Algeria: Overseas Aid

International Development written question – answered on 13th November 2008.

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Photo of Jeremy Corbyn Jeremy Corbyn Labour, Islington North

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much his Department has spent on aid to Saharawi refugees in Algeria in each of the last three years; and how much is planned to be spent in 2009-10.

Photo of Michael Foster Michael Foster Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for International Development

The Department for International Development provides aid indirectly to Saharawi refugees in Algeria through the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the European Commission's Humanitarian Office's (ECHO).

DFID is the sixth largest donor to the UNHCR. Since 2006, DFID has provided up to £19 million per year of unearmarked funds with plans to continue this in 2009-10. In 2007 alone, UNHCR spent $6 million on programmes in Algeria; almost all of this on providing protection and assistance to Saharawi refugees. DFID's unearmarked funds support the organisational capacity building and operations of UNHCR to enable it to effectively carry out its work with refugees.

The UK Government currently provide approximately 15 per cent. of the European Commission's Humanitarian Office's (ECHO) core budget. In 2005, ECHO provided €9.3 million to assist the Saharawi refugees in Algeria. In 2006, ECHO provided €10,900,000 (including an exceptional primary emergency response of € 900,000 to the February 2006 floods). In 2007 ECHO provided a further €10 million.

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