MINISTER O'DONNELL VISITS IRISH AID PROJECTS IN ZAMBIA
MINISTER O'DONNELL VISITS IRISH AID PROJECTS IN ZAMBIA, 21-26 SEPTEMBER 1997
Ms. Liz O'Donnell T.D., Minister of State for Overseas Development and Human Rights in the Department of Foreign Affairs, is visiting Zambia this week. Zambia is an important priority country for Irish aid, and this is Minister O'Donnell's first visit to Africa since she assumed responsibility for Ireland's Development Cooperation Programme (July 1997).
Minister O'Donnell is visiting aid projects supported by Ireland in Zambia's Northern Province, and in Lusaka. The Minister will also hold consultations with the Zambian authorities to discuss the progress of the Irish Aid Programme, and the current political and economic situation in the country. Minister O'Donnell will meet with the Zambian Ministers for Finance, Education, Water and Energy Development, the Zambian Human Rights Commission and members of the Irish community living in Zambia.
Note for Editors:
Ireland's Aid Programme in Zambia, which began in 1982, has expanded significantly in recent years. In 1992, the budget was £1.5m. The budget this year is £5.3m.
The two main themes of the Irish Aid Programme are:
- helping to reduce poverty and help people to meet their basic needs by support to essential social sectors such as health, education, water, sanitation and income generation. Over 80% of funds are spent on these areas.
- building capacity at community, local and national levels to maximise the involvement of the Zambian people in their own development, and to contribute to economic growth.
Zambia is classified by the UN as a Least Developed Country. 70% of Zambia's population of 9.65m are living below the poverty line. The average annual income per head is US$253.Top