§ Mr. Hooley
asked the Minister of Overseas Development what is the amount of the United Kingdom contribution to the European Development Fund of £1,500 million over five years; and whether this contribution will be within or outside the financial ceiling imposed on aid expenditure.
§ Mr. John Grant
The United Kingdom's contribution to the fourth European Development Fund will be 589.050 million units of account or 18.7 per cent. of the total of 3,150 million units. This contribution will be spread over the estimated nine-year disbursement period of the fund. Its size in sterling terms will depend upon the rate of exchange at a given time between the pound and the EDF unit of account, which is calculated by reference to a weighted basket of member State currencies. Our contribution at current rates of exchange amounts to approximately £338.5 million. Payments to the EDF will be accommodated within the aid programme.