HC Deb 27 June 1974 vol 875 cc538-9W
Mr. Woof

asked the Minister of Overseas Development, in view of the World Bank estimates, indicating that the developing countries as a whole spent more than $5,200 million on oil last year, and will need $14,900 million for the same volume of oil this year, if the Government will support the poorer States facing probable increases in their import bills for basic foods comparable to the increase in their outlays for oil.

Mrs. Hart

In planning aid commitments, I take account of all factors affecting the economic position of each country concerned. Within the funds available for overseas aid, I shall therefore seek—through multilateral channels or bilaterally—to provide some additional help to the countries which are suffering most seriously from the combined effects of oil, commodity, and food price rises.

As part of this approach, we have been urging the European Community to tell the United Nations Secretary-General of its willingness to join in arrangements with other donors, in response to the recent appeal by the Special Assembly of the United Nations, for emergency assistance for the countries most seriously affected by the oil price rises. I am glad to say that at its meeting on 25th June the Council of Ministers of the Community decided to offer up to$500 million on the understanding that other donors, including the oil producers, are willing to make commensurate contributions.

Mr. Woof

asked the Minister of Overseas Development what requests she has received for emergency assistance intended to provide to help the most seriously threatened developing countries which are suffering food shortages and the supply of chemical fertilisers.

Mrs. Hart

Requests for emergency assistance have been received from countries in the Sahelian zone and from the Ethiopian Government.

Her Majesty's Government's commitment to Sahel relief to date for 1974 is:

  1. (i) Share of community food aid and special non-food aid programmes (£3.5 million);
  2. (ii) 10,000 tons of food aid to Mali (£1 million);
  3. (iii) Further contribution to the FAO Sahelian Zone Trust Fund (£.5 million);
  4. (iv) purchase and airlift of trucks to Chad and Niger (£.25 million); and
  5. (v) a contribution towards the cost of providing and maintaining a floating ferry at Rosso in Mauritania (£.03 million).

In respect of Ethiopia, Her Majesty's Government have made available a total of£.85 million in grant form for relief and rehabilitation measures. Of this,£.35 million was offered last year and the balance was offered recently. A large part of this latest grant is being used to provide transport for the distribution of grain.

1964–1973 inclusive 1973 only
Gross Net of Amortisation Gross Net of Amortisation
(a) India 430,033 327,913 49,365 36,269
(b) Nigeria 69,600 50,043 7,807 4,878
(c) Arab Countries 86,565 80,577 6,750 5,543

These figures include the provision of technical assistance as well as of capital aid.

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