HC Deb 19 May 1986 vol 98 c18
58. Mr. Alton

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what proportion of total public expenditure was spent on overseas aid in 1985.

Mr. Raison

For the financial year 1985–86 provisional figures indicate that overseas aid accounted for 0.84 per cent. of total public expenditure.

Mr. Alton

I thank the Minister for that reply. Will he confirm that as a percentage of GDP that is a lower precentage than in the late 1970s, and, despite Live Aid, Band Aid and the famine in africa, we are spending less now in real terms than we were then? Do the Government have any plans for increasing the amount of money spent on overseas aid?

Mr. Raison

There has been a fall in percentage terms since 1979. On the other hand, the aid programme is now broadly stable as a proportion of planned public expenditure, and we have had an increase in real terms this year over last year.

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