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Overseas Aid

Volume 477: debated on Friday 20 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what (a) criteria are used and (b) process is followed in determining whether breaches of aid partnership commitments should give use to (i) revocation and (ii) reduction of aid allocations. (211706)

The joint DFID, FCO and HM Treasury policy paper “Partnerships for poverty reduction: rethinking conditionality” (2005) states that a successful aid partnership depends on shared commitments to:

Poverty reduction and achieving the MDGs

Respecting human rights and other international obligations

Strengthening financial management and accountability

The UK will consider reducing or interrupting aid if partner countries breach these commitments. Table 5.2 of DFID’s annual report provides details of changes to programmes as a result of a breach of conditions during 2007-08. The report is available through DFID’s website:

The UK conditionality policy commits us to agreeing with partner Governments in advance a process for considering whether there has been a breach. We aim to have a substantial period of discussion with the partner Government to enable us to explain our concerns and understand their position. We are committed to greater transparency about conditionality by making public our decisions and the evidence on which they are based, as we do in DFID’s annual report.

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what process his Department follows for assessing the performance of its aid projects; and what definition he uses of success in assessing aid project outcomes. (211709)

All of the Department for International Development’s (DFID) projects and programmes identify what problems they will address, what the money will be spent on and who will benefit to ensure that they have as much impact as possible in improving the lives of poor people.

DFID’s projects and programmes of £1 million or more include a measurement framework against which performance is monitored. Operational projects are scored annually throughout their duration to assess the likelihood of achieving their intended objectives. Projects are then scored on completion according to whether they achieved their intended objectives. See table 1 as follows.

Projects are monitored routinely to check that they are on track by active management by DFID’s regional divisions.

Table 1


DFID description

Achievement of outputs


Likely to be completely achieved

The outputs/purpose are well on the way to completion (or completed)


Likely to be largely achieved

There is good progress towards purpose completion and most outputs have been achieved, particularly the most important


Likely to be partly achieved

Only partial achievement of the purpose is likely and/or achievement of some outputs


Only likely to be achieved to a very limited extent

Purpose unlikely to be achieved but a few outputs likely to be achieved


Unlikely to be achieved

No progress on outputs or purpose


Too early to judge

It is impossible to say whether there has been any progress towards the final achievement of outputs or purpose

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will place a copy in the Library of each institutional strategy paper for multilateral aid organisations. (211717)

We will place copies of all current institutional strategies in the Library by 30 June. These are already in the public domain. Some are due for renewal in 2008. As we agree new institutional strategies, we will also place these in the Library.