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Written Question
World Health Organisation: Overseas Aid
15 Jun 2020

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much funding was allocated from (a) the UK Government public purse and (b) other countries to the World Health Organisation in 2019.

Answered by Wendy Morton

The UK is the third biggest donor to the WHO, giving £120 million per annum on average. We do not routinely keep data on funding allocated by other countries. The World Health Organization holds this information.


Written Question
Palestinians: Schools
29 Jan 2020

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the Answer of 8 July 2019 to Question 272116, if he will place a copy in the Library of the inception report which formed the basis of the independent review of Palestinian Authority textbooks.

Answered by Andrew Murrison

The UK commissioned the Georg Eckert Institute to produce an inception report. I can confirm that we will place a copy of this inception report in the Library and I will write to the Right Honourable member once this has been done.


Written Question
Middle East and North Africa: Locusts
7 Jan 2020

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what support his Department is providing to countries in the Middle East and North Africa to (a) counter plagues of locusts and to (b) support populations affected by them.

Answered by Andrew Murrison

DFID provides approximately £17 million per annum in core funding to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), a strategic objective of which is to “increase the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises” such as locusts. In 2018, UK core funding to the FAO supported the Desert Locust Information System, which provides an early warning information system for countries including in the Middle East and North Africa.

DFID also funds a range of programmes that work to improve the monitoring of and response to pests more generally. These include the Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux International (CABI) Plantwise and Action on Invasives programmes, the development and testing of biopesticides by the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, and new work under development with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to strengthen pest and disease surveillance, forecasting and the coordination and capacity of plant health organisations.


Written Question
Developing Countries: Renewable Energy
28 Oct 2019

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what support his Department provides to developing countries to support off-grid electricity generation from renewable sources.

Answered by Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park

Off-grid renewable energy is often the best way for millions of people to have access to electricity, especially in rural areas. DFID’s support to off-grid electricity generation is delivered through a range of programmes.

We provide funding for the installation of off-grid solar power, such as through mini-grid projects in Kenya and Rwanda. We provide technical assistance and are helping to establish markets in a number of African countries for household solar power. For example, a programme using results-based financing is delivering clean energy electricity access to millions, while the Africa Clean Energy programme is supporting a market-based approach for private sector delivery of solar home system products and services.

We also support private sector off-grid projects through the Green Climate Fund. For example, one project is helping 50 poor, rural communities in Mali to switch from fossil fuel-powered diesel generators and kerosene lamps to green energy by installing solar mini-grids. We also support development finance interventions such as the Private Infrastructure Development Group, the Multilateral Development Banks, and CDC – which has, for example, invested substantial equity in M-KOPA, a pay-as-you-go solar energy company.

Since 2011, the UK has provided 26 million people with improved access to clean energy and installed 1,600 MW in clean energy capacity.

The Prime Minister announced at the UN Climate Action Summit funding of up to £1 billion for research, development and deployment of new energy technologies and business models to unlock opportunities in developing countries for cleaner growth and better access to clean energy.


Written Question
Pakistan: Earthquakes
3 Oct 2019

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assistance the Government is offering to the Government of Pakistan following the aftermath of the recent earthquake in Azad Kashmir.

Answered by Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park

DFID has been liaising closely with the Government of Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) since the earthquake struck on 24 September 2019.

Key humanitarian partners, including UN agencies, met with the NDMA to discuss the response to the earthquake on Friday 27 September. The NDMA confirmed that the Government of Pakistan will not launch any formal appeal or request for National or International Assistance, but donors and agencies can provide assistance on a voluntary basis.

DFID stands ready to respond and provide funding and the National Disaster Consortium partners have pre-positioned supplies which can be deployed at short notice.


Written Question
Yemen: Humanitarian Aid
17 Jul 2019

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

What recent discussions he has had with his (a) European and (b) other international counterparts on the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela.

Answered by Andrew Murrison

The UK regularly discusses the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela in international fora.

This includes with our European counterparts, as well as during the visits to the UK by the Colombian President Duque and US Secretary of State Pompeo.

Together with our international partners, we continue to call for unimpeded access for humanitarian aid in to Venezuela.


Written Question
Venezuela: Reconstruction
4 Feb 2019

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what preparations her Department has made for urgent reconstruction work in Venezuela in the event of a change of Government.

Answered by Alistair Burt

DFID does not have a bilateral presence in Venezuela. DFID continues to work closely with – and provide significant core funding to – the UN and Red Cross movement to alleviate the worsening humanitarian situation. In the event of a change in government in Venezuela, the international financial institutions will play a key role in supporting any reconstruction work.


Written Question
Venezuela: Refugees
19 Nov 2018

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, pursuant to the answers of 12 November 2018 to Questions 188711 and 188712 on Venezuela, how much money from the public purse has been spent on Venezuelan related aid in the last year.

Answered by Alistair Burt

Despite efforts by the UK to urge the Venezuelan Government to accept humanitarian aid, they continue to deny the existence of a humanitarian crisis.

DFID is supporting the relief effort within the region through partners such as United Nations agencies, the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), the European Commission and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

The European Commission announced a €35m aid package this year of which the UK’s share is approximately 15%. In addition, the UK is a longstanding supporter of the CERF which allocated $26m to the region. The UK is the largest donor to the fund since inception and in 2017 represented 20% of the fund’s total contributions. This year the UK has contributed £55m to the CERF which will support responses to humanitarian needs across the globe, including in response to the Venezuelan crisis. DFID is also ICRC’s second largest donor, providing approximately £63m of core funding per year for ICRC to direct towards priority operations across the globe as they deem appropriate.


Written Question
Land Mines
19 Nov 2018

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much her Department spent on the clearance of landmines and improvised explosive devices in the last 12 months.

Answered by Alistair Burt

Between October 2017 and October 2018 the Department for International Development spent £45,308,302 on programmes that reduce the humanitarian impact of landmines and improvised explosive devices (ERW). These programmes survey and clear land contaminated by landmines and ERW; provide mine risk education sessions to help communities understand the dangers of landmines and ERW; and support national mine action authorities to manage contamination effectively and efficiently.


Written Question
Venezuela: Overseas Aid
12 Nov 2018

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what discussions she has had with her EU and UN counterparts on providing humanitarian relief to Venezuelans in that country and in neighbouring countries.

Answered by Alistair Burt

DFID has deployed two humanitarian experts and funded additional roles for UN agencies in the region. The UK is also supporting the international response through core funding to the UN, humanitarian agencies, the European Commission and Red Cross movements.

The UK continues to urge the Venezuelan Government to accept humanitarian aid and DFID is supporting the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s efforts to urge Venezuela to meet their population’s needs.


Written Question
Venezuela: Refugees
12 Nov 2018

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what support her Department is providing to countries neighbouring Venezuela that are hosting refugees from that country.

Answered by Alistair Burt

DFID has deployed two humanitarian experts and funded additional roles for UN agencies in the region. The UK is also supporting the international response through core funding to the UN, humanitarian agencies, the European Commission and Red Cross movements.

The UK continues to urge the Venezuelan Government to accept humanitarian aid and DFID is supporting the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s efforts to urge Venezuela to meet their population’s needs.


Written Question
Developing Countries: Family Planning
6 Feb 2017

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether her Department plans to contribute to the fund set up by the Government of the Netherlands in response to the changes to foreign aid for family planning announced by the new US Administration.

Answered by Lord Wharton of Yarm

The UK will continue to show global health leadership by promoting and supporting evidence-based sexual and reproductive health and rights. The full implications of the reinstated and expanded Mexico City policy are not yet clear, but we are closely following developments.


Written Question
Department for International Development: Consultants
11 Jan 2017

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much her Department has spent on private consultancies in the last 12 months.

Answered by Priti Patel

Figures for financial year 2015/16 show that DFID spends approximately 13% of its budget through contractors. The House will know that I have recently instructed my officials to undertake a review of how we work with our suppliers. It is essential that all of DFID’s contractors and partners are fully open and transparent, uphold the highest standards and are held to account for those standards.


Written Question
Department for International Development: Procurement
4 Jul 2016

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, if she will take steps to ensure that her Department's purchasing policies support British (a) industry and (b) agriculture.

Answered by Nick Hurd

The Department's purchasing policies support the Government’s commitment to do all it can to ensure UK suppliers can compete effectively for public sector contracts, in line with our current international obligations and guidance issued by the Crown Commercial Service.


Written Question
Developing Countries: Transport
13 Jan 2016

Questioner: John Spellar (LAB - Warley)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment her Department has made of the contribution of wider access to efficient refrigerated transport to reducing (a) food waste in developing countries and (b) carbon dioxide emissions.

Answered by Nick Hurd

DFID is working to support partner countries to tackle poverty and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by building sustainable infrastructure, increasing their access to clean energy and reducing deforestation. DFID recognises the importance of investment in trade and transport logistics to improve efficiency and reduce delays, which have major impacts on reducing carbon dioxide emissions. These improvements will have downstream impacts on many trade related issues including reducing the amount of spoilt goods from transit delays. We are engaged in this area in a number of ways. For example, Trade Mark East Africa is helping to improve the major trade corridors in East Africa to reduce the time and expense of transporting goods. Furthermore, the investment by CDC group into Grindrod, a South African logistics company, is enabling it to expand its transport logistics investments across sub-Saharan Africa. CDC is the UK’s development finance organisation with DFID as its only shareholder.