HC Deb 26 February 2001 vol 363 cc509-10W
Mr. Goggins

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much was paid in total to the United Kingdom in debt servicing payments, in the last year for which figures are available, by(a) Angola, (b) Burundi, (c) Central African Republic, (d) Chad, (e) the Republic of Congo, (f) the Democratic Republic of Congo, (g) Cote d'Ivoire, (h) Ethiopia, (i) Ghana, (j) Kenya, (k) Lao PDR, (l) Liberia, (m) Myanmar, (n) Sierra Leone, (o) Somalia, (p) Sudan, (q) Togo, (r) Vietnam and (s) Yemen. [144479]

Miss Melanie Johnson

Her Majesty's Government have received amounts of debt service payments under bilateral debt agreements from the following countries in 2000:

Country Payment (£)
Central African Republic 27,637
Ethiopia 525,526
Ghana 1,417,864
Kenya 6,357,388
Vietnam 66,285
Yemen 201,103
Total 9,205,803

No payments were made in 2000 by Angola, the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cöte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan or Togo. Nor was any payment received from Myanmar, which has no debt agreement with the UK.

Burundi, Chad and Lao PDR have no liabilities to Her Majesty's Government.

In addition, in 2000 the Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC) received £5,020,124 from Ghana and £1,947,456 from Kenya. CDC is, a PLC owned by Government: economic interest in CDC loans to HIPCs has been transferred to DFID.

With effect from 2 December, in line with the joint announcement of the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Secretary of State for International Development, Her Majesty's Government will receive no financial benefit from any future payments by any of these countries. They will be held in trust and refunded to the country when Decision Point under the enhanced HIPC initiative is reached, at which time 100 per cent. of future payments will also be relieved.

In order to reach Decision Point, HIPC countries must demonstrate their commitment to a programme agreed with the IMF to deliver macroeconomic stability and alleviate poverty. Poverty eradication must be the recognised priority: the UK cannot provide debt relief for conflict countries where defence spending is high or for those with no track record of economic reform.