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North Korea: Non-Governmental Organisations

Volume 464: debated on Monday 8 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent discussions his Department has had with AIDCO and ECHO on support for the work of non-governmental organisations in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. (154064)

The most recent discussion DFID officials have had with the Commission was on 13 September in Brussels.

The Directorate General for Humanitarian Aid (ECHO) will close its programmes in North Korea in May 2008. This is primarily because the North Korean Government requested its donors to end humanitarian aid for the first time in August 2004 and then enforced it in August 2005.

AidCo will now assume the lead on the EU assistance programme, and they plan to allocate a total of €35 million between 2007 and 2010, including €8 million in 2007, largely concentrating on food security. Non-governmental organisations in Pyongyang (and possibly others not currently based in the country) will be bidding for a share of the €8 million. AidCo will take over responsibility from ECHO for the NGOs operating in North Korea.