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|Millions Year |Sight tests ------------------------------------ 1978-79 |7,894 1979-80 |8,331 1980-81 |8,332 1981-82 |8,469 1982-83 |8,678 1983-84 |9,266 1984-85 |9,882 1985-86 |10,246 1986-87 |10,615 1987-88 |11,695 1988-89 |12,493 1989-90<1> |5,280 1990-91<1> |4,154 1991-92 |4,979 1992-93 |5,528 1993-94 |5,935 <1> From 1 April 1989, NHS sight tests were restricted to certain groups in the population. The figures for 1989-90 include sight tests paid for in 1989-90 but conducted in 1988-89 under the previous scheme. The remaining tests were conducted and paid for in 1989-90 which does not constitute a full 12 months of the new scheme. The figures for 1990-91 which do represent 12 months under the new scheme, are not, therefore, directly comparable with those for 1989-90. Two surveys carried out jointly by the Department of Health and the optical profession estimated that 13.184 million sight tests were performed in Great Britain in the year to 31 March 1994; the estimate for the year to 31 March 1995 is 12, 673 million.
Sir Norman Fowler: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many operations were provided in the last 12 months at the Good Hope hospital, Sutton Coldfield; and what was the comparable figure for 1978.
Mr. Sackville: This information is not available centrally, although I understand from the Good Hope hospital that the total number of operations undertaken at the hospital in the current year is expected to show a 47 per cent. increase on 1989 90. I refer my right hon. Friend to Mr. Doug Ellis, chairman of the Good Hope hospital, for further details.
Mr. Eastham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what contributions the United Kingdom Government made to the World Health Organisation in (a) 1981, (b) 1991 and (c) 1994; if these funds were directed to (i) the World Health Organisation headquarters or (ii) the regional office in Copenhagen; who determined the level of contributions; at what time of the year the contributions were requested; if such funding is linked to inflation; and when the next review of financial allocations will take place.
These funds were directed to the WHO's headquarters in Geneva. The level of the United Kingdom contribution is in accordance with the United Nations's scale of assessment adjusted to the specific requirements of the WHO. The WHO biennial budget is set at the world health assembly. Contributions are payable in two instalments to be submitted by 1 January. Inflation, in line with the standard assessment for all United Nations organisations, is one of the factors taken into account in determining the budget with the next biennial budget for 1996 97 is due to be set at the world health assembly in May.
Mr. Sweeney: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales will the Secretary of State provide details of what performance targets for 1995 96 he has proposed for the Welsh Development Agency, the Development Board for
Column 497Rural Wales, the Wales tourist board and the Cardiff Bay development corporation.
|1995-96 |target ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Welsh Development Agency Job creation Number safeguarded or created |13,000 Minimum percentage outside M4 and A55 catchment areas |20 Inward Investment New jobs |10,000 Investment (£ million) |500 Industrial and commercial floor space (direct build and joint ventures) Square metres |100,000 Property Disposal (£ million) |90 Vacant space (000 Sq metres) |116 Investment In conjunction with capital programme (£ million) |650 Derelict land Reclamation hectares |850 Efficiency Management running costs (£ million) |13.2 Reduction in consultancy (costs £000) |700 Development Board for Rural Wales Job creation Number safeguarded or created |1,500 Property Disposal (£ million) |6.0 Void rate (percentage) |10.0 Investment in conjunction with capital programme £ million |30 Management Running costs £ million |3.689 Reduction in consultancy costs (£000) |170 Cardiff Bay Development Corporation CBDC'S Programme Barrage Expenditure in year (£ million) |42.0 Percentage completed |54 Land reclamation Hectares |24 Land disposal Hectares |30 Receipts (£ million) |10.3 Roads Constructed (kilometres) |3.5 Running costs (£ million) |4.1 Private Sector Activity Development Private Sector Investment (£ million) |120 Industrial/Commercial floor space (sq metres) |69,500 Residential (units) |560 Jobs |3,000 Wales Tourist Board Capital development Private sector investment (£ million) |18.0 Leverage Private: Public |6.1 Direct marketing: cost per response |75p Wales share of GB market, (percentage) |9.5 Average occupancy rates, (per cent.): Hotel and Guest Houses |40 Caravan Sector |62 Self Catering |72 Running costs (£ million) |4.15
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to the answer of the Chancellor of the Exchequer of 22 February, Official Report, column 195, what information he has on the numbers of non-executive members of the boards of non-departmental public bodies sponsored by him who are paid other than on a schedule E basis, and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Redwood: This information is not held centrally. However, non- departmental public bodies sponsored by my Department were instructed in May 1994 that board members' remuneration should be subject to national insurance and tax in the usual way.
Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what assessment he has made of the loss of revenue to farmers in Wales so far this year resulting from their inability to get their products to market as a result of public disorder incidents; and what is his estimate of the full-year effect on current trends.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: There has been little effect so far on prices on beef animals and sheep as a result of the present action on live exports. The main effect has been on dairy producers, who are receiving less for their surplus male calves. If these animals are fattened for beef in this country, this may impact on producer prices in the medium term, but this could be mitigated by increases in exports of carcases and boned meat.
Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will take immediate steps to ensure that no Welsh farmers are prevented from transporting their animals to market within the framework of legislation that safeguards animal welfare and in accordance with the trading laws of the European Community; and how many representations he has received from (a) farmers and (b) farming unions on this matter.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: Numerous representations have been received on this subject and I have met the farming unions on a number of occasions to discuss the matter. The export of live animals is a legal trade. The Government fully appreciate the strong feelings and concern expressed by those calling for higher animal welfare standards; but pursuing these aims by violent means is completely unacceptable. We do share their views about standards elsewhere and we have been doing our best to reach an acceptable agreement throughout the European Community on the transport of live animals which would allow the trade to operate on a basis acceptable to all.
Mr. Dafis: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what plans he has to issue Welsh equivalents of planning policy guidance notes (a) No. 15, on planning and the historic environment, (b) No. 23, on planning and pollution control, (c) No. 24 on planning and noise and (d) No. 2 on green- belts.
Mr. Win Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will draw up a list of watercourses and their surrounding areas which are vulnerable to minewater pollution and develop a programme of remedial and preventative work along with estimates of the funding required.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: A survey report on ferruginous minewater impacts in the Welsh coalfields was published in March 1994 and copies have been placed in the Library of the House. A follow-up report studying remedial options for the most significant minewater discharges is due to be published shortly.
Mr. Redwood: The Under-Secretary of State, my hon. Friend the Member for Clwyd, North-West (Mr. Richards), received a request on 3 February 1995 from Ian Greer Associates Ltd. for a meeting with representatives of Boeing, which was declined.
"Biodiversity--The UK Action Plan", he has identified in Wales; and if he will make a statement about his strategy to protect and enhance such sites.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what assessment he has made of the suitability of existing financial incentives to encourage environmentally sensitive forms of agriculture to ensure that they are contributing to biodiversity objectives.
Mr. Redwood: The environmentally sensitive area scheme is an obvious example of the application of biodiversity objectives to agricultural policy. A detailed monitoring programme to examine the environmental and economic effects of the scheme has been established and will continue.
Policy reviews are undertaken every five years to assess the suitability of the scheme and reports of the findings in the Cambrian mountains "Original", and Cambrian mountains "Extension" and Lleyn peninsula ESAs were published in 1991 and 1992 respectively. Copies have been placed in the Library of the House. Payment reviews are undertaken biennially.
The new agri-environmental schemes will be similarly monitored to ensure they also contribute to biodiversity objectives.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what guidance he has issued to encourage the tourism industry in Wales to include information about the need for environmental conservation, and information about local biodiversity, in promotional literature.
Mr. Redwood: Planning policy guidance note 21: "Tourism", issued November 1992, outlines the economic significance of tourism, its environmental impact and how it should be dealt with in local authority development plans. Local authorities, working with the Wales tourist board are best placed to decide how to promote such policies.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what financial assistance from public services was provided to the Welsh Health Common Services Authority and to Grosvenor Waterside with respect to the development of Crickhowell house as the authority's new headquarters.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what consultations he has had with the chairman of the Welsh Health Common Services Authority concerning the number of inquiries made with regard to the market testing of the prescription-pricing service; how many inquiries have been made to date; and what is the proposed modus operandi for organising the market-testing bidding procedure.
Mr. Redwood: None. By 23 February, 38 organisations, including the prescription pricing services' in-house team, had asked for a copy of the authority's market testing information pack. The closing date of the submission of outline proposals is 24 March 1995. The bidding procedure will be organised according to the established public sector procurement rules.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what consultations he has had with the chairman of the Welsh Health Common Services Authority concerning damage to the authority's premises arising from leaks;
Column 501what compensatory measures he has discussed to remedy the problem; and who will pay for it.
Mr. Redwood: None. The defects liability period for the external envelope of Crickhowell house has been extended to 31 March 1995. The rectification of any building defects is a contractual matter for Grosvenor Waterside and the parties responsible for the design and construction of the building.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to the oral statement of the Under-Secretary of State, the hon. Member for Clwyd, North-West (Mr. Richards) of 21 February, Official Report , columns 223 24, if he will list those sections of the Welsh Health Common Services Authority which will be market tested under the conventional procedure and those sections where other procedures will be followed.
Mr. Redwood: Prescription pricing services is being market tested conventionally. As my hon. Friend indicated on 21 February, Official Report , column 223, options for other non-clinical services still have to be considered.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to his answer to 23 February, Official Report , column 300 , on what date the latest inspection of Bryn Alyn Hall school took place; what representations he has received and from whom under section 87 of the Children Act 1989 following the Department's inspection of welfare of children at the school, and what was his Department's response to their representation.
Mr. Redwood: At the request of my Department, the office of Her Majesty's chief inspector of schools inspected the school in November 1994. Its advice was received in January 1995 and is currently being considered.
The responsibility to inspect the welfare of children at the school under the Children Act 1989 rests with the Clwyd social services department. I understand that that Department visited the school in November/December 1994 and its final report is expected to issue shortly. My Department has received for information a copy of a previous report on the school by the SSD, but has received no formal notification of a concern about welfare under section 87(4) of the Children Act.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what progress is being made in the preparation of summary management plans for biological sites of special scientific interest in Wales; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Redwood: The designation and management of SSSIs is the responsibility of the Countryside Council for Wales. I have asked the chief executive to write to the hon. Member with the information requested. I will arrange for copies to be placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Redwood: Strategic research in this area is funded by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. A full-scale managed set-back trial is being carried out at Tollesbury creek, Essex. Nevertheless, my Department ensures that, where appropriate, a managed set-back option is among those considered for coastal defence schemes approved for grant aid.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what progress has been made to maintain the annual red kite population increase in Wales at more than 5 per cent. per annum since the publication of the report "Biodiversity--The UK Action Plan": and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list those areas he intends to designate special areas of conservation in Wales over the next five years; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what guidance he has issued to local authorities to encourage them to make reasonable provision for local nature reserves and natural green space in local plans.
Mr. Redwood: Advice and guidance to local authorities on the needs of nature conservation are set out in Welsh Office circular 52/87. In addition, the Conservation (Natural Habitats etc.) Regulations 1994 which implement the habitats directive encourages the management of features of the landscape which are of major importance of wild flora and fauna, which would include sites which are important to local communities.
16. Mr. Home Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on his Department's procedures for controlling expenditure on the official service residences of senior officers.
Mr. Soames: The control of expenditure on accommodation, including official service residences, is delegated to budget holders. Work is in hand to prepare comprehensive guidance on expenditure on such residences.
Mr. Soames: Members of the armed forces are subject to the criminal law. Where a member of the armed forces is alleged to have committed murder or manslaughter in the United Kingdom, jurisdiction lies with the civil authorities.
18. Dr. Godman: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the measures taken to avoid hazardous encounters between submarines and fishing vessels in and around the Firth of Clyde and on traditional fishing grounds.
Mr. Soames: A comprehensive package of dynamic measures provides for the safe co-existence of submarines and fishing vessels in UK waters. These have been implemented only after extensive consultation with the fishing industry, with whom my officials and those of the Department of Transport regularly consider such matters.
19. Mr. Harry Greenway: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many members of the armed services were estimated to be in post on 1 January; how many of them held (a) one of the six highest commissioned ranks, (b) the three highest non-commissioned rank and (c) no rank at all; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Soames: At 1 January 1995, the total strength of the regular armed forces was 236,667. On the same date, 1,752 personnel on the active list held one of the six highest commissioned ranks. 28,144 personnel held one of the three highest non-commissioned ranks. No service personnel had no rank at all.
20. Mr. Jack Thompson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to discuss European defence co-operation with the Council of Ministers of the Western European Union at their next meeting.
Mr. Soames: We look forward to participating fully in discussions on a range of issues affecting European defence and security at the next meeting of WEU Ministers in May. The development of the WEU as a
Column 504means of European co-operation in this area will undoubtedly be on the agenda.
Mr. Freeman: The defence costs study was highly successful and achieved all of its aims and we do not plan, nor do we need, to conduct another similar exercise. The Ministry of Defence will, however, continue to subject all of its activities to close and continuous scrutiny as part of its normal arrangements for maximising efficiency and effectiveness.
22. Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what representations he has received in relation to the percentage allowance for overheads on bids for non-Trident warhead diversification work by the atomic weapons establishment, Llanishen, Cardiff.
23. Dr. Michael Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what measures he is taking to help find gainful employment for defence industry scientists following reduced demand for defence equipment.
Mr. Freeman: The Government described in "Realising our Potential", Cm 2250, the considerable efforts being made to exploit the wealth-creating potential of the defence research and development programme. Further details were given in the Statement on the Defence Estimates 1994, Cm 2550.
Mr. Soames: European allies co-operate closely within the alliance. As agreed at last year's NATO summit, the alliance is prepared to make its collective assets available for WEU operations undertaken by the European allies in pursuit of their common foreign and security policy. NATO's combined joint task force concept, which was also endorsed at the summit, will make NATO command and control facilities available for European-led operations. These developments have paved the way for the generation of separable but not separate European capabilities.
25. Sir Fergus Montgomery: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects to visit Bosnia; and if he will make a statement on the level of humanitarian supplies so far delivered and the number of lives saved.
Column 505last year, most recently in December 1994. It is too early to say how many he will make this year, or when.
UNHCR records show that a total of 315,000 tonnes of food aid was delivered to over 2,700,000 people in Bosnia in 1994, including almost 71,000 tonnes to Sarajevo. As part of this, British UNPROFOR troops have assisted with the delivery of over 234,000 tonnes of humanitarian aid since operations began in Bosnia in Autumn 1992; the RAF airlift into Sarajevo has flown in a further 22,800 tonnes of aid since July 1992.
26. Mr. Austin-Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of land contamination on the Woolwich arsenal site; and if his Department will bear the costs of decontamination.
Mr. Soames: I refer the hon. Member to my written answer to the hon. Member for Don Valley (Mr. Redmond) on 15 February 1995, Official Report, column 723 about my Department's assessment of land contamination at the royal arsenal, Woolwich. The extent of decontamination required and the associated costs have yet to be defined and will be determined by the future use of the site.
27. Mr. Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent representations he has made to the Government of Russia about the safe storage and ultimate destruction of its stock of chemical weapons agents; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Freeman: Officials are in regular dialogue with their Russian counterparts on all aspects of the chemical weapons convention through the preparatory commission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in The Hague. Her Majesty's Government remain keen to see the Government of Russia, as the declared holder of one of the largest stockpiles of chemical weapons, deposit early its article of ratification of the chemical weapons convention so that monitoring of the stockpiles's destruction can begin as soon as possible.
Mr. Soames: The prevention of the proliferation of nuclear weapons is one of the main aims of the United Kingdom's security policy. My Department supports a wide range of measures to this end, including: Actively working to have the nuclear non-proliferation treaty extended idefinitely and unconditionally at the review and extension conference of states parties in April/May.
Playing a positive and constructive part in negotiations for a comprehensive test ban treaty.
Making a full contribution to the work of the Zangger Committee and Nuclear Suppliers Group.
Scrutiny of export licence applications for nuclear-related goods to sensitive destinations.
Trying to establish a mandate for an ad hoc committee at the conference on disarmament in Geneva to negotiate a Convention banning production of fissile material for military explosive purposes.