HC Deb 20 December 1999 vol 341 c427W
Dr. Tonge

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what mechanisms are in place to monitor funds pledged for reconstruction in(a) Nicaragua and (b) Honduras. [102817]

Clare Short

The Consultative Group meeting for the Reconstruction and Transformation of Central America in Stockholm agreed that a group of five major donor countries, (Germany, Canada, the United States, Sweden and Spain), would be set up to monitor the process of reconstruction and transformation in Central America.

The five countries met for the first time in September and drew up a proposal for a permanent dialogue with the governments of Honduras, Nicaragua, (and El Salvador and Guatemala).

Their remit is to negotiate and agree with the affected countries a system of follow up and support. The affected countries will provide progress reports on their reconstruction programmes.

The aim of the group is to reduce the social and ecological vulnerability of the region; improve transparency; consolidate democracy and good governance; promote respect for human rights; coordinate donor efforts; and intensify efforts to reduce the external debt burden.

Representatives from each of the five major donor countries and each of the four affected Central American countries will meet on a frequent basis to ensure that all conditions are adhered to. They will be reporting back to the next Consultative Group meetings to be held in Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaragua in the week beginning 7 February 2000. Britain will be represented at these meetings.

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