HM Treasury

Spending Review


18 July 2000

New resources for conflict prevention

New innovative ring fenced funds have been set up to channel more resources into preventing conflict and reducing the numbers of people affected by war and civil unrest in Sub-Saharan Africa and the wider world.

For the first time, programme funding will be brought together with expenditure on military operations and peacekeeping in jointly-managed pooled budgets to strengthen the way departments involved in conflict prevention work together and deliver more effective British interventions overseas.

The increased funding announced by the Chancellor Gordon Brown will pay for a wide range of activities including military operations, Britain's contribution to UN and other international peacekeeping missions and bilateral initiatives to prevent conflict, reduce conflict-related poverty and deliver stability in sub-Saharan Africa and the wider world.

The new budgets will be managed jointly by the Ministry of Defence (MOD), the Foreign Office (FCO) and the Department for International Development (DFID), working to a set of jointly agreed priorities. It is the result of a cross-departmental review of conflict prevention conducted jointly by FCO, MOD, DFID and HM Treasury.

Commenting, Foreign Secretary Robin Cook said:

"This Government is committed to helping those people who are, or are at risk of being, caught up in armed conflict and to contributing more where we can to international peace and security. Britain already has a good record of promoting democracy and stability.

"The new arrangements announced today are a result of Government departments working more closely together than ever before. They will permit swifter, better coordinated and more effective action to help prevent conflicts breaking out, and to manage them if they do break out."

Secretary of State for International Development Clare Short said:

"Conflict is one of the key obstacles to development in Africa. It hits the poor hardest and diverts scarce resources away from the fight against poverty. This cross-departmental initiative will help us work more effectively together to prevent and resolve conflict and reduce poverty."

Notes for editors

1. Expenditure plans over the next three years are:

2. In addition, indicative sums reflecting estimates of likely total expenditure on international peacekeeping and other overseas military operations (such as those currently underway in the Balkans) have been identified for the first time.

3. The new budgets bring together programme money currently held by the Department of International Development, the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defence, with new resources from the Treasury. For the first time, the forecast requirement for international peacekeeping and military operations is to be included in a budget, rather than claimed in arrears from the Treasury Reserve.

4. For further details please contact the DFID Press Office on 020 7917 0950.

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