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Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : Production and initial distribution costs amounted to £35,281. This covered the design, the printing of 100,000 copies and the mailing of 38,230 copies. An existing freephone facility is being used to respond to requests for further copies. Each request incurs a postage and handling charge which varies according to the number of booklets involved. Due to demand, a reprint of 150,000 copies has now been ordered at a cost of £11,007. European Comunity funds were not involved.
Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many times General Pinochet has visited the British embassy in Santiago since 1990 ; and how many other meetings he has held either with embassy staff and officials or at which the embassy was represented over the same period.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : General Pinochet attended a recent reception in honour of Lady Thatcher at our ambassador's residence, but has never visited the embassy.
Our ambassador called on General Pinochet, who is commander in chief of the army, during his initial courtesy calls. His predecessor paid one similar call.
Column 24Our defence attache has met General Pinochet twice in the course of routine duties.
Mr. Cash : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether a date has been fixed for the inaugural conference of the stability pact to be convened in Paris by the European Union according to the decisions taken at the European Council in Brussels on 10-11 December 1993 ; which Ministers will represent the United Kingdom ; and what the agenda will be at that conference.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : The inaugural conference of the stability pact will be held in Paris from 26 to 27 May 1994 at Foreign Minister level. All countries which participate in CSCE meetings will be invited. United Kingdom representation has still to be decided. The agenda for the conference has not yet been finalised ; preparations are continuing in consultation with a wide range of countries.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will ask Parliament to ammend article 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972 to make inapplicable, in the United Kingdom, without consent of Parliament, any decision of the EEC to which the United Kingdom is opposed.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : No. To amend article 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972 in this manner would put the United Kingdom in breach of its international treaty obligations.
Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the current military situation in Sierra Leone and its effect on displaced people and refugees and the work of aid agencies, with particular reference to British agencies in the country.
Mr. Lennox-Boyd : The recent intensification of attacks by rebels in the east and south-east of the country has forced the movement of rural inhabitants into larger towns and camps. On 12 March a convoy of clearly- marked Catholic mission and hospital vehicles was ambushed, and an Irish priest, a Dutch doctor and his family were killed. As a result, most British aid agencies have withdrawn expatriate workers from the area. At least one agency has withdrawn both expatriate and local staff.
Mr. Hunter : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a direct contribution to the funds of political parties in Mozambique for political training and the development of political structures.
Mr. Lennox-Boyd [holding answer 21 March 1994] : The Rome peace accords, endorsed by the international community, envisaged assistance to allow RENAMO to participate in the elections as an essential step towards democracy.
We propose to help with the democratic process in Mozambique by contributing £500,000 to the United
Column 25Nations trust fund for the implementation of the peace process in Mozambique. Our contribution is subject to confirmation of the agreement of the Government of Mozambique. Several other major donors are already contributing.
Ms Corston : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will list the latest studies funded by the Economic and Social Research Council of causes of premature mortality related to (a) environmental pollution, (b) deprived material conditions of work and (c) other forms of material deprivation.
Mr. Waldegrave : The latest studies funded by the Economic and Social Research Council of causes of premature mortality related to (a) environmental pollution, (b) deprived material conditions of work and (c) other forms of material deprivation are as follows : a. Environmental Pollution
The Effects of Warmer Winters on Morbidity and Mortality in Great Britain ;
Climate Change Melanoma Risk and Exposure to Ultraviolet Radiation.
Climate Change and Human Health : A Review ;
Climate Change and the Incidence and Costs of Food Poisoning in England and Wales.
ESRC-funded Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment (co-located at University College London and the University of East Anglia).
b. Deprived Material Conditions of Work
There are no projects specifically dealing with the relation between mortality and deprived conditions of work although employment is an aspect of much of the more general research on deprivation and mortality which is listed under (c).
c. Other Forms of Material Deprivation
The Health of an Invisible Minority : The Irish in Britain Liverpool University
Income Distribution and National Mortality Rates
Sussex University, Centre for Medical Research
"Deprivation" Indicators : Stability and Reliability over Locality and Lifecycle
Influence of Geographical Setting on Social Differences in Health University of London
Limiting Long Term Illness : Geographical Inequalities and Their Associations
University of East Anglia, School of Environmental Sciences Health Inequalities Between Women and Their Families
Health and Social Circumstances from Birth to Mid-Life
London : Institute of Child Health
The Fourth National Survey of Ethnic Minorities
Policy Studies Institute
Column 26A Comparison of Women's Health Concerns in Four Societies : A Feasibility Study.
In addition to the above studies funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, further work is also being financed by the Medical Research Council on issues referred to in this parliamentary question. The Department of Health and the universities may also be funding some research which may be relevant.
Ms Corston : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will list the latest studies funded by the Medical Research Council of causes of premature mortality related to (a) environmental pollution, (b) deprived material conditions of work and (c) other forms of material deprivation.
Mr. Waldegrave : The latest studies funded by the Medical Research Council of causes of premature mortality related to (a) environmental pollution, (b) deprived material conditions of work and (c) other forms of material deprivation are as follows : (a) Environmental Pollution
The MRC Environmental Epidemiology Unit in Southampton : (
(i) Carcinogenicity of pesticides and styrene.
(ii) exposure to aluminium in drinking water and possible association with an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease.
The MRC Cell Mutation Unit (University of Sussex, Brighton, and the MRC Toxicology Unit in Leicester jointly) :
Mutant frequency in individuals exposed to petrochemicals as a result of the Braer oil spillage.
(b) Deprived Material Conditions of Work
The MRC Environmental Epidemiology Unit in Southampton : (
(i) the possible association between the risk of leukaemia and lymphoma and father's occupational exposure to radiation. (
(ii) The possible link between papillomavirus and lung cancer in butchers.
(iii) the relation of mortality to specific aspects of work in submariners.
(iv) whether exposure to mineral acid mists poses an important risk to health.
(v) incidence of cancer in molecular biology research workers. (
(vi) mortality and cancer incidence of workers from a paper mill. (
(vii) respiratory disease in radiographers.
(viii) national analysis of occupational mortality.
The MRC Cell Mutation Unit (University of Sussex, Brighton) : Mutant frequencies in workers exposed to low levels of radiation in the nuclear industry.
The MRC Radiobiology Unit :
The effects of alpha radiation on haemopoietic stem cells in the context of radiation leukaemogenesis.
The Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College and Middlesex School of Medicine : Possible explanations for the observation that civil servants in the lowest grades have higher levels of heart disease, chronic bronchitis, diabetes and other illnesses.
c) Other Forms of Material Deprivation
The MRC Cell Mutation Unit (University of Sussex, Brighton) : Mutant frequency in the parents of children who have developed leukaemia.
MRC Medical Sociology Unit in Glasgow :
The differences in morbidity and mortality at the national level between areas of residence.
Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Gibson Laboratories, Oxford :
An investigation of cancer mortality in the vicinity of nuclear establishments in England and Wales.
The H. H. Wills Physics Laboratory, University of Bristol--
Column 27MRC supported research :
Possible links between exposure to domestic radon and various non-lung cancers.
In addition to the above studies funded by the Medical Research Council, further work is also being financed by the Economic and Social Research Council on issues referred to in this parliamentary question. The Department of Health and universities may also be funding some research which may be relevant.
Mr. Gordon Prentice : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will list the dates and venues of meetings of the charter forums and the number of people who attended.
Mr. Waldegrave : The information requested is set out in the table :
Date |Venue |<1>Attendance ----------------------------------------------------------- 21 June 1993 |Manchester |226 5 July 1993 |Birmingham |190 12 October 1993 |Newcastle |174 15 October 1993 |Bristol |163 2 November 1993 |Nottingham |144 9 November 1993 |Cardiff |163 24 November 1993 |Southampton |155 20 December 1993 |Edinburgh |286 10 March 1994 |Leeds |148 <1>Registered audience. Totals exclude forum organisers and Cabinet Office staff who attended.
Mr. Llew Smith : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what consideration he gave to the implication for parliamentary questions in preparing his revised draft code of practice on Government information section XV.
Mr. Waldegrave : The code of practice on access to Government information has no implications for the practice of the House concerning parliamentary questions. The draft code published in Cm 2290 included in exemption (xv) a reference to information which could not be sought in a parliamentary question. This has been dropped in the final version of the code, which I announced on 29 March Official Report , columns 608-9 . Many members of the public using the code will not be familiar with parliamentary practice on admissibility of questions as described in "Erskine May". Furthermore, the code covers requests for information which may be addressed directly to non-ministerial departments and public bodies, in respect of which the rules on admissibility would be irrelevant.
Mr. Gordon Prentice : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will publish the results of the Efficiency Unit's multi- departmental scrutiny of the management of the Government's civil estate.
Mr. Waldegrave : I am currently considering the report of the scrutiny with my colleagues and will announce the Government's conclusions as soon as possible.
Mr. Gordon Prentice : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what plans the efficiency unit has to scrutinise the management of the NHS estate.
Mr. Waldegrave : The efficiency unit has been consulted about the current three-year review of the NHS Estates Agency, but plans no efficiency scrutiny in this area.
Mr. Boyes : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what was the total cost of official entertaining in his Department in each year since April 1992 ; if he will list the receptions held in each year at his Department's expense ; and what was the cost of each reception.
Mr. Waldegrave : Expenditure on official entertaining in 1992-93 and between April 1993 and February 1994 was as follows :
|1992-93 |April 1993 to |February 1994 |£ |£ ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Cabinet Office/Office of Public Service and Science (excluding the Prime Minister's Office) |<1>99,000 |47,300 COI |4,640 |5,680 HMSO<2> |16,000 |21,950 <1>Includes £59,000 relating to the launch of Chessington Computer Centre as an executive agency. <2>Figures for HMSO cover the calendar years 1992 and 1993.
The entertainment budget is used for a variety of functions including receptions. Separate figures for individual functions are not kept centrally.
Mr. Matthew Taylor : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what computer systems his Department have brought in, for what function, and at what cost for each of the last five years ; and in each case if the computer system is still in use.
Mr. David Davis : My department has no computer systems which are common to the whole of OPSS and its associated agencies. Networked office automation systems are, however, widely implemented across the Department. Costs for these systems, for the last five years, are as follows :
|£ million ------------------------------ 1989-90 |0.9 1990-91 |1.9 1991-92 |2.3 1992-93 |3.0 1993-94 |1.2
The figures above incorporate the total IT systems expenditure by OPSS Agencies. The cost of systems to support more specific business functions in the agencies, such as recruitment, training, financial management and payroll are therefore included.
Approximate figures for the Central Office of Information are :
|£ ------------------------ 1989-90 |464,000 1990-91 |411,000 1991-92 |95,000 1992-93 |110,000 1993-94 |79,000
All of the above systems are still in use, although many have been upgraded and enhanced during the period in question.
Costs for information technology systems for HMSO are not readily available because of the decentralised nature of their operations.
Mr. Matthew Taylor : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what information technology consultants his Department has employed in each of the last five years ; for what purpose ; and at what total cost.
Mr. David Davis : My department has placed a large number of information technology consultancy contracts during the last five years. It is impossible to give a brief summary ; I will however write to the hon. Member.
I regret that the costs of IT consultancy are not separately identifiable within my Department's overall expenditure on consultancy and related services.
Mr. Allen : To ask the Chairman of the Administration Committee (1) what is the limit on the number of passes hon. Members can have for their staff ; when this was agreed ; and if the Administration Committee will now review the number ;
(2) what appeal an hon. Member has if an additional staff pass is refused by the Serjeant at Arms.
Mr. Michael J. Martin : On 30 January 1989 the House agreed to recommendations contained in the Second Report from the House of Commons Services Committee of Session 1987-88 that, in general, no Member should be entitled to apply for a photo-identity pass for more than three individual members of their personal staff ; and that those limits should not be transferable. Any appeal against those rules should be submitted to the Administration Committee. The Committee has no immediate plans to review these arrangements.
Mr. Parry : To ask the Chairman of the Information Committee (1) if he will call for a report into why it was impossible to ring central Liverpool from the House on Tuesday 29 March ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) for how long the telephone connection between the House and central Liverpool was unavailable on Tuesday 29 March ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Michael J. Martin : I have been asked to reply.
This is a matter for the Communications Manager.