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30. Mr. Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the effect the continuing instability in Rwanda will have on the situation in Burundi; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Baldry: We agree that the continuing instability in Rwanda will make attempts to find a lasting solution to the problems in Burundi more difficult. The fragile, and relative calm that exists at the moment is threatened by the activities of armed Rwandan bands, retaliatory military measures and the presence of many Rwandan refugees in Burundi. The international community remains very concerned and focused in these events and the UN is fully engaged in Bujumbura.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: We welcome continued progress in the middle east peace process, including the establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and Jordan, and the resumption of talks between Israel and the Palestinians on elections and Israeli redeployment in the west bank. We look forward to progress on the Syrian track, leading to a comprehensive settlement.
Column 706statement on British relations, including trade relations, with Japan.
Mr. Goodlad: United Kingdom relations with Japan are generally excellent. Our exports rose 19 per cent. last year to £2.65 billion, and have so far risen a further 14 per cent. this year. The "Action Japan Campaign" helps British business take advantage of the opportunities in 10 key sectors.
Mr. Goodlad: The 31st plenary session of the Sino-British joint liaison group began in London today. It should build on the useful achievements of the plenary sessions held in June and September, and offer more evidence of enhanced co-operation.
34. Mr. MacShane: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Foreign Ministers of the other European Union countries about the preparations for the 1996 intergovernmental conference.
Mr. David Davis: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and I have had and continue to have regular discussions with our counterparts in the European Union on preparations for the 1996 intergovernmental conference.
Mr. Goodlad: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary met the Malaysian Foreign Minister in April. There was no fixed agenda. They both attended the European Union--Association of South-East Asian Nations ministerial meeting in Karlsruhe in September, although there was no formal bilateral meeting on that occasion.
Mr. Madden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what guidance he has issued to entry clearance officers at British posts overseas about the appropriate gross incomes of women sponsors working full time in west Yorkshire sufficient to maintain their spouses and dependent children without recourse to public funds.
Mr. Baldry: Entry clearance officers are not given guidance on the gross income necessary to meet the maintenance requirements of the immigration rules: each case is considered on its individual merits having regard to the total financial resources available and likely to become available to the parties. These vary considerably from case to case. Entry clearance officers are further guided by rulings from the adjudicators, the tribunal and the higher courts.
Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the Government's intentions for the future constitution and development of Gibraltar and its people's status within the European Union.
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has received regarding human rights violations in East Timor and other part of Indonesia; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Goodlad: We have received many representations from non- governmental organisations and individual correspondents. We make our human rights concerns clear to the Indonesian Government, bilaterally and with our European Union partners.
Mr. Chris Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to make representations to the Government of Indonesia about their actions in East Timor and human rights in Papua.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: In our contacts with the Indonesian authorities, we and our European Union partners regularly raise our concerns about the situation in East Timor and, more generally, the human rights situation in Indonesia, including, whenever appropriate, the province of Irian Jaya.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action he plans to take to follow up his initiative on preventative diplomacy and conflict resolutions in Africa, announced in his recent speech to the United Nations General Assembly; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Hurd: We wish to gain African support for measures which will strengthen their own capacity for preventive diplomacy and conflict resolution. We have been working with African countries, the Organisation of African Unity, and with European partners to identify practical steps-- including the establishment of UN peacekeeping skills centres at African staff colleges, and the creation of UN logistics centres in Africa. We plan to report on progress to the UN early in 1995.
Mr. John Greenway: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress is being made in developing the NATO partnership for peace proposal; and what practical military co-operation has flowed from it so far.
Mr. Hurd: Partnership for peace is developing very well. Twenty- three countries, including Russia, have become partners. Many have already negotiated individual programmes of activities with NATO. Three PFP military exercises have taken place so far, with United Kingdom forces participating each time. The extensive range of practical co-operative activities scheduled for 1995 is
Column 708concrete evidence of the lasting success of this important initiative.
Mr. Worthington: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the current British financial contribution to the United Nation's operation in Rwanda excluding explicit humanitarian assistance; and what services it supports.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: The United Kingdom's assessed contribution to the United Nations assistance mission for Rwanda is 6.373 per cent. of the budget total. We anticipate that in the current financial year, Britain's contribution will amount to £5.05 million. This contribution supports the full range of services associated with the mission outlined in UN document A/48/837, a copy of which is in the House of Commons Library.
Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which programmes and projects of his Department are planned for market testing; and if he will make a statement in respect of progress in each element of the programme, together with the number of current jobs involved and their location.
Function |Number of staff -------------------------------------------------------------- Security Guards-Hanslope Park |47 Queen's Messengers |32 Administration of Calculation of Salaries/ Pensions 11, Overseas Security Officers 34
Reviews of all these activities are under way. All posts are located in London or Hanslope Park, except the overseas security officers who serve at a number of different overseas posts. In addition, a market test of reprographics, delayed from the 1993 94 programme is under-way involving 32 staff.
Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is his Department's policy towards those members of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office who have now admitted their homosexuality but who were originally recruited when homosexuality was a bar to recruitment to his Department; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if his Department operates a policy of non- discrimination against homosexuals in recruitment to all sections of his Department.
Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what questions pertinent to the homosexuality of potential recruits to his Department are still being asked during recruitment interviews; and to what purpose.
Mr. Baldry: No questions about a candidate's sexual orientation are asked at selection interviews as such. After a candidate has been recommended for a position in the diplomatic service, however, questions about sexual orientation are asked during the security vetting procedures. The purpose of these questions is to minimise an officer's vulnerability to blackmail, and so that a homosexual officer can be given suitable advice before bidding for postings for certain overseas countries where homosexual practices are illegal or socially unacceptable.
Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the answer of 30 November to the Member for Leyton (Mr. Cohen), Official Report , columns 709 10 , if he will list the number and general nature of his communications or correspondence with the Chilean authorities since 9 November 1991; and whether documentation or other evidence relevant to the death of Mr. Jonathan Moyle in his Department's possession or in the possession of agencies responsible to his Department has been passed to the Scott inquiry.
Mr. Baldry: We have had numerous exchanges with the Chilean authorities since Mr. Jonathan Moyle's death. More recently the case was raised by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State during his visit to Chile in January 1993. The hon. Member for Wells (Mr. Heathcoat-Amory), the then Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, raised it with the Chilean Defence Minister designate in January this year. We await the Supreme court's response to a formal request sent to it through diplomatic channels for information required by the coroner for Exeter and East Devon, Mr. Van Oppen.
Documents relevant to the death of Mr. Moyle were passed to Lord Justice Scott. On 31 March 1993, Lord Justice Scott announced that he did not believe that an investigation into Mr. Moyle's death would further his inquiry.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: Britain's relations with Romania are developing positively. We continue to support the consolidation of political and economic reform in Romania, including through the use of the know-how fund and the activities of the British Council. The frequency of high-level contacts has increased, and in November this year President Iliescu paid a successful visit to the United Kingdom. Britain's trade with Romania has increased significantly, now standing at over £225 million. The United Kingdom is the eight largest investor in Romania. My right hon. Friend the Member for Eddisbury (Mr. Goodlad), Minister of State for Foreign and
Column 710Commonwealth Affairs, recently led the largest trade mission yet mounted to Romania.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps are being taken to help combat fraud in the European Union, particularly in the spending of the common agricultural policy and structural and cohesion budgets.
My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister secured important commitments in this respect at the Essen European Council on 9 and 10 December. The Council called on the Community's institutions and member states to make full use of the new powers given to them in the Maastricht treaty, and urged them to ensure special reports submitted by the European Court of Auditors are pursued thoroughly. The Council will actively pursue agreement in the first half of 1995 to a proposal for intergovernmental co-operation against criminal aspects of fraud and will seek rapid progress toward concluding a regulation on the protection of the Community's financial interests. Each member state also undertook to report back on measures they take at a national level to counter fraud, waste and mismanagement. These reports will be submitted to the European Council in December 1995.
Mr. Byers: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the total estimated cost of the new embassy in Moscow; when it is expected to be ready; what is the capital valuation of the present embassy; how many rooms the present embassy has; and what is its proposed use once the new embassy is in operation.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: The total estimated construction cost of the new embassy in Moscow is £50 million at current prices and rates of exchange, providing offices for about 80 United Kingdom and 80 local staff plus 31 flats for United Kingdom staff. Subject to all the necessary planning approvals, it is expected to be ready in 1999. The present embassy is leased at a peppercorn rent from the Russian authorities, in reciprocity for the lease of part of the accommodation occupied by the Russian embassy in London, also at a peppercorn rent. We do not know the valuation put on our buildings in Moscow by the Russian authorities. The present embassy provides office accommodation for 170 staff.
The Russian authorities require us to remove our offices from the present site. They have agreed that the present embassy buildings may be retained for residential use. Some of the space will be used to make a limited extension to the Ambassador's flat. Most will be converted into staff accommodation, to save on the very high rents which are charged in Moscow by both public and private landlords.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what was the Serb population of Croatia before recent hostilities began; and how many Slovenians are in Slovenia.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: According to the 1991 census, the population of Croatia was 4.76 million, of which about 12 per cent. were Serbs. Slovenia has approximately 1.8 million citizens, of whom about 90 per cent. are ethnically Slovenian.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what plans NATO has for extending membership to countries on the Russian border; and if he will make a statement about its role following the extension of membership.
Mr. David Davis: The NATO summit in January confirmed that the alliance expected and would welcome expansion of its membership to include democratic states to its east, as part of an evolutionary process, and taking into account political and security developments in the whole of Europe. At their meeting in Brussels on 1 December, NATO Foreign Ministers endorsed this approach, and set in hand work on a study into the modalities and principles of enlargement. The initial results of this study will be made available to all partners, including Russia, by next December's North Atlantic Council in Brussels. NATO Foreign Ministers also agreed that it would be premature to discuss at this stage the time frame for enlargement on which countries would be invited to join the alliance.
NATO's role after expansion will continue to be to provide for the collective defence of its member states, to play a leading part in enhancing stability and security in Europe, and to undertake peacekeeping and other missions under the UN or the Conference on Security and Co- operation in Europe auspices.
Mr. David Davis: For the financial year 1993 94, the total cost of NATO membership to the United Kingdom was £168,676,935. This comprised £69,129,000 for the military budget, £82,495,000 for the infrastructure budget and £17,052,935 for the civil budget.
Column 712expanding co-operation in a wide range of issues with the countries of central and eastern Europe. This process has been augmented by the partnership for peace launched at the NATO summit last January, which is developing into an important feature of European security, linking NATO and its partners, and providing the basis for joint action with the alliance in dealing with common security problems.
The alliance also continues to adapt its own structures to meet the challenges of the changed security environment, and to allow it to contribute effectively to its new missions, including peacekeeping.
Mr. Newton: Copies of the revised memorandum of guidance with a new, more accurate title of "Departmental Evidence and Response to Select Committees" are now being issued to Government Departments. I have today sent copies to the hon. Member and to Chairmen of Select Committees. I have also placed copies in the Library.
Mrs. Anne Campbell: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will list the income that each university received under the block grant system and the amount received under the new dual support system.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes: Details of universities' recurrent income for spending on teaching and research and in support thereof for the years up to and including 1992 93, excluding for the former polytechnics and colleges, are published in the Universities' Statistical Record's "University Statistics" series, copies of which are available in the Library of the House.
Mrs. Anne Campbell: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will produce figures of research overheads paid to universities by the research councils since the dual support funding system was put in place.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes: Payments made to universities by the research councils for research overheads since August 1992, when the councils became liable to meet these costs under new arrangements for the dual support system, are as follows:
|SERC |AFRC |NERC |MRC |ESRC Financial year |£ millions |£ millions |£ millions |£ millions |£ millions --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1991-93 |16.98 |2.84 |1.42 |5.54 |4.17 1993-94 |46.75 |5.37 |5.47 |17.52 |6.56
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether he will list the persons and organisations which have replied to the White Paper, "The Civil Service-Continuity and Change"; and if he will place the replies in the Library.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes: Those who sent responses on the White paper, "The Civil Service--Continuity and Change," and who have not requested that their comments remain confidential are listed. I am placing copies of their responses in the Library.
Those who sent comments in response to the White Paper, "The Civil Service-Continuity and Change" |Organisation ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Anonymous |Civil Servant G. A. Holley |Department for Education G.E. Malone |Civil Servant R. Sellars |Civil Servant Anonymous |Civil Servant D. Faulkner |St. John's College, Oxford P. Walton |Government Office for the North West F. Smith |Civil Servant P. W. Moran |Moran Webb R. D. Cramond |Ex-Civil Servant A. R. Baker |Civil Servant I. Miller |Civil Servant Miss S. Mason |Department of Transport B. Sawbridge |Her Majesty's Treasury P. Wood |Department of Transport Dr. D. R. Langslow |English Nature D. R. Fisher |Ministry of Defence R. A. Allan |Department of Transport B. Wadsworth |Department of Transport D. Simpson |Public Record Office D. J. Goddard |Forestry Commission R. Gray |The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants B. Clayden |Association of Metropolitan Authorities C. W. Dyment |Law Commission Ms R. Doveton |The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Professor C. Hood |The University of Manchester H. M. G. Stevens |Ex-Civil Servant J. N. Ellis |Council of Civil Service Unions |The Association of First Ms E. Symons |Division Civil Servants and Ms J Thurston |Institution of Professionals, |Managers and Specialists R. Hardy |Executive Interim Management G. A. Johnson |Lancashire County Council Dr. P. Barberis |The Manchester Metropolitan University J. N. Caton |Chertsey and Walton Constituency, Conservative Political Centre J. Sheldon |The National Union of Civil and Public Servants C. Darracott |Charter 88 J. Stevens |Institute of Personnel and Development Professor N. Lewis |The University of Sheffield A. G. Thornton |FDA, Welsh Office Branch H. Ouseley |Commission for Racial Equality I. B. Beesley |Price Waterhouse J. M. Wynn |Price Waterhouse B. Reamsbottom |The Civil and Public Services Association M. W. Sayers |Law Commission M. Devereau |Government Information Service D. Casey |The Sports Council
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: Reliable information on waiting lists relating to specific operations was not available centrally until last year. The information requested for 31 March 1994 and 30 June 1994 is shown in the table:
Date |Number on waiting |list ------------------------------------------------------ 31 March 1994 |1,314 30 June 1994 |1,323 Note: The information relates to patients on NHS waiting list in Scotland.
Year ended |Total hip |replacement |operations ----------------------------------------- 31 December 1983 |2,755 31 December 1984 |2,877 31 December 1985 |3,118 31 December 1986 |3,236 31 December 1987 |3,485 31 December 1988 |3,798 31 December 1989 |3,567 31 December 1990 |3,718 31 December 1991 |3,747 31 December 1992 |3,850 31 March 1994<1> |3,916 <1> Provisional. Note: The information relates to operations carried out by the NHS in Scotland.
Mr. Home Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he has completed his consideration of the application by Scottish Nuclear to construct a dry store for waste nuclear fuel at Torness power station; and if he will make a statement.
Column 715implications of a multistore strategy compared with the potential benefits of a single store strategy had been carried out. This appraisal is being carried out in the context of the radioactive waste management review announced by the Secretary of State for the Environment on 19 May.
Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what was (a) the price charged in pence per kilowatt hour to standard tariff domestic consumers, (b) the percentage change from the previous year's average household electricity bills and (c) the average annual household electricity bill in respect of each electricity company for each year since 1990.
(a) Price of electricity to domestic consumers (p/KWh)<1> <2> Company |1990 |1991 |1992 |1993 ---------------------------------------------------------------- ScottishPower |7.17 |7.81 |8.09 |8.30 Scottish Hydro-Electric |7.18 |7.82 |8.27 |8.37
(b) Percentage change from the previous year's average<2> annual household electricity bills in current price terms Company |1990 |1991 |1992 |1993 ---------------------------------------------------------------- ScottishPower |+8.5 |+8.9 |+3.7 |+2.6 Scottish Hydro-Electric |+8.8 |+8.9 |+5.8 |+1.2 Percentage change from the previous year's average annual household electricity bills in real (1990) price terms<3>.
Company |1990 |1991 |1992 |1993 ---------------------------------------------------------------- ScottishPower |+2.16 |+2.11 |-0.83 |-0.83 Scottish Hydro-Electric |+2.16 |+2.11 |+1.65 |-2.44
(c) Average annual household's electricity bill in current price terms (£ per year) Company |1990 |1991 |1992 |1993 ---------------------------------------------------------------- ScottishPower |237 |258 |267 |274 Scottish Hydro-Electric |237 |258 |273 |276 Average annual household's electricity bill in real (1990) price terms.
(£ per year)<3> Company |1990 |1991 |1992 |1993 ---------------------------------------------------------------- ScottishPower |237 |242 |240 |238 Scottish Hydro-Electric |237 |242 |246 |240 Notes: <1> These are current prices based on standard domestic tariffs; standing charges have been taken into account. <2> No account has been taken of any rebates paid by electricity companies in recent years nor of discounts for direct debit payments. <3> Real prices are the cash figures adjusted to 1990 price levels by excluding the effect of general inflation as measured by the GDP (market prices) deflator.
Column 716dualling the A1 road between Meadowmill and Amisfield; what are the expected dates for the start of work and completion; and if he will make a further statement on his plans for dualling the A1 from Amisfield to Dunbar and for further improvements between Dunbar and the English border.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: Tenders for the dualling of the A1 from the Bankton roundabout to east of Haddington are currently due to be submitted on 23 December. Subject to the receipt of a satisfactory tender, a contract will be awarded early next year to allow a work start in the early spring. The construction of the new road is expected to take up to two years. Draft proposals for the extension of the dualling to Dunbar have now been published. A number of comments and objections have been received and are currently being considered. South of Dunbar, improvement schemes shall be brought forward for construction as resources and other priorities allow. The statutory procedures for three schemes are now very near completion and they will be well placed for consideration next year.
Mr. Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps he intends to take to ensure that no one has to sleep rough in Scotland; and whether he plans to make resources available in Scotland which are comparable to those set aside by the Department of the Environment for the rough sleepers initiative in central London.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton: Local authorities, which have the primary statutory responsibility for dealing with homelessness, should give top priority to helping roofless people. In 1991 94 we have made available around £29 million extra capital allocations earmarked for homelessness projects, many of which will help people, particularly young homeless people, who would otherwise have been roofless. We are also providing grants amounting to over £300,000 in 1994 95 for voluntary bodies who support homeless and roofless people.
Mr. Lang: The grant-aid expenditure figure in respect of each local authority for 1995 96 is set out in the table. Each authority's allocation of the GAE total has been determined having regard to the client group methodology which is agreed with the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities in the distribution committee of the working party on local government finance. The table excludes figures for urban programme GAE which is not allocated to individual authorities. The addition of this amount--£63.4 million--brings the GAE total to the previously announced sum of £5,318.2 million.
|GAE 1995-96 Regions and Islands |£000s ---------------------------------------------------------------- Borders |97,770 Central |232,150 Dumfries and Galloway |138,129 Fife |296,358 Grampian |430,557 Highland |211,295 Lothian |611,991 Strathclyde |2,076,639 Tayside |348,940 Orkney |29,203 Shetland |30,256 Western Isles |44,574 |-------- Total |4,547,862 Districts Berwick |2,228 Ettrick and Lauderdale |3,980 Roxburgh |4,206 Tweeddale |1,809 Clackmannan |7,032 Falkirk |18,516 Stirling |12,194 Annandale and Eskdale |4,075 Nithsdale |6,671 Stewarty |2,875 Wigtown |3,571 Dunfermline |17,284 Kirkcaldy |21,343 North East Fife |10,329 Aberdeen |28,532 Banff and Buchan |11,981 Gordon |10,771 Kincardine and Deeside |7,314 Moray |11,788 Badenoch and Strathspey |1,625 Caithness |3,109 Inverness |7,675 Lochaber |2,542 Nairn |1,298 Ross and Cromarty |6,501 Skye and Lochalsh |1,716 Sutherland |1,944 East Lothian |11,802 Edinburgh |59,137 Midlothian |10,576 West Lothian |20,481 Argyll and Bute |10,297 Bearsden and Milngavie |5,248 Clydebank |5,170 Clydesdale |8,211 Cumbernauld and Kilsyth |8,134 Cumnock and Doon Valley |5,771 Cunninghame |18,583 Dumbarton |10,019 East Kilbride |12,339 Eastwood |7,436 Glasgow |120,932 Hamilton |14,794 Inverclyde |11,408 Kilmarnock and Loudoun |10,558 Kyle and Carrick |15,626 Monklands |13,990 Motherwell |19,167 Renfrew |27,736 Strathkelvin |11,001 Angus |13,003 Dundee |24,287 Perth and Kinross |18,293 |-------- Total |706,908 |-------- All Scotland total |5,254,770
Mr. Norman Hogg: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what advice he has given to new town development corporations on the treatment of staff in the wind-up of the Scottish new towns and the transfer or engagement of such staff by the new authorities to be set up under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1994; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Stewart [holding answer 28 November 1994]: Since the White Paper, "The Scottish New Towns--The Way Ahead", CM 711, was published in July 1989, the Government have been consistent in their view that every effort should be made to retain the expertise of new town staff for the wider benefit of Scotland. In accordance with the guidance on winding-up the development corporations are pursuing staffing in discussion with organisations taking over their functions. With effect from 1 April 1995, some staff may transfer to East Kilbride and Kirkcaldy district councils; other may transfer before dissolution of the Corporations. The other new towns are consulting existing local authorities about staff transferring with the functions they currently perform. Guidance on the staffing of the new local authorities is currently being considered by the local government staff commission (Scotland).
Mr. McAllion: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether his Department will carry out an inquiry into the failure to monitor regularly the health of tunnellers who worked on the Clyde tunnel between 1959 and 1964.
The records available show that medical surveillance was carried out in accordance with the then new Work in Compressed Air Special Regulations 1958, and the doctors performing the work were experienced in medical surveillance of the workers involved in the operations.