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Vehicles per day Present |1995 |2000 -------------------------------------------------------- 9,000-10,000 |10,000-12,000|11,000-14,000
|Fatal |Serious|Slight ---------------------------------------- 1986 |Nil |1 |1 1987 |Nil |Nil |2 1988 |Nil |1 |Nil <1>1989 |Nil |1 |2 <1> to end of November
Mr. Pawsey : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans exist for improvements to the A5 where it passes close to the village of Newton, near Rugby.
Mr. Atkins : Changes to white lining and signing are to be carried out shortly at the junction of the A5 with the B5414. This will provide a right-turning lane for southbound vehicles turning towards Newton and Clifton-on-Dunsmore.
The section of A5 trunk road near Newton is included in a scheme identification study in the 1989 White Paper "Roads for Prosperity". Consultants are to be appointed shortly and work will commence this spring. The study report is expected in spring 1991. Any schemes identified by this study will be considered for addition to the trunk road programme but the time scale for construction will depend on priority and statutory procedures.
Mr. Lilley : It was decided in January 1988 that--from April 1988-- the provision of reply-paid envelopes by the Inland Revenue should be confined to demands for payment of tax and to a few other special instances. Treasury Ministers approved this change because it helps the Inland Revenue to keep its administrative costs as low as possible consistent with effectiveness and efficiency. The overall saving in Revenue running costs from the change was £2 million in 1988-89 and a change in the existing arrangements would not be justified.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will ensure the Inland Revenue publishes in its annual report on tax information summary details of High Court cases in which the Inland Revenue has sought to recover £1 million or more of tax revenue.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list the results of those High Court cases in the last two years in which the Inland Revenue has sought to recover £5 million or more of tax revenue.
Mr. Charles Wardle : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what representations he has received about the coverage of the proposed tax legislation on European economic interest groupings ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Lilley : The Government have received a number of representations on the taxation of European economic interest groupings. The Inland Revenue has discussed these with interested parties. Further to these discussions, the Inland Revenue is today issuing, with my agreement, a press release and a consultative document including a draft clause and schedule.
Comments on the consultative document and draft legislation should be received by 28 February 1990. We shall carefully consider all comments and representations which are made before introducing the necessary legislative provisions in the 1990 Finance Bill. I have placed copies of the document including the draft clause and schedule in the Library.
Column 630the Department of Trade and Industry in 1988 additional to those referred to in his reply of 19 December 1989 to the hon. Member for Birmingham, Hodge Hill.
Mr. Lilley [holding answer 8 January 1990] : In addition to the discussions referred to in my reply of 19 December 1989 to the hon. Gentleman, Inland Revenue officials attended one discussion with British Aerospace at the Department of Trade and Industry in March 1988. There was also a further discussion that month at the Inland Revenue. Records are not kept centrally in a form which would permit discussions involving the Department of Trade and Industry, the Inland Revenue and other taxpayers to be readily identified.
Mrs. Chalker : Britain provides substantial assistance in English language teaching to Sri Lanka. Discussions on the programme and its possible development are held regularly by representatives of our two Governments.
The Attorney-General : Subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary Supplementary Estimate, the cash limit for class XI vote 8 will be increased by £1,640,000 from £14,746,000 to £16,386,000. The increase arises because of additional costs incurred in respect of judicial removals and bomb damage to a number of court buildings. The running costs limit for the Northern Ireland court service will as a result be increased by £120,000 from £11,721,000 to £11,841,000.
Column 631Mr. Peter Walker : None.
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Gordon (Mr. Bruce), 19 December 1989, Official Report, column 124, what is the cause of toxic forms of algal blooms in Wales ; what action he is taking ; how he proposes to reduce their occurrence ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Gordon, 19 December 1989, Official Report, column 124, if he will list, by Welsh county, the locations of toxic forms of algal blooms in Wales, identified during 1989.
Mr. Alan Clark : My officials are in constant touch with representatives of the Saudi Arabian Government during which a range of Project Al Yamamah issues, including finance, are reviewed and discussed.
Mr. Kirkwood : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he last met the Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation to discuss progress at the talks on conventional forces in Europe.
Mr. Archie Hamilton : My right hon. Friend last met the Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation at the meeting of the defence planning committee on 28-29 November 1989, when a wide range of defence matters, including progress at the talks on conventional forces in Europe, were discussed.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what were the total overseas exchange costs of all British forces in Germany and the net cost after offsetting expenditure in the latest year for which figures are available.
Mr. Archie Hamilton : The estimated foreign exchange cost of British forces in Germany in 1989-90 is £1,331 million. While no direct offset payments have been made by the Federal Republic of Germany since 1980, property and certain public services continue to be provided free of charge along with some tax and duty concessions.
Column 632(2) what is the maximum amount of power that could be used by non-targeting laser devices currently fitted to Royal Navy vessels.
Mr. O'Neill : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence under what heading in the Supply Estimates the expenditure on the non-targeting laser devices currently fitted to Royal Navy vessels was included.
Mr. O'Neill : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what was the cost of the project definition phase of the procurement programme for the non-targeting laser devices currently fitted to Royal Navy vessels.
Mr. O'Neill : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether Her Majesty's Government were, prior to the signature of the agreement signed between the United States and Soviet Governments on the reduction of risks at sea in 1989, consulted by either of the two Governments concerned.
Mr. Archie Hamilton : The United States Government kept their NATO allies fully informed on progress towards their conclusion of an agreement with the Soviet Union last year on the prevention of dangerous military activities.
Column 633Mr. Redwood : As I explained in the replies I gave on 27 November at columns 92-93 , 18 December, at columns 22-23 , and 21 December, at columns 392-93 , to questions by the hon. Member, membership of the Auditing Practices Committee is a matter for the Consultative Committee of Accountancy Bodies.
Mr. Redwood : According to provisional figures published by the Central Statistical Office the United Kingdom had a crude trade deficit (i) in electronics and information technology manufactured goods (ii) of £3 billion for the year to June 1989.
(i) Exports (fob) less imports (cif).
(ii) Principal products of activity headings 3301, 3302, 3441, 3442, 3443, 3444, 3453 and 3454 of the Standard Industrial Classification (revised 1980).
Mr. Redwood : In the first 11 months of 1989 imports of manufactures from the Federal Republic of Germany exceeded United Kingdom exports to that country by £9 billion.
Mr. Forth : Support for a successor to the Alvey programme was announced in the January 1988 White Paper "DTI--The Department for Enterprise" (Cm. 278). The information engineering advanced technology programme was launched in mid-1988, and is continuing.
Mr. Ward : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if his Department has considered an application for an exhibition relating to the Association of Consulting Engineers to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Mr. Redwood : The Government are well seized of the new trading opportunities opening up in eastern Europe. To assist United Kingdom industry in making commercial decisions about participation in joint venture projects in eastern Europe, the Department of Trade and Industry
Column 634has produced a comprehensive guide which contains advice on the merits and difficulties of establishing joint ventures in that area. Copies of the guide are freely available from the DTI and it gives details of contact points with whom United Kingdom companies can discuss further the opportunities for joint venture projects. I am arranging for copies of the guide to be placed in the Libraries of both Houses today. In addition, officials are very willing to advise companies on specific proposals if requested.
Mr. Cousins : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list the names, dates of appointment, remuneration and other directorships of all directors appointed by him or his predecessors under special or golden share provisions.
Mr. Redwood : Government directors appointed to the board of British Aerospace under the special share provisions, together with the dates of their appointment, have been Mr. K. M. Bevins CBE TD (1 May 1985) ; Mr. C. B. Gough (19 October 1987) ; and Mr. K. C. Brown (16 March 1989).
Government directors appointed or nominated to the board of British Telecom under the special share provisions, together with the dates of their appointment or nomination, have been Mr. G. D. W. Odgers (20 September 1984) ; Mr. J. M. Raisman (20 September 1984) ; Mr. P. G. Bosonnet (1 October 1986, and re-nominated on 1 October 1988) ; Mr. G. J. Mulcahy (19 October 1988).
Remuneration is a matter for the individual companies. Both companies' articles of association state that each director (including Government directors) shall receive a level of remuneration as decided by the company board subject to a maximum level agreed by shareholders.
Details of other directorships as specified in section 289 of the Companies Act 1985 are held in the register of directors maintained by each company in accordance with section 288 of the Act. Details are also publicly available from the Registrar of Companies.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many times in the last five years he has used his powers to disenfranchise voting rights in the shares of United Kingdom companies ; and in how many of those cases the shares have been identified as being held by beneficial or nominee owners based in (a) Jersey, (b) Guernsey, (c) the Isle of Man, (d) the Netherlands Antilles, (e) the Cayman Islands and (f) Liechtenstein.
Mr. Redwood : Seven orders imposing restrictions (since removed) on shares, including the prohibition of the exercise of voting rights, have been made during the period, all in relation to the current section 442 Companies Act 1985 investigation into Consolidated Gold Fields plc. In one case the restrictions were imposed on shares registered in the name of a United Kingdom company and held by it to the order of a Cayman Islands company. The investigation is continuing and it would be inappropriate for me to comment further.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will ask the Director General of Fair Trading to investigate the extent to which competition is distorted by certain United Kingdom companies being involved in transactions, the purpose of which is solely or mainly to avoid or evade taxation, with companies' trusts and individuals based in (a) the Cayman Islands, (b) the Netherlands Antilles, (c) Guernsey, (d) Jersey, (e) the Isle of Man and (f) Liechtenstein.
Mr. Redwood : I will consider any evidence of the distortion of competition which the hon. Member may wish to put to me. Taxation issues are however a matter for my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer, rather than for me.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will assess the case for keeping records of United Kingdom companies owned or controlled by Netherlands Antilles or Cayman Island companies in order to assist in preventing tax avoidance and evasion.
Mr. Redwood : All companies registered in Great Britain, whatever their ownership, are required to file records at Companies House. These include lists of shareholders and, for subsidiary companies, identification of the ultimate holding company.
Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list those company investigations in the last 10 years carried out by his Department where the conclusions have alleged wrongdoing or fraud or illegality and the reports refer to business transactions involving companies, trusts or individuals based in (a) the Cayman Islands, (b) the Netherlands Antilles, (c) Guernsey, (d) Jersey, (e) the Isle of Man and (f) Liechtenstein.
Company ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Saint Piran Ltd |Cayman Islands; |Netherlands Antilles Minet Holdings plc/WMD |Netherlands Antilles Underwriting agencies Ltd |[interim "Unimar" report] Westminster Property Group plc |Isle of Man Equity & General plc |Jersey (formerly Emray plc) Milbury plc/Westminster Property |Netherlands Antilles Group Ltd Summer International plc |Isle of Man; (formerly Sumrie Clothes plc) |Jersey
For further information, I would refer my hon. Friend to the reports, copies of which are available in the Library.
Column 636extent of business transactions between United Kingdom companies and companies, trusts and individuals based in (a) the Cayman Islands, (b) the Netherlands Antilles, (c) Guernsey, (d) Jersey, (e) the Isle of Man and (f) Liechtenstein in order to determine the purposes of those transactions and the degree to which those transactions are in the public interest ;
(2) what proposals he has to prevent frauds or breaches of company law involving United Kingdom companies as a result of their directors, shareholders or other interested parties (a) creating transactions between those companies or (b) controlling some or all of their share capital through companies, trusts or individuals based in (i) the Cayman Islands, (ii) the Netherlands Antilles, (iii) Guernsey, (iv) Jersey, (v) the Isle of Man and (vi) Liechtenstein.
Mr. Redwood : There are no plans for special treatment of companies owned by, or trading with, such companies, trusts or individuals. There is a system of enforcement already in place to deal with frauds and breaches of company law. The Companies Act requires notification, in the annual accounts, of any ultimate holding company and its location, and for large companies, a breakdown of turnover by geographical area, where material. This information is available from Companies House, on a company-by-company basis.
Mr. Redwood [holding answer 9 January 1990] : The proposed acquisition by Kingfisher plc of Dixons is currently being considered by the Director General of Fair Trading who has a duty to advise the Secretary of State on whether or not it should be referred to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission. It would not be appropriate for me to comment on the proposed acquisition in anticipation of the director general's advice.
(2) what statement was made by his Department on 22 December 1989 in relation to the legal position regarding paleontological exports.
Mr. Redwood [holding answer 8 January 1990] : My Department is guided by the provisions of the Export of Goods (Control) Order 1987, (S.I. 1987 No. 2070) as they apply to exports of antiques, collectors' items and so on. My Department stated on 21 December that it had concluded that group B of the order should not be interpreted as bringing within export control fossils which are not the remains of man-made objects. Such fossils therefore do not require a licence under the order for export to any destination.