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State Aid Agencies (Co-operation)

Volume 450: debated on Tuesday 10 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what plans he has for increased co-operation with other state aid agencies in relation to the objectives set out in the White Paper. (90017)

The White Paper on International Development published this year sets out the UK commitment to increase aid to 0.7 per cent. of gross national income by 2013. It describes how DFID aims to improve aid effectiveness by supporting partner country ownership of development and by working more closely with other donors.

DFID has already worked with other donors to increase cooperation at a country level in Tanzania and Zambia, and is currently working with the Government and other donors to improve working arrangements in Uganda. The world’s first fully harmonised joint donor office opened earlier this year in Juba, Southern Sudan and combines the bilateral programmes of the UK, Netherlands, Norway, Denmark and Sweden into one operation.

DFID is also working closely with the European Commission to establish and improve joint strategies in a number of African countries and aims to participate in multi-donor arrangements in all countries where it has a bi-lateral aid programme by 2010.

Achievement of White Paper objectives also requires that donors act and provide funds in ways that simplify aid delivery to meet the needs of partner countries and that the performance by the UN, World Bank and regional development banks is improved. DFID is working with other donors to reform the support to the UN by pooling funds at country levels, and is pushing for a stronger role for the OECD development assistance committee to monitor and hold donors, countries, multi-laterals and the UN to account on meeting their commitments.