|Previous Section||Home Page|
Column 803in 1988-89 to (a) El Salvador, (b) Honduras, (c) Guatemala, (d) Costa Rica, (e) Panama, (f) Nicaragua, (g) Cuba, and (h) Belize ; and what is projected for 1989-90.
" |£ thousand ---------------------------------- El Salvador |154 Honduras |1,212 Guatemala |4 Costa Rica |1,550 Panama |988 Nicaragua |180 Cuba |2 Belize |3,176
This aid was in the form of technical co-operation, apart from : (a) Commonwealth Development Corporation investment of £817,000 in Costa Rica and £340,000 in Belize ;
(b) Capital aid of £1,547,000 for Belize and £615,000 for Honduras ;
(c) Financial aid under the aid and trade provision of £854,000 for Panama ; and £47,000 for Belize ;
(d) £20,000 provided to Costa Rica and £180,000 to Nicaragua for relief measures following Hurricane Joan ; further relief was provided in 1989 ;
(e) £140,000 provided to El Salvador for refugee relief. These figures do not include our contribution through the European Community or to development projects jointly funded with British voluntary agencies.
In 1989-90 we expect our aid to the region to remain at about the same level.
(2) what plans he has to increase the level of compensation paid for loss of earnings to self-employed people on jury service.
Where the period over which earnings or benefit are lost or additional expense is incurred is not more than four hours in any day, the maximum sum now payable is £16.15 ; where the period is more than four hours, the sum is £32.35 ; and where a juror has served on more than 10 days, for each day over the tenth the sum may exceed that specified but shall not exceed £64.70. These limits are reviewed annually in accordance with Treasury guidelines. All such sums are tax free. No distinction is made between those who are self-employed and others.
The Prime Minister : Since 1 April 1989 I have received representations regarding the horticultural industry on the subject of pesticides, research and development and the Apple and Pear Development Council.
The Prime Minister : I am frequently reminded of the importance to business of consistently reaching high standards of quality in order to succeed in competitive markets. I strongly support British business in its efforts to achieve this, and the Department of Trade and Industry provides help to industry in this area through its quality and design initiatives.
Column 805Europe. For example, we have offered Poland £25 million over five years to help develop the expertise needed to run democratic institutions and a market-based economy. I am glad that the Paris summit decided to co-ordinate such efforts internationally. I welcome the seminar for Hungarian politicians being organised this week by the Great Britain/east Europe centre and look forward to further such ventures. We are ready to help other east European countries which embark on the road to democracy.
The Prime Minister : I have received a number of such representations. Since 1979, the level of resources for the NHS has increased by 40 per cent. in real terms and gross annual capital expenditure now stands at £1.25 billion. The numbers of those providing care has also increased, with 14,000 more doctors and dentists and 67,000 more nurses and midwives. There are now 1.5 million more in- patient cases treated in a year, 3.75 million more out-patient attendances and over 500,000 extra day cases. Considerable improvements have been made on screening, transplants and infant mortality. The Government have received much support for their commitment and record on expanding and improving the level of health care and for their proposals to build on these successes to create a service which is even more responsive to the needs of local communities whilst allowing patients improved choice.
Q110. Mr. McCrindle : To ask the Prime Minister what consideration she has given to an environmental protection commission, similar to the Environmental Protection Agency in the United States of America, to co- ordinate the activities of various Government Departments on green issues.
The Prime Minister : The Government considered the case for an environmental protection agency or commission in their reply to the second report from the Environment Committee on toxic waste (Cm. 679). The Government do not accept the need for structural changes.
The Prime Minister : I have not received any recent representations about secondary education. The introduction of the national curriculum from autumn this year will help to improve the standards achieved by maintained secondary schools.
The Prime Minister : I receive many representations on education matters, including the Government's policies for higher education, which are aimed at increasing participation beyond the record levels already achieved.
Q209. Sir John Hunt : To ask the Prime Minister what response she has made to the petition handed in to No. 10 Downing street on 14 July, with regard to the proposed closure of the RAF officer and aircrew selection centre at Biggin Hill.
Column 807Nevertheless, the RAF ceased flying from Biggin Hill in 1959 and the officer and aircrew selection centre is now the only unit based at the station. The decision to transfer this unit to the RAF college, Cranwell, was taken in the interests of efficiency, economy and the present day needs of the Royal Air Force. The memorial chapel will be retained at Biggin Hill as a permanent tribute to the station's role in the Battle of Britain.
Mr. Maxwell-Hyslop : To ask the Prime Minister whether she will remind Ministers to ensure that during the holiday period their private offices do not omit to send hon. Members a copy as well as an original of all ministerial letters.
The Prime Minister My right hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury has written to Ministers accordingly.
Mr. Tony Banks : To ask the Prime Minister what will be the total amount paid to Ministers retired from ministerial office following her latest announcements ; and if any such Minister will not receive compensation.
The Prime Minister : Severance payments arising from the resignations announced on 24-25 July total £41,929. These will be made to outgoing Lords Ministers under the provisions of section 13 of the Parliamentary Pension Act 1984. The severance scheme recommended by the TSRB for Commons Ministers has not yet been implemented.
The Prime Minister : This morning I presided at a meeting of the Cabinet and had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others. In addition to my duties in the House, I shall be having further meetings later today.
Column 8081989 (a) excluding retailers' margin and Government taxes and duties and (b) including all Government taxes and duties in each European Community member state.
Mr. Peter Morrison : The Department of Energy does not have data on retailers' margins. The figures from the Commission of the European Communities on the pump price (in pence per litre) of premium grade petrol in each of the member states, over the first four months of 1989 is as follows :
Excluding Tax and Duty |January |February|March |April ------------------------------------------------------------ Belgium |12.41 |13.11 |13.22 |16.72 Denmark |12.61 |13.37 |13.93 |16.58 West Germany |11.11 |12.08 |12.32 |16.49 Greece |9.85 |10.38 |11.05 |14.00 Spain |12.26 |12.87 |13.31 |14.66 France |10.24 |10.34 |10.90 |13.75 Eire |14.36 |14.11 |14.49 |14.61 Italy |12.34 |12.37 |13.03 |15.73 Luxembourg |12.85 |12.85 |14.02 |15.74 Netherlands |12.86 |13.55 |14.53 |17.96 Portugal |13.68 |14.32 |14.28 |15.62 United Kingdom |11.86 |12.86 |13.34 |15.33
Including Tax and Duty |January |February|March |April ------------------------------------------------------------ Belgium |37.44 |38.32 |38.82 |43.41 Denmark |52.06 |52.83 |54.01 |57.76 West Germany |35.36 |36.47 |37.11 |42.09 Greece |28.42 |28.25 |28.47 |28.44 Spain |36.25 |36.52 |39.96 |37.40 France |44.63 |44.89 |46.19 |49.95 Eire |48.10 |48.65 |49.63 |50.06 Italy |56.80 |56.95 |57.66 |58.25 Luxembourg |30.70 |30.71 |32.28 |34.36 Netherlands |42.58 |43.44 |44.95 |49.28 Portugal |44.51 |44.51 |44.94 |45.23 United Kingdom |37.14 |38.30 |38.85 |41.14
Mr. Malcolm Bruce : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what progress has been made towards achieving the aim of 20 per cent. energy saving in the United Kingdom economy, as identified by the Energy Efficiency Office.
Mr. Peter Morrison : When the Energy Efficiency Office was established in 1983, we believed that the nation could improve its energy efficiency by 20 per cent. leading to savings of £7 billion in our annual energy bill. At our last calculation in December 1987, the UK had so improved its energy efficiency as to be saving some £2.3 billion per year at 1983 prices. At this rate, the £7 billion or 20 per cent. saving is likely to be achieved by 1995.
Mr. Peter Morrison : I have today placed in the Libraries of both Houses a copy of a notice inviting applications for landward exploration licences in a third round of onshore licensing. The notice will be published in the London and Edinburgh Gazettes at the earliest possible opportunity. Applications will be invited for any currently unlicensed
Column 809areas in the United Kingdom within the boundaries defined by the Petroleum (Production) (Landward Areas) Regulations 1984, and in accordance with the guidance given in the Gazette notice. In addition, holders of old-style exploration licences (XLs) will be allowed to convert them to new exploration licences provided that they are ready to carry out a drilling programme.
Successful applicants will be offered landward exploration licences under the terms of the Petroleum (Production) (Landward Areas) Regulations 1984. The licences will be offered for a non-extendible term of six years and will entitle the licensee to carry out seismic survey and deep drilling work, subject to the need to obtain consent from the appropriate mineral planning authorities.
Application forms and guidance notes will be available from my Department. Applicants will be expected to offer a suitable programme of exploration, which will generally involve both seismic survey and drilling work, designed to cover the whole of the area they are applying for.
Applications will be returnable on 17 and 18 October 1989. I hope to be able to announce awards within a few months thereafter.
Mr. Michael Spicer : The most recent estimates of the potential contribution from renewable energy sources were published in energy paper 55, copies of which are in the Libraries of the House. The Government intend to set orders for up to 600 MW of renewable energy capacity during the 1990s, in addition to whatever is contracted by the end of this year under the non-fossil fuel obligation in the Electricity Bill. The proposed levels of these special tranches will be kept under review to ensure that when the obligations are laid they take fully into account the potential availability of renewable capacity.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy, what assessment he has made of the impact on the local economy, of the rundown in the deep coal mining industry of (a) the south Yorkshire and (b) the north Yorkshire areas.
Mr. Michael Spicer : While no such specific assessments have been carried out, my Department helps to alleviate the difficulties caused by colliery closures through its funding of British Coal Enterprise Ltd.
Dr. David Clark : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy for each of the last five parliamentary Sessions including the 1988-89 Session, if he will list the number of statutory instruments that were issued by his Department ; how many were negative and how many affirmative ; and if he will make a statement.
Parliamentary Session |Total |Negative |Affirmative |Not required to be laid |before Parliament ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1984-85 |195 |4 |3 |188 1985-86 |146 |10 |2 |134 1986-87 |56 |6 |2 |48 1987-88 |89 |16 |5 |68 1988-89 |34 |6 |3 |25
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will make a statement on his response to the letter from Councillor Graham Bett, the chair of Leicester city council's policy and resources (development schemes) sub-committee, dated 21 July.
Mr. Michael Spicer : Where it is economic, combined heat and power technology produces net benefits which stem from its higher fuel efficiencies compared with conventional plant. There are likely to be environmental benefits as a result of the reduction in the amount of fuel needed to meet a given demand for heat and power compared with using separate technologies. It is in recognition of these benefits that the Government have supported and promoted the development of economic CHP schemes. They have introduced measures in the Electricity Bill to enable CHP to compete with other established electricity suppliers. For example, licensed CHP operators will have new powers to break streets to lay electricity lines and heat mains. The Bill also enables the Director of Electricity Supply to monitor and collect information on the use and application of CHP. Output from CHP schemes based on non-fossil fuels such as refuse or landfill gas will count towards the non-fossil fuel obligation.
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if, in relation to the meeting held between Leicester Energy Ltd. and officials from his office in the recent past, he will state (a) the length of the meeting, (b) the date of the meeting, (c) the names of the officials attending and (d) what action was proposed by the Government to assist the project.
Mr. Michael Spicer : Officials of my Department's electricity division and Energy Efficiency Office have met representatives of Leicester Energy Ltd. on a number of occasions. Representatives of Leicester Energy Ltd. and of the East Midlands electricity board last met my officials on 19 July. The parties confirmed that their decision not to proceed with the Leicester project was taken on commercial grounds and therefore the issue of Government assistance was not raised.
Year |£ millions --------------------------------- 1979/80 |2.4 1980/81 |4.5 1981/82 |6.9 1982/83 |9.4 1983/84 |11.4 1984/85 |17.5 1985/86 |<1>22.5 1986/87 |<1>24.5 1987/88 |18.6 1988/89 |18.5 <1>1986 was Energy Efficiency Year.
Budget allocation for 1989-90 is £15 million. Information on years before 1979-80 is not readily available on a comparable basis.
Mr. Michael Spicer [pursuant to the reply, 24 July 1989, c. 723.] The United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (AEA) recently commissioned consultants to assist it with its longer-term strategic thinking. In line with the consultants' recommendations, the AEA has decided to restructure its activities into a series of distinct businesses under the new corporate identity of AEA Technology. The businesses will be focused on the areas of work with the best commercial prospects. Each will have its own chief executive, who will be responsible for its efficient and profitable development. I understand that a number of key appointments will be announced shortly. The businesses will serve customers worldwide and will spearhead the effective commercial exploitation in selected markets of the unique skills which the AEA has built up over the years, largely in the service of the nuclear industry.