EC Development Council
§ Mr. David Martin
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the outcome of the European Community Development Council on 9 November.
§ Mr. Chris Patten
I represented the United Kingdom for the first part of the Council: we were later represented by our permanent representative to the European Community. Agreement was reached on a special programme to assist poor, heavily indebted African countries that are taking action to adjust the structure of their economies. It was agreed to allocate £70 million (100 mecu) for this purpose, of which £42 million (60 mecu) is additional to present European development fund resources.
Conclusions were adopted on how best to take account of the environmental factors and on the role of women in development programmes.
The Commission introduced its proposals for guidelines on EC aid to Asia and Latin America in 1988, and for amendments to the regulation governing EC food aid. There was also a discussion of the famine in Ethiopia and the help being given by the EC and the member states; and a report by the Commission on the EC programme to combat the spread of AIDS in developing countries.