§ Mr. Foulkes
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what effect the variation in exchange rate between the dollar and the pound sterling will have on the United Kingdom contribution to each of the multilateral aid agencies in the current year; and what effect there will be on the budget of the Overseas Development Administration.
§ Mr. Raison
United Kingdom capital subscriptions and contributions to certain multilateral development banks, and annual subscriptions to certain international organisations, are denominated in US dollars. Payments against certain individual commitments are made over a number of years. Within each year the precise timing of payments cannot be anticipated and thus it is not possible at this stage to say what the overall effect of fluctuations in the US dollar/£ sterling exchange rate will be in each case in the current financial year. £16,422,090 was spent in 1982–83 in meeting commitments of this kind which amounted to US$27,800,661.
The effect of exchange rate variations in the current financial year will be met from within the existing provision for overseas aid. This provision includes an unallocated element which, subject to parliamentary approval, can be used to meet unforeseen items of expenditure, including those arising from exchange rate fluctuations.