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Mr. Paice: Modern apprenticeships will continue to be offered in the sectors covered by the current prototype arrangements. These are:


Business Administration

Chemicals Industry

Child Care


Electrical Installation Engineering

Engineering Manufacture

Engineering Construction

Information Technology

Marine Engineering

Merchant Navy




Steel Industry

Travel Services

Wool Textiles

In addition, it is envisaged that modern apprenticeships will also be offered in the following sectors from September 1995:


Air Transport

Amenity Horticulture

Arts and Entertainment


Master Bakers


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Broadcasting, Film and Video Production

Builders Merchants

Bus and Coach

Carpet Industry


Cleaning and Support Services



Engineering Services

Estate Agency

Fabric Care

Fire Service

Furniture Manufacture



Health Care


Hotel and Catering


Knitting, Lace and Narrow Fabric Industries

Landscape Gardening

Manmade Fibres

Meat Training

Motor Industry

Paper and Board Industry


Road Haulage and Distribution

Sea Fish


Sports and Recreation


Timber Trade

In 1995 96, the Department will make £680 million available for youth training and modern apprenticeships.

Disabled People (Horticultural Industry)

Mr. Jim Marshall: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what measures he is taking to encourage the employment of people with disabilities in the horticultural industry.

Miss Widdecombe: The Department has a wide range of initiatives and services which help enhance employment opportunities for people with disabilities, including those wishing to work in the horticultural industry. We will continue our programme of educating and persuading employers to adopt good employment practices for disabled people. We will also continue to provide effective practical help to both employers and disabled individuals.

The Government have also introduced a Disability Discrimination Bill which will make it unlawful for an employer to treat a disabled person less favourably because of his or her disability, without justifiable reason.

South Thames Training and Enterprise Council

Mr. Sumberg: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what the arrangements are for paying employers investment in people programme, contractors to South Thames TEC, since the appointment of the receiver; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Paice: Since his appointment on 21 December 1994, the receiver has been operating South Thames training and enterprise council in accordance with the

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company's operating agreement with the Employment Department. The receiver is making payments to providers in respect of employers investment in people activity undertaken since his appointment. He is making related claims upon the Department and the Department is meeting legitimate claims. As is normally the case when a company is in receivership, the receiver has not met claims arising from activities undertaken before his appointment.

Small Firms Training Initiative

Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how much in (a) cash and (b) percentage terms he expects to distribute of the skills for small business budget in 1995 96 in Wales.

Mr. Redwood: I have been asked to reply.

I am providing £1 million to fund the small firms training initiative in Wales during 1995 96. This represents 11 per cent. of the £9 million level of funding set aside for the equivalent programme in England known as skills for small business.



Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Attorney-General how many representations his office has received in each year since 1990, alleging unfair outcomes of prosecutions in England and Wales.

The Attorney-General: The detailed information requested by the hon. Member could be obtained only by scrutiny of all correspondence and other representations received in my office since 1990 and would involve disproportionate expense.



Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what advice he has sought for his Department from the director general of the BBC on how to manage redundancy.

Mr. Nelson: None.

Government Securities

Mr. Peter Bottomley: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what proportion of new long-dated government borrowing is from the accumulated funds of (a) insurance linked saving, (b) a personal equity plans and (c) tax-exempt special savings accounts.

Mr. Nelson: Information is available only for the net investment in long-dated government stock by insurance companies, unit and investment trusts up to September 1994.

Table: Net investment in British Government Securities (over 15 years      

maturity and undated).                                                     

£ million and as a percentage of long gilt insurance.                      

                     1993-94               1994                            


                    |£ million |Percentage|£ million |Percentage           


Insurance Companies |7,943     |66.7      |1,951     |85.4                 

Unit Trusts         |86        |0.7       |-31       |-1.4                 

Investment Trusts   |114       |1.0       |-54       |-2.4                 


CSO, "Financial Statistics", tables 1.2C, 5.1A, 5.2C and 5.2D.             

No information is available on the proportion of PEP funds specifically invested in long-dated gilts. TESSAs represent a significant proportion of bank and building society retail funds. Although bank and building societies currently own around 9 per cent. of UK government stock, these holdings are predominantly of short and medium-dated issues. No information is available on their recent transactions in long-dated stock.

Alcohol (Illegal Imports)

Sir Timothy Sainsbury: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many prosecutions have been made against individuals importing and illegally selling duty-free wines, beers and spirits from the EU; and what was the total value of goods seized.

Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: Of the 182 prosecutions brought by customs in the period 1 January 1993 to 31 December 1994 for the illegal importation or sale of alcoholic drinks duty paid in other member states, 54 involved alcohol only and 128 involved mixed loads of alcohol and tobacco. The retail value of the goods seized is not available, the volumes involved were 117,579 litres of beer, 4,556 litres of spirits and 13,314 litres of wine.

Retail Prices Index

Sir Timothy Sainsbury: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of whether the retail prices index takes sufficient account of consumers' expenditure patterns varying in response to the availability of sales and special offers.

Mr. Nelson: In accordance with the recommendations of the retail prices index advisory committees, the RPI is based on a fixed "basket" of items revised annually in line with changes in consumer spending. The monthly RPI price indicators are based on prices charged; sale and special offers available to all purchasers are included.

Reinvestment Relief

Mr. Barry Field: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he expects to announce whether capital gains tax reinvestment relief for unquoted rule 4.2 companies will be extended to those companies that transfer to the alternative investment market.

Sir George Young: I announced on 20 February that reinvestment relief will be available for investment in shares traded on the alternative investment market.

Departmental Reports

Mr. Matthew Banks: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he expects the 1995 departmental reports to be published.

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Mr. Aitken: Proposed publication dates for the 1995 departmental reports are as follows:

Departmental reports                              |Dates                                    


Statistical Supplement to the Financial Statement |24 February                              

  and Budget Report                                                                         

Cabinet Office, Chancellor of the Duchy of        |1 March                                  

  Lancaster's Departments, Privy Council                                                    

  and Parliament                                                                            

Department of Trade and Industry                  |2 March                                  

Ministry of Defence                               |2 March                                  

Department of Health and Office of Population     |3 March                                  

  Censuses and Surveys                                                                      

Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food,      |3 March                                  

  and Intervention Board                                                                    

HM Treasury and the Chancellor of the Exchequer's |6 March                                  

  other Small Departments, and Net Payments to                                              


Inland Revenue                                    |7 March                                  

HM Customs and Excise                             |7 March                                  

Department of Transport                           |7 March                                  

Department for Education                          |7 March                                  

Lord Chancellor's and Law Officers' Departments   |7 March                                  

Home Office (including Charity Commission)        |8 March                                  

Department of the Environment                     |8 March                                  

Foreign and Commonwealth Office (including the    |8 March                                  

  Overseas Development Administration)                                                      

Department of Social Security                     |9 March                                  

Department of National Heritage                   |9 March                                  

Welsh Office                                      |9 March                                  

Scottish Office (including Forestry Commission)   |10 March                                 

Northern Ireland Office                           |10 March                                 

Department of Employment                          |10 March                                 

Copies will be made available at the Vote Office.

Women's Earnings

Mr. McCartney: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will provide the latest available estimates of the number of women who have earnings below (a) the tax threshold and (b) the national insurance threshold, broken down for married women, lone parents and single parents and for each year since 1979.

Sir George Young [holding answer 15 February 1995]: It is estimated that in 1994 95 about 2.3 million women employees have no income tax liability, and about the same number have earnings below the national insurance lower earnings limit. Some women in this latter category will be taxpayers due to income from other sources. In each of the categories, approximately 75 per cent. are married women, 10 per cent. are lone parents and 15 per cent. single women. It is not possible to provide a consistent series of figures for earlier years.

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Bank of England

Mr. Salmond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what are the core purposes of the Bank of England; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 21 February 1995]: The Bank of England defines its core purposes as follows.

As the central bank of the United Kingdom, the Bank of England's overriding objective is to maintain a stable and efficient monetary and financial framework for the effective functioning and development of the economy. In pursuing this goal, it has three core purposes: maintaining the integrity and value of the currency; maintaining the stability of the financial system, both domestic and international; and seeking to ensure the effectiveness of the UK's financial services.

The three core purposes relate primarily to the UK, but achieving them requires the bank to monitor international developments and co-operate with other monetary authorities and international organisations.

Betting Duty

Mr. Charles Kennedy: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the total additional tax yield per annum that would accrue from increasing betting duty to 15 per cent.

Mr. Heathcoat-Amory [holding answer 22 February 1995]: Increasing the rate of general betting duty--off course--is estimated to raise an additional revenue of around £500 million.

Value Added Tax (Domestic Fuel)

Mr. Charles Kennedy: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the total annual additional tax yield generated to date by the increase in VAT on domestic fuel.

Mr. Heathcoat-Amory [holding answer 22 February 1995]: The total yield of VAT on domestic fuel is estimated at £950 million in 1994 95.



Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what date the United Kingdom named Iraq as being in breach of the 1925 chemical weapons obligation; when his Department first became aware that Iraq had breached its 1925 obligations; what action ensued in respect of Iraq as a result of it being so named; and what assessment his Department made as to the adequacy of these actions.

Mr. Baldry: In a written answer to the House on 20 March 1986, Official Report, column 260, the hon. Member for Mid-Sussex (Mr. Renton) condemned Iraq's

"clear breach of the Geneva protocol".

He referred to a report by a team of specialists which had been released on 14 March 1986 by the UN Secretary-General which confirmed the use of chemical weapons by Iraqi forces in the conflict between Iran and Iraq.

The Security Council subsequently considered the report, and on 21 March 1986 the president of the council

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