§ Mr. Alexander
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what action the Government are taking to implement the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative. 
§ Mr. Timms
So far this year, three countries have reached decision point under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative: Mauritania, Bolivia and Uganda. We are working closely with International Financial Institutions and with the countries themselves, in a capacity building and advisory role, towards the G7 target that three quarters of eligible countries should reach their decision point by the end of the year.
The Government have stepped in to bridge the IMF financing gap and have pledged to help other Multilateral Development Banks meet their costs of participating in the initiative. In total the Government have pledged $385 million to the Institutions involved in debt relief. The UK's contribution (including our share of the sum from the European Development Fund) is the largest resourced pledge of any bilateral donor. The European Development Fund contribution, released at the UK Government's urging, has been instrumental in allowing countries to be brought forward for debt relief before the delivery of the US's pledged financing.