Press Notice 45, Session 2002-03


11:00 Thursday 30 October 2003

Publication of Eighth Report:

Department for International Development: Departmental Report 2003

The International Development Committee will be publishing its 8th Report [HC 825] 'Department for International Development: Departmental Report 2003'  at 11.00 hours on Thursday 30 October 2003.

There will not be a press conference, and advance copies of the Report will not be available.

Copies of the Report will be available for collection by witnesses or Government Departments from 11.00 a.m., Thursday 30 October, at 7 Millbank Reception. Witness copies not collected by 12 noon will be posted out first class. Copies of the Report [HC 825] can be ordered from The Stationery Office (tel: 0845 702 3474) or from the Parliamentary Bookshop (tel: 020 7219 3890) or it can be viewed on our website from 3.30 p.m. on the day of publication at:



In a wide-ranging report published today by the Commons Select Committee on International Development, MPs express concern over a number of specific policies adopted by the Government department in charge of international development.

The findings, which are based on the Committee's scrutiny of the Department for International Development's (DFID) annual departmental report, include a warning that DFID lacks a coherent strategy for agriculture and that more information needs to be provided on sexual and reproductive health. Although MPs commend many aspects of the department's work they say that DFID must adopt new approaches to specific policy areas. Recommendations include:

• On agriculture: calls for DFID to develop strategies to boost smallholder production, which the Committee argues is a more cost-effective policy than food aid.

• On sexual and reproductive health: The Committee says that DFID needs to provide more information about the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) on maternal health and demonstrate exactly how it gives priority to sexual and reproductive health. Members are particularly concerned that the existence of a MDG on tackling HIV/AIDS should not be allowed to cause a shift in focus and funding away from broader SRH issues.

The Committee also recommends that:

• DFID must ensure that it reports on the full range of its activities and not just those that are related to Public Service Agreement (PSA) targets. The Department also needs to report on how it is working to tackle underperformance instead of merely identifying where underperformance occurs.

• DFID should continue to develop pioneering methods which  improve communication between donors and recipients so that the commitments and expectations of both sides are clearer.


The DFID Departmental Report can be found at:

Committee Contact: Sarah Hartwell, Second Clerk, International Development Committee, 020 7 219 2891, email


Reports and press notices issued by the International Development Committee are available on the Parliamentary website:

The membership of the Committee is as follows: Tony Baldry (Chairman) (Conservative, Banbury), John Barrett (Liberal Democrat, Edinburgh West), Mr John Battle (Labour, Leeds West), Hugh Bayley (Labour, City of York), Alistair Burt (Conservative, North East Bedfordshire), Ann Clwyd (Labour, Cynon Valley), Mr Tony Colman (Labour, Putney), Mr Piara S. Khabra (Labour, Ealing, Southall), Chris McCafferty (Labour, Calder Valley), Mr Robert Walter (Conservative, North Dorset) and  Tony Worthington (Labour, Clydebank and Milngavie).

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