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Column 477

assistance to the applicants, worth 2,966 mecu in 1995-98. The four applicants will, collectively, remain net contributors to the Community budget over this period.

The European Union has assured Austria that the essential objectives of the 1992 EC/Austria bilateral transit agreement will be respected. The eco- points system for controlling transit traffic through Austria will continue for a transitional period after accession, if necessary until 2004. There will also be a progressive liberalisation of the arrangements for terminating traffic from accession, with complete liberalisation on 1 January 1997. All four applicants have been granted a five-year transitional period during which they can maintain national legislation on the purchase of second homes.

Discussion of the institutional consequences of enlargement, and of Norwegian fisheries, are expected to resume on 15 March.

World Summit on Social Development

Mr. Watson : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what decision Her Majesty's Government have made on the establishment of a national committee on the World summit on social development ; which Government Departments have been involved in discussions to formulate the United Kingdom Government's approach to the summit ; and which Government Department will be leading co-ordination of United Kingdom activity in relation to the summit.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : There has been no decision to establish a national committee for the World summit for social development. Consultations at official level have taken place with the participation of several Whitehall Departments. These include the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Departments of Social Security, of Trade and Industry, of Employment, and of Health, Her Majesty's Treasury and the Overseas Development Administration. Other interested Departments have been made aware of preparations for the summit. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is co-ordinating the United Kingdom's approach to the summit.

Haiti

Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representation Her Majesty's Government have in Haiti ; what reports have been received concerning abuses of human rights in Haiti ; and what representations have been made to the Haitian authorities.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : Britain is represented by Her Majesty's ambassador resident at Kingston, Jamaica, and a vice-consul in Port au Prince, Haiti, Reports of human rights abuses are compiled by a special rapporteur of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights ; by United Nations civilian observer in Port au Prince who also register complaints locally ; and by non-governmental organisations such as Amnesty International. We have supported United Nations resolutions expressing concern about human rights violations in Haiti. The European Union has also made several statements on this question.


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Algeria

Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with representatives of the Government of Algeria concerning the reasons citizens of Algeria seek asylum elsewhere.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : None.

Russia

Mr. Radice : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the progress of reform and democracy in Russia.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : Russia has come a remarkably long way since the collapse of the Soviet Union two years ago. She now has a new constitution guaranteeing human rights and a democratically elected parliament. The way ahead will not be easy, not least in terms of economic reform ; but President Yeltsin and Prime Minister Chernomyrdin have both stressed their commitment to the reform process.

Yugoslavia

Mr. Marlow : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the annualised level of reimbursement from (a) international and (b) other non-United Kingdom sources paid to the United Kingdom to defray the cost of British military operations associated with Yugoslavia.

Mr. Douglas Hogg : The United Kingdom can reclaim from the United Nations about 50 per cent. of the total Ministry of Defence extra costs for United Kingdom military participation in UNPROFOR, but the timing of actual reimbursement depends on the United Nations cash flow situation.

UNPROFOR Croatia--UNPROFOR I--started operations in February 1992. UNPROFOR Bosnia Hercegovina command--UNPROFOR II--first deployed in September 1992, but was only brought on to United Nations assessed contribution funding from 1 April 1993. National costs were therefore non-reimbursable in financial year 1992-93. Reimbursement in financial year 1992-93, for the British contribution to UNPROFOR I totalled £191,663. Refunds for financial year 1993-94, UNPROFOR I and II, so far total £18.1 million.

SOCIAL SECURITY

Motability Scheme

Mr. Riddick : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will outline the number of people currently provided with vehicles under the motability scheme, the number of new people coming on to the scheme each year, the current annual cost of the scheme and the estimated annual profit to the motor industry from the scheme.

Mr. Scott : As at 31 December 1993, 178,317 vehicles were being provided under the motability scheme. The number of vehicles provided under the scheme each year since 1983, the first year for which records are available, are in the table. Motability's annual administration cost during the last full accounting year, 1992-93, was £1.8 million. Details of estimated annual profit to the motor industry as a result of the scheme are not available.


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Vehicles supplied since 1983                                                                                

Year        |HP (new)   |Contract   |Total (new)|HP (used)  |Total cars |Total      |Total                  

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

1983        |4,656      |3,915      |8,571      |1,141      |9,712      |858        |10,570                 

1984        |5,058      |4,217      |9,275      |1,354      |10,629     |821        |11,450                 

1985        |5,509      |5,436      |10,945     |1,461      |12,406     |820        |13,226                 

1986        |5,953      |11,693     |17,646     |1,183      |18,829     |712        |19,541                 

1987        |5,885      |17,530     |23,415     |853        |24,268     |655        |24,923                 

1988        |7,064      |21,357     |28,421     |646        |29,067     |807        |29,874                 

1989        |4,692      |31,808     |36,500     |587        |37,087     |926        |38,013                 

1990        |2,873      |40,299     |43,172     |685        |43,857     |900        |44,757                 

1991        |2,324      |44,136     |46,460     |1,145      |47,605     |1,005      |48,610                 

1992        |2,896      |57,898     |60,794     |1,587      |62,381     |1,364      |63,745                 

1993        |4,542      |69,748     |74,290     |2,949      |77,239     |1,924      |79,163                 


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Grand total vehicles supplied (1978 to 31 December1993)                                                                                 

HP(new)          |Contract Hire   |Total (new)     |HP used         |Totalcars       |Total wheelchair|Total vehicles                   

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

57,354           |320,375         |377,729         |14,461          |392,190         |11,641          |403,831                          

Departmental Property

Mr. Enright : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what property, leased or owned for the purposes of his Department, is not currently occupied.

Mr. Hague : There are no properties currently unoccupied on the departmental estate. The provision and disposal of property leased for Government Departments is the responsibility of Property Holdings, Department of the Environment, which is replying on behalf of the common user estate.

Housing Benefit

Mr. David Shaw : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will list for each local authority (a) the total amount paid by his Department in housing benefit, (b) the number of council properties, (c) the political control of the authority, (d) the average claim per council property and (e) the average claim per claimant in respect of the most recent year for which figures are available.

Mr. Burt : Information is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Child Support

Mr. Simon Coombs : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many child support cases have been referred to him by (a) hon. Members and (b) the general public.

Mr. Hague : Information is not available in the form requested and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Between 1 September 1993 and 10 March 1994 Ministers received 5,089 letters from hon. Members concerning child support issues. These included questions about both individual cases and general policy. The number of letters received from the general public about child support cases is not available.

Savings Disregard

Mr. Eastham : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security by how much the savings disregard of £3,000 would have to be increased to have the same value as when it was introduced in 1988.


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Mr. Burt : An increase of £960 would be required to restore the real value of the £3,000 disregard, at 1993-94 prices, to its level in 1988.

Note : Calculation based on Rossi index, rounded to nearest £10.

Performance-related Pay

Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many employees of (a) his Department and (b) agencies established by him are on (i) individual contracts and (ii) performance-related pay ; and what were the average salaries and bonuses paid to these people in (1) 1992-93 and (2) 1993-94.

Mr. Hague : There are currently five such employees in the Department's agencies, and one in the war pensions unit which will achieve agency status from April 1994. All have contracts which incorporate performance bonus arrangements. The average salary, including bonuses, paid to these employees in 1992-93 was £55,834. Figures for 1993-94 are not yet available.

Savings Rule

Mr. Eastham : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what is the basis for calculating the savings rule for people with between £3,000 and £8,000 ; and how this has changed since the rule was introduced.

Mr. Burt : A weekly deduction of £1 is made for each £250, or part of £250, of capital held between £3,000 and the upper capital limit, which was increased from £6,000 to £8,000 in 1990. This rule gives most help to those with the least savings. The formula is not linked to any particular rate of return that could be secured from investment and has not changed since the rule was introduced.

NATIONAL HERITAGE

Arts Council

Ms Mowlam : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage how many touring weeks have been lost as a result of the reductions made to the Arts Council's national touring allocation for drama.

Mr. Brooke : These are matters for the Arts Council.


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Film Exports

Ms Mowlam : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what contribution the export of United Kingdom-produced films has made to the United Kingdom's annual balance of trade in each of the past 10 years.

Mr. Brooke : Over the past 10 years for which figures are available, United Kingdom-produced films have contributed the following amounts to the balance of trade :


Year           |£ million at                 

               |current prices               

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

1983           |99                           

1984           |104                          

1985           |131                          

1986           |115                          

1987           |147                          

1988           |145                          

1989           |158                          

1990           |179                          

1991           |182                          

1992           |189                          

These figures do not take account of earnings from overseas companies which pay for production services in the United Kingdom.

Royal Palaces

Mr. Alan Williams : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what is the range of rents paid for all accommodation at each of the occupied royal palaces.

Mr. Sproat [holding answer 3 March 1994] : Rent paid by official employees of the Queen is presently set at 6 per cent. of after- tax salary wherever they are housed. This is equivalent to 7.5 per cent. of pre-tax salary--not 8.5 per cent. as stated on 9 February, Official Report, column 352. Pensioners allocated accommodation since 1 April 1991 and Crown Estate employees pay 8.5 per cent. of their gross pension or pensionable pay wherever housed.

Rents paid by the Queen's private employees and by Royal Collection Enterprises Ltd. staff are equivalent to local authority rents in the area.

Since my reply to the right hon. Member on 12 January, Official Report, column 201, about costs of accommodation borne by the Department it has been brought to my attention that in accordance with the memorandum of understanding the Department has been bearing the cost of furnishing apartments in the occupied royal palaces occupied by heads of department in the royal household.

OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT ADMINISTRATION

Kenya (Cereals)

Mr. Cox : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Government of Kenya as to the possible purchase of surplus EC cereals ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : None. The primary relief need in Kenya is for white maize which is not produced within the EC. We are supplying 15, 000 tonnes of white maize bought from African regional sources and financed from our bilateral food aid funds.


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Philippines

Mr. Tom Clarke : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what has been the level of aid to the Philippines (a) from the European Community and (b) from the British overseas aid programme, for each year since 1986 ; and what is (b) as a proportion of (a).

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : (a) European Community aid expenditure on the Philippines for each year since 1986 has been :


(a)                                             

            |Million ecu|Sterling               

            |equivalent                         

            |million<1>                         

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

1986        |21.90      |16.31                  

1987        |4.50       |3.35                   

1988        |14.00      |10.43                  

1989        |22.50      |16.76                  

1990        |31.66      |23.90                  

1991        |5.46       |4.07                   

1992        |53.15      |39.59                  

1993        |49.06      |36.54                  

<1> ecu-sterling exchange rate £1=1.3426.       

(b) British bilateral aid expenditure on the Philippines since 1986 has been :


(b)                   

                      

million               

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

1986    |0.205        

1987    |0.262        

1987-88 |0.666        

1988-89 |1.003        

1989-90 |13.290       

1990-91 |4.042        

1991-92 |1.934        

1992-93 |9.038        


(C)  As a proportion of (a), (b) 

is:                              

             |Per cent.          

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

1986         |1.3                

1987         |7.8                

1987-88:1988 |6.4                

1988-89:1989 |5.9                

1989-90:1990 |55.6               

1990-91:1991 |99.3               

1991-92:1992 |4.9                

1992-93:1993 |24.7               

In respect of United Kingdom financial year 1989-90 the percentage figure is high because it coincided with payments, made under our aid and trade programme ; in 1990-91, EC aid was, as will be seen from table (a) , unusually low. Direct comparisons of this sort can be misleading, as is shown by the figures for these two financial years.

Occupied Territories

Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what medical assistance he had offered the Palestinians in the occupied territories following the Hebron massacre.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : We have provided £34,000 via Medical Aid for Palestinians, a non-governmental


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organisation. This contributed to the expenses of a Jordanian specialist surgical team and associated medical supplies. We are discussing with MAP a donation of up to £40,000 in order to purchase additional life-saving equipment for two of the hospitals concerned in treating the victims.

Aid

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list for each country the financial amount of overseas aid received in 1993, five years ago and 10 years ago.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : This information is given in "British Aid Statistics", published annually, copies of which are in the Library of the House. Expenditure is now recorded on a financial year, rather than calendar year, basis.

Health Projects

Mr. Kirkwood : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement outlining the policy of the degree of priority to be afforded to future primary health projects in least developed countries within Her Majesty's Government's overseas aid programme.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd : Our overall aid policy includes better health as an essential element in promoting human development which is one of our seven priority objectives. Programmes to implement this objective are settled at country level in the framework of establishing our overall pattern of assistance to the particular country. The countries we have selected for particular attention with regard to our health care and Children by Choice objectives include : Bangladesh, Nepal, Cambodia, Uganda, Tanzania, the Gambia, Zambia and Malawi which are least developed countries.

Our approach at country level focuses on assisting health sector reform, Children by Choice policies and better reproductive health and combating particularly significant problems with malaria, tuberculosis and HIV.

China

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what evidence he has of the effects of the Chinese population control programme in creating an imbalance between the sexes in China ;

(2) what information he has regarding the incidence of female infanticide, abortion of female unborn children and female slavery as a result of the Chinese population control programme.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answer 11 March 1994] : Her Majesty's Government are aware of reports from China of female infanticide and abortion of female foetuses, and of an imbalance between the sexes. We have received no authoritative information which would lead to relating these reports to Chinese Government policies.

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what meetings officials from his Department have had with the Chinese Family Planning Association to discuss the implementation of the Chinese population control programme since November 1992 ;


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(2) what meetings officials from his Department have had with the Committee of Population and the Economy to discuss the implementation of the Chinese population control programme since November 1992 ; (3) what meetings officials from his Department have had with the Chinese state Family Planning Commission to discuss the implementation of the Chinese population control programme since November 1992.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answers 11 March 1994] : I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave him on 5 November 1993, Official Report, columns 599-600. Staff of the British embassy in Beijing have also had contacts with the two other organisations to which the hon. Member refers.

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what information he has received since November 1992 from the United Nations Fund for Population Activities regarding human rights violations as a result of the implementation of the Chinese population control programme ;

(2) what information he has received from the International Planned Parenthood Federation regarding human rights violations as a result of the implementation of the Chinese population control programme.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answers 11 March 1994] : The United Nations Population Fund and International Planned Parenthood Federation have not provided authoritative information on such human rights violations. These organisations are encouraging the Chinese authorities and the Chinese Family Planning Association to establish mechanisms for reporting and dealing with any such violations.

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations his Department has received from other Government Departments regarding the need to continue overseas aid provision to China.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answer 11 March 1994] : By long- standing convention discussions of this sort between Departments are confidential.

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what meetings officials from his Department have had with the United Nations Fund for Population Activities to discuss the implementation of the Chinese population control programme since November 1992 ;

(2) what meetings officials from his Department have had with the International Planned Parenthood Federation to discuss the Chinese population control programme since November 1992.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answers 11 March 1994] : I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by my noble Friend Baroness Chalker of Wallasey to Lord Braine of Wheatley in another place on 20 January 1994, House of Lords Official Report , column 53 .

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what meetings officials from his Department have had with the campaign Free Tibet to discuss the implementation of the Chinese population control programme.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answer 11 March 1994] : Officials of the Overseas Development Administration and


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diplomatic wing of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office have had contacts with the campaign Free Tibet, including a meeting on 1 December 1993 at which human rights issues were discussed.

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has as to differences between the implementation of the Chinese population control programme in China and Tibet.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answer 11 March 1994] : There are variations in the family planning programmes between individual provinces throughout China, including Tibet. An analysis of the regulations will be undertaken by the Chinese Family Planning Association during 1994.

Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what evidence he has on trends in the level of breaches of human rights arising from the Chinese population control programme since November 1992.

Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answer 11 March 1994] : Authoritative information is not available.

ATTORNEY-GENERAL

Ministerial Offices

Mr. Boyes : To ask the Attorney-General how many bottles of (a) whisky and gin and (b) sherry and port were consumed by each of his private offices in 1993-94.

The Attorney-General : (a) none and (b) none.

Mr. Boyes : To ask the Attorney-General what was the cost of new furniture for the private offices in his Department during the year 1993- 94.

The Attorney-General : The cost was £2,900.

Ministerial Receptions

Mr. Boyes : To ask the Attorney-General what was the cost of receptions held by Ministers in his Department in 1993-94.

The Attorney-General : The cost was £1,300.

Racial Hatred

Ms Ruddock : To ask the Attorney-General how many prosecutions for incitement to racial hatred under the Public Order Act 1986 he has authorised in each year since 1987 ; and on how many occasions the prosecution has been successful.

The Solicitor-General : In each of the years since 1987 consent has been given to prosecute the following numbers of persons for offences contrary to part III of the Public Order Act 1986 :




       |Number       

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

1987   |0            

1988   |2            

1989   |1            

1990   |2            

1991   |3            

1992   |3            

1993   |2            

1994   |1            

Seven cases resulted in conviction and one in acquittal. In addition, one defendant was bound over, one died before trial and one case was discontinued by the Crown Prosecution Service. Prosecutions have been started, but have not been concluded, in three cases. In one further case, although consent was originally granted, it was later withdrawn on public interest grounds.

Student Unions

Mr. Bryan Davies : To ask the Attorney-General if he will make a statement on the current standing of the 1983 guidance issued in respect of expenditure by student unions ; how many complaints about breach of the guidance have been received ; how many have been investigated ; how many were substantiated ; and with what results.

The Attorney-General : The guidance on expenditure by student unions, first issued in 1983, is still valid and applicable save that it refers to section 24 of the Charities Act 1960 which has been repealed and re-enacted in the same terms by section 29 of the Charities Act 1993.

The guidance is intended to assist union officers who may find themselves called to account for their actions as trustees of charitable moneys in the discharge of their responsibilities for union funds.

Complaints of breach of charity law made to me are referred to the Treasury Solicitor for investigation. No single continuous record is maintained, but a search of files shows that since the guidance was issued, 53 complaints have been referred to the Treasury Solicitor, all of which have been investigated.

In one case there is now no record of the result and two other cases are current.

Of the remaining cases, seven were found to be substantiated. The action taken in these cases is as follows :

(a) in one case an injunction was obtained after one ultra vires payment to halt a proposed further payment,

(b) in four cases repayments (in whole or in part) of ultra vires payments were secured,

(c) in one case the union agreed not to make a proposed ultra vires payment and made arrangements to recover previous ultra vires payments, and

(d) in one case the union agreed to discontinue ultra vires payments.

DUCHY OF LANCASTER

Information Super Highways

Mr. Gordon Prentice : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what measures he has taken to promote the development of information super highways in the United Kingdom.


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