HC Deb 10 March 1958 vol 584 cc6-7W
56. Colonel Beamish

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, in view of the urgent need for increased technical advice and assistance in many parts of Africa, south of the Sahara, if he will make a full statement about the recently concluded conference in Accra of the Commission for Technical Co-operation, saying particularly which countries, territories, or organisations now belong to the Foundation for Mutual Assistance in Africa, which are about to join, and which will be represented in future by observers; what technical assistance will be available for countries or territories which do not join the organisation; what size of staff is proposed; when it will be set up and fully functioning; what is likely to be the total expenditure of this whole joint operation; and the estimated cost, to the United Kingdom during the next twelve months.

Mr. Ian Harvey

I represented the United Kingdom at the Conference in Accra on 19th and 20th of February at which the new Foundation for Mutual Assistance in Africa south of the Sahara was inaugurated. The meeting was very successful and I am certain that the new Foundation has got off to an excellent start.

The Foundation has been set up jointly by all the member Governments of the Commission for Technical Co-operation in Africa south of the Sahara. But the other countries and territories in Africa south of the Sahara will be equally eligible to receive technical assistance under this scheme. The provision of technical assistance under the Foundation can start as soon as specific requests for it are put forward by Governments.

It is too early yet to estimate the eventual total of expenditure by member Governments. The provision which the House will be asked to approve for actual expenditure by Her Majesty's Government in the next financial year for assistance to non-Commonwealth countries in the region is £20,000.

I give below further details for which my hon. and gallant Friend has asked:

Forward to