George Freeman calls on Government to integrate aid and trade missions to developing countries

George Freeman calls on the Government to integrate aid and trade missions in developing countries as, particularly in the field of agricultural technology, it is the best way to drive really sustainable development.

George Freeman (Mid Norfolk) (Con): What plans she has to support the application of agricultural science, research and innovation in developing economies. [165587]

The Secretary of State for International Development (Justine Greening): DFID is scaling up its agricultural research work in developing countries, particularly programmes that address the slow pace of agricultural innovation in sub-Saharan Africa.

George Freeman: I thank the Secretary of State for that answer, and congratulate her on the recent announcement of the £7 million international trade centre and the £57 million trade support package for Kenya and Uganda. Does she agree with me that trade is the best form of aid and that integrating our aid and trade missions, particularly in the field of agricultural technology, is the best way to drive really sustainable development?

Justine Greening: My hon. Friend is right, which is why I am very pleased that DFID is a central part of the agri-tech strategy that is shortly to be set out by the Government. It is absolute clear that we have an important role in helping poor countries to improve their agricultural systems and, in doing so, to help develop trade both domestically and internationally.

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