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Mr. Trippier : It is provisionally estimated that there were 15,400 local authority and new town completions in England for 1988. For information on housebuilding in Wales, I refer the hon. Member to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales.
Mr. Norman Hogg : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many local authority voids there were in England at the latest available date ; and of this total, how many were (a) actually available for letting, (b) in various stages of repair and (c) empty for over 12 months.
Mr. Trippier : The information for April 1988 was reported by local authorities in the annual housing investment programme return (HIP 1) and appears in the "Housing Needs Appraisal : HIP 1 for 1988, Grossed for England", a copy of which is in the Library.
Mr. Latham : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when a representative of his Department or of the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission last visited Stocken hall, Rutland, to investigate the condition of that grade 2 listed building ; and what action was taken as a result of those visits.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : An inspector from the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission visited Stocken hall in April 1988, at which time certain wind and weather-proofing works were being carried out. Officials from the Department carried out a brief external inspection of the building in January 1989 following discussions with the local planning authority on future action in connection with Stocken hall. We understand that the building is being offered for sale.
Mr. Latham : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he intends to use the statutory powers available to him, or encourage the use of similar powers by the local planning authority, to bring about the immediate protection and preservation of Stocken hall, Rutland, a grade 2 listed building ; and whether he will make a statement.
Column 581Town and Country Planning Act 1971 on the owner of Stocken hall. My right hon. Friend will consider whether he should authorise the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission to serve such a notice when the outcome of present attempts to sell the building is known.
Mr. Latham : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will list the specific action which has been taken since the reply by my hon. Friend the Member for Bristol, West (Mr. Waldegrave) to the hon. Member for Rutland and Melton on 3 December 1986, Official Report, column 688, to repair and restore the grade 2 listed building, Stocken hall, Rutland ; and whether he will make a statement.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : We understand that since December 1986 the owners have carried out urgent repairs to wind and weather-proof Stocken hall. These works include patching a large hole in the roof with bitumen felt secured with wooden battens and boarding up and covering with plastic sheeting windows which were broken. These are the type of repairs which would in many circumstances meet the requirements of section 101 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971.
Mrs. Rosie Barnes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether it is possible to keep, breed, sell, and kill for commercial purposes those animals listed in appendix 2 of the convention on the conservation of European wildlife and natural habitats known as the Berne convention.
Mr. John Garrett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the public buildings in Whitehall and Westminster in the care of the Property Services Agency which take drinking water from boreholes.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, pursuant to the statement made on 13 March, Official Report, column 168 if he will make a further statement on the role Her Majesty's Government are playing in the intergovernmental panel on the climate change, and their work on clarifying the climatic consequences of deforestation in eastern Amazonia.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answer 10 April 1989] : The United Kingdom's delegate to the UNEP/WMO intergovernmental panel on climate change is Dr. John Houghton, Director General of the Meteorological Office. The IPCC has set up three working groups, on the science of climate change, on the impacts of climate and on formulation of response strategies. All are to report by mid-1990. Dr. Houghton leads the science working group. The Government are supporting a central unit for this group, based on the Meteorological Office, and is funding working and plenary meetings. It is also supporting Dr.
Column 582Martin Parry of the university of Birmingham, an internationally recognised expert on the impact of climate change, to contribute to the working group on impacts. Officials and experts from several Government Departments are contributing to the working group on response strategies. We have been assured that change in vegetation cover, which includes tropical deforestation, is one of the climate forcing factors being reviewed by the science working group.
Mr. Baldry : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what information is available to employers on computer assisted local labour information, developed by the Training Agency ; what is the extent of the use of the system by employers ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Cope : The key information, in the main collected from employers, held on the computer assisted local labour market information system (CALLMI), includes work force characteristics, recruitment practices and difficulties, use of new technology, and training-related data. The system itself is not directly accessible to employers, but summary analyses and reports by the Training Agency are readily available to employers and employer organisations. It is not possible to say how many employers have received copies of these reports nor to what use they have been put.
My Department, through the Training Agency and the establishment of training and enterprise councils, is committed to ensuring that all concerned with training, vocational education and enterprise have access to relevant and readily available information. CALLMI is a key tool in this process. We shall continue to seek ways of developing effective means of co -operation with other collectors and users of local labour market information, at the same time respecting the need for confidentiality concerning individual employers' data.
Mr. Nicholls : All cases of fatal injury in the course of agricultural work activities are reported to the Health and Safety Executive's Her Majesty's agricultural inspectorate. It is not known what proportion of other reportable accidents from agricultural activities go unreported, but it is thought to be more than 50 per cent.
Mr. Cope : Since April 1986, 2,740 career development loans have been approved, 655 during the pilot phase and 2,085 since the scheme was launched nationally in July 1988. The total approved loan value is currently some £6.5 million.
The growth in the number of career development loans since they became available nationally last year has been
Column 583very encouraging. It has shown that many people both employed and unemployed, are willing to invest in their own future by paying for vocational training of their own choice to improve their job prospects.
Mr. Pike : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the cost to his Department of producing the information leaflet "You and Your Union : The Employment Act 1988", and what has been the cost of advertising this package.
Mr. Nicholls : The cost to the Department of Employment of producing the information booklet "You and Your Union : the 1988 Employment Act" was £9,395. A further reprint of the booklet has been ordered to meet demand but the cost of this is not known yet. The total media cost was £277,337, excluding VAT.
Mr. Nicholls : There are no firm figures but the booklet "Mental Health at Work", published by the Health and Safety Executive, estimated that some 30-40 per cent. of all sickness absence from work is attributable to some form of mental or emotional disturbance.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will give his support to the application by the University College of Wales Swansea (Computeraid Ltd.) for European social fund grant funding.
Although my Department has not yet received formal notification of the European Commission's decision on United Kingdom social fund applications for 1989, we understand that the scheme to which the hon. Member refers was refused funding on what appears to be a technicality. A request therefore has been forwarded to the European Commission to review its decision.
Mr. Lee : The English Tourist Board, on behalf of the Department of Employment, will be running one of its "Vision for the Cities" seminars in Bristol on 20 April 1989, as part of the Government's action for cities campaign. The aim of the seminar is to stimulate further development and investment which will expand tourism employment within the city.
Mr. Nicholls : In 1987-88, 4.9 per cent. of reportable accidents reported to the factory inspectorate were investigated. All accidents involving fatal injuries were investigated. Reported accidents are selected for investigation after considering the gravity of the apparent breach, the need to give advice and the value of any information that would be obtained to prevent similar accidents.
Mr. Cope : It was a very constructive meeting. The Council reached agreement on a common position on three draft directives concerning the minimum safety and health requirements in the workplace. These cover the workplace ; the use by workers of machines, equipment and installations ; and the use by workers of personal protective equipment. There was some discussion of a proposal for social measures to assist workers in the shipbuilding industry who are made redundant or threatened with redundancy ; and family benefits for migrant workers. The Commissioner gave an oral presentation on a possible community charter of fundamental social rights. Finally, the Council reached agreement on a text of a resolution on continuing vocational training.
Mr. John Morris : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what representations he has received regarding the congestion along the Baglan road ; and what further urgent work will be put in hand, in addition to the work on traffic lights to be installed by the West Glamorgan county council.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : A petition has been received from the Port Talbot Ratepayers Association regarding congestion at Baglan. The scheme to install part-time traffic lights at Baglan roundabout which will start in the summer, includes provision for increased carriageway widths.
Mr. Grist : The estimated percentages of total personal disposable income in Wales expended on domestic rates in the years 1979-80, 1984-85 and 1987-88 are as follows. Information is not available for the year 1959- 60.
|Percentage --------------------------------- 1979-80 |1.47 1984-85 |1.61 1987-88 |1.90
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish a table showing for each county in Wales for each of the last three years the number of pollution incidents caused by (a) silage liquor, (b) farmyard slurry and (c) other pollutants.
Mr. Norman Hogg : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many households were accepted as homeless in Wales in the calendar years 1987 and 1988 ; and how many applications by households there were in those years.
Mr. Grist : The numbers of households accepted as homeless in Wales in the calendar years 1987 and 1988 were 5,683 and 6,818 respectively. The numbers of cases presented during those years were 8,423 and 10,018, respectively.
Mr. Grist : The results of the 1988 bathing water survey have already been placed in the Library. I refer the hon. Gentleman to the statement made by my hon. and learned Friend the Minister of State for the Environment to the House on 21 February.
Mr. Alex Carlile : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what payments have been made by his Department, in each of the financial years 1987-88 and 1988-89, to Mr. Tony Ball and Tony Ball Associates, respectively ; and in respect of what work or services.
Mr. Peter Walker : Mr. Tony Ball undertook a study of the craft industry free of fees. He was paid £2,154 in 1987-88 and £350 in 1988-89 to meet his expenses. In addition, Tony Ball Associates were paid £63,269 in 1987-88 and £21,673 in 1988-89 exclusive of VAT in respect of the craft industry, the enterprise Wales and the Wales land of quality initiatives. All of this work was undertaken following a competitive tender, except for the craft industry element (£3,269 in 1987-88) which was paid for at cost.
Mr. Peter Walker : Because there are some differences in the content and implementation of the national curriculum in Wales, my right hon. Friend does not intend to circulate the Department of Education and Science document, "National Curriculum : From Policy to Practice" to schools in Wales. An equivalent Welsh Office document is being produced and will be issued to schools in the current term.
Mr. Grist : A circular is being issued today giving the Departmental reaction to the Community Nursing Review (CNR) report "Nursing in the Community--A Team Approach for Wales" and guidance and information as to what the next steps are to be. A copy has been placed in the Library of the House.
The report was, in my view, an excellent one and reaction to it has been overwhelmingly favourable. I am very grateful to Mrs. Noreen Edwards CBE, under whose chairmanship the review was conducted, and to her team for providing such a thorough analysis of community nursing in Wales and I am glad to be able to respond favourably to almost all the report's recommendations.
I have been made particularly aware of the importance of proper training and education for community nurses in Wales and we will be making additional funding available for this and for specific support for them in the operational context.
I am sure that the work stimulated by the report will have a major beneficial impact on the community nursing service in Wales for many years to come.
Dr. Thomas : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what information he has on the numbers of people who have moved to live (a) into and (b) out of each district authority area in Wales in each year since 1979.
Mr. Grist [holding answer 11 April 1989] : Data from the National Health Service central registers (which relate to movements of persons on National Health Service doctors' lists) give an indication of migration into and out of Welsh counties. These are shown in the following table. Information is not available at district authority level.
|c|Movements between family practitioner committee areas|c| (in thousands) Year ended September |1979 |1980 |1981 |1982 |1983 |1984 |1985 |1986 |1987 |1988 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (a) Movements into: Clwyd |13.4 |11.8 |10.7 |11.4 |11.1 |10.9 |12.1 |12.0 |13.4 |15.7 Dyfed |11.5 |11.6 |10.4 |10.0 |10.4 |10.3 |10.5 |11.6 |13.1 |15.3 Gwent |8.5 |8.1 |8.0 |7.7 |7.2 |7.8 |8.5 |8.4 |9.4 |11.0 Gwynedd |8.1 |8.2 |7.8 |7.8 |7.8 |8.4 |8.8 |8.4 |9.6 |11.1 Mid Glamorgan |9.3 |9.4 |8.8 |8.4 |8.1 |8.3 |9.2 |8.3 |9.2 |11.1 Powys |5.0 |4.1 |3.8 |4.2 |3.7 |3.9 |4.8 |5.0 |5.5 |5.9 South Glamorgan |12.0 |11.4 |11.7 |11.4 |12.9 |10.0 |12.2 |13.8 |13.6 |15.8 West Glamorgan |8.0 |7.0 |6.9 |5.9 |6.1 |6.7 |7.1 |7.3 |7.6 |8.7 (b) Movements out of: Clwyd |9.7 |9.4 |9.7 |9.3 |9.2 |9.5 |9.8 |10.1 |10.2 |11.6 Dyfed |8.9 |8.8 |8.4 |8.4 |8.4 |9.0 |8.9 |9.2 |9.6 |10.4 Gwent |9.3 |8.5 |8.9 |8.0 |8.2 |8.2 |8.8 |8.8 |9.1 |9.5 Gwynedd |7.4 |7.1 |6.8 |6.6 |7.0 |7.1 |7.0 |7.2 |7.7 |8.1 Mid Glamorgan |10.6 |9.9 |10.2 |9.2 |10.0 |9.5 |10.1 |10.5 |10.6 |11.3 Powys |3.9 |3.4 |3.3 |3.4 |3.4 |3.6 |3.7 |3.9 |4.0 |4.3 South Glamorgan |12.8 |11.9 |12.2 |11.5 |11.9 |11.2 |12.8 |12.3 |13.2 |13.7 West Glamorgan |7.8 |7.3 |7.0 |7.1 |7.2 |7.0 |7.2 |7.9 |7.9 |8.4 Source: OPCS. Note: Figures are derived from re-registration of patients with National Health Service general practitioners; for 1979 to 1983 they are based on a 10 per cent. analysis of re-registrations. Movements to or from overseas are excluded.
Mr. Martyn Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) whether, in setting the nuclear tax level at 10 per cent., he took into account the cost of reprocessing, decommissioning of plant and the disposal of waste ;
(2) on what basis the nuclear tax of 10 per cent. is expected to drop to 3 per cent. by the year 2000 ;
(3) what difference in the price of generation between nuclear power and fossil fuel the nuclear tax of 10 per cent. represents ; (4) whether the nuclear tax will take effect as soon as National Power begins operation as a private company.
Mr. Michael Spicer : The fossil fuel levy is not a nuclear tax but an allocation of existing nuclear costs. It will be levied on all sales of fossil-generated power by licensed suppliers and set at a level to recover any difference in price between the costs of meeting the non-fossil obligation and what would have been the cost of purchasing that electricity if it had been generated by fossil-fuel generating stations. Negotiations on contracts for generating capacity will not be completed until later this year. It is too early to say what the prices in these contracts will be or the implications for the level of the levy, either in 1990 or later in the decade. The contracts for nuclear generating capacity will take into account the anticipated costs of reprocessing, decommissioning of plant and the disposal of waste.
The timing of the introduction of the levy will be dealt with in regulations made by the Secretary of State under clause 31 of the Electricity Bill.
Mr. Atkinson : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what specific aid has been given to the Angolan Government by Her Majesty's Government in the last two years ; and for which specific projects.
Mr. Chris Patten : In 1987, the most recent year for which final figures are available, expenditure was £211,000 on English language training projects and scholarships requested by the Angolan Government.
Mr. Chris Patten : Final expenditure figures for 1988 are not yet available. In addition to continuing projects, we pledged £750,000 for emergency relief through international and non-Government organisations.
Mr. Chris Patten : Some £66 million has been allocated to Angola's country programme under Lome III, which runs from 1985 to 1990. Commitments so far have been made to agriculture, fisheries, industry and health.
Following the recent peace agreement, the Community plans to use some of the money which remains uncommitted to help with job creation and reintegrating former military personnel into civilian life. It also plans to give another £26 million for humanitarian, refugee and other assistance. In 1988 it gave some £6 million of food aid to Angola.
Column 589Proposals for aid allocations are approved by the Community member states. The Commission and its delegation in Luanda are responsible for managing projects and programmes, along with the Angolan authorities.
Mr. Atkinson : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the value of British Government aid to individuals and agencies in Angola not associated with the MPLA-PT Government of Angola.
Mr. Atkinson : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what guarantees and mechanisms are in place to ensure that British Government aid to Angola is not used for military purposes.
Mr. Atkinson : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations Her Majesty's Government have received from the Angolan Government concerning aid to Angola in the last two years.
Mr. Chris Patten : There are regular contacts between the two Governments about our aid programme. I had friendly discussions with President dos Santos and Ministers during my visit to Angola in February.
Mr. Tom Clarke : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the reply to the hon. Member for Monklands, West on 6 February, Official Report, column 470, (1) if he will name those developing nations which (a) reacted positively and (b) reacted negatively to that part of his Department's private sector development exercise relating specifically to the possibility of Britain offering assistance with the privatisation of nationalised industries ;
(2) what were the terms, financial or otherwise, offered to developing countries in exchange for British assistance (a) in the promotion of private sector development and (b) relating directly to the privatisation of nationalised industries ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Chris Patten : The exercise comprised an instruction to British posts in developing countries encouraging closer consultation with their United States counterparts with a view to being able to respond more effectively to developing country needs in relation to private sector development, including privatisation.
Mr. Tom Clarke : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) if his Department has had any discussions with (a) bankers, (b) brokers and (c) management consultants concerning the possibility of Britain assisting with the privatisation of developing nations' nationalised industries ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) whether officials from his Department have had meetings with representatives of the overseas privatisation unit of NM Rothschild ; and if he will make a statement.