Written Answers. - Overseas Development Aid.

Bernard J. Durkan

Question:

96 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the number of countries with which Ireland has a bilateral aid programme; if he will report on the present position in each case; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22315/98]

The following are the six priority countries for the Irish bilateral aid programme: Ethiopia, Lesotho, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. In addition, assistance is provided in smaller amounts for particular purposes to a number of other countries including South Africa, Zimbabwe and the Palestinian territories.

The programmes are proceeding satisfactorily all cases. The budgets for the priority country programmes for 1998 are as follows:

£m

Ethiopia

12.4

Lesotho

4.4

Mozambique

5.0

Tanzania

9.8

Uganda

6.0

Zambia

5.8

Details of all aid expenditures are published each year in the Irish aid annual report.

Bernard J. Durkan

Question:

97 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the number of countries benefiting from the multilateral aid programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22316/98]

Ireland's contributions to international multilateral aid programmes take the form of mandatory and voluntary contributions. In 1997, a total of £43.242 million was channelled through multilateral development assistance agencies, equal to 35 per cent of Irish aid expenditure.

In respect of the United Nations, voluntary contributions to a range of UN organisations totalled £7.5 million in 1997 and are likely to be £8.43 million in 1998. The three main recipients — the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) and the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) — operate in most developing countries. For example, UNDP covers 174 countries through a network of 134 country offices. In addition, Ireland makes mandatory payments to the World Bank Group, UNIDO, Global Environment Facility and UN Environment Programme as well as a range of mandatory and voluntary contributions to UN agricultural and food agencies.
The Irish Aid bilateral programme also makes specific voluntary contributions to UN Programmes on an emergency basis or to support particular programmes or projects. In respect of the EU, 21 per cent of Irish aid funding was channelled through the EU in 1997. The main direct development expenditure in 1997 was £4.928 million to the European Development Fund, EDF, as part of the Lomé Convention. The EDF has programmes in the 71 African, Caribbean and Pacific countries that are party to the Lomé Convention. In addition, some £20.82 million of Ireland's contribution to the EU budget went to fund development co-operation. This would be used to fund a wide range of aid operations in Asia, Latin America, the Mediterranean region, eastern Europe and the countries of the former Soviet Union. In summary, Ireland supports through the UN, EU, World Bank, and other multilateral institutions a range of programmes — involving mandatory or voluntary contributions — in virtually every developing country.