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Bangladesh

Volume 455: debated on Thursday 25 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what funding and resources his Department has (a) provided in each of the last three financial years and (b) committed in each of the next three financial years for communities living on the chars of Bangladesh; what proportion of the funding has been spent (i) bilaterally and (ii) multilaterally; and through which organisations funding has been spent. (117020)

DFID has provided £10.7 million of bilateral funding over the last three financial years (£1.1 million in 2004-05, £3.3 million in 2005-06 and £6.3 million in 2006-07) to support ‘char’ island communities in Bangladesh under the Chars Livelihoods Programme (CLP). All funding is routed through Maxwell Stamp plc., the managing agents for the programme: about 70 per cent. is passed to 30 local non-governmental organisations (NGOs), which transfer cash stipends and assets (such as cows, poultry and vegetable seeds) to poor and destitute women and, fund the raising of households above normal flood levels; the remaining 30 per cent. goes through five local government offices to provide cash for public works which create employment opportunities for poor communities on the island chars. We expect to spend a further £10 million per year on the CLP in each of the next three financial years.