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Mr. Eggar: The external financing limit of the British Coal Corporation has been increased from £700 million to £736 million. This is attributable to a variety of factors including the effect on cash flow of privatising British Coal's mining business.
Mr. Byers: To ask the President of the Board of Trade what financial assistance is being provided towards the contracts recently entered into between Trafalgar house, PowerGen and British Gas with companies in Indonesia, the subject matter of the contracts, their total value and the identity of the Indonesian company in those contracts which involve a joint enterprise.
Mr. Needham: The DTI has awarded to Trafalgar house and a subsidiary company two grants under the overseas projects fund. These were to assist with a feasibility study and precontractual activities in Indonesia. Details of these grants are commercially confidential. Where appropriate, in accordance with the scheme rules, grants are repaid.
In addition, in 1988, Her Majesty's Government offered aid funds under the aid and trade provision of £16.856 million in support of a bid by Trafalgar house to build a toll road between Cikampek and Padalarang at an estimated cost of £56 million. The final value of the contract is subject to ongoing negotiations. The Indonesian partner company is PT Jasa Marga (Persero).
No financial assistance has been made available to PowerGen or British Gas.
|Company ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Brian McCann |AMEC Plc Director Corporate Development Adam Strachan-Stevens |Avro International Regional Manager Ian Thomas |Balfour Beatty Director, International Business Development David Moleshead |Banque Paribas, Export Finance Director |London Richard Beresford |British Gas Plc Manager, Indonesia Global Gas Division David Payne |British Telecom Country Representative Peter Burleigh |Cable and Wireless Managing Director, Asia Ray Grimwood |Focas Limited Managing Director Dr. Clive Palmer |GEC Alstom Director, Exports Division Andrew Walker |High Point Rendell Director, PT Indurenco International |Group Barrie Gannon |International Power Chief Executive |Systems Mr. B Dewe Matthews |J. Henry Schroder Senior Director | Wagg Raymond McCabe |John Brown Managing Director | Engineering Clive Kerner |Kleinwort Benson Manager Project and Export Finance Dr. Nicholas Crosby |Kvaerner Boving Office Manager (Indonesia) | Ltd. Roger Walker |Long Products Ltd. Chairman and Managing Director Pat Dougan |Mackie International Chief Executive Alan McCready |Mivan Group Director Asia Pacific Carl Nuttall |MMD Group Managing Director (Australia) Clare Phelan |National Grid Co Plc General Manager, Business Development David Byers |National Grid Co Plc International Business Development Manager Peter Windsor |National Power Plc Director International Business David Smith |Philips Telecom Executive Project Manager Peter Hughes |PowerGen Plc Managing Director, PowerGen International James Carmichael |PowerGen Plc Director, Business Development SE Asia Dr. B Sweeney |Rolls Royce Marketing Director |Industrial Power Group Rod Williams |Rolls Royce Regional Executive (Indonesia) |Industrial Power Group Roger Harman |Sir Alexander Gibb Business Unit Leader Roger Liew |Swindon Chamber Manager, International Desk | of Commerce Douglas Watkinson |Tarmac Construction Managing Director |International John Swann |Taylor Woodrow Manager, Business Development (Asia) | International John Cotton |Westinghouse Managing Director | Brakes Ltd. Mr C W Lynch |Westinghouse Projects Director | Systems James Young |West Merchant Bank Director, Project and Export Finance Dr D Keith |Wimpey Far East Director (Singapore) |Construction
Mr. Charles Wardle: My Department is currently assessing the cost and quality of the bids received, and carrying out the statutory and other consultations. I hope to be able to announce the order in early December.
Mr. Heseltine: Subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary supplementary estimates, the cash limit for class IV, vote 1--support for business, consumer and investor protection, energy programmes and administration--will be increased by £12,525,000 from £1,173,077,000 to £1,185,602,000.
The gross running costs limit for the Department of Trade and Industry is being increased by £14,217,000 from £328,000,000 to £342, 217,000. This change comprises the take-up of £14,549,000 in running costs end-year flexibility as approved by my right hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury on 14 July, Official Report , columns 729-34 , and the transfer from Her Majesty's Treasury, class XVII, vote 1, of £3,000, offset by machinery of government transfers to the Department of Transport, class VI, vote 2, of £110,000, Office of the Rail Regulator, class VI, vote 8, of £197,000 and Oftel, class IV, vote 10, of £28,000.
There are some other changes in the allocation of provision. These include a reduction in provision of £1,500,000 on support for business reflecting a forecast underspend and a new provision of £1, 795,000 on privatisation and contractorisation of DTI laboratories, the balance being made up by a transfer of £295,000 from other services. They also include the transfer of £740,000 to the Scottish Office and £1,194,000 to the Welsh Office in respect of industrial programmes.
In addition, subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary supplementary estimate, the cash limit for class IV, vote 4, privatisation of the coal industry, will be increased by £3,402,000 from £12,495,000 to £15,897,000. The increase covers additional costs of privatisation advisers' fees.
Mr. David Shaw: To ask the President of the Board of Trade what changes will be made to the cash limits and running costs limits for the Office of Electricity Regulation, Office of Gas Supply and Office of Telecommunications.
Column 1026increased by £299,000 from £9,059,000 to £9,358,000 and the gross running costs limit by £299,000 from £8,627,000 to £8,926,000. The increase includes the take-up of running costs end-year flexibility of £171,000 as announced by the Chief Secretary on 14 July 1994, Official Report, columns 729 34, and increased provision for personnel services. The increase will be offset by transfers from the Department of Trade and Industry, class IV, vote 1, £28,000, and Office of Electricity Regulation, class IV, vote 12, £100,000. The cash limit for class IV, vote 11, Office and Gas supply, will be increased by £100,000 from £4,424,000 to £4,524,000. The increase is required for refitting and equipping new offices. The increase will be offset by a transfer from the Office of Electricity Regulation, class IV, vote 12, £100,000.
As a consequence of the above, the cash limit for class IV, vote 12, Office of Electricity Regulation, class IV, vote 12, will be reduced by £200,000 from £10,871,000 to £10,671,000. The gross running costs limit will be reduced by £200,000 from £11,603,000 to £11,403,000. These changes are offsetting or charged to the reserve and will not, therefore, add to the planned total of public expenditure.
Dr. John Cunningham: To ask the President of the Board of Trade what assessment he has made of the effect in percentage terms in the amount of trade with Iraq following from business visits of Iraqi business men since February 1993.
Mr. Needham [holding answer 31 October 1994]: None. Exports of foodstuffs, medicines and humanitarian goods to Iraq in 1993 totalled £12 million. For the first nine months of this year they were about £7.5 million. There have been no imports from Iraq in either year.
Mr. Needham [holding answer 31 October 1994]: No written guidelines are issued to companies about exports to Iraq from the United Kingdom, but each proposed export to Iraq is dealt with individually by the Department's sanctions unit.
All exports to Iraq from the United Kingdom require authorisation from the United Nations Sanctions Committee and an export licence from the DTI. Companies must therefore complete a form provided by the United Nations Sanctions Committee giving details for their proposed exports. The form is sent out to any company who intends to export goods and any query that it may have can be discussed with the sanctions unit.
16 20 July 1993 Richard Needham Minister for Trade
Trade Mission |Sponsored by --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1992 1-5 June |London Chamber of Commerce |and Industry 21-25 September |Northants Chamber of Commerce |and Industry 1993 1-5 March |Cardiff Chamber of Commerce |and Industry 26-30 April |Wolverhampton Chamber of |Commerce and Industry 14-18 June |London Chamber of Commerce |and Industry 20-24 September |Northants Chamber of Commerce |and Industry 1994 17-21 January |Wales (formerly Cardiff) Chamber |of Commerce and Industry 7-11 March |Northern Development Company |Chamber of Commerce and |Industry 9-13 May |Wales Chamber of Commerce and |Industry 19-23 September |Northants Chamber of Commerce |and Industry 10-14 October |Manchester Chamber of Commerce |and Industry
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the President of the Board of Trade what plans his Department has to import radioactively contaminated nitric acid from the former nuclear reprocessing plant at Hanford, USA; and what representations his Department has received from staff at the British embassy in Washington on the subject.
Mr. Charles Wardle [holding answer 31 october 1994]: None. The import of nitric acid is a commercial matter for British Nuclear Fuels plc, subject to meeting appropriate import licensing and regulatory requirements. The British embassy, as part of its policy to support British companies pursuing commercial opportunities, and with the agreement of my Department, wrote to the United States Department of Energy in August 1994 in support of BNFL's commercial activities, including this proposal.
Mr. Worthington: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent action has been taken by Britain and the European Union to address the humanitarian needs of the people in Liberia and refugees therefrom.
Mr. Baldry: Since 1 January, Britain has provided £1.25 million and the European Union approximately £5 million in support of the United Nations and non-governmental organisations emergency relief programmes to those displaced inside Liberia and to refugees in neighbouring states, the United Kingdom share of the EU aid is £0.6 million.
Column 1028statement about British and European policy towards The Gambia following the recent coup.
Mr. Baldry: We and our European partners have condemned the overthrow of the democratically elected government of The Gambia. We have made it clear that the four-year election timetable announced by the armed forces provisional ruling council is wholly unsatisfactory. Together with our EU partners, Britain announced on 12 October that it was suspending all military co-operation and balance of payments support and would review new aid projects on a case-by-case basis. Copies of United Kingdom and European Union statements on The Gambia have been placed in the Libraries of the House.
Mr. Worthington: to ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress has been made in improving relationships between UNOSOM and Somaliland in adding to the infrastructure of Somaliland.
Mr. Baldry: UNOSOM closed its office in Hargeisa on 21 August. We understand that the United Nations Development Office will visit north-west Somalia in the near future to take forward the process of planning rehabilitation and reconstruction assistance.
Mr. Worthington: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement about the humanitarian needs of Kenya; and what is being done by Britain and the European Union in this connection.
Mr. Baldry: Harvest prospects are good in most areas. The world food programme will continue to deliver food aid until the end of the year to meet localised needs especially in northern and eastern regions.
The United Kingdom has contributed over £6 million in bilateral humanitarian aid since January 1994. European Union emergency aid commitments for 1994 amount to £7.35 million, of which the United Kingdom share is £0.92 million.
Sir John Stanley: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what are the figures, the sources of the figures and the definition of "poorest" which formed the basis of his statement of 24 October, Official Report, column 680, in respect of the focus of bilateral aid.
Mr. Baldry: In 1992 93, £619 million was spent on aid to the poorest countries. This represents 80 per cent. of United Kingdom bilateral aid to developing countries which is allocable by income group.
This information is published in table A2 of "British Aid Statistics 1988 89 to 1992 93", a copy of which is available in the Libraries of the House.
"The poorest countries" are defined as low income group countries with a GNP per capita in 1991 of below $765.
Column 1029well British overseas aid expenditure is spent through (a) the United Kingdom bilateral programme and (b) multilateral agencies.
Mr. Baldry: We attach equal importance to the effectiveness of all projects whether in bilateral or multilateral programmes. A sample of projects financed under the bilateral programme are assessed to determine their effectiveness and the lessons are fed back into the design of future projects. Our approach towards improving the effectiveness of multilateral aid is set out in the speech which my right hon. and noble Friend the Minister for Overseas Development gave to the Overseas Development Institute on 14 June 1994, copies of which are available in the Libraries of the House.
Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on how many occasions in the past year the spouse of a Minister in his Department has travelled abroad at public expense to accompany a Minister on public duties, and what has been the total cost to public funds; and on how many occasions such travel has been undertaken at own cost.
Sir Patrick Mayhew: On three such occasions since 1 January 1994, a Minister has been accompanied by his spouse travelling at public expense. The total cost to public funds was £4,197.68. On no occasion has such travel been undertaken at own cost.
Mr. John D. Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many students from Northern Ireland who gained university entrance, enrolled in universities in Great Britain during the last academic year; and how many went to each university in Great Britain.
Mr. Ancram: Information is not available in the form requested. However, a total of 4,207 students from Northern Ireland entered higher education courses in Great Britain in the 1993 94 academic year.
Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) how much money the Medical Research Council spent in 1993 94 on (a) research into asthma and (b) research which may be relevant to the condition;
(2) how much money the Medical Research Council plans to spend in the current year and in 1995 96 on (a) research into asthma and (b) research which may be relevant to the condition.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes: In the financial year 1993 94, the Medical Research Council's expenditure on research projects directly related to asthma was £0.9 million. Further spending on research which may be relevant to the condition totalled almost £1.1 million. The decision on funding for asthma research in the current year and in 1995 96 rests with the MRC. It will depend, as with all
Column 1030other research areas, on the quality of the research proposals that the Council receives. The MRC is, of course, willing to consider soundly based proposals in competition with other applications for council support, and funding decisions are dependent upon a peer review process.
On 3 October, MRC and the Departments of Health and of the Environment issued a combined call for research proposals on the links between air pollution and respiratory disease, with a special emphasis on asthma. Up to £5 million has been allocated to support this programme over the next four to five years.
Mr. Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps his Department is taking to co-ordinate road repairs and the digging up of highways by public utilities, to minimise disruption to local communities.
Mr. Norris: Under the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991, co- ordination on publicly maintained local roads, the vast majority, is the responsibility of the local highway authority. For trunk roads and motorways the responsibility rests with the Highways Agency which, through its agents, works to the requirements of the Act. A code of practice has been issued under the Act, giving practical guidance on the co-ordination of street works and works for road purposes and related matters.
Mr. Hanson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Wyre (Mr. Mans) of 19 July, Official Report, columns 81 82, what progress he has made in establishing a timetable for the compulsory fitting of seat belts on all new minibuses and coaches.
Mr. Norris: We have pressed the Commission on this issue. Work is under way on revised technical proposals on the basis of which we expect the Commission to make a formal proposal for a directive early next year.
Mr. Norris: An assessment of the relative merits of lap and three- point belts is contained in the review of the technical and cost implications of the fitment of seat belts in minibuses and coaches, which was published on 19 July. A copy of that report was placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Hanson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what further steps he is taking to encourage manufacturers of minibuses and coaches, and owners of currently operational minibuses and coaches to fit seat belts to vehicles.
Mr. Norris: The major minibus manufacturers are already fitting seat belts to all seats in their new vehicles as standard equipment. We take every available opportunity to encourage coach and minibus manufacturers and operators to fit belts in both new and, where practicable, existing vehicles.
Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will list, for each executive agency in his Department, the number of sick days taken in the past 12 months broken down by grade and gender;
Column 1032(2) if he will list the number of sick days taken during the last 12 months by staff of the Driving Standards Agency, broken down by grade and gender.
Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list, for each executive agency within his Department, the number of staff who have died while in employment in each of the last three financial years broken down by a grade and gender.
Agency |Grade |Gender |1991-92 |1992-93 |1993-94 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Vehicle Certification Agency |Higher Professional and Technical |Male |- |- |1 |Officer Coastguard Agency |Coastguard Officer (probationer) |Male |1 |- |- |Coastguard Officer (Watch Officer) |Male |- |1 |- |District Officer |Male |1 |- |- |Station Officer (District Management Team) |Male |- |1 |1 Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency |Administrative Assistant |Female |1 |1 |1 |Male |1 |1 |1 |Administrative Officer |Female |1 |- |- |Male |1 |- |- |Executive Officer |Female |1 |1 |- |Stores Officer Grade C |Male |- |1 |- |Support Grade Band 2 |Male |2 |1 |- |Typist |Female |2 |1 |- Driving Standards Agency |Driving Examiner |Female |- |- |1 |Male |6 |4 |1 |Senior Driving Examiner |Male |1 |- |- |Senior Driving Examiner Managerial |Male |- |- |1 |Supervising Driving Examiner |Male |1 |- |- Highways Agency |Executive Officer |Female |- |- |1 |Grade 4 |Male |1 |- |- |Typist |Female |- |- |1 Transport Research Laboratory |Grade 6 |Male |- |- |1 |Professional and Technical Officer |Male |1 |- |- Vehicle Inspectorate |Administrative Officer |Female |- |- |1 |Male |- |1 |- |Casual Administrative Assistant |Male |- |- |1 |Executive Officer |Male |1 |- |- |Higher and Professional and Technical Officer|Male |- |- |1 |Professional and Technical Officer |Male |2 |2 |2 |Senior Traffic Examiner |Male |- |1 |- |Traffic Examiner |Male |2 |1 |- Marine Safety Agency |Executive Officer |Male |1 |- |- DVOIT<1> |Senior Executive Officer |Female |- |- |1 |Male |- |- |1 <1> DVOIT was privatised in December 1993.
Mr. Norris: Under arrangements agreed at the time of the unified budget, provision was made for London Transport to retain all proceeds up to £100 million and 25 per cent. of receipts above this level.
Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how many (a) vehicle examiners and (b) traffic examiners were employed by his Department in each of the last six years; (2) to what extent Vehicle Inspectorate and traffic and vehicle examiners undertake random roadside checks of vehicles;
Column 1033(3) how many (a) vehicle examiners and (b) traffic examiners are employed by the Vehicle Inspectorate; and what are his projections for the numbers in the financial years 1995 96 and 1996 97.
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your questions about vehicle and traffic examiner staffing, and roadside enforcement checks.
i. Vehicle and Traffic Examiner staffing
Annex 1 updates the tables 1 sent to you on 18 July. These show the current staff in post figures. The information does not distinguish between operational and non operational staff so cannot be used to determine average man years spent on testing, and on roadworthness and traffic enforcement.
Annex 2 is an analysis of average staffing by grade spent on vehicle testing and roadside enforcement activities. This information has been extracted from the Inspectorate's management accounts for the years 1988/89 1993/94.
The Inspectorate is planning efficiency savings of 20 per cent. by April 1996. Total staffing across the Inspectorate will fall by 470 from an average staffing figure of 1,758 in 1994/95. Most of these losses will come from natural wastage and voluntary redundancy. Unfortunately it is too early to determine staffing levels in the operational divisions, but we intend to make up for staff reductions by improved efficiency, greater use of information technology, more
Column 1034automation in vehicle testing work and better targeting of roadside enforcement.
ii. Roadside Enforcement
The Inspectorate targets the majority of its work. Whilst we try to examine at least some vehicles from all operators, we also try to concentrate activities on those most likely to be operating illegally.
In 1993 94, the last full year for which the information is available, vehicle examiners spent a total of 60.89 man years on roadside vehicle checks. VI testing staff carried out an additional 3.93 man years in clearing prohibitions issued by our vehicle examiners.
VI staff spent 64.88 man years on traffic enforcement checks at the roadside plus an additional 5.7 man years at ports.
I hope the above information is adequate, but if you would like to discuss the issues in more detail please contact Mrs. Jean Frary on 0117 9543211 who will arrange a convenient appointment.
Vehicle examiners Grade |27 October 1994 ------------------------------------------------ SPTO |36 HPTO |83 PTO |390 AVE |83 Total |592
Traffic Examiners Grade |27 October 1994 ------------------------------------------------------------- Enforcement Co-ordinator |5 Supervising Traffic Examiner |- Senior Traffic Examiner |25 Traffic Examiner |161 Total |191
Average Vehicle and Traffic Examiner Staffing-1988/89 to 1993/4 Average Staffing in Man-Years |1988-89|1989-90|1990-91|1991-92|1992-93|1993-94 ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Vehicle Testing PTO/AVE<1> |237 |240 |253 |263 |252 |237 Road Transport Enforcement Vehicle Examiners |228 |233 |244 |268 |278 |244 Traffic Examiners |<2>- |<2>- |<2>- |170 |172 |166 Notes: <1> Vehicle Testing is conducted by PTOs(VEs), Tester and Assistant Vehicle Examiners. Unfortunately it is not possible to separate VE and AVE staffing. <2> The Traffic Examiners organisation did not become part of VE until April 1991.
Mr. Pawsey: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the answer of 24 October, Official Report, column 398 , what plans he has for a press campaign to promote the smoky vehicle hotline.
I am confident that the recent announcements by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State about targeted emissions enforcement checks will help further increase public awareness.
We will review the need for further press announcements in due course.
Mr. Wilshire: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on the timetable for his review of proposed M25 link roads and for an announcement on whether he plans to abandon or push ahead with the scheme.
Mr. Watts: It was announced earlier this year that the next stage for the scheme for link roads between junctions 12 and 15 of the M25 would be a public inquiry. A date for the inquiry was not fixed. That remains the position. A further announcement will be made in due course.