International Development written question – answered on 5th December 2005.

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Photo of Greg Hands Greg Hands Conservative, Hammersmith and Fulham

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the circumstances were of the termination of aid projects in Uzbekistan in 2005; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Gareth Thomas Gareth Thomas The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for International Development, Party Chair, Co-operative Party

Immediately after the events in Andijan in May 2005, DFID suspended, and subsequently terminated, its support to a poverty statistics project being implemented jointly with the World Bank, which involved close co-operation with the central Government. DFID has since decided to end its bilateral programme with effectfrom March 2006 when our remaining bilateral project-working with the UnitedNations Development Programme and local government on a cross-border sustainable livelihoods programme with Tajikistan-comes to an end. Given the policies of the Uzbek government the potential impact on poverty reduction of our small bilateral programme is very limited.

We will continue to support the work of multilateral agencies in Uzbekistan, particularly the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The EBRD has agreed a new country strategy, limiting its assistance to the private sector. The World Bank and the ADB are in the process of revising their strategies. We are keeping closely in touch with them.

DFID's regional HIV/AIDS programme in Central Asia, working with the World Bank and other partners and based in the Kyrgyz Republic, will include a component in Uzbekistan, managed by a non-government agency. The programme has just begun, in the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, and will run to 2008.

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