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Basra Development Commission

Volume 470: debated on Tuesday 8 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what development projects have been identified for funding by the Basra Development Commission; and if he will make a statement; (174171)

(2) how many officials from his Department are seconded to the Basra Development Commission; where these officials are based; and how much has been spent by his Department on the Commission.

The Basra Development Commission (BDC) has not identified any development projects. So far one Commissioner has been appointed (Michael Wareing, international CEO of KPMG) and the Government of Iraq and Basra Provincial Council (BPC) are expected to appoint further Commissioners in the coming weeks. Moreover, the Commission’s role will be to provide guidance and advice on economic issues, not to identify development projects.

No DFID officials have been seconded to the BDC. The Commission is expected to consist of several Commissioners and a small Secretariat. DFID has not allocated any funds specifically for expenditure on the BDC. Some logistical support for the Commission is being provided through existing DFID programmes for Basra, but no financial assistance.