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King's Fund

Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the work commissioned by his Department from King's fund in each of the last 10 years, giving the title of each project, its principal location and the cost of each project.

Mr. Dorrell : I will write to the hon. Member.

Product Licensing

Mr. Michael Morris : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the difference between a suspension of a product licence and a withdrawal.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answer 21 October 1991] : Section 28 of the Medicines Act 1968 enables the Licensing Authority, which is a body of Ministers, to suspend, revoke or vary a product licence for a medicinal product issued under the Act. Under schedule 2 to this Act, Licensing Authority decisions for action under section 28 will only take effect after the licence holder has exhausted the rights provided in the Act to object to the proposal. However, the Licensing Authority may, in the interests of safety, suspend a product licence with immediate effect. In these circumstances, the licence holder is precluded forthwith from selling or supplying the product. Suspensions can only initially be for a period not exceeding three months.

Section 62 of the same Act enables the Health Ministers, in the interests of safety, to make an order prohibiting the sale, supply or importation of any class or description of medicinal products. The particular circumstances of use are specified in the section. Under the standard provisions for product licences, a licence holder may be directed to withhold a batch of a medicinal product from sale or supply if it has been found not to conform with certain licensed specifications or with the provisions of the Act or any regulations made under the Act.

The holder of a product licence may decide for commercial reasons, independent of any action by the Licensing Authority, to withdraw the product from the market. In such circumstances the licence holder notifies the Licensing Authority of its action.

Medicines Act

Mr. Michael Morris : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the sections of the Medicines Act which relate to powers to refuse supply of a prescription medicine against a named patient prescription.


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Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answer 21 October 1991] : The Medicines Act 1968 and orders made under the Act control the safety, quality and efficacy of medicines supplied to the public. There are no powers to refuse the supply of a prescription-only medicine against a properly completed prescription from a doctor, dentist, veterinary surgeon or veterinary practitioner in accordance with section 58 of the Act and article 12 of the Medicines (Products other than Veterinary Drugs) (Prescription Only) Order 1983 provided that it is not subject to an order under section 62 prohibiting the supply of medicine on grounds of safety. A pharmacist may also refuse to supply a medicine if advised by the Medicines Control Agency, acting under section 28 of the Act, that a medicine has been withdrawn with immediate effect on grounds of safety.

Surgery

Ms. Harman : To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will list for each regional health authority the average number of operations carried out in scheduled operating sessions in the year ended March 1991 ;

(2) if he will list for each regional health authority the number of scheduled operating sessions which were cancelled in the year ended March 1991.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answer 21 October 1991] : I will write to the hon. Member.

Hospital Beds, Bradford

Mr. Cryer : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many hospital beds are currently available in Bradford for (a) medical, (b) surgical, (c) maternity, (d) geriatric and (e) other health care ; and what the comparable figures were (i) 12 months, (ii) 24 months,(iii) 36 months and (iv) 48 months previously.

Mr. Dorrell [holding answer 21 October 1991] : I will write to the hon. Member.

Westminster and Chelsea Hospital

Mr. Soley : To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how the cost of the new Westminster and Chelsea hospital will be funded ; what effect it will have on national health service provision in the region ; and if he will make a statement ;

(2) what was the estimated cost for the new Westminster and Chelsea hospital submitted to his Department in 1987 ; what is the current estimate of the actual cost ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Dorrell [holding answer 18 October 1991] : Approval in principle for the Westminster and Chelsea hospital at a cost of £135 million was given in December 1988. The figures in the submission then made to the Department were principally intended to provide a comparison of the various options under consideration, and for this purpose did not need to include local construction costs or the effects of a likely general increase in construction costs. They were not intended to be an estimate of outturn costs.

We now expect the total cost to be £206 million.

When approval in principle is given to a project we now publish an estimate of the actual costs likely to be incurred.

The project will be funded from the sale of the five surplus sites which will be vacated and from the North


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West Thames regional health authority's capital allocation. The new hospital will reprovide more efficiently and effectively the services currently provided on the five sites which are to become redundant.

Medical Manpower

Mr. Gerald Bowden : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to review future United Kingdom medical manpower.

Mr. Waldegrave [pursuant to his reply, 15 July 1991, columns 69- 70] : I am pleased to announce that the following have agreed toserve on the Medical Manpower Standing Advisory Committee which will be chaired by Professor Colin Campbell, vice-chancellor of Nottingham university :

Dr. John Ball, Chairman, Medical Practices Committee ; member of the Council of the Royal College of General Practitioners ; Professor David Bartholomew, Professor of Statistics, LSE ; member, first and second Advisory Committees for Medical Manpower Planning ; Dr. Fiona Caldicott, Dean, Royal College of Psychiatrists ; Chairman, Consultant and Associate Specialist Sub-Committee of the Central Manpower Committee ;

Mr. Douglas Gentleman, Senior Registrar in Neurosurgery, South Glasgow central Hospital ; member, General Medical Council ; Professor Keith Peters, Regius Professor of Physic, Cambridge University ; former Chairman of MRC Physiological Systems Board ; Dame Rosemary Rue, DBE, former President of the BMA, and of the Medical Women's Federation ;

Professor Dorothy Wedderburn, Senior Research Fellow, Management School, Imperial College ; former Principal, Royal Holloway and Bedford New College ;

Dr. Robert Wilson, Principal Research Fellow in Economics, Institute of Employment Research, Warwick university.

TRADE AND INDUSTRY

Romania

Mr. Rowlands : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is his latest estimate of the annual imports from Romania ; and what are the major items imported.

Mr. Sainsbury : Information on United Kingdom trade is published monthly in Business Monitor MM20, "Overseas Trade Statistics of the United Kingdom", which is available in the Library of the House.

Mr. Rowlands : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what information he has as to what proportion of Romania's imports and exports are (a) with the United Kingdom and (b) with the EC.

Mr. Sainsbury : The answer can be obtained from information in the International Monetary Fund's direction of trade statistics which is available in the House of Commons Library.

Crown Post Offices

Mr. Barry Field : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans he has to review the redundancy terms for counter staff of Crown post offices ; and when were these last reviewed.


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Mr. Leigh : The terms of employment and, where appropriate, redundancy, offered to the employees of Post Office Counters Limited are operational matters for the Post Office.

Mr. Barry Field : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the average conversion ratio of Crown post offices to agencies for all the English counties ; and what is the ratio in the Isle of Wight, if proposals take effect.

Mr. Leigh : The Post Office's Crown Office regrading programme is an operational matter for the Post Office board and I understand that the information requested is not available in the precise form requested. However, the Post Office tells me that since the start of the Crown office regrading programme in April 1989 to the end of September 1991, 390 offices have been regraded nationwide, out of a total of 1,493. In April 1989 there were eight Crown offices on the Isle of Wight, of which one had been converted to agency status by the end of September 1991. A second conversion is proposed upon the appointment of a suitable agent. I also understand that conversions to agency status are not carried out on a ratio basis as each case is carefully considered on its merits with the needs of the Post Office's customers uppermost in the Post Office's mind.

Hospitality Costs

Mr. Skinner : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the latest annual figure for the cost of hospitality provided by the Department of Trade and Industry ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Leigh : I refer the hon. Member to the answer which I gave to the hon. Member for Don Valley (Mr. Redmond) on 17 June 1991 at column 39, which gave the costs of hospitality in 1989-90. Expenditure in 1991-92 is not expected to be significantly different.

Invoice Payments

Mr. Simon Coombs : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is his Department's policy on the payment of invoices to small and medium-sized businesses.

Mr. Leigh : My Department's policy is to pay all valid invoices within 30 days of receipt of the goods or services, unless an earlier date is specified. I recognise and support the principles of prompt payment and the Department is participating in the examination of payment performance being undertaken this financial year by the Department of Employment.

GPT, Liverpool

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement on the recent job losses at the GPT factory, Edge lane, Liverpool ; what action has been taken to secure further overseas orders for System X ; and what initiatives are being taken to secure alternative employment for existing employees.

Mr. Redwood : I am sorry to see the announcement of possible job losses at GPT. The Government's task is not to influence a company's commercial decisions but to create the right environment for success. The Government have regularly supported GPT's products and projects


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abroad, including System X, financially through the aid and trade provision (ATP) wherever possible. It will continue to do so. DTI officials are discussing with GPT's management ways of attracting new investment to the Liverpool site.

Inward Investment Jobs, Scotland

Mr. Maxton : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what has been the total numbers of inward investment jobs secured in Scotland in each year since 1971 ; and what percentage of the United Kingdom total it represents in each year.

Mr. Leigh : The information required is available only from 1979 onwards and is based on information provided by the companies notified to my Department's Invest in Britain Bureau at the time of the announcement of the decision to invest and takes no account of subsequent developments. It is estimated that the numbers of inward investment jobs secured in Scotland each year since 1979, and percentages they represent of the United Kingdom total, are as follows :


Jobs secured by inward investment in the United   

Kingdom                                           

Year      |Scotland |United   |Per cent.          

                    |Kingdom                      

          |Total                                  

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

1979      |2,757    |14,310   |19.3               

1980      |4,474    |18,662   |24.0               

1981      |5,756    |16,417   |35.1               

1982      |2,258    |10,529   |21.4               

1983      |8,567    |30,803   |27.8               

1984      |10,224   |46,396   |22.0               

1985      |7,893    |44,305   |17.8               

1986      |2,488    |27,034   |9.2                

1987      |5,765    |41,935   |13.7               

1988      |7,407    |46,590   |15.3               

1989      |4,917    |56,468   |8.7                

1990      |10,595   |62,411   |17.0               

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

Totals<1> |73,101   |415,860  |17.6               

<1> during period.                                

Microelectronics

Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many offers were made for projects under the investment support scheme for microelectronics in (a) Wales, (b) South-East England and (c) the United Kingdom during the year 1990-91 ; what was the total project costs of these products, respectively ; and what was the assistance offered, respectively.

Mr. Leigh : The programme of investment support for

microelectronics closed for new applications in January 1988. No offers of assistance were made during the year 1990-91.

Environmental Compliance

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will obtain for his departmental library a copy of the report, "Clean Up or Close Up : Environmental Compliance in Europe", prepared for industry by Davies, Arnold and Cooper Partners.

Mr. Leigh : Yes.


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Arms Exports

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will obtain for his departmental library a copy of the new report, "Regulating Arms Exports : A Programme for the European Community", published by the Saferworld Foundation.

Mr. Sainsbury : The Saferworld Foundation has sent its new report to my Department and a copy is available in its headquarters library.

Biotechnology Industry

Mr. Cryer : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what initiatives have been taken recently by Her Majesty's Government on the development of the biotechnology industry.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : Biotechnology features strongly in the Government initiatives to foster future industrial competitiveness. It dominates the collaborative research between industry and the science base supported in the LINK initiative. The largest grant (£7.6 million) awarded under the EUREKA initiative to encourage European collaboration between companies was to a biotechnology project. Government are active in establishing a balanced regulatory regime for human and environmental safety, consistent with European directives ; a consultative document will be issued shortly. The second edition of the successful "Plain Man's Guide" to support/regulations has been published. And Government have collaborated with the research councils in developing a strategy to encourage take-up of the technology from the science base, published by the Biotechnology Joint Advisory Board as "A Strategy for Industrial Strength".

World Summit for Children

Miss Lestor : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if his Department has completed the review of its policies for inclusion in the progress report on action in the areas targeted by the World Summit for Children's declaration and plan of action ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is co-ordinating an exercise among all interested Whitehall Departments in order to prepare the United Kingdom's progress report on action in the areas targeted by the world summit for children's declaration and plan of action. The aim is to submit this to the UNICEF Secretariat by the end of this year.

Children's Clothing

Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps the Government are taking to introduce safety standards for children's day wear clothing and in particular for shell suits.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : My Department has asked the British Standards Institution (BSI) to prepare a flammability specification for children's daywear garments that could provide the basis for informative labelling to be included in these garments.


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Mr. Alex Carlile : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if the Government will introduce fire and toxicity safety standards for children's shell suits and other children's day wear ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Leigh : My Department has asked the British Standards Institution (BSI) to prepare a flammability specification for children's daywear garments that could provide the basis for informative labelling to be included in these garments. Discussions with the BSI are continuing.

There is no evidence that garments present a toxicity hazard either in their made up state or in the event that they catch fire.

Leg Irons

Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many applications for licences for the export of leg irons and other similar restraining equipment have been made in each of the past three years ; how many have been granted ; and what were the countries of destination.

Mr. Sainsbury [holding answer 21 October 1991] : No applications have been made in each of the past three years for export licences for leg irons as such. Five applications were received in 1991 for a variety of handcuffs and chains, including "oversized" cuffs. Four were for export to the United States of America and one for Ghana. The four United States of America applications were approved, but have since been revoked in so far as they relate to the "oversized" cuffs and certain chains. The application in respect of Ghana is being refused.

Libya

Mr. Ron Brown : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what was the value of British goods and services exported to Libya during the past 12 months ; and what was the value of Libyan goods and services imported into the United Kingdom during the same period.

Mr. Sainsbury : Statistics on bilateral trade in services are not available. Information on United Kingdom visible trade is published monthly in Business Monitor MM20, "Overseas Trade Statistics in the United Kingdom", which is available in the Library of the House.

Private Security Firms

Mr. George : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list the number of private security firms currently employed by his Department, the number of employees for each firm on the contract, the total value of each contract and the total value of all contracts for each financial year since 1984-85.

Mr. Leigh : This Department, including its executive agencies, currently has contracts with seven private security guarding companies. The numbers employed by each company on DTI sites are as follows : Thorn Security Services Limited (36 guards), Centuryan Security Ltd (18), Chubb Wardens Ltd (23), Euroguard Ltd (10), Securiguard Services Ltd (7), Mint Security Ltd (3), and Sterling Guards Ltd (2). The value of each contract is commercially confidential information. The total values (excluding VAT) for all contracts for the financial years


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1984-85 to 1988-89 were published in the Official Report column 612, on 20 February 1990. The final figure for 1989- 90 (estimated in the earlier answer) was £1,325,220 ; and for 1990-91, £1,678,930.

Public Houses

Mr. Alex Carlile : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make it his policy to establish a charter of rights for public house tenants faced with demands by breweries for rent increases ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Redwood : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State and I have recently met each of the major brewers to urge them to adopt best practices in dealings with their tenants. As a result, those brewers not already doing so have introduced procedures for the independent arbitration or assessment of rent in cases where agreement cannot be reached in individual negotiations with their tenants. All the major brewers have also accepted the need to show flexibility to tenants who would have real difficulties in taking on a long-term lease and, within this category, to show special consideration to those nearing retirement. We shall continue to monitor closely negotiations between brewers and their tenants.

Financial Services

Mr. Tim Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement on progress in negotiations in the Council of Ministers on the proposed investment services directive and on the proposed capital adequacy directive.

Mr. Redwood : The investment services directive (ISD) was last discussed at the Council of Economic and Finance Ministers (ECOFIN) on 8 July when we considered a compromise text tabled by the Dutch Presidency. This addressed a proposal originally suggested by France that certain transactions should be confined to "regulated markets" and that details of transactions should be published within specified time limits. No agreement was reached. ECOFIN next meets on 11 November but the Presidency has not made a decision whether the ISD will appear on the agenda. The United Kingdom Government will continue to argue for a genuinely market-opening directive which will enhance the ability of investment firms to do cross- border business within a framework of mutually agreed prudential standards. The draft capital adequacy directive has not yet been discussed in ECOFIN. Under the Dutch Presidency discussions are continuing in a Council working group, where there remain a number of important issues to be resolved.

Mr. Tim Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he has received from the European Commission the final text of the insurance intermediaries recommendation ; whether he will publish it ; and whether he proposes that it should apply to insurance intermediaries doing business in the United Kingdom.

Mr. Redwood : The European Commission has not yet published this recommendation. Recommendations are published in the Official Journal in the usual way. Implementation of Commission recommendations is not


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mandatory. We will however consider its implications carefully, and consult interested parties, once it is published.

RECHAR

Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is his estimate of the total sum which will be received within the United Kingdom from the RECHAR programme if the arrangements to secure additionality are such as to meet the requirements of the European Community.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : The United Kingdom Government have applied for £109 million of grants from the RECHAR programme.

Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he proposes to meet representatives of the European Commission to discuss the arrangements which will need to be made to allow the United Kingdom to quality for support under the RECHAR programme.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : The Commission's continued refusal to approve the United Kingdom's applications for RECHAR programmes is unreasonable. We have at present no plans for further meetings.

Perifra Programme

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what proportion of the grant aid money devoted to the EC Perifra programme for peripheral regions with fragile economies has been allocated to areas in the United Kingdom where conversion of military bases to alternative industrial uses has been planned ; if he will name the areas benefiting ; and to what amount.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : Grants for Perifra are available for various purposes including the economic conversion of areas affected by the new trade concessions to countries benefiting from the PHARE programme. On the United Kingdom Government's proposal, the European Commission has agreed to the following areas of the United Kingdom :


European Commission grant         

approved                          

                  |Mecu           

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

Barrow-in-Furness |2.086          

Wirral            |0.056          

Preston           |1.079          

Kirklees          |0.436          

Strathclyde       |1.010          

                  |-------        

Total             |4.667          

Research and Development

Mr. Cryer : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement on the level of investment in research and development by British industry.

Mr. Leigh [holding answer 21 October 1991] : British industry's investment in research and development increased by over 50 per cent. in the six years to 1989 in real terms. However, United Kingdom firms are still not doing enough to match and surpass efforts of their best overseas competitors. For this, we need a major change in attitudes to innovation.


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The main effort must come from the worlds of business and education and the Government are acting as a catalyst for the many changes that are needed. An example is the recent sponsoring by DTI of the publication of the "R and D Scoreboard". This is one initiative designed to focus attention on the importance of innovation, and showed that large United Kingdom companies increased their R and D expenditure by 12 per cent. last year. The pharmaceuticals sector was exceptionally strong, with United Kingdom companies leading the world. However, the largest increases occurred in other sectors such as aerospace, containers and electricals.

EFTA

Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what is the expected timetable for the completion of the EC negotiations with EFTA.

Mr. Sainsbury [pursuant to his reply, 8 July 1991, c. 256] : I am pleased to announce that at the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) which I attended in Luxembourg with my hon. Friends, the Minister of State (FCO) and the Parliamentary Secretary (MAFF) on Monday 21 October, political agreement was reached to conclude the European Economic Area (EEA). The EEA will comprise the 19 member states of the European Community and the European Free Trade Association and is intended to enter into force on 1 January 1993. It will extend the general economic benefits of the single European market to some 375 million consumers enjoying a total GDP of nearly US$ 7,000 billion. I am confident that the United Kingdom will derive significant political and economic advantages from

DEFENCE

The Gulf

Mr. Boyes : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he intends to publish a White Paper on the lessons of the Gulf war.

Mr. Archie Hamilton : The work to evaluate the lessons of Operation Granby is continuing, but is unlikely to be completed before the end of the year. We are considering the most appropriate method of publishing our conclusions.

Mr. David Young : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what action was taken in respect of parcels sent to troops in the Gulf and not distributed to them ; and how many such parcels reached the troops for whom they were intended and how many did not.

Mr. Kenneth Carlisle : Personally addressed parcels to the Gulf were, whenever possible, delivered to the individuals concerned. Parcels that arrived in the Gulf after the departure of the addressees were redirected to the individual's peacetime location. In addition, welfare parcels were distributed to all three services in the Gulf ; any that had not been sent on closure of the BFPO 3000 appeal were redirected to service personnel in other locations. It is not possible to provide the statistical data requested, as neither the Post Office nor BFPO London maintained a record of individual parcels processed.


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Information Technology

Mr. Warren : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a copy or details of the briefing given to suppliers of information technology equipment at the Royal Military Academy and at his headquarters concerning the information systems in which his Department is interested on future projects.

Mr. Alan Clark : I will write to my hon. Friend.

Uranium

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the category of armaments used by the British armed forces in which depleted uranium is used.

Mr. Alan Clark : Depleted uranium has a number of applications in defence equipment, and is particularly suitable for use in high-kinetic energy projectiles.

NATO Ministers

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the issues discussed and decision made at (a) the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation Defence Ministers meeting in Taormina, Sicily on 17 and 18 October and (b) the North Atlantic Assembly, in Madrid on 17 October.

Mr. Alan Clark : At the recent meeting of the NATO nuclear planning group in Taormina, the alliance warmly welcomed the recent decisive steps towards democracy and freedom in the Soviet Union. In welcoming President Bush's recent initiative, and President Gorbachev's response, the alliance agreed that there is no requirement for NATO ground-launched short range nuclear systems. In addition to the elimination of these systems, the allies also agreed that the number of air-delivered weapons in NATO's stockpile will be greatly reduced. The total reduction in the current NATO stockpile of sub-strategic nuclear weapons in Europe will be roughly 80 per cent. The alliance however reaffirmed that nuclear weapons will continue for the foreseeable future to fulfil their essential role in the alliance's overall strategy of war prevention. NATO will therefore continue to base effective and up-to-date sub-strategic nuclear forces in Europe, but they will consist solely of dual-capable aircraft, with widespread participation in nuclear roles and peacetime basing by allies. A copy of the final communique issued at the end of the meeting has been placed in the Library of the House. The North Atlantic Assembly meeting continues until today. The subject of its plenary debate was "NATO after the Soviet Union" and reports on a range of subjects were discussed in committee.

Scientific Research

Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what basic scientific research is currently sponsored by his Department.

Mr. Kenneth Carlisle : None. All research sponsored by the MOD has application to the defence programme.

Private Security Firms

Mr. George : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the number of private security firms currently employed by his Department, the number of employees for


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