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Afghanistan: Overseas Aid

Volume 501: debated on Thursday 26 November 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much funding his Department has provided for rehabilitation projects for (a) health clinics, (b) schools and (c) drinking wells in Afghanistan in each year since 2001. (301522)

The majority of the Department for International Development’s (DFID’s) support for health and education in Afghanistan is not through direct construction projects, but rather support to the Afghan Government budget. Since 2002 DFID has contributed £360 million to the Afghanistan Reconstruction Fund (ARTF) which is managed by the World Bank and reimburses proven Government expenditure on operating costs including in health and education. We will provide a further £165 million to the ARTF to 2012-13. This will cover 14 per cent. of the Government’s recurrent costs in health and education.

Since 2001 DFID has also contributed to a number of specific programmes involving the construction of health clinics, schools and drinking wells. Between 2006 and 2009, DFID contributed £30 million to various construction projects in Helmand through the Helmand Agriculture and Rural Development Programme (HARDP). This included almost £4.4 million for the construction of wells and latrines.

Through the UK-led Provincial Reconstruction Team, the Bost hospital in Lashkar Gah received approximately £800,000 last year for a new maternity clinic and college that would not have been possible under the Taliban.

Since 2003, DFID has also contributed £32 million to the Government of Afghanistan’s National Solidarity Programme (NSP), which funds small-scale projects selected by communities all around Afghanistan.