HC Deb 13 April 1965 vol 710 cc1149-50
22. Mr. R. Carr

asked the Minister of Overseas Development what was the estimated amount of aid provided to Aden and the Federation of South Arabia in 1964–65; how much this represents on a per capita basis of the population of the territories concerned; and whether she anticipates making any significant change in the amount of aid to this area in the current year.

Mrs. Castle

During 1964–65 schemes under the Colonial Development and Welfare Act were approved for the Federation of South Arabia to a total of £2,578,000, which represents about £3 10s. per head of the estimated population. Cash issues during the year, which relate both to these and to schemes previously approved, together with assistance in other forms, excluding budgetary and military aid, amounted to £1,153,618, or about £1 10s. per head.

Budgetary and military aid, which is the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Colonies, amounted to £8.2 million.

I shall be consulting my right hon. Friend about the provision of further development aid during the coming year, in the light of the total C.D. & W. provision made by the Overseas Development and Service Bill now before the House. Issues are likely to increase substantially, as schemes recently approved get under way.

Mr. Carr

I welcome the large amount of aid which the right hon. Lady has mentioned in connection with these territories, but can she tell the House by what criterion she allocates what is a very high amount of aid compared with that which is given to many other developing countries where the needs for and the prospects of the effective use of aid are just as great? Why is it so much bigger in this area?

Mrs. Castle

I am rather surprised at the attitude which the right hon. Member is taking. I thought that it would have been agreed by hon. Members on both sides of the House that a backlog of development work needs to be done in this part of the world. I am only sorry that in the past the issues have not proceeded more speedily against allocations. It will be my aim to speed up the allocations.