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Written Answers to Questions

Monday 18 March 1991

FOREIGN AND COMMONWEALTH AFFAIRS

Energy Efficiency

Mr. Colvin : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which of his Ministers has been given responsibility for energy use by his Department ; and what is his or her brief regarding energy efficiency.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : I am responsible for energy matters in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. My brief is to promote awareness of the Government's energy efficiency campaign and raise the profile of energy efficiency and energy-saving technology in the FCO estate both at home and overseas.

There is a policy of saving 15 per cent. on energy

consumption/costs over five years on the home estate. Overseas, the FCO is providing information material to posts to target local industry, commerce and Government decision makers in an attempt to stimulate commercial/technological spin-offs for United Kingdom energy efficiency/saving measures. The FCO is also carrying out other initiatives under the overseas aid programme to help developing countries.

Soviet Union

Mr. Atkinson : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the status of the recognition and diplomatic representation currently accorded to each of the Soviet republics.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : We do not recognise the individual Soviet republics as states. The question of diplomatic relations, therefore, does not arise.

Sudan

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what efforts Her Majesty's Government are supporting to bring the warring parties in Sudan to the negotiating table ; and if he will raise during the visit of John Garang, leader of the Sudanese People's Liberation Movement, in April the case for initiating round-table talks.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : We have urged on both sides in the civil war the need for a ceasefire and the early discussion and settlement of all outstanding problems, but neither the Government of Sudan nor their opponents appear ready to bring this long-running, tragic and wasteful conflict to an end.

War Crimes Tribunal

Mr. Amos : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will meet his counterparts in the coalition countries to discuss the


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establishment of a war crimes tribunal to try the activities of Saddam Hussein in the Gulf war ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : Various mechanisms already exist under the Geneva conventions for prosecuting grave breaches of the conventions. It is too early to say what machinery might be applied in this case.

PRIME MINISTER

Shops Act

Mr. Duffy : To ask the Prime Minister what proposals he has to provide additional support for local authorities to improve the enforcement of the Shops Act 1950 ; and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister : Local authorities have a wide range of functions and duties of which enforcement under the 1950 Act is but one. Local authorities receive a substantial contribution towards their total spending of some £40 billion through external grants. The amount provided in external support is being increased by nearly £3 billion this coming year. It is for local authorities to decide how they allocate their resources to provide services and meet their duties.

Pensioners (Heating and Lighting)

Mr. Beggs : To ask the Prime Minister what figures the Government have for the average weekly cost to pensioners for heating and lighting in (a) Northern Ireland, (b) Peterborough, (c) north Wiltshire and (d) Richmond and Barnes.

The Prime Minister : The information requested is available only at regional levels. For data on the average weekly expenditure on heating and lighting by pensioners in Northern Ireland I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to the hon. Member for Banff and Buchan (Mr. Salmond) on 13 March at columns 540-41 .

North-west London

Mr. Dykes : To ask the Prime Minister if he intends to make any official visit to constituencies in the north-west London area.

The Prime Minister : I am making a series of visits to all parts of the country and very much hope to include constituencies in London.

Agricultural and Industrial Support

Dr. David Clark : To ask the Prime Minister if he will publish in the Official Report , an updated version of the table that was given in his answer to the hon. Member for Norfolk, North (Mr. Howell) on 17 March 1988, Official Report, columns 636-37 .

The Prime Minister : I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to him by my right hon. and learned Friend the Chief Secretary on 18 February 1991 at column 13 .

East Timor

Mrs. Mahon : To ask the Prime Minister, further to his oral answer of 28 February, Official Report, column 1116, if he is now in a position to make a statement about East Timor.


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The Prime Minister [holding answer 15 March 1991] : Through our embassy in Jakarta, we keep a close watch on developments in East Timor and have made clear to the Indonesians our concern about infringements of human rights, such as those described in the Amnesty report. We will continue to do so.

All countries have a sovereign right under the United Nations charter to secure the means of their own self-defence. Applications to export defence equipment are carefully scrutinised on a case-by-case basis. We do not allow the export of arms and equipment likely to be used against civil populations. In the case of Indonesia this criterion extends to possible use against the civilian population of East Timor.

Soviet Union

Mrs. Clwyd : To ask the Prime Minister from which Government Departments United Kingdom contributions to the cost of EC technical assistance to the Soviet Union will be paid ; and what proportion from each Department.

The Prime Minister [holding answer 15 March 1991] : The Commission is continuing its exploratory discussions with the Soviet Union and will soon table a proposal on technical assistance to the Soviet Union. The Government will react in due course to that proposal.

OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT

Famine

35. Mr. Cohen : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the latest assessment of the level of famine in sub-Saharan Africa.

Mrs. Chalker : The World Food Programme estimates that 29 million people may be at risk of starvation in 25 sub-Saharan African countries. Populations within Ethiopia, Sudan, Mozambique, Angola and Liberia are the most seriously affected with more than 20 million people at risk. I have placed the World Food Programme's most recent table of estimates for Africa in the Library of the House.

36. Mr. Alan W. Williams : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the Government's latest estimate of the number of people facing famine in Africa ; and what is the Government's total commitment to emergency relief during this financial year.

Mrs. Chalker : The World Food Programme estimates that 29 million people may be at risk of starvation in 25 sub-Saharan African countries. The total provision this financial year for humanitarian assistance is £74 million.

37. Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs by how much the budget to tackle famine in Africa has been increased for every year since 1987 at 1991 prices.

Mrs. Chalker : There is no separate allocation for famine relief in Africa within the overall humanitarian assistance provison. This provision is enhanced as required during each financial year in order to respond quickly and appropriately to developing countries' needs.


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Tropical Forests

38. Mr. Mans : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has received on the subject of tropical forests ; and if he will make a statement.

Mrs. Chalker : I receive numerous letters from hon. Members and members of the public who are rightly concerned about tropical deforestation. Many are also interested in the emerging World bank forestry policy paper due for publication in July. My postbag also includes letters from environmental NGOs such as the World Wide Fund for Nature and representatives of the trade.

In addition I have recently received over 25,000 postcards from Friends of the Earth members who are calling for limitations on tropical timber imports and greater attention to environmental and social safeguards in projects carried out by the International Tropical Timber Organisation-- ITTO.

The United Kingdom Government believe that import restrictions would be counterproductive and would almost certainly tempt some tropical forest countries to accelerate conversion of forest to agricultural or ranch land. Restrictions or outright bans may also encourage loggers to speed up their rate of timber extraction to recoup investments in machinery and infrastructure. The positive way forward is to encourage Governments to manage and use their forest resources sustainably and to help provide them with the capacity to do this.

The ODA is already at the forefront of initiatives to ensure that ITTO works as an effective organisation. We supported work to produce ITTO guidelines on best management practice of natural tropical forests and will continue to encourage countries to adopt them. We pressed for the establishment of an expert panel to review ITTO project proposals which has now been set up. We are also financing two independent experts to help ITTO review how it handles projects generally including the appraisal of their environmental and social impacts.

Burma

Mr. Alan W. Williams : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what was the level of development aid to Burma in each of the financial years from 1986-87 to the present ; and what is the planned level for 1991-92.

Mrs. Chalker : British aid to Burma since 1986-87 has comprised :


£'000                                                           

                        |1986-87|1987-88|1988-89|1989-90        

----------------------------------------------------------------

Technical Co-operation  |889    |1,157  |1,037  |131            

Aid and Trade Provision |3,119  |3,005  |305    |17             

Disaster Relief         |10     |-      |91     |4              

Other                   |51     |85     |23     |46             

                        |-------|-------|-------|-------        

Total                   |4,069  |4,247  |1,456  |198            

Since the aid programme was suspended in late 1988 due to human rights concerns, expenditure has been limited to residual contract payments under the aid and trade provision--all now

complete--completion of training awards for Burmese students already in the United Kingdom, pensions, and humanitarian assistance.


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Figures for expenditure in 1990-91 are not yet available. No aid is planned in 1991-92 apart from possible limited humanitarian assistance to refugees.

Sudan

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much food aid has been delivered to Sudan since March 1990 ; and how much of this food has reached rebel-controlled southern Sudan.

Mrs. Chalker : The precise figures requested are not available from the World Food Programme. However, its statistics show that 282,000 tonnes of food aid was delivered to Sudan from January to December 1990. Of this, 33,300 tonnes was supplied to the south.

Equal Opportunities

Mrs. Roe : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what percentage of officers in grades 1 to 7 in the Overseas Development Administration are women.

Mrs. Chalker : The number and percentage of women at G7 and above in the ODA is as follows :


                                  

----------------------------------

Grades 1 to 3 |none               

Grade 5       |5-11.40            

Grade 6       |9-13.40            

Grade 7       |22-10.95           

These figures include eight women who are on secondment to other aid organisations.

Iraq

Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what resources and facilities Her Majesty's Government are prepared to make available by way of medical and technical assistance to Iraq following the report of the United Nations investigative team ; if a decision has been made in principle to provide such assistance ; and if he will make a statement.

Mrs. Chalker : We have already provided £2.5 million in humanitarian assistance through the International Committee of the Red Cross. When the UN mission's report on emergency needs is available, we shall respond to any UN appeal for humanitarian assistance.

Cambodia

Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what proposals he is making to the United Nations on the provision of development aid towards (a) mine removal and (b) provision of clean water supplies in Cambodia.

Mrs. Chalker : Britain is currently supporting the humanitarian aid programmes of United Nations agencies


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in Cambodia, including UNICEF, which provides assistance for the improvement of water supplies and sanitation. Provision for mine clearance to be undertaken with the assistance of the UN transitional authority for Cambodia as part of a comprehensive political settlement, was included in the draft document agreed by the permanent five, including Britain, the co-chairman of the Paris conference and the UN permanent representative at their meeting in Paris from 23 to 26 November 1990.

Education Projects

Mr. Harry Greenway : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what proportion of overseas aid is being spent on educational projects ; in what main areas ; and if he will make a statement.

Mrs. Chalker : In 1989, the latest year for which final figures are available, £180.4 million was spent bilaterally on education projects out of a total bilateral expenditure of £1,113 million. Main areas of expenditure were :


                             |£ million          

-------------------------------------------------

Training Support Schemes     |110.5              

British Council              |43.2               

English Language Teachers    |13.0               

Capital projects             |6.9                

Books, seminars and research |6.8                

                             |-------            

                             |180.4              

A number of technical co-operation staff working overseas are also in education, but they are not designated by sector.

Much money made available from the aid programme to multilateral organisations such as the World bank, is committed to education. Our bilateral efforts complement this investment.

Future expenditure plans will take into account the priority which overseas Governments give to the call made at the world conference on education for all in Thailand in 1990 for a greater emphasis on basic education and adult literacy.

Non-governmental Organisations

Sir John Stanley : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list the non-governmental organisations associated with overseas development which received financial support from his Department in 1989-90, the total sum received by each organisation in that year and the breakdown of the total sum received by each organisation to show separately the sums received (a) under the joint funding scheme, (b) for emergency relief and (c) other.

Mrs. Chalker : The information requested is as follows :


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ODA grants to NGOs 1989-90                                                                                                      

Agency                                                  |JFS        |Emergencies|Others     |Total                              

                                                                    |(Disasters,                                                

                                                                    |Refugees                                                   

                                                                    |Food Aid)                                                  

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Acord                                                   |450,074    |610,000    |50,000     |1,110,074                          

Action Aid                                              |499,801    |-          |735,449    |1,235,250                          

Action on Disability and Development                    |134,326    |-          |-          |134,326                            

Action Water                                            |10,000     |-          |-          |10,000                             

Afghan Aid                                              |-          |1,700,000  |-          |1,700,000                          

Africa Now                                              |9,960      |-          |-          |9,960                              

African Medical and Research Foundation                 |201,179    |-          |-          |201,179                            

Aga Khan Foundation                                     |312,957    |-          |1,205,808  |1,518,765                          

AHRTAG                                                  |129,133    |-          |12,730     |141,863                            

Aid Armenia                                             |-          |12,261     |-          |12,261                             

Aid for India                                           |35,960     |-          |-          |35,960                             

Alternative for India Development                       |51,857     |-          |-          |51,857                             

Anti Slavery Society                                    |34,361     |-          |-          |34,361                             

Association of Commonwealth Universities                |-          |-          |415,443    |415,443                            

Boys Brigade                                            |13,219     |-          |-          |13,219                             

British Executive Services Overseas                     |-          |-          |360,000    |360,000                            

British Red Cross Society                               |75,000     |196,763    |-          |271,763                            

Busoga Trust                                            |33,333     |-          |-          |33,333                             

Care                                                    |797,250    |4,859,455  |1,489,789  |7,146,494                          

Catholic Fund for Overseas Development                  |1,000,000  |4,391,797  |188,905    |5,580,702                          

Catholic Institute for International Relations          |92,195     |-          |1,160,000  |1,252,195                          

Centre for International Briefing                       |-          |-          |139,000    |139,000                            

Centre for World Development Education                  |-          |-          |129,200    |129,200                            

Child To Child                                          |8,000      |-          |-          |8,000                              

Christian Aid                                           |1,706,901  |3,891,704  |594,900    |6,193,505                          

Christian Outreach                                      |-          |267,000    |-          |267,000                            

Christians Abroad                                       |-          |-          |18,000     |18,000                             

Commonwealth Human Ecology Council                      |22,659     |-          |-          |22,659                             

Commonwealth Trade Union Council                        |118,612    |-          |-          |118,612                            

Concern                                                 |129,956    |801,738    |190,673    |1,122,367                          

Conservation Foundation                                 |123,790    |-          |-          |123,790                            

Cooperation for Development                             |111,872    |-          |385,312    |497,184                            

Council for Education in World Citizenship              |-          |-          |4,000      |4,000                              

Cusichaca Project                                       |37,000     |-          |-          |37,000                             

DPCCN                                                   |-          |-          |400,000    |400,000                            

Duke of Edinburgh Award                                 |77,000     |-          |-          |77,000                             

Equipment to Charity Hospitals Overseas                 |24,850     |10,234     |-          |35,084                             

Farm Africa                                             |-          |-          |55,000     |55,000                             

Feed the Minds                                          |8,330      |-          |-          |8,330                              

Goal                                                    |-          |50,000     |-          |50,000                             

Hand In Hand                                            |7,397      |-          |-          |7,397                              

Harvest Help                                            |40,076     |-          |-          |40,076                             

Health Unlimited                                        |175,893    |-          |-          |175,893                            

Help The Aged                                           |75,104     |207,591    |-          |282,695                            

Homeless International                                  |12,771     |-          |-          |12,771                             

Impact Foundation                                       |7,096      |-          |-          |7,096                              

India Development Group                                 |33,325     |-          |-          |33,325                             

Institute of Development Studies                        |-          |-          |2,145,000  |2,145,000                          

Intercare                                               |30,487     |-          |-          |30,487                             

Intermediate Technology Development Group               |184,050    |-          |93,713     |277,763                            

International Agricultural Training Programme           |37,950     |-          |-          |37,950                             

International Bee Research Association                  |-          |-          |32,000     |32,000                             

International Boys Town Trust                           |33,180     |-          |-          |33,180                             

International Committee for Red Cross                   |-          |-          |100,000    |100,000                            

International Council for Bird Preservation             |33,943     |-          |-          |33,943                             

International Extension College                         |-          |249,796    |-          |249,796                            

International Institute for Environment and Development |-          |-          |63,000     |63,000                             

International Medical Relief                            |-          |80,600     |-          |80,600                             

International Rescue                                    |-          |23,816     |-          |23,816                             

International Trust for Nature Conservation             |3,898      |-          |-          |3,898                              

Jalchatra Project                                       |8,250      |-          |-          |8,250                              

King Mahendra Trust                                     |14,750     |-          |-          |14,750                             

Leonard Cheshire Foundation                             |83,923     |-          |-          |83,923                             

Living Earth                                            |61,400     |-          |-          |61,400                             

Lutheran World Federation                               |-          |7,559      |-          |7,559                              

Marie Stopes International                              |484,842    |-          |35,678     |520,520                            

Medical Aid for Palestinians                            |-          |-          |70,975     |70,975                             

Money for Madagascar                                    |3,600      |-          |-          |3,600                              

National Childrens Home                                 |-          |-          |15,406     |15,406                             

New Age Access                                          |13,500     |-          |-          |13,500                             

Ockenden Venture                                        |-          |248,536    |-          |248,536                            

Opportunities for Women                                 |55,490     |-          |-          |55,490                             

Order of St. John                                       |-          |-          |125,000    |125,000                            

Overseas Development Institute                          |-          |-          |570,000    |570,000                            

OXFAM                                                   |3,100,000  |1,763,473  |946,881    |5,810,354                          

Passe Partout                                           |10,675     |-          |-          |10,675                             

Plan                                                    |209,608    |-          |-          |209,608                            

Population Concern                                      |272,392    |-          |-          |272,392                            

Ranfurly Library Service                                |-          |-          |115,000    |115,000                            

Reed Charities                                          |117,969    |-          |-          |117,969                            

Regional Conference on International Voluntary Service  |-          |-          |5,000      |5,000                              

Royal Commonwealth Society for the Blind                |36,393     |-          |-          |36,393                             

Ryder Cheshire Mission                                  |-          |30,000     |-          |30,000                             

Sandy Galls Afghanistan Appeal                          |-          |134,000    |-          |134,000                            

Save the Children Fund                                  |2,400,000  |1,464,238  |2,337,720  |6,201,958                          

Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund                |74,515     |-          |-          |74,515                             

Scottish Education and Action for Development                       |-          |7,000      |7,000                              

Semi Arid Lands Training Livestock Improvement Centres  |25,272     |-          |-          |25,272                             

Send A Cow                                              |10,120     |-          |-          |10,120                             

Sheffield Health Authority                              |53,020     |-          |-          |53,020                             

Skillshare Africa                                       |68,666     |-          |980,000    |1,048,666                          

SOS Sahel                                               |76,846     |-          |100,000    |176,846                            

Special Projects in Christian Missionary Areas                      |54,094     |61,123     |115,217                            

Tear Fund                                               |46,943     |11,806     |-          |58,749                             

Traidcraft Exchange                                     |22,341     |-          |-          |22,341                             

Trax                                                    |31,943     |-          |-          |31,943                             

Trust for Education and Development                                 |-          |2,000      |2,000                              

Uganda Society for Disabled Children                    |212,743    |-          |-          |212,743                            

UK Foundation for the Peoples of the South Pacific      |79,360     |-          |-          |79,360                             

UNICEF Appeal                                           |-          |-          |200,000    |200,000                            

UNIPAL                                                  |-          |12,000     |2,322      |14,322                             

United Nations Association International Service        |-          |-          |611,904    |611,904                            

Urban Aid                                               |15,000     |-          |-          |15,000                             

Vetaid                                                  |5,053      |-          |70,000     |75,053                             

Voluntary Services Overseas                             |9,000      |-          |10,375,155 |10,384,155                         

War on Want                                             |-          |-          |56,179     |56,179                             

Water Aid                                               |628,873    |-          |230,608    |859,481                            

Womens Corona Society                                   |-          |-          |4,320      |4,320                              

World University Service                                |14,861     |100,775    |420,000    |535,636                            

World Vision                                            |198,399    |-          |100,000    |298,399                            

World Wide Fund for Nature                              |1,000,000  |-          |-          |1,000,000                          

Y Care International                                    |64,729     |80,000     |-          |144,729                            

You and Me                                              |-          |21,000     |-          |21,000                             

Young Womens Christian Association                      |-          |7,127      |-          |7,127                              

Zimbabwe Trust                                          |31,350     |-          |-          |31,350                             

                                                        |_______    |_______    |_______    |_______                            

Total                                                   |16,466,571 |-          |21,287,363 |-          |27,410,193             

HOUSE OF COMMONS

Office Costs Allowance

Mr. Summerson : To ask the Lord President of the Council what is the amount of the office costs allowance per Member for each of the last 10 years ; what percentage of the total allowance has been spent in each of the last 10 years ; and, of the amount of the allowance which has been spent in each of the last 10 years, what proportions have been spent on (a) secretarial salaries, (b) research expenses and salaries, (c) miscellaneous office expenses and (d) other secretarial services.

Mr. MacGregor : The amount of the office costs allowance and the percentage of total estimates provision spent in each of the last 10 years is in the table. Information on the proportions spent on secretarial salaries, research expenses and salaries, miscellaneous expenses and other secretarial services is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.



The Office Costs Allowance                                                      

Financial Year      |OCA Maximum        |Percentage of total                    

                    |per Member         |Estimates provision                    

                                        |spent<1>                               

                    |£                                                          

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1980-81             |7,859              |92                                     

1981-82             |8,384              |96                                     

1982-83             |8,752              |98                                     

1983-84             |11,364             |93                                     

1984-85             |12,437             |100                                    

1985-86             |13,211             |99                                     

1986-87             |20,140             |89                                     

1987-88             |20,302             |97                                     

1988-89             |22,588             |99                                     

1989-90             |24,903             |101                                    

1990-91             |27,166                                                     

<1> Including Supplementary Estimates where appropriate.                        

War Crimes Bill

Mr. Peter Bottomley : To ask the Lord President of the Council, pursuant to his answer of 6 December to the hon. Member for Northampton, North, (Mr. Marlow) Official Report, column 463, what are his reasons for deciding not to bring forward or proceed with any Government amendments to the War Crimes Bill.

Mr. MacGregor : To preserve the possibility of the use of the Parliament Acts in the event of disagreement between the House of Commons and the House of Lords, the Bill should be returned to the House of Lords in precisely the same form as it went to it last year, apart from purely technical changes necessary to reflect the passage of time. It has been presented to the House of Commons in


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that form. The Government have decided not to propose suggested amendments under the procedure provided in the Parliament Acts because the Bill as it stands meets the Government's objectives of implementing the recommendations of the war crimes inquiry, ensuring that any prosecutions are well founded and well prepared and that any defendants have proper and effective safeguards. If the House of Lords wishes to propose amendments in a spirit of seeking to secure the support of both Houses, the Commons will be able to consider these and decide on a free vote.

Mr. Peter Bottomley : To ask the Lord President of the Council when the Government last proposed a motion excluding the Committee stage or amendment of a Bill similar to the motion on the War Crimes Bill.

Mr. MacGregor : A motion to similar effect was last made by the Government on 1 December 1976, relating to the Aircraft and Shipbuilding Industries Bill.

SOCIAL SECURITY

Invalidity Benefit

Mr. Sillars : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what are the differences between men and women in respect of invalidity benefit when they reach normal retirement age.

Mr. Scott : There are no differences in the way invalidity benefit entitlement is determined or paid between men and women when they reach normal retirement age.

Payment of invalidity benefit can continue after normal retirement age 60-- women--or 65--men--only if there is entitlement to retirement pension. Invalidity benefit is then payable until retirement pension is claimed or age 65--women--or 70--men--is reached.

AGRICULTURE, FISHERIES AND FOOD

Energy Efficiency

Mr. Colvin : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food which of his Ministers has been given responsibility for energy use by his Department ; and what is his brief regarding energy efficiency.

Mr. Curry : I have given the Minister of State, Baroness Trumpington, special responsibility for energy use within my Department. I attach great importance to the efficient use of energy both within the Department and the industries with which my Department has contact. In line with the Government's objectives, our aim is to save 15 per cent. of departmental energy costs over the next five years. I have asked the Minister of State to encourage the practice of energy efficiency in our policies and pronouncements.

Veterinary Services

Dr. David Clark : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) if he will list the numbers of veterinarians that have been lost from each location where they are employed since 1979 ; and if he will make a statement ;

(2) further to his answer to the hon. Member for South Shields of 12 March, Official Report, column 442, if he will


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list the veterinary investigation centres ; and how many (a) veterinarian, (b) scientific, (c) administrative and (d) laboratory posts will be lost as a result of his decision to close these centres.

Mr. Gummer : It is not possible or meaningful to list the number of veterinary posts that have been lost from each individual location where they are employed since 1979 because where individual locations have been closed, amalgamated or relocated, additional veterinary posts have been allocated to other locations to cope with the additional work load.

The number of veterinary posts located at veterinary investigation centres was 87 in 1979, is 84 in 1991 and it is expected that there will be 72 such veterinary posts in 1995. The numbers of veterinary posts in those central laboratories which comprise the central veterinary laboratories was 97 in 1979, is 73 in 1991 and it is expected that there will be 73 veterinary posts in 1995.

For the same reasons it is not possible or meaningful to list the (a) veterinarian, (b) scientific, (c) administrative and (d) laboratory posts that will be lost in relation to specific individual veterinary investigation centres. I refer the hon. Member to my reply of 12 March, Official Report, column 442, which gives this information in relation to these posts when the reorganisation of the VI service is completed in three or four years' time. One of the 13 veterinary post losses referred to in that reply is accounted for by a post in the national management team located at the state veterinary service headquarters at Tolworth.

As I indicated in my reply to the hon. Member of 14 March 1991, at column 680, the changes in the structure of the veterinary investigation service are designed to produce significant improvements in the quality, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the service and I consider it important that we have an efficient VI service which is well equipped to meet our national needs over the years ahead.

Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

Dr. David Clark : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will publish in the Official Report the results of the test for the presence of BSE undertaken by Dr. Harash Narang, at the public health laboratory, Newcastle, on the bovine brains supplied by his Department.

Mr. Gummer : Publication of the results of the research being undertaken by Dr. Narang is a matter for him. All the material and data requested by him as a part of this study have been supplied by my Department.

Food Safety

Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he has issued guidelines to local authority environmental health departments on recommended levels of staffing for implementation of the Food Safety Act and the registration of food premises in particular.

Mr. Dorrell : I have been asked to reply.

Staffing levels are a matter for local authorities to determine locally.


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EMPLOYMENT

Training Agency

Mr. McLeish : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when the accounts for the Training Agency for 1989-90 and 1990-91 will be laid before Parliament.

Mr. Jackson : It had been planned to lay the White Paper accounts for the Training Agency for 1989-90 before Parliament in December 1990, but their preparation has been delayed and they will now be published in May 1991. The Training Agency has now ceased to exist as a separate operation entirely and no further White Paper accounts will be prepared.

Racehorse Breeding

Mr. Wiggin : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people are estimated to work in the racehorse breeding industry.

Mr. Jackson : The information requested is included in the estimates for agriculture and horticulture, which do not separately identify the racehorse breeding industry. In September 1990, the latest date for which information is available, there were 307,000 employees in employment in agriculture and horticulture in the United Kingdom.

Rathbone Society

Mr. Alfred Morris : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what representations he has received from the Rathbone Society about the precautionary notices of redundancy it has issued to its staff in England and Wales and the imminent closure of the training and employment service it provides for people with learning difficulties ; what reply he is sending ; what action he is taking ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Jackson [holding answer 15 March 1991] : The chief executive of the Rathbone Society wrote to my right hon. and learned Friend on 1 March and the chairman wrote on 10 March. I shall be replying shortly.

On 26 February my right hon. and learned Friend announced we were making available an additional £120 million for employment training in 1991- 92 bringing our total expenditure on the programme to £877 million.

Training and enterprise councils will be able to use this additional money to provide training in line with the priorities set out in their plans including training for those with learning difficulties and other special needs. It is for individual TECs to decide, in the light of local circumstances, with whom they will contract to provide the necessary training.

Labour Statistics

Mr. Gorst : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what the unemployment figures for Hendon, North have been during each of the last 12 months for which figures are available ; and if he will state what factors have affected any changes in them.

Mr. Jackson [holding answer 15 March 1991] : The information requested can be obtained from the NOMIS database in the House of Commons Library. The figures available are on the unadjusted basis and are therefore affected by seasonal influences.


Column 14

TECs (Advertising)

Mr. Madden : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the total budget for television, newspaper and other advertising for the launch of training and enterprise councils ; what is the total budget for advertising for each TEC so far established ; what is the cost of such advertising nationally and locally, expressed in terms of each person now undertaking training ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Jackson [holding answer 15 March 1991] : The total budget for television, newspaper and other advertising for the launch of training and enterprise councils is £10 million.

The overall budget for local publicity and marketing by TECs in 1990-91 is £4 million. The amount allocated to individual TECs is adjusted during each financial year according to changing requirements.

The figures on the cost of TECs advertising nationally and locally, expressed in terms of training can be provided only at

disproportionate cost.


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