|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
The reason why there is a difference from the original quoted figure of £215.4 million and the figure of £250.2 million quoted in the answer of 5 March 2007, Official Report, column 1675W, is due to the fact that the original figure only referred to funding linked directly to the sports. It does not include the total funding allocated to support the Performance Pathway. For example, UK Sport is investing additional resources into the following areas: research and innovation, increased athlete medical support, funding to support the British Paralympic Association and operational costs to support the English Institute of Sport (EIS).
Mr. Woodward: DCMS set targets for VisitBritain on return on grant in aid investment, regional and seasonal spread, and key areas of consumer engagement. These are set out in the Funding Agreement between the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and VisitBritain 2005-06 to 2007-08, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment she has made of the merits of giving priority to private domestic buyers over foreign institutions open to the public in purchasing artworks proposed for export. 
Mr. Lammy: In 1996, the then Secretary of State consulted on whether any specific conditions should be attached to offers to purchase export deferred items made by private buyers. As a result of that consultation, it was decided that an owner's refusal to accept such an offer from a private buyer should lead to an export licence being refused only if the private buyer is able to guarantee reasonable public access and satisfactory conservation conditions for the art work. This remains the position. If an individual refuses an offer where such assurances have been provided, the licence application will normally be refused.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps she has taken to ensure that proposed sales and valuations of works of art subject to examination by the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art are genuine. 
When making a decision on whether a valuation is acceptable, I ensure that sufficient
information has been provided to justify it. The Reviewing Committee is vigilant in requiring such information and will not recommend a fair matching price unless satisfied it has been properly justified. In a number of cases where the Committee has not been satisfied with the justification for the valuation, it has recommended that I obtain an independent valuation and I have done so.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether the process of the registration of land of all administrative units and the registration of titles was completed for all major urban areas in Afghanistan by the end of 2010 in accordance with the target of the London Compact of 2006; whether he expects the process to have been completed for all other areas by the end of 2008; and what further progress he expects to be made towards these targets by the end of 2007. 
a process for registration of land in all administrative units and the registration of land titles will be started for all major urban areas by end-2006 and all other areas by end-2008. A fair system for settlement of land disputes will be in place by end-2007. Registration for rural land will be under way by end-2007.
A white paper on formalisation of informal property rights was prepared and approved by the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD). The recommendations made by the White Paper have been updated and incorporated in the draft land policy;
A property rights certification process has been piloted in two districts of Kabul, prior to the formalisation of land tenure;
The land register and survey that defines or re-establishes boundaries of public and/or private land for purposes of ownership and taxation is being modernised;
A Land Information System database has been established in Kabul, in collaboration with key stakeholders;
The Supreme Court has agreed to simplify the process for property transfer; and
The property archives in 15 out of 34 provinces have been reorganised and staff have been retrained in document management and security.
Looking forward, the Government of Afghanistan has committed to approving a comprehensive land policy by April 2007. This will provide guidance on dealing with crucial issues such as land grabbing, informal development, and the allocation and management of land. The Government has also committed to drafting the legislation needed to clarify and then improve the land tenure security of urban residents by April 2007. Finally, the Government has renewed its commitment to reform the system for settlement of land disputes, and improve registration of rural land by the end of 2007.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what contracts were awarded by his Department to private military security companies for work in (a) Iraq, (b) Afghanistan and (c) other countries in each of the last five years; what the (i) value and (ii) purpose was of each such contract; and if he will make a statement. 
Hilary Benn: DFID engages private security companies to provide security of our staff in high threat environments. ArmorGroup, Control Risks Group (CRG), and Kroll, have provided mobile security for DFID staff, consultants and static guarding for our compounds in Iraq and Afghanistan.
|Cost to DFID (£ million)|
|(1) DFID contract.|
The Global Conflict Prevention Pool (GCPP) Iraq Strategy also has significant programme spend on police/prison reformelements of police capacity building programme contracted to ArmorGroup who utilise both CRG and military (escorts) to provide security for their personnel.
In Afghanistan, DFID has awarded a number of contracts to ArmorGroup for armed protection of the main DFID office and residential compounds. These contracts also provide close protection (armed bodyguards) to staff when travelling to locations in Afghanistan deemed medium/high risk, and defensive driving training to our locally employed drivers. The value of this contract from June 2004 to December 2006 was £3,217,691. Since January 2007, DFIDs security needs have been met through a contract issued by the FCO.
Many of our overseas offices have contracts with local private security companies to guard residential properties. Each office would need to be contacted to provide details of the companies used and the value of each security contract. To obtain this information would incur a disproportionate cost.
Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps his Department is taking to encourage the composition of parliaments in developing countries to reflect the population of those countries in terms of (a) gender, (b) ethnicity, (c) religious belief and (d) sexuality; and if he will make a statement. 
As part of its commitment to promoting good governance, DFID works to strengthen the parliaments of developing countries.
What we do is different in different countries, depending on our assessment of what the priorities are. In some places we will focus more on the legislative function of parliaments, for instance, while in others our efforts will be channelled more towards strengthening oversight of the executive.
One of the initiatives DFID has supported recently to improve representativeness is the High Level Committee on Reservations which has developed recommendations for affirmative action for women and dalits in the political structures of Nepal. Another group we have supported is the Forum des Femmes Rwandaises Parliamentaires (FFRP). The FFRP comprises all the women members of the Rwandan Parliamentand at 48.8 per cent. Rwanda has the highest female representation in the world. Our most recent support to the FFRP funded a conference on 22 and 23 February that celebrated the progress made towards gender equality in Rwanda. It also produced the "Kigali Declaration", that will add vitality to the efforts of other African countries to get more women into Parliamentfollowing Rwanda's example.
As we increase our focus on accountable, responsive governance, DFID will support more groups like Nepal's Reservations Committee and the FFRPnot only to get disadvantaged groups into parliaments, but to ensure they function effectively once there.
Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what information is collected by his Department on the extent to which national parliaments of developing countries are representative of their populations in terms of (a) gender, (b) ethnicity, (c) religious belief and (d) sexuality. 
Hilary Benn: The proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments is an indicator used to monitor progress towards the Millennium Development Goal to promote gender equality and empower women. The number of women in parliaments is also one of the governance indicators included in the new Country Governance Analysis (CGA) that is now a mandatory component of DFIDs Country Assistance Planning process. DFID tracks progress on the gender composition of parliaments using data compiled by the United Nations and the Inter-Parliamentary Union.
Information on the composition of national parliaments by ethnicity, religion and sexuality is not as easy to find. I am not aware of any international initiative to gather this information systematically. Where it is availablefor one or more of these categories in particular parliamentsit is likely that our country offices hold this information, but it is not gathered and stored by DFID centrally.
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what response he has made to the National Audit Office report Tackling Rural Poverty in Developing Countries; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Thomas: DFID welcomes the report and is pleased that the NAO has recognised DFIDs achievements in providing help to rural communities. The Public Accounts Committee will hold a hearing on the report on 4 June. DFID is studying the detailed analysis and recommendations in the report and is preparing to respond to the PAC.
John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what assessment he has made of the impact of corruption in British companies upon the effectiveness of good governance initiatives in the developing world; 
Hilary Benn: At a global level the World Bank Institute estimates that US$1 trillion plus or minus 40 per cent. is paid in bribes every year, representing 3 per cent. of the worlds gross domestic product. No firm estimates exist on how this issue affects UK business specifically. The obstacles to measuring corruption scientifically have led to the measurement of perceptions.
Transparency Internationals Bribe-payers Index (BPI) aims to evaluate the supply side of corruption by asking business experts in emerging economies for their impressions of the likelihood that companies from the listed countries pay or offer bribes in their business activities. The highest ranked country is the one whose companies are seen as least likely to pay bribes. The UK is ranked 6(th) out of 30 countries, the 2(nd) G7 country and 3(rd )EU country in the table. But the UK is not complacent because, as the UK White Paper on Eliminating World Poverty recognises, Corruption undermines the accountability of political leaders and officials to their citizens. When politicians are bought by powerful people or businesses through bribery, or when leaders themselves use personal or public funds to buy support, they become representatives of the few and not the many. In short, corruption is both a cause and a symptom of bad governance. Any such impact will undermine work to promote good governance and reduce poverty in developing countries.
The UK is also a major supporter of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and its Special Action Programme on Forced Labour (SAP-FL). We will provide core funding of almost £2 million to SAP-FL over the next three years, in addition to support to individual country programmes.
Last month DFID published a booklet, Breaking the Chains: Eliminating slavery, ending poverty. It highlights the link between the fight against slavery and poverty and some of the work the UK is supporting through the ILO and other organisations.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what recent discussions the Government have had with President Rajapakse on aid to the Tamil people of north-east Sri Lanka; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what steps his Department is taking to ensure that humanitarian aid reaches the people of north-east Sri Lanka following the blocking of the main road route into the area; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Thomas: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and I met the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister on 7 March. My hon. Friend, the Minister for the Middle East met the Sri Lankan President on 15 February. At these meetings we discussed the impact of the conflict on civilians of all ethnic groups and how the UK could best assist progress towards a settlement of Sri Lanka's tragic conflict.
In September 2006 DFID gave US$1 million to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the UN for immediate humanitarian assistance. We are considering how to respond to the UN's latest request for funding to its 2007 Common Humanitarian Action Plan.
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) how much his Department contributed to the World Banks Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility in each of the last five years; 
Hilary Benn: Although the Public Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility (PPIAF) is not a World Bank fund, it is housed in the World Bank offices in Washington. It is a good example of donors successfully working together in development. The World Bank is one of 14 PPIAF donors.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|