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Mr. Salmond : To ask the President of the Board of Trade what are the implications for the frequency of plutonium nitrate shipments from Dounreay to Sellafield of plans to increase the rate of prototype fast reactor spent fuel reprocessing over the next three or more years.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the President of the Board of Trade what information he has on United Kingdom industrial research and development spending, by sector, in each of the past five years ; what these figures are as a percentage of (a) sales, (b) profits and (c) dividends ; and what comparison his Department has undertaken with the top 200 companies world wide.
Mr. Sainsbury : Data on United Kingdom business enterprise research and development expenditure by detailed product group for 1988-1992 were published in table 2 of the Central Statistical Office "First Release" (CSO(93)188) a copy of which is available in the Library of the House. Research and development expenditure as a percentage of sales is given in table 3 of the same publication.
Column 574Research and development expenditure as a percentage of sales, profits, and dividends for individual United Kingdom companies is published in "The 1993 UK R&D Scoreboard" a copy of which is available in the Library of the House. This publication also contains similar data for the 200 international companies spending most of research and development. The data in the scoreboard are drawn from annual reports and accounts and are not directly comparable to the data published by the Central Statistical Office.
Mr. Neil Hamilton : This is a matter for the Director General of Fair Trading who announced on 23 November 1993 that he would consider again the case for applying to the restrictive practices court for leave to have its decision in respect of the net book agreement reviewed.
Mr. Dafis : To ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he has consulted the Secretary of State for the Environment on the environmental effect of his proposals to change the legislation regarding charter markets ; and what assessment he has made of the compatibility of those proposals with recent planning guidance on out-of-town shopping developments.
Mr. Neil Hamilton : Consultations have, of course, taken place between myself and my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for the Environment, on all these matters and the Government's proposals in the Deregulation Bill take due account of all the relevant issues.
Specific studies are being completed on steel-concrete sandwich composite for use in tidal barrages, mud transport in shallow water, fish deterrence, estuary sediment prediction, bird populations and mesocosm studies.
Mr. Flynn : To ask the President of the Board of Trade what proportion of the non-fossil fuel obligation fund is allocated to (a) nuclear power, (b) wind power, (c) geothermal power, (d) tidal power and (e) other renewable energy sources.
Mr. Eggar : The level of payments to the individual technologies contracted under the non-fossil fuel obligation, and financed by the fossil fuel levy, depends on the contracts which the regional electricity companies sign in fulfilment of the NFFO orders, on the amounts of electricity generated under these contracts, and the market price of electricity. The Director General of Electricity Supply has estimated that in 1993-94 around 6 per cent. of the amount raised by the fossil fuel levy will go to renewables generators.
Mr. Mullin : To ask the President of the Board of Trade when Mr. Asil Nadir will be eligible to be discharged as a bankrupt ; and if he will give an assurance that he will not automatically be discharged.
Mr. Neil Hamilton : Under section 279 of the Insolvency Act, 1986 most bankrupts are automatically discharged on the third anniversary of their bankruptcy. In Mr. Nadir's case the third anniversary of his bankruptcy is 25 November 1994. However, the court may, on the application of the Official Receiver, suspend the discharge of any bankrupt who fails to comply with any of his obligations under the Act, for example to co- operate with his trustee.
Mr. Salmond : To ask the Chairman of the Committee of Selection, pursuant to his answer of 31 January, Official Report, columns 522-23 ; what qualifications the Committee of Selection ascertained under the terms of paragraph 2 of Standing Order No. 86 in respect of the nomination of the hon. Members for Stroud (Mr. Knapman), for Hexham, (Mr. Atkinson), for Leeds, North-East (Mr. Kirkhope), for Swindon (Mr. Coombs) and for Blackpool, North (Mr. Elletson) to serve on the First Scottish Standing Committee in respect of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Bill.
Mr. Salmond : To ask the Chairman of the Committee of Selection, pursuant to his answer of 31 January, Official Report, columns 522-32, what documents the Committee of Selection had before it in ascertaining the qualifications of hon. Members nominated to serve on the First Scottish Standing Committee in respect of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Bill.
Sir Austin W. Pearce CBE (Chairman)
Professor Sir Eric Ash CBE FEng FRS
Column 576Dr. Mary D. Archer
The Lord Brabourne CBE
The Viscount Downe DL
Miss Mary S. Goldring OBE
Mrs. Anita Higham BA Lesl Med
Mrs. Joanna Kennedy CEng
HRH The Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC
Dr. Bridget Ogilvie FI Biol
Sir Michael Quinlan GCB
Sir Dennis E. Rooke CBE ERS FEng
Leopold de Rothschild Esq CBE
Professor Sir John M. Thomas FRS
Sir Christopher S. Wates FCA
John Lee Esq. (Chairman)
Michael Bailey Esq.
Louis Brennan Esq.
Mrs. Joan Brown
Ms Gayle Broughall
Michael Dyble Esq.
Professor Michael Gordon Gibbons BSc BEng MSc PhD
Mrs. Virginia Halliwell
Ben F. Hurren Esq.
Ms Sue Runyard
Sir Gilbert Thompson
Dr. John Thynne
Col. John Timmins
Anthony Wilson Esq.
F. D. Wilson Esq.
Rev. Professor Owen Chadwick, OM, KBE, DD, PPBA (Chairman) Sir Anthony Acland
Mrs. Jane Benson
Sir Roger de Grey (ex officio)
Henry N. L. Keswick, Esq, MA
Professor Norbert C. Lynton, BA
Sir Oliver N. Millar, KCVO, FBA
Lord Morris, MA, DPhil
The Rt. Hon. Tony Newton, OBE, MP (ex officio)
Professor Sir Eduardo Luigi Paolozzi
Professor John M. Roberts, MA, DPhil
Sir David Scholey, CBE
Mrs. Claire Tomalin
Mrs. Winifred Tumin
John Tusa, Esq
Sir Anthony Kenny FBA (Chairman)
Brian Lang (Chief Executive)
Michael Smethurst (Director, General Humanities and Social Sciences)
David Russon (Director General, Science Technology and Industry) Part-Time Members
The Hon. Edward Adeane, CVO
John Forty, CBE, PhD, DSc
Column 577Ronald Utiger, CBE
Michael Griffith, CBE, DL
Dame Ann Warburton, DCVO
Henry Heaey, FLA
Sir Peter Swinnerton-Dyer KBE, FRS (Chairman)
Sir Charles Chadwyck-Healey