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Mr. Cohen : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he now has the figure for 1988 of the number of people applying for refugee status ; and if he will provide a breakdown of the country of origin.
Mr. Renton [holding answer 27 July 1989] : The available information, by nationality, is published in table 8 of Home Office statistical bulletin (issue 25/89) "Refugee Statistics, United Kingdom, 1988", a copy of which is in the Library.
Mr. Marlow : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give his best quantitative assessment as to the impact of recent events in China on the flow of Hong Kong Chinese to and from the United Kingdom.
Mr. Renton [holding answer 20 July 1989] : Figures for admissions of pasengers from Hong Kong during the period since the recent events in China are not yet available. The latest available information relating to admission of Hong Kong British dependent territory citizens is given in answer today to the question from the hon. Member for Edinburgh, Central (Mr. Darling) which asks how many British nationals from Hong Kong have been admitted to the United Kingdom since January 1988. Corresponding figures for embarkations are not available.
Mr. Bermingham : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the total number of prisoners currently remanded or sentenced in gaols in England and Wales who are known to be addicted to heroin ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Peter Lloyd [holding answer 27 July 1989] : The number of heroin addicts in prison service establishments at any one time is not known. During 1988, counting addicts at their most recent notification, 1,022 heroin (alone or with other drugs) addicts were notified to the chief medical officer at the Home Office by prison medical officers in England and Wales.
Mr. David Young : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what has been the average delay between retailers or manufacturers discovering the problem of food contamination or adulteration and their alerting consumers to the danger.
Mr. Forth [holding answer 27 July 1989] : The responsibilty for the contamination of food rests with my right hon. Friend the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, advised by my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Health.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what is his estimate of the number of British jobs represented by the present deficit in manufactured trade with the EEC ;
(2) what was the United Kingdom share of the market for imported manufactures in the latest year for which figures are available in (a) South Africa, (b) Canada, (c) Australia, (d) New Zealand and (e) Nigeria ; and if he will provide corresponding figures for 1977, 1968 and 1959 ;
(3) what was the United Kingdom share of the market for imported manufactures in 1988 in the case of the Irish Republic, Denmark, Portugal and each of the European Free Trade Association countries ; and if he will provide corresponding figures for 1977, 1970 and 1959 ;
(4) why the indices of output in the production industries were dropped from the CSO annual abstract of statistics in the current year ; and if he will publish in the Official Report the information given in table 8.2 of the 1988 edition ;
(5) if he will publish in the Official Report a table showing for Italy and the United Kingdom respectively the increase in gross domestic product and in imports and exports of manufactures since 1979 ;
(6) whether he will bring up to date the export price and volume indices given in his answer to the hon. Member for Dagenham (Mr. Gould) on 22 March 1985, Official Report, column 638, including figures for the change in the terms of trade for finished manufactures ;
(7) whether he will publish in the Official Report for the years 1970 to date a table showing for the European Economic Community and for the rest of the world (a) the trade balance in manufactures less precious stones on a balance of payments basis, (b) the balance of trade less oil and precious stones on the same basis and (c) the ratio of exports to imports in each case.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what percentage of the value of United Kingdom exports in 1988 of (a) finished and (b) semi-finished manufactures, including and excluding erratics, consists of re-exports ; and what were the figures in 1979, 1970 and 1959.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he will publish in the Official Report the balance of trade in manufactures between the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Holland and
Column 1076Belgium, respectively, and the rest of the European Economic Community in 1978 and in 1988, together with the change in relative export prices for such goods.
Balance of trade in manufactures<1><3> with other members<2> of the Community US $ billion |1978 |1988 ------------------------------------- United Kingdom |-2.2 |-24.2 Germany |+15.5|+54.6 France |-4.3 |-22.0 Italy |+6.5 |+5.4 Netherlands |-5.9 |-4.6 Belgium/Luxembourg |+0.7 |+6.5 <1>Standard International Trade Classification sections 5-8. <2>Current EC membership throughout. <3>The balance of payments statistics overall reveal the need for a balancing item of £14 billion for 1988. The Pickford report has looked at the limitations of the figures in the light of this item. Source:1978-OECD series C. 1988-Statistical Office of the European Community.
Export of manufactures Changes in relative export prices between 1978 and 1988 |Percentage ----------------------------------------- United Kingdom |+20.4 Germany |-4.5 France |-5.8 Italy |+8.2 Netherlands |-5.2 Belgium/Luxembourg |-6.8 Source: Department of Trade and Industry.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if, further to his reply of 30 November Official Report, column 251, showing the balance of trade in manufactures in terms of 1988 prices, he will provide the outturn figure for 1988 and that for the first five months of 1989 together with the figures for each year in current prices ; and if he will provide the corresponding figures for trade in manufactures with the European Economic Community.
Manufactures less erratics (BOP basis) at 1988 prices (£ billion) |Exports|Imports|Balance ---------------------------------------- 1988 |59.3 |74.8 |-15.6 <1>1989 |62.5 |82.7 |-20.2 <1> The figures for 1989 are for January-May 1989 at an annualised rate.
Figures for earlier years at current prices are shown in the table.
Table 2 Manufactures less erratics (BOP basis) at current prices (£ billion) |Exports|Imports|Balance ---------------------------------------- 1970 |6.3 |3.7 |+2.6 1971 |7.1 |4.0 |+3.2 1972 |7.2 |4.9 |+2.3 1973 |9.0 |7.2 |+1.7 1974 |12.2 |10.0 |+2.2 1975 |14.6 |10.2 |+4.4 1976 |18.8 |13.7 |+5.1 1977 |23.3 |17.0 |+6.4 1978 |25.5 |20.4 |+5.1 1979 |28.1 |25.4 |+2.8 1980 |31.0 |25.1 |+5.9 1981 |31.8 |27.6 |+4.2 1982 |33.9 |32.6 |+1.3 1983 |35.7 |39.2 |-3.5 1984 |41.9 |47.0 |-5.1 1985 |48.0 |51.9 |-3.9 1986 |49.1 |56.5 |-7.4 1987 |54.7 |64.3 |-9.6
Estimates for trade in manufactures with the European Community are available only at current prices, and including the erratic items :
Table 3 United Kingdom Trade with the EC Manufactures including erratic (BOP basis) at current prices (£ billion) |Exports|Imports|Balance ---------------------------------------- 1970 |2.2 |1.5 |+0.6 1971 |2.3 |1.8 |+0.4 1972 |2.5 |2.5 |- 1973 |3.3 |3.7 |-0.4 1974 |4.7 |5.2 |-0.5 1975 |5.1 |5.7 |-0.6 1976 |7.2 |7.7 |-0.5 1977 |9.3 |9.8 |-0.5 1978 |10.2 |12.0 |-1.7 1979 |12.6 |15.2 |-2.6 1980 |14.0 |15.2 |-1.2 1981 |13.2 |15.9 |-2.6 1982 |14.6 |18.9 |-4.3 1983 |15.9 |23.1 |-7.2 1984 |18.8 |27.0 |-8.1 1985 |21.8 |30.5 |-8.7 1986 |23.9 |34.0 |-10.1 1987 |28.0 |38.4 |-10.4 1988 |31.5 |44.0 |-12.6
Mr. Sillars : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will list for each of the past 20 years the 10 top markets for United Kingdom exports ; and if he will show for each year the percentage the United Kingdom gained of each market.
Mr. Haynes : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) if he will make it his policy not to return textile, knitting and clothing products to normal general agreement on tariffs and trade rules until such time as all of the major supplying and participating countries to the Uruguay round of general agreement on tariffs and trade negotiations have removed the tariff peaks and bans against United Kingdom exports ;
(2) if he will make it his policy not to return textiles and clothing to normal general agreement on tariffs and trade rules, until those rules related to safeguards, subsidies, dumping and intellectual property rights have been effectively strengthened.
Column 1078of the Punta del Este declaration--and in particular the parallelism between the gradual integration of textiles into GATT and the application of strengthened rules and disciplines within GATT- -remains a vital condition for the success of the negotiations. The communication makes it clear that the strengthening of rules and disciplines must include action on tariff and non-tariff measures to ensure effective market access, as well as in relation to safeguards, subsidies, dumping and intellectual property rights.
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if, pursuant to his answer of 6 February to the hon. Member for Islington, North, Official Report, column 457, he will make a statement on his policy on the use of recycled materials.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : My Department's new business and the environment unit will continue to promote the use of recycled materials whenever this is technically and economically possible and will seek the full co- operation of local communities, voluntary organisations, user and producer industries, retailers and local authorities in pursuing this aim.
Conferences and workshops will be held on best practice in the production techniques of materials, the encouragement of waste minimisation and the design of products for recylability. Technical advice on recycling will continue to be available through the Warren Spring laboratory.
Where appropriate further initiatives will be introduced.
Mr. Forth : This is an operational question for the Post Office board. I understand that the Post Office has made the following joint statement with the Post Office Unions Council about the employment of disabled people :
"It is Post Office policy, which its Unions fully support, to endorse the MSC Code of Good Practice and to develop and to maintain positive measures to encourage the recruitment and employment of persons who are disabled, provided that they are qualified and suitable for the job and can be expected to maintain a satisfactory level of performance in their allocated job."
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will place in the Library the standard contract showing the range of duties expected of a post person employed by the (a) Royal Mail (letters) and (b) Royal Mail (parcels).
Mr. Cran : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) how many letters were received from, and sent to, hon. Members by his Department in (a) January and (b) the whole of this Session up to 1 July ;
(2) what progress is being made in his Department's review, in line with Treasury guidelines, of the potential for the further relocation of Civil service posts outside London and the south-east ; and when he expects the review to be completed.
Dr. Woodcock : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) if he will take action to amend the Unichem Ltd. (Allotment of Shares) Order 1989 to prevent Unichem from continuing with the change of trading terms introduced on 1 July and to ensure that shares issued to new members recruited after the date of the order do not rank for participation in the planned flotation of Unichem ; (2) what action he will take to prevent Unichem using its privileged position as an industrial and provident society to continue anti-competitive practices in a similar form to those identified in the recent Monopolies and Mergers Commission investigation.
Mr. Teddy Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what was the total deficit in visible trade with (a) the EEC and (b) the rest of the world, over the most recent 12-month period for which figures are available.
Mr. Cryer : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) if he will list those standard industrial classification manufacturing activities where there is a trade deficit (a) with the rest of the world and (b) with the EEC, listing the percentage import penetration as at the most recent practicable date ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) what is the current balance of trade deficit with (a) the EEC and (b) the rest of the world ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Kirkwood : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement outlining Her Majesty's Government's position on the recently published European Commission proposals liberating world trade in textiles and clothing in the context of the current general agreement on tariffs and trade negotiations.
Mr. Redwood : The communication submitted by the European Community this week to the GATT negotiating group on textiles and clothing sets out objectives agreed by all EC member states. It stresses in particular the need for parallelism between the gradual integration of textiles and clothing into GATT and the application of strengthened GATT rules and disciplines and examines the general framework within which these two elements need to be organised.
Mr. Win Griffiths : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what are the Government's plans, in the light of the European Commission's Green Paper on copyright and the challenge of new technology, to ensure that consumers (a) can contine to purchase blank audio cassettes without a levy and (b) are not denied access to new recording technology.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : The Commission's Green Paper does not propose a Communitywide levy on blank audio cassettes and the Government have no intention of introducing such a levy in the United Kingdom. Developments in recording technology need to take account of the interests of copyright owners, but the Government do not believe this should be done by inhibiting consumer choice when acquiring new technology.
Mr. Randall : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what action the Government will be taking to ensure that only properly qualified electrical installation engineers are able to establish business in order to provide electrical installation services to the public.
Mr. Randall : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what plans the Government has to introduce a national register of qualified electrical installation engineers in order to protect the consumer.
Mr. Douglas Hogg [holding answer 24 July 1989] : None. There is insufficient evidence that the benefits to be obtained from a registration scheme would warrant the cost and management effort that it would involve. However, the Government will continue to encourage the self- regulatory schemes operated by the Electrical Contractors' Association, the Electrical Contractors' Association for Scotland and the National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contractors.
Column 1081generally accepted standards laid down in the IEEE regulations with the introduction of the free movement of labour within the European Economic Community in 1992.
Mr. Douglas Hogg [holding answer 24 July 1989] : The treaty of Rome provides for free movement of labour, and overseas firms and individuals are already free to provide electrical installation services in the United Kingdom. However, the Government are considering whether electrical installations should be brought within the scope of the Building Regulations 1985.
Mr. Randall : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what training measures the Government will be taking to ensure that electrical installations are installed in a manner which makes them safe with the introduction of the free movement of labour within the European Economic Community in 1992.
Mr. Douglas Hogg [holding answer 24 July 1989] : No additional training measures are necessary as the United Kingdom market is already open. Nevertheless the Government will continue to give encouragement to the high level of training already provided by employers in the electrical contracting industry and by the Electrical Electronic Telecommunications and Plumbing Union.
Mr. John Patten [holding answer 24 July 1989] : I have been asked to reply. In 1987, 17 per cent. of accidental fires in occupied buildings, in the United Kingdom, attended by local authority fire brigades were attributed to faulty electrical appliances and installations. More detailed information is published in table 49a of the Home Office annual report "Fire Statistics United Kingdom 1987" a copy of which is in the Library.
(2) what support his Department is proposing to give the trade mission to China in the near future.
Mr. Redwood [holding answer 26 July 1989] : The Department is in consultation with the 48 group about its plans for this mission. About £70,000 had already been provided to the group prior to June of this year, that amount being based on normal DTI mission support terms. It was provided early in order to assist with the launching of this exceptionally large mission.
Mr. Redwood [holding answer 27 July 1989] : This proposal is currently being considered by the Director General of Fair Trading to ascertain whether it qualifies for reference to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission under the Fair Trading Act 1973. If so, the director general
Column 1082will advise my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State on whether the merger should be referred to the MMC : and the Secretary of State will then decide whether to make a reference.
The main consideration in deciding whether to refer a merger to the MMC is the potential effect on competition in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Tony Banks : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will give details of all African elephant products, other than ivory, imported each year into the United Kingdom by type, quantity and value since 1985.
Mr. Redwood [holding answer 27 July 1989] : African elephants' products are not identified in the overseas trade statistics. However, some information by type and quantity for 1985 and 1986 is available from the EC annual reports on the convention of international trade in endangered species of wild fauna and flora (CITES) : chapter 2, copies of which are in the Library.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) how many cars were exported to the United States in 1988 and in 1989 ; and what information he has on the reason for the change ;
(2) whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing the number of United Kingdom cars exported to the United States by category in 1987, 1988 and this year to date and the United States share by value of United Kingdom exports of cars.
Mr. Redwood : Pursuant to the holding answer of 2 July 1989, the United Kingdom exported 31,703 passenger motor vehicles to the United States in 1988. In the four months January to April 1989 the United Kingdom exported 11,187 vehicles to the United States compared with 13,090 vehicles for the same period in 1988.
Short-term fluctuations in the level of exports may not be fully representative of the market. However, one factor that may have affected the level is that there has been a weakening of the United States luxury car market in which the United Kingdom has a strong presence.
The following table shows a breakdown by category of United Kingdom exports of motor vehicles to the United States for the requested periods and the United States share by value of United Kingdom exports.
United Kingdom exports of motor cars to the United States- numbers of vehicles |1987 |1988 |January-April 1989 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- New Vehicles-Assembled Station wagons and estate cars |1 |- |11 not exceeding 1,500 cm<3> exceeding 1,500 cm<3> but not |141 |28 |9 exceeding 3,000 cm<3> exceeding 3,000 cm<3> |3,042 |3,478 |1,686 Other not exceeding 1,500 cm<3> |56 |50 |11 exceeding 1,500 cm<3> but not |21,978 |5,855 |2,266 exceeding 3,000 cm<3> exceeding 3,000 cm<3> |25,172 |21,975 |7,056 New Vehicles-Unassembled not exceeding 1,500 cm<3> |- |45 |18 exceeding 1,500 cm<3> but not |1 |10 |14 exceeding 3,000 cm<3> exceeding 3,000 cm<3> |- |6 |- Used Vehicles |546 |210 |110 Vehicles with engines other than |n/a |16 |5 spark-ignition or compression-ignition combustion engines Motor Caravans |n/a |n/a |1 United States share by value of |40 |28 |24 United Kingdom exports of cars-percentage Source: Overseas Trade Statistics. Notes: Motor vehicles defined as SITC R2 Sub-Group 781 for 1987 and SITC R3 Item 781.2 for 1988 and 1989. 1988 and 1989 figures provisional.
Mr. Clay : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on what date his Department was first made aware of a renewed interest in the purchase of North East Shipbuilders Ltd. by the Egon Oldendorff line of West Germany.
Mr. Douglas Hogg [holding answer 27 July 1989] : British Shipbuilders informed my Department on 13 April that an approach it had received from a further interest in North East Shipbuilders Ltd. would be confirmed in writing that day.
Mr. Clay : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry pursuant to the reply by the right hon. Member for Braintree to the hon. Member for Dagenham (Mr. Gould) Official Report, 13 July, column 1151, whether it was his Department or British Shipbuilders who informed the bidders for NESL of the anticipated difficulties with the European Commission ; and whether this advice was provided in writing.