§ 26. Mr. McAllion
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions she has had with aid organisations relating to reduction of debts owed by developing countries. 
§ Clare Short
My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer leads on debt policy, but my Department has a key interest in ensuring the rapid and flexible implementation of debt reduction measures for the poorest most-indebted countries. Debt relief, coupled with economic policies that benefit the poor, has an important part to play in creating the conditions for the sustained economic growth needed to eliminate poverty in poorer countries. We seek to work closely with other donors and creditors in order to achieve this objective. In recent weeks, I have had discussions with the development Ministries of most of our EU partners, the Japanese Foreign Ministry, and the President of the African Development Bank. Last month, the Chancellor and I met representatives of the churches and leading NGOs, to discuss how we would work together to make faster progress.