|Previous Section||Home Page|
Mr. Alan Clark : The main development contracts for the European fighter aircraft were signed in November 1988. Since then work on the first prototype has progressed satisfactorily ; and the first full-scale development engine is expected to be run next year. The selection of equipment for EFA is also proceeding ; and to date only the choice of radar has presented significant difficulties.
Column 136senior management of all major defence contractors, including British Aerospace. The details of our discussions are always confidential.
Mr. Alan Clark : The RN anti-submarine warfare variant of the EH101 helicopter is in the sixth year of full development, whilst the RAF utility variant is in the project definition phase. Following normal practice the programmes are managed by a project director with the Ministry's Procurement Executive.
(2) whether he intends to involve any penalty clauses on the TOGS system contract with United Scientific.
Mr. Alan Clarke : As I told the hon. Member for Tyne Bridge (Mr. Clelland) on 14 December, Official Report, columns 822-23, it is our intention to reach a decision on a tank to replace Chieftain by the end of 1990. The precise number of tanks to be ordered has yet to be be decided.
Mrs. Margaret Ewing : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what was the extent of land held in Scotland by his Department in (a) September 1988 and (b) September 1989 ; and if he will break this down by region and island authorities.
Region or Island |1 April 1988 Holdings (acres)|1 April 1989 Authority |Land/Foreshore |Land/Foreshore |Holdings (acres) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Borders |Nil |Nil Central |197 |197 Dumfries and Galloway |10,620 |10,400 Fife |3,181 |3,269 Grampian |5,387 |5,361 Highland |12,854 |12,853 Lothian |2,923 |2,870 Strathclyde |9,103 |9,082 Tayside |3,874 |3,599 Orkney |9 |8 Shetland |120 |111 Western Isles |3,310 |3,314 |------- |------- Totals |51,578 |51,064
Mr. Hood : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he has received representations from Clydesdale district council complaining about the transport of nuclear weapons through the Clydesdale constituency ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Archie Hamilton : I am aware of one letter from Clydesdale district council which was concerned in part, though not exclusively, with nuclear weapon movements, and was sent to my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland in May this year. A copy was passed to the Ministry of Defence and a reply was sent at official level.
The Ministry of Defence provides some financial assistance towards office expenses, administration and subscription fees for United Kingdom participation in CIOR through the Reserve Forces Association, which has filled the role of the official United Kingdom representative since 1972.
Mr. Tony Banks : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what were the amounts spent by his Department on recruitment advertising in the years 1985-86 to 1988-89 ; and what is estimated for 1989-90 for (a) the Regular Army, (b) the Territorial Army Volunteer Reserve and (c) the Home Service Force.
£ million |1985-86 |1986-87 |1987-88 |1988-89 |1989-90 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Regular Army |3.625 |4.547 |3.984 |4.467 |<1>10.093 TAVR |1.811 |1.879 |<2>4.316 |<3>4.264 |<1><3>5.500 |------- |------- |------- |------- |------- Total |5.436 |6.426 |8.300 |8.731 |15.593 <1> Estimated final outturn. <2> Includes £ 2 million from National Employers Liaison Committee (NELC). <3> Includes £2.1 million from NELC.
Separate figures for the Home Service Force are not available, but would be included in the TAVR figures.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what information he has of the number of United Kingdom companies which are under the ultimate ownership of Australian companies but which have intermediary ownership via the Cayman Islands or the Netherlands Antilles.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many contracts over £92,500 have been let by his Department in the 1988-89 financial year and in the current financial year to date ; and how many of these were (a) automatically renewed and (b) open to competition by advertisement throughout the European Community.
Mr. Forth : The number of contracts awarded by the Department of Trade and Industry and covered by the provisions of the EC supplies directive, for which the current threshold is £92,000, was 24 in the 1988-89 financial year and 10 in the current financial year to date. Of these five were awarded following advertisement in the EC Journal and 29 were considered to be exempt from advertising and may have been awarded to the previous supplier.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list those accountancy firms which have been criticised by (a) his Department's Inspectors and (b) the Registrar of Friendly Societies since June 1979.
Column 139contained criticisms of accountants. The extent of criticism varies in scale and reference should be made to individual reports.
Name of company |Date of publication |Name of accountants |of report ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Ashbourne Investments |31 July 1979 |Wright Stevens & Limited |Lloyd Data Investments Limited |30 April 1980 |Robson Rhodes Cornhill Consolidated |31 December 1980 |Singleton, Fabian & |Group Limited Kina Holdings Limited |24 March 1981 |Harold Everett, Wand |& Co. |Dixon Wilson Tubbs & | Gillett |Collins & Co. Scotia Investments Limited |22 January 1981 |Lubbock Fine Gilgate Holdings Limited |8 September 1981 and others |Gerald Edelman & Co. Norwest Holst Limited |23 June 1982 |Price Waterhouse Ramor Investments Limited |22 March 1983 |Price Waterhouse Greenbank Trust plc |5 August 1988 |Pannell Kerr Forster Milbury plc |27 October 1988 |Arthur Young
I assume that the hon. Member intended to refer to inspectors appointed by the Chief Registrar of Friendly Societies under powers comparable to those of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State under the Companies Act.
No such inspector has reported since June 1979.
Mr. Fry : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry in view of the recent increase in the price of domestic heating oil, diesel fuel, agricultural oils and other non-petrol oil products, if he will ask the Office of Fair Trading to make an investigation.
Mr. Redwood : If the hon. Member has any evidence that such price increases are the result of monopoly abuse or anti-competitive or restrictive trade practices he should bring it to the attention of the Director General of Fair Trading who has powers under the competition legislation to investigate such matters if he considers it appropriate.
Mr. Irvine : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the current position on the inter-industry arrangement on forklift trucks from Japan, referred to in his answer to the hon. Member for Darlington (Mr. Fallon) on 30 March 1988, Official Report, columns 480-81.
Mr. Redwood : The British Industrial Truck Association (BITA) has told us that its bilateral voluntary restraint arrangement with the Japan Industrial Vehicle Association is no longer in operation. My right hon. and noble Friend the Minister for Trade has, in reaffirming the Government's general policy against restrictive arrangements, informed BITA that any agreements to restrict imports of forklift trucks to the United Kingdom would have to be fully economically justified.
Mr. Colvin : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) if he accepts the recommendations of the Law Commission's report on computer misuse ; and what response he intends to make to the report ;
(2) what individuals and organisations he has consulted on the detailed proposals contained in the Law Commission's report on computer misuse ; and if he will make a statement ;
(3) what is his estimate of the annual loss of trade and industry in the United Kingdom caused by computer misuse.
Mr. Forth [holding answer 15 December 1989] : In welcoming the Law Commission report, I stated that I was inclined to accept its recommendations subject to the views of interested parties. Representations that I have had since that date have convinced me that it provides a sound basis for legislation and that such legislation should be introduced as soon as a suitable opportunity arises.
My Department has written directly to over 280 interested parties to ask for their views on the Commission's proposals. This represents a wide cross -section from industry and commerce, private individuals, consumer organisations, academia, the legal profession and other Government Departments. We have also contacted officials and law enforcement agencies in countries where legislation has already been introduced. The overall response indicates widespread support for the introduction of legislation along the lines suggested by the Law Commission.
There are no centrally collected statistics on the damage caused by computer misuse on which a reasonably accurate estimate could be based. Private sector sources have estimated figures of between £400 million and £1 billion but I cannot validate them. However, the reported cases have convinced me that misuse is occurring, and that the problem is of sufficient magnitude to cause concern.
(2) what was the maximum quantum of the Rover Group's pre-acquisition trading tax losses potentially available to claw back under the contractual sale arrangements between the Department of Trade and Industry and British Aerospace.
Mr. Ridley [holding answer 18 December 1989] : Because the £469 million of the cash injection relating to Rover's historic debt had, through conditions attaching to it, to be passed down to the operating companies in the form of a taxable subvention it eliminated a corresponding amount of trading tax losses. The remainder of the mechanism effectively to limit Rover Group's access to the benefit of past trading tax losses was the pound-for-pound contractual clawback affecting use of more than £500 million of such losses. It is not possible to state the amount of Rover's trading tax losses eliminated in the final agreement or the maximum amount potentially available to be clawed back. These depend on the outcome of the normal application of tax law to the circumstances of the Rover Group, including any claims or disclaimers made by it, and this is governed by the strict rules of tax confidentiality.
Column 141Mr. Gordon Brown : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much of the capital allowances disclaimed by the Rover Group which, under the March conditional terms, could have been clawed back under the contractual sale arrangements if used outside the Rover Group were disclaimed within the statutory time limit set down in the relevant Finance Acts.
Mr. Ridley [holding answer 18 December 1989] : As I said in my reply of 12 December on disclaimers of capital allowances by Rover Group -- Official Report, column 638 --this is a matter for Rover Group and the normal rules of confidentiality governing taxpayers' affairs apply.
Mr. Gordon Brown : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when the plan to defer payment of £150 million for the Rover sale was discussed ; and what were the options under consideration in July.
Mr. Ridley [holding answer 18 December 1989] : The deferment of the £150 million consideration was first raised at the end of June 1988. Three specific options were set out in a letter of July 1988 from the then Secretary of State to the chairman of British Aerospace, a copy of which has already been placed in the Library of the House. There were further discussions on 12 July following receipt of the letter at which it was decided that the consideration would be paid not later than 30 March 1990.
Mr. Ridley [holding answer 18 December 1989] : I am unaware of any such request. As I explained on 13 December at columns 699-700, the company has consulted us on a number of occasions on the detail of certain provisions in the company's articles of association which require the consent of the special shareholder before any changes can be made.
Mr. Lewis : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will publish in the Official Report full details of the code of practice recently agreed between the director general of OFTEL and the telecommunications industry relating to the provision of telephone chatlines and one-to-one services.
Mr. Allan Stewart : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list the annual tonnage of imports of bananas from the dollar area received by each company under the quota arrangements.
Ms. Walley : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what discussions he has had in the last 12 months with Fisons Limited on waste reduction and minimisation ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) what discussions he has had in the last 12 months with Orsynthetics Limited on waste reduction and minimisation ; and if he will make a statement ;
(3) what discussions he has had in the last 12 months with Sterling Organics Limited on waste reduction and minimisation ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Forth : I have had no discussions on waste reduction and minimisation with the particular companies referred to by the hon. Member. However, my Department is encouraging business in general to take further steps to reduce their waste and has recently published a business guide to waste minimisation entitled "Cutting Your Losses". A copy of the booklet has been placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will announce his response to the Parliamentary Commissioner's investigation into the role of his Department in the Barlow Clowes collapse ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing (a) the increase in real earnings of manual and non-manual workers in the decade to June 1989 analysed in both cases to show for the worker at 1 per cent. and 5 per cent., from the top and the manual worker 5 per cent. from the bottom, (b) the average of the earnings above the high figures and below the low one and (c) for all groups the corresponding information (i) manufacturing and for the whole economy less the production industries, (ii) full-time adult female manual and non-manual workers in each case and (iii) the numbers covered by each category.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, further to his reply of 11 December to the hon. Member for Great Grimsby, Official Report, columns 467-68, with regard to the increases in weekly and hourly earnings of certain workers, what is his estimate of the increase in unit labour costs in each case in the decade ending in April.
Mrs. Peacock : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if his Department has considered an application for an exhibition relating to the United Kingdom Federation of Business and Professional Women to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Mr. Nicholls : I understand that, under procedures agreed by the Services Committee, arrangements have been made with the authorities of the House for an exhibition to be held in the Upper Waiting Hall from Monday 22 January to Friday 26 January.
Mr. Pike : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many trainees are undergoing employment training in (a) Burnley, (b) Pendle, (c) Hyndburn and (d) Rossendale and Darwen constituencies ; and how many training scheme vacancies exist.
Mr. Alfred Morris : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what special funding arrangements there are to cater for the needs of people with disabilities participating in the employment training programme.
a) the necessary cost of providing special equipment, adaptations to premises or equipment, and, for the sensorily impaired, communication services.
b) variable Supplementary Grants - up to £40 per week per trainee - for places involving higher cost training (including, but not exclusively for, people with disabilities).
c) the necessary cost of creating an individualised training programme for those for whom,because of the effects of their disability, existing contracted training places would be inappropriate. athis facility is known as Special Training Provision (STP).
d) the necessary cost of providing a residential training place where this is deemed appropriate.
(d the necessary cost of providing a residential training place where this is deemed appropriate. Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he has any plans to change the provision for travel costs in the employment training scheme. Mr. Nicholls [holding answer 14 December 1989] : There are no plans.
Mr. Eggar : In the field of health and safety at work, the Council formally adopted three directives. These provide for minimum standards of health and safety for the workplace, for the use of work equipment and the use of personal protective equipment by workers at work. In addition a common position was reached on a directive dealing with protection of workers from risks relating to exposure to carcinogens at work.
A draft resolution on the setting up of a European employment survey was also adopted ; as was a proposal allowing the Commission to negotiate on behalf of the Community at the International Labour Organisation on certain issues.
The Council continued its discussion of the proposal for a technology training programme (Eurotecnet) following amendments by the European Parliament with a view to its adoption at an early future meeting of the Council. Also in the field of training, the Commission outlined a proposal for a programme on continuing training throughout working life ; and there was a statement by the presidency on the need for training measures to combat female unemployment and promote equality of opportunity in the labour market.
The Council heard an oral presentation by the Commission on the proposed social action programme to implement the social charter. There was also an oral presentation by the Commission on the worker participation proposals in the draft European company statute.
Mr. Eggar : Yes. The sale process has now reached a stage where I am able to place a copy of the information memorandum about STA, and a copy of the information packs about individual parts of STA, in the Library. Copies will also be made available to staff in the STA and to the recognised trade unions.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he has issued any recent guidelines to the Forestry Commission concerning the release of agricultural land for afforestation ; and if he will make a statement.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland on 24 October 1989, Official Report, columns 399-401, to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Dumfries (Sir H. Monro).
Miss Emma Nicholson : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what assessment his Department has made of the implications for reform of the law of the recent High Court trial in Aberdeen in which a man was charged with raping his wife.
Column 145Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : At the sitting of the High Court in Aberdeen commencing on 6 November 1989 a man did appear on indictment charged inter alia with raping his wife on two separate occasions. After trial, he was convicted of attempted rape and was sentenced to three years' imprisonment. It is not considered that this case has any implications for the reform of the criminal law of Scotland.