Memorandum from HM Treasury
This memorandum provides information on the
Treasury's input to UK preparations for the World Summit on Sustainable
2. HM Treasury is involved in the UK's preparations
for the World Summit on Sustainable Development through the MISC
18 ministerial group, and through official-level contacts with
other government departments. Input to the ministerial group on
matters of Treasury competence is coordinated centrally, with
contributions from relevant policy teams. Treasury has produced
(jointly with the Department for International Development) a
paper for MISC 18 covering the linkages between the World Summit
on Sustainable Development and the UN summit on Financing for
Development. We have not actively publicised the summit or our
3. In addition to contributions to the UKs
preparations for the World Summit on Sustainable Development;
the Chancellor has taken a leading role in international efforts
to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. In recent speeches,
the Chancellor has led international calls for developed countries
to increase the volume and effectiveness of aid, and to build
a Global New Deal to ensure the world's poor can share fairly
the benefits of prosperity throughout the world.
4. The UK Sustainable Development Strategy
A Better Quality of Life (1999) commits the Government to report
annually on its progress towards achieving sustainable development.
Progress is measured against the 15 headline indicators and 147
core indicators identified in the 1999 paper Quality of Life Counts.
5. The forthcoming Sustainable Development
Annual Report sets out the indicators for which the Treasury has
lead responsibility and those for which we make a significant
contribution. The latest data demonstrates that the indicators
for which the Treasury has lead responsibility are moving in the
direction of meeting the Government's sustainable development
6. The Treasury has an important role to
play in promoting sustainable development through the allocation
of resources to departments during the spending review. Departments
with a Public Service Agreement (PSA) have been requested to produce
a Sustainable Development Report as part of their proposal to
the Spending Review outlining the sustainable development implications
of their department's priorities.
7. As the Treasury's ENV (G) minister the
Financial Secretary is taking a lead role incorporating sustainable
development into the Spending Review. Departmental progress has
been reported through the ENV (G) committee meetings and the Financial
Secretary will be holding a series of bilateral meetings to enable
ministers to discuss the content of their department's sustainable
8. Through its Aims, Objectives and Public
Service Agreement (PSA) targets, the Treasury contributes directly
to three of the Government's headline indicators:
H1: Economic Output (GDP).
H3: Employment (% of working age people
H4: Poverty and social exclusion.
Moreover, the Treasury substantially contributes,
through its aims and objectives, to the indicator on investments
(H2: Investment as % of GDP).
9. The Government remains committed to environmental
appraisal and evaluation of its Budget measures and makes available
the methodologies underpinning the environmental appraisals which
are published in its Budget document.
10. The Government will appraise all Budget
measures which have a significant impact on the environment or
serve an environmental purpose. This is in line with its own guidance
on appraising and evaluating the effects of policy measures.
11. In line with its sustainable development
policy, the Government ensures that policy design, appraisal and
evaluation takes account of costs and benefits, the precautionary
principle, and the need to make the polluter pay by internalising