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Aid Programme

Volume 201: debated on Wednesday 15 January 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the new agenda for Africa in the 1990s adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 18 December 1991; and what are the implications of this agenda for Her Majesty's Government's overseas aid programme.

The United Nation's new agenda for the development of Africa in the 1990s encourages African countries to make further progress on economic reform; improve the quality of their public expenditure programmes; and pay particular attention to human resource development and capacity building. It stresses the link between economic and social development and good governance.These are already the aims of our bilateral assistance programmes to African countries. Almost 50 per cent. of our bilateral aid goes to Africa. We have also taken the lead in promoting international consensus and action on debt relief for the poorest, most heavily indebted countries undertaking economic reforms, many of which are in Africa.