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Asian Sub-Continent (Aid)

Volume 33: debated on Monday 6 December 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the level and quality of aid to the Asian subcontinent.

In the last financial year we provided £188 million bilateral aid for countries in the area. We expect to provide about the same amount in the current financial year. All the aid is given without interest or repayment. In addition, those countries benefit from British contributions to various international funds such as the World Bank, the European Community and the Asian Development Bank.

In view of the expertise that has been built up in Britain in the establishment of new towns, would my right hon. Friend consider using some of the aid to the Asian sub-continent for the creation of further new towns to house the outflow of migrants from Britain that is likely to occur during the next 10 years?

It is for the developing countries to request aid for the creation of new towns. We always consider those requests.