§ Clare Short
The most important step is implementation of political and economic reforms in Indonesia. This is critical if the reduction of poverty in recent years is not to be reversed and if benefits are to be more widely shared. The UK supports the IMF economic reform programme and is also contributing £5 million to the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) Trust Fund which will underpin the efforts of Asian Governments, including Indonesia, to combat the social effects of the crisis and reform their financial sectors. We have provided £375,000 of assistance to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to help with nutrition, hygiene and medical needs for the people of Irian Jaya; and continue to monitor the food situation more widely.236W
We are also providing support to trade union education. We are currently exploring urgently any additional measures, through civil society, which might bring effective help to the most vulnerable people suffering the effects of the crisis.