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Sri Lanka: Overseas Aid

Volume 475: debated on Tuesday 6 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment he has made of whether UNICEF funds donated to educational projects in Sri Lanka are being properly spent on those projects; and if he will make a statement. (202495)

As Sri Lanka is now a middle income country, there is no UK bilateral aid programme of support to Sri Lanka. The Department for International Development's (DFID) bilateral programme ended in March 2007.

Instead, DFID works in conjunction with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and Ministry of Defence (MoD) to provide peace building support to Sri Lanka by pooling funds through the conflict prevention pool (CPP). DFID does not currently fund any UNICEF education projects.

Through the conflict prevention pool, the UK funds UNICEF's human rights and poverty programme called “Children Affected by Armed Conflict”.

To ensure that conflict prevention pool funds are properly spent, projects are regularly monitored by the High Commission in Colombo and three UK Government Departments responsible for the pooled funds in the UK. Quarterly reviews are conducted jointly by the High Commission and the three departments in London. An internal annual review of projects is also conducted.