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Cablegate: More Canadian Aid for Haiti Announced

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PP RUEHGA RUEHHA RUEHQU RUEHVC
DE RUEHOT #0271/01 0522117
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 212117Z FEB 08
FM AMEMBASSY OTTAWA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7348
INFO RUEHPU/AMEMBASSY PORT AU PRINCE PRIORITY 0157
RUCNCAN/ALL CANADIAN POSTS COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 OTTAWA 000271

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CAN AND WHA/CAR
USAID FOR LAC

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID SOCI CA HA
SUBJECT: MORE CANADIAN AID FOR HAITI ANNOUNCED


1. (U) Summary: Shortly before Foreign Minister Bernier's
ongoing visit, the Canadian Government announced nearly C$125
million in support to Haiti, much of which will be used to
construct and rehabilitate roads. The rest will be targeted
to improve reproductive health; provide technical assistance
to the Haitian State project; support school feeding; provide
credit for tuition fees; support education; and improve
disaster preparedness. Haiti is the largest recipient of
long-term Canadian development assistance in the Americas.
Its aid projects are consistent with Canada's focus on
greater democratic governance, enhanced prosperity, and
stronger security in the Hemisphere (septel). End Summary.

2. (U) Since the departure of President Aristide in 2004,
Canada has played an important role in international efforts
to re-establish security and stability in Haiti and to assist
in reform and reconstruction efforts. Haiti has become
Canada's most important long-term development assistance
beneficiary in the Americas, and the second largest in the
world (after Afghanistan).

3. (U) Foreign Minister Bernier is visiting Haiti on
February 20-23. On February 15, International Development
Minister Bev Oda and Public Works Minister Michael Fortier
announced that Canada will spend nearly C$125 million on 7
projects to build roads, feed children, improve health care
for mothers, contribute to economic recovery and increase
Haiti's ability to respond to natural disasters. "These
projects will provide immediate relief to Haitians and will
also help create the long-term conditions essential to
Haiti's sustainable development," Minister Oda said. "The
Government of Canada is committed to reviving and expanding
its leadership throughout the Americas, especially in fragile
states like Haiti." The money is part of Canada's commitment
of C$555 million over five years (2006-2011) to
reconstruction and development efforts announced during Prime
Minister Harper,s July 2007 visit to Haiti.

4. (U) C$75 million will go to the construction and
rehabilitation of the 92 kilometer road between the major
cities of Jeremie and Les Ceyes, through the Inter-American
Development Bank's infrastructure program. This project will
enable Haitians to have better access to services and will
foster economic development in southwestern Haiti.

5. (U) The remaining nearly C$50 million will support six
other initiatives:

-- Improving Reproductive Health - C$19 million. This
initiative aims to improve reproductive health care for women
and adolescents. Implemented by the United Nations
Population Fund (UNFPA), it will contribute to improving
material health and reducing the maternal mortality ratio at
the national level and especially in the Nippes and Southeast
regions by three quarters by 2015. The UNFPA will provide
obstetric care and implement information and education
campaigns on family planning and reproductive health. The
initiative aims to sensitive 40,000 Haitians of childbearing
age every year on reproductive health issues;

-- Technical assistance to the Haitian State project - C$13.8
million. Canada will provide assistance to central
government institutions in Haiti to help them better fulfill
their mandates. Activities will include: sharing expertise,
training programs for Haitian public servants and the
rehabilitation and construction of infrastructure projects.
These activities will increase the technical and strategic
capability of Haitian government institutions to implement
Qcapability of Haitian government institutions to implement
its National Strategy for Growth and Poverty Reduction;

-- School Feeding Support - C$5.4 million. Implemented by
the World Food Programme (WFP), this initiative will provide
balanced daily meals to 330,000 primary school children in
five Haitian departments (North, Northeast, Northwest,
Southeast, and Artibonite). A variety of foods will be
provided in accordance with the country's dietary habits.
Enriched products meet the needs to address micronutrient
deficiencies;

-- Credit for Tuition Fees - C$5.4 million. The project will
provide parents with loans to pay for their children's school
fees, uniforms, and books through a network of 35 credit
unions. This initiative will also include a component to
implement innovations in teaching and learning, and inform
parents about the importance of regular and continuous school
attendance. It is expected that 45,250 loans will be
delivered and the 210 primary schools will benefit from the
program;


OTTAWA 00000271 002 OF 002


-- Education for All in Haiti - C$1.2 million. This
initiative will increase access to primary school to up to
13,500 poor children aged 6-12 this year, responding to
Haiti's pressing need to facilitate the yearly back-to-school
process. Canada's contribution will cover the operational
expenses of the schools and the distribution of textbooks to
students to enable poor families to enroll their children
free of charge. The target areas are Nippes and Artibonite.
The project is being implemented through Haiti's Ministry of
Education;

-- Disaster Preparedness in Haiti - C$700,000. Through the
Pan-American Health Organization, this initiative will
enhance Haiti's capacity to respond to disaster. Its key
elements include the development of a national disaster
preparedness and response plan, training for health care
staff and information campaigns targeting the general public,
particularly in southern Haiti. The overall objective is to
reduce the population's vulnerability to floods, landslides
and cyclones.


Visit Canada,s Economy and Environment Forum at
http://www.intelink.gov/communities/state/can ada

WILKINS

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