International Development Questions on 13th March to the Secretary of State for International Development

Private Sector: Development

8. Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps she is taking to work more closely with the private sector for development aims. [147434]

Justine Greening: I want to see an end to aid dependency through jobs. On Monday I announced a step-change in how DFID works to drive economic development in developing countries. We will work with the Confederation of British Industry to see business and UK companies joining the development push with DFID.

Economic Development

9. Catherine McKinnell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what strategy her Department has for economic development; and if she will make a statement. [147435]

Justine Greening: On Monday I announced that my Department will work with the Confederation of British Industry to create a joint strategy for business to join the development effort.

My Department will also work in developing countries to remove trade barriers and unlock growth and jobs through supporting particularly small companies to grow successfully.

UN Aid Target

10. Chi Onwurah: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent progress has been made on the Government commitment to meet the UN aid target of 0.7 per cent of GDP. [147436]

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Mr Duncan: The Government will, as promised, meet its commitment to spend 0.7% of gross national income on Official Development Assistance from this year.

G8

11. Henry Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how her Department is supporting the UK’s presidency of the G8. [147437]

Justine Greening: The Prime Minister has said he wants to use the G8 to tackle the causes, not just the symptoms, of poverty, including work on tax, trade and transparency. My Department is working across Government and leading key elements of discussions that are relevant for developing countries.

Tax Avoidance: Developing Countries

12. Andrew Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions she has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on tackling tax avoidance in developing countries. [147438]

Lynne Featherstone: The Secretary of State for International Development, the right hon. Member for Putney (Justine Greening), regularly has meetings with ministerial colleagues, including the Chancellor of the Exchequer. In these meetings, they discuss various issues of common interest, including tax avoidance.

Better Governance

14. Neil Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps her Department is taking to promote better governance in fragile and conflict-affected states. [147440]

Mr Duncan: The UK will direct 30% of UK Official Development Assistance (ODA) to fragile and conflict affected states by 2014-15. Improving governance is central to all DFID programmes, and to tackling the drivers of instability, in fragile and conflict affected countries.

Water

15. Dr Thérèse Coffey: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how she plans to support the International Year of Water Cooperation and events on World Water Day on 22 March 2013. [147441]

Lynne Featherstone: DFID will host events on World Water Day on how water impacts on girls and women, and our support to improving access to services and managing water resources. DFID will continue supporting international cooperation on water in Africa and Asia.

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Afghanistan

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what progress has been made in meeting her Department’s target for female children attending primary school in Afghanistan. [147211]

Mr Duncan: DFID has made a large investment in improving education provision in Afghanistan for all children over the last decade. UK development funding through the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund has contributed to 5.9 million children attending school in 2011-12. This includes 2.3 million girls, compared with virtually none under the Taliban. We have therefore exceeded our Operational Plan target of contributing to 2.1 million girls attending primary school by 2013-14 and will be working with the Afghan Ministry of Education as they develop new targets.

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps she is taking to ensure that the Afghan government keeps schools and hospitals open after Coalition forces leave that country. [147215]

Mr Duncan: Since 2002 the UK has contributed over £685 million to the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF), to support the delivery of basic services across Afghanistan, including health care and education. UK support to the ARTF will continue after the security transition.

In the Tokyo Mutual Accountability Framework (TMAF) agreed in July 2012, the Afghan Government committed to adequately resource health care and education to meet Millennium Development Goal targets. The UK, as co-chair of the first ministerial review of the TMAF in 2014, will play a leading role in ensuring this commitment is met.

Rwanda

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development in what circumstances she would restore aid to Rwanda. [147328]

Justine Greening: I refer the hon. Member to my written ministerial statement of 1 March 2013, Official Report, 47-48WS.

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