The Government are strongly committed to achieving the Millennium Development Goals of universal primary education (UPE) in all countries by the year 2015 and gender equity in primary and secondary schooling by 2005.
Since May 1997 the Department for International Development has committed over £600 million to education. In addition, we will be launching the Commonwealth Education Fund on
Education will continue to be given high priority under our development assistance programme because it is a precondition of development and poverty reduction.
The UK's International Development budget has risen by 45 per cent. in real terms since 1997 and is now at the highest level ever. The ratio of Official Development Assistance to Gross National Product is on course to rise from 0.26 per cent. to 0.33 per cent. by 2003–04. We will significantly raise the amount of our development aid, and also raise its share in national income, in our next spending round covering the years up to 2005–06.