Developing Countries: Education

International Development written question – answered on 7th October 2008.

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Photo of Claire Curtis-Thomas Claire Curtis-Thomas Labour, Crosby

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much and what percentage of its budget his Department spent on education programmes in schools in 2007-08; and what assessment he has made of the performance of such programmes against their objectives.

Photo of Douglas Alexander Douglas Alexander The Secretary of State for International Development

In 2007-08, the Department for International Development (DFID) spent some £351 million bilaterally on education which represented 12 per cent. of DFID's total bilateral programme. These figures include an allocated proportion of General Budget Support and funding to the Education for All fast track initiative. It does not include support to education through multilateral institutions and non-governmental organisations funded through DFID's Partnership Programme Agreements. The UK is committed to increasing its total spending on education globally to £1 billion by 2010.

Global enrolment in primary education increased from 647 million in 1999 to 688 million in 2005 but latest estimates show that some 75 million primary aged children are still not enrolled in school, so a significant challenge remains. That is why, last year the Prime Minister and United Nations' Secretary General called for accelerated action to achieve the millennium development goals, including for education.

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