HC Deb 17 June 1974 vol 875 cc25-6
49. Mr. George Cunningham

asked the Minister of Overseas Development what was the value of the estimated return flow to this country of amortisation and interest on old loans in 1973–74; and what is her estimate for 1974–75.

Mr. William Price

Amortisation receipts from aid loans during 1973–74 totalled £33.5 million and interest £26.7 million. Our estimates for 1974–75 are amortisation receipts of £38.8 million and interest payments totalling £28.0 million.

Mr. Cunningham

Is my hon. Friend aware that it has frequently been proposed that the return flow of amortisation and interest should somehow be recycled for use as fresh aid without fresh authorisation? Is he aware that the Germans have made some move in that direction? Do the present administration intend to move in the same direction?

Mr. Price

My hon. Friend will understand that there has been a good deal of recycling already, particularly on interest payments. We accept that it is no use helping a poor country today only to hang huge debts around its necks for 25 years. That is why, in conjunction with other donor nations, we have accepted a target of 86 per cent. in grant aid to the 25 poorest countries.