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Column 897these issues with the Government of Sudan, and to press for action to resolve them.
Mr. Bernie Grant: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the role and function of the remaining British diplomatic personnel in the Sudan; and what assessment he has made of whether they are being adequately monitored.
Mr. Douglas Hogg: Her Majesty's embassy in Khartoum conducts a range of diplomatic activities, with political, aid, consular, commercial and visa sections. As with all our diplomatic missions, the embassy's activities are supervised from London.
Mr. Bernie Grant: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress has been made in resolving the diplomatic impasse between Britain and the Sudan in relation to the exchange of ambassadors; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Bernie Grant: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many British non-governmental organisations are currently operating in the Sudan; and if he will list them and their locations.
NGO |Location(s) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Acord |Qala En Nahal, Port Sudan British Red Cross |Juba CARE |North Kordofan Christian Outreach |Shagarab Ockenden Venture |Gadem Gifrit, Port Sudan OXFAM |Akot, Juba, Mundri, Terekaka, |Maridi, Ed Daein, Red Sea |Hills, North Tokar, Kababiya, |Jebel Aulia, Gezira PISCES AID |Sobat Basin Save the Children Fund |Darfur, Waat, Yuai, Akon You and Me |Awad El Sid
Mr. Baldry: The number of officers currently employed on entry clearance work at the British embassy in Addis Ababa is four. They include the consul and vice-consul, who have other duties in addition to entry clearance work and two full-time entry clearance officers with the effect from 31 December 1994.
There are plans to increase the staffing complement of the section by a further full-time ECO as soon as new
Column 898offices are completed. This is expected to be in September 1995.
Mr. Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the waiting time for entry clearance interviews at Her Majesty's post in Addis Ababa on the latest available information and in the last three years.
Mr. Baldry: Straightforward applications in Addis Ababa are dealt with in two working days. Those who require detailed interviews are now being given appointments in January. The visa section will be closed over the Christmas, new year and Ethiopian new year holidays. The waiting time for straightforward Somalia reunion cases is currently one week. In other cases, where referral to the Home Office is necessary, applicants are being given appointments for interview in June 1996.
Corresponding information for the last three years could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. David Davis: There is a backlog of EC legislation awaiting implementation in Gibraltar including directives in the areas of financial services, money laundering, the environment and health and safety. We are addressing this problem in co-operation with the Government of Gibraltar to whom we are giving substantial support in London and Gibraltar.
Mr. Madden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the answer of 12 December, Official Report, column 487, what considerations underlie the practice of British embassies in Belgrade, Sofia and Zagreb not recording the nationality of those to whom they issue visas to visit the United Kingdom; how many visas were (a) granted, (b) refused and (c) are awaiting decisions; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Baldry [holding answer 16 December 1994]: As the immigration rules are applied without regard to nationality, and as the recording of applications by nationality is not operationally necessary, it is not the practice to record the number of applicants by nationality. During 1993, the last full year for which figures are available, the following visas were issued, refused or awaiting decision in Belgrade, Sofia and Zagreb.
|Issued |Refused |Awaiting --------------------------------------------- Belgrade |1,772 |105 |62 Sofia |9,005 |476 |42 Zagreb |1,753 |414 |-
It is estimated that 95 per cent. of applicants in Sofia are Bulgarian nationals. Estimates are not available for Belgrade or Zagreb.
33. Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the right hon. Member for Berwick- upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission what proposals the Commission has for contracting a House of Commons photographic unit.
Mr. Whittingdale: To ask the Chairman of the Administration Committee if he has considered an application for an exhibition relating to Nuclear Electric Robotics to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Mr. Michael J. Martin: I understand that, under procedures agreed by the Administration Committee, arrangements have been made for the exhibition to be held in the Upper Waiting Hall from Monday 23 January to Friday 27 January 1995.
Mr. Deva: To ask the Chairman of the Administration Committee if he has considered an application for an exhibition relating to channel tunnel drawings by Mr. Ralph Lilliford to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Mr. Michael J. Martin: I understand that, under procedures agreed by the Administration Committee, arrangements have been made for the exhibition to be held in the Upper Waiting Hall from Monday 27 February to Friday 3 March 1995.
Mrs. Golding: To ask the Chairman of the Administration Committee if consideration has been given to an application for an exhibition relating to the work of the Empty Houses Agency to be displayed in the Upper Waiting Hall.
Mr. Michael J. Martin: I understand that, under procedures agreed by the Administration Committee, arrangements have been made for the exhibition to be held in the Upper Waiting Hall from Monday 16 January to Friday 20 January 1995.
Mr. Michael J. Martin: I understand that, under procedures agreed by the Administration Committee, arrangements have been made for the exhibition to be held in the Upper Waiting Hall from Monday 3 April to Friday 7 April 1995.
Mrs. Roche: To ask the right hon. member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission what recent progress has been made towards providing a creche for staff of the House, hon. Members' staff and hon. Members.
Mr. Richards: A wide variety of organisations are working locally and nationally to reduce the number of young people smoking. Health authorities were asked in "Caring for the Future" to pay particular attention to this group when drawing up their activity plans for promoting healthy lifestyles. Together with local education authorities, they are involved in projects such as life education centres and smokebusters, which are run through the Health Promotion Authority for Wales. Other, more general health education programmes include smoking as part of their broader approach.
The Government also encourage and monitor the enforcement of existing laws and voluntary agreements relating to tobacco sales to under 16-year-olds, and to relevant advertising and sponsorship issues.
Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish a summary of the actions that were taken by his Department arising from the report by the working party chaired by Mr. Owen Hughes into the question of the provision of secure accommodation in Wales for people with psychiatric needs.
Mr. Richards: The Report, "Security in Psychiatric Hospitals in Wales", was produced in July 1975 and has long since been overtaken by more recent policy developments, culminating in the publication of the report of the all-Wales advisory group on forensic psychiatry in 1991, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House. On 19 April 1993, it was announced that additional funding of £9.25 million for new hospital facilities in Wales for mentally ill offenders. This included £1.2 million for the expansion of the Caswell clinic from 14 to 33 beds and to provide additional revenue support to compensate health authorities for the high cost of maintaining these patients. Three million pounds was made available to fund the development of a medium secure unit for north Wales. The new beds at the Caswell clinic should be available by 31 March 1995. In north Wales, planning approval to develop a purpose-built, 25-bed medium secure unit at Llanfairfechan was obtained on 9 November 1994. The facility is expected to open in the latter half of 1996.
Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many houses in Wales (a) are in a condition which would qualify them for repairs or renovation grants and (b) were given such grants in 1993 94; and what is the average cost per household of such grants in that year.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: Recent estimates are available only for mandatory renovation grants where the 1993 Welsh house condition survey estimated that 151,000 dwellings were in a condition which would qualify for such grants. Estimates of the number of houses in a
Column 901condition which would qualify for discretionary grant are not available.
Householders' eligibility for grants depends on their means. Therefore, not all of the properties could be improved with grant aid. The number of completed grants in 1993 94 and the average amount paid are shown in the following table:
|Number of grants |Average grant paid |£ ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mandatory renovation grant |7,565 |18,489 Discretionary renovation grant |422 |17,184 Minor works |4,966 |852
Mr. Richards: Seventeen NHS hospitals in Wales have closed, and remain closed, since 1 April 1991. In all but one case this has enabled patients to be moved to better facilities or into the community.
In one instance, responsibility for the care provided was transferred from the NHS to social and probation services.
Mr. Dafis: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many applications have been made by (a) each county council, (b) each district council and (c) Wales as a whole for telecentres under the strategic development scheme; and how many and what proportion of such bids have been successful.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: There has been: (a) one successful bid by Gwynedd county council for 1995 96; one successful bid by Powys county council for 1994 95 and three unsuccessful bids for 1995 96--two bids were joint bids with Radnor district council and Brecknock borough council respectively. No other county councils have made applications for SDS funding of telecentres centres. There has been: (b) one unsuccessful bid by Aberconwy borough council for 1994 95; one unsuccessful bid from Colwyn borough council for 1995 96; one unsuccessful bid by Ceredigion district council for 1994 95 and one unsuccessful bid by Brecknock borough council for 1995 96, which was a joint bid with Powys county council; oneunsuccessful bid by Radnor borough council for 1995 96, which was a joint bid with Powys county council. No other borough or district councils have made applications for SDS funding of telecentres. There have been: (c) nine bids for SDS funding of, telecentres for the 1994 95 and 1995 96 SDS rounds: the joint bids have been counted as one in both cases. Three bids were successful, a 33 per cent. success rate.
Mr. Richards: My right hon. Friend has met the National Association of Head Teachers. Since my appointment I have met the National Association of Schoolmasters and Union of Women Teachers. I hope to have the opportunity to meet other teachers' associations in the near future.
St. Davids High School
Eirias High School (Grant maintained)
Since my appointment, I have visited Ysgol Emrys ap Iwan, which is grant maintained and Ysgol Gymraeg Dewi Sant, Rhyl. I also attended a life education centre, which was based at Ysgol Esgob Morgan in St. Asaph.
(2) what are the future plans for the expansion of pre-school education; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: In the five years beginning December 1989, my right hon. Friend has called in 32 planning applications. The Government's policy is to be very selective about calling in planning applications, which will in general be called in only if planning issues of more than local importance are involved.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what further guidelines are being considered by his Department following the second report of Session 1993 94 on wind energy by the Welsh Affairs Select Committee HC336; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: Under the geological and mineral planning research programme the Department of the Environment is planning to undertake a study into the marine aggregate resources and constraints of the Bristol channel.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what consultations he has had with the chairman of the Welsh Development Agency regarding the publication of reports on (a) the Grant Thornton inquiry into the Cynon valley land deal, (b) the internal audit report into the use of agency investment funds on underwriting the BP share
Column 904issue and (c) audit problems in the issuing of computer and consultancy contracts.
Mr. Redwood: I met the chairman on 6 December and discussed the issues contained in the Grant Thornton report. I have expressed my deep concern at the shortcomings identified in that report and at those other matters which have now been reported by the agency to the Chairman of the Committee of Public Accounts.
|£ ------------------------------ 1989-90 |921,440 1990-91 |896,112 1991-92 |1,159,874 1992-93 |1,213,879 1993-94 |1,300,889
These figures consist of call charges, equipment maintenance, line rental, provision of new extensions, moving existing ones and provision of freephone facilities.
Details of the number of calls made per year are not held centrally.
(2) what was the budget available to his Department to allocate to Welsh police authorities in 1994 95 and 1995 96; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Redwood: For 1994 95 there are no standard spending assessments for police authorities in Wales on which to base year-on-year comparisons. County council SSAs include provision for police services. Expenditure on policing is determined by county councils in the light of their statutory responsibilities, local needs and available resources. Some 51 per cent. of current and capital expenditure incurred by police authorities is met by Home Office grant. For 1994 95 this is expected to amount to £150.6 million.
From 1 April 1995, police authorities will be self-standing local authorities with their own cash-limited police grant and SSA allocations. I announced on 1 December that I propose to make £300.7 million available from total standard spending in Wales to fund police services in 1995 96.
Mr. Alex Carlile: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many grant-maintained schools there were on 1 January 1993 and 1 January 1994 respectively; how many are there today; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the programmes for which his Department is responsible directly, or via agents, to train employed people, or provide on-the-job training; and what funding is available for each scheme.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what proposals he has for the future functions of the Land Authority for Wales, the Development Board for Rural Wales and the urban regeneration division of the Welsh Development Agency in urban redevelopment.