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Volume 712: debated on Tuesday 14 July 2009


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what funds they are providing towards the rebuilding of the education system in Afghanistan. [HL4665]

The United Kingdom's largest contribution to education in 2009-10 will be made by the Department for International Development (DfID) to the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF). The ARTF is managed by the World Bank and reimburses proven expenditures on Government operating costs, of which the education sector accounts for 52 per cent. Of DfID's ARTF contribution of £60 million in 2009-10, a nominal £31.2 million will be spent on education.

DfID provided an additional £1.2 million for construction, equipment and training of staff at the Helmand agricultural college, on course to be completed in August 2009. The cross-departmental Stabilisation Aid Fund (SAF) also funds some small-scale educational projects in Helmand, expected to amount to approximately £1 million this year.

The British Council expects to spend over £400,000 on education in 2009-10. This includes vocational and higher education, and the Connecting Classrooms project, which links Afghan schools to others in the region and the UK.

DfID also provided £32 million to the National Solidarity Programme (NSP) between 2003 and 2009. Through NSP, communities have delivered 47,000 small projects of their own choosing. As of August 2008, education projects made up 13.4 per cent of all NSP spending nationwide, giving a nominal UK spend of £4.3 million.