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Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on her development programme in Zimbabwe following the election results. [44754]

Clare Short: The election outcome is likely to accelerate poverty and hunger in Zimbabwe. The UK is continuing to work with others to urge policy changes on the part of the Zimbabwe Government to halt the catastrophic decline in agriculture, the economy, and social services. In parallel, we are providing humanitarian assistance through the UN and non-governmental channels, and helping to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic that affects 1 in 3 adults.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much money her Department has pledged to the World Food Programme to help deal with food shortages in Zimbabwe; and how much has been spent. [44894]

Clare Short: We have pledged #6 million to the UN Humanitarian Assistance Programme, of which #3.5 million is for food. Of the contribution for food #2.5 million has been spent. We have also contributed #86,000 toward the cost of the UN's Relief and Recovery Unit in Harare which is helping to appraise emergency needs, plan, negotiate and monitor emergency assistance on behalf of the UN and donors.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what difficulties her Department is facing in the delivery of humanitarian aid to Zimbabwe; and what action is being taken to overcome such difficulties. [46275]

Clare Short: DFID has provided #4 million to partner NGOs to feed 400,000 children and vulnerable adults for the past six months. The main difficulty has been in obtaining adequate supplies of maize. With growing national shortages suppliers have been unable to fulfil their contracts. However, the NGOs, working collectively, are generally managing to make alternative arrangements to import food directly.

DFID has worked closely with the UN's Humanitarian Assistance and Recovery Programme, providing #6 million for both food and medical supplies. The impact of this has been hampered by the lateness of the Zimbabwe Government appeal, the time taken to assemble the UN team, and the sparseness of donor responses.

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As a wider national food emergency looms, DFID is keeping the situation under review, though what can be done will be greatly affected by the extent to which the Government of Zimbabwe allows a conducive policy environment.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether humanitarian aid provided to Zimbabwe has been seized by Government militia in the last 12 months. [46276]

Clare Short: We have had no reports of humanitarian aid being seized. There have been isolated incidents where militias have attempted to include themselves on the list of beneficiaries, though in all cases the non-governmental organisations implementing programmes have managed to have them removed peacefully.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what conclusions she has drawn from the recent elections in Zimbabwe in respect of the New Partnership for African Development. [44199]

Clare Short: The situation in Zimbabwe highlights the damage caused by abusive economic and political governance to economic development in Africa. The decision to suspend Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth demonstrates that the leaders involved in developing NEPAD understand the damage the Mugabe regime has done to the people of Zimbabwe and to African development.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what changes she will make to her development policy to countries in southern Africa following the election in Zimbabwe. [44755]

Clare Short: None at present. Our co-operation with southern African countries will continue to be based on our understanding of their needs and policies. We will continue to provide humanitarian and HIV/AIDS related assistance in Zimbabwe. A further decline in the Zimbabwe economy, and the food shortages there which are likely to persist into next year, will have an impact on the economies of its neighbours which all development agencies will take into account.


Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what assessment she has made of the impact of the Vision 2020 project in Andhra Pradesh in India on the local population as regards (a) displacement of population, (b) loss of homes and (c) loss of employment; [46280]

Clare Short: I refer the hon. Member to my answer to Ms Joan Ruddock on the subject of Andhra Pradesh and Vision 2020, Official Report, column 477W, 20 July 2001. Vision 2020 is not a project, and it is not possible for an assessment to be made of its impact on the issues identified in the questions.

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Monterrey Conference

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on the United Kingdom's contribution to the Monterrey United Nations Conference on Financing for Development on 18 March. [46294]

Clare Short: The United Kingdom played a leading role in the preparatory process leading up to the Monterrey Conference in helping to formulate the EU position for the Conference. The EU worked hard during the negotiations of the text of the outcomes document: the XMonterrey Consensus". This is a good document, in which developing countries commit to set in place the pro-poor economic policies and good governance that is required to attract foreign direct investment and mobilise domestic resources; and donor countries commit to provide enhanced support to developing countries through providing more and better quality oda, through opening up markets to trade access in the context of the Doha process, and through ensuring that the HIPC process provides sustainable debt relief. The UK also played a leading role in developing the package of commitments announced by the EU at Monterrey, which includes a commitment to increase EU aid volume from an average of 0.33 per cent. to an average of 0.39 per cent. by 2006—which represents an additional 7 billion dollars per annum. Baroness Amos and I represented the UK at the Conference itself. I chaired a round table on financing sustainable development and participated in a round table on partnerships. Baroness Amos held a press conference to publicise the DFID/HTM paper on the case for aid and participated in a round table on coherence.

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on her Department's policy in respect of sustainable development, with specific reference to the United Kingdom's participation in the Monterrey Conference on 18 March. [46293]

Clare Short: In the XMonterrey Consensus" document which was agreed at the Financing for Development Conference, the nations of the world agreed that developing countries need to set in place pro-poor economic policies and good governance in order to attract foreign direct investment and mobilise domestic resources. Donor countries need to provide more and better oda; provide better market access for developing country products through the Doha negotiations; ensure that the HIPC process provides heavily indebted poor countries with a sustainable exit from debt, and take concrete steps to give developing countries a stronger voice in the international financial architecture. The UK Government, throughout the Financing for Development process, has promoted the view that development assistance should be untied and should be targeted on poor countries with large numbers of poor people and good policies; and that donors should harmonise their procedures to reduce the burden on developing country governments; should move away from stand-alone projects towards direct support through government budgets where possible; should strengthen government accounting and audit capacity

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so as to enable a greater use of budget support by donors; and should provide aid in support of country-owned poverty reduction strategies.

The Government believes that the Monterrey Consensus, alongside the WTO Doha Declaration, provides an excellent basis for a new global partnership to tackle poverty eradication and manage globalisation so that it works for all the world's people, including the poorest. We hope that the World Summit on Sustainable Development, at Johannesburg in September, will build on these outcomes, and help to identify means of implementation.

A full outline of how my department is contributing to the delivery of the Government's commitment to global sustainable development will be published in our Departmental Report next month. Priorities are set out in the two White Papers on International Development (which can be found on or obtained from the DFID Public Enquiry Point). In addition, my department has considered the full sustainable development implications of its bid for resources as part of the Spending Review.

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