Skip to main content

Africa: International Assistance

Volume 486: debated on Thursday 22 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what progress has been made to date towards meeting the G8 Gleneagles pledge to (a) increase official development assistance (ODA) by $50 billion, (b) increase ODA to Africa by $25 billion and (c) cancel 100 per cent. of heavily indebted poor countries' debt by 2010; what steps are being taken to ensure that the G8 meets these targets by 2010; and if he will make a statement. (248507)

According to the latest available data from the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC), ODA from DAC members increased from $79 billion in 2004 to $104 billion in 2007, and ODA to Africa has increased from $30 billion in 2004 to $39 billion in 2007.

The Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative agreed at Gleneagles in 2005 has delivered an additional $42 billion of debt cancellation to 23 countries including 19 in Africa. Non-DAC donors are also contributing to meeting the targets. The ODA increases by the G8 and other donors towards the 2005 targets are monitored by the DAC, the European Commission and by civil society, and are discussed in intergovernmental bodies including the United Nations, the G8, the European Council, and DAC High Level meetings. The UK Government is continuing to work with others to ensure effective delivery of the commitments made in 2005.

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the UK's agreed contribution was towards the G8 Gleneagles pledge to (a) increase official development assistance (ODA) by $50 billion and (b) increase ODA to Africa by $25 billion by 2010 (i) as a percentage of each total and (ii) in monetary terms expressed in (A) US dollars and (B) pounds; and if he will make a statement. (248508)

At Gleneagles, the UK announced a timetable to provide 0.7 per cent. of gross national income (GNI) as official development assistance (ODA) by 2013. The European Union agreed to provide 0.56 per cent. of its GNI as ODA in 2010, with at least half of the increase allocated to sub-Saharan Africa. On the basis of these commitments, and those of other donors, the OECD estimated that total annual ODA would increase by around $50 billion between 2004 and 2010, and annual ODA to Africa would increase by $25 billion.

In the comprehensive spending review settlement announced in October 2007, the Government announced that DFID would spend £7.9 billion in 2010-11, and projected that total UK ODA would reach £9.1 billion (0.56 per cent. of projected GNI), compared to ODA of £4.3 billion in 2004. This projected increase of £4.8 billion is equivalent to US$7.3 billion at today's exchange rates, about 15 per cent of the $50 billion increase expected to result from the Gleneagles commitments. The Government has not announced a projection of total UK ODA to Africa, but has announced that DFID will increase its total multilateral and bilateral aid to Africa from £1.3 billion in 2004 to more than £3 billion in 2010—equivalent to $2.6 billion at today's exchange rates, and over 10 per cent. of the $25 billion increase for Africa announced at Gleneagles commitments.