
£11.3 billion by 2013-14. The planned increase is £3.5
billion in cash terms. Therefore, the needs - in nominal terms
- of the World Service can be fully met with just 0.8 percent
of the increase in funding that is currently going to DfID.
Given the above, I find the case for the cuts in
the World Service budget difficult to justify.
I'm copying this letter to a number of colleagues
who have expressed support in the past for the BBC World Services
work and I am putting it in the public domain.
Andrew Tyrie MP
2 Source: BBC World Service (written statement) HC
Deb 26 January 2011 c13WS Back