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Mr. Ben Chapman: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the relationship between the Royal Air Force and the Air Training Corps. [107406]

Mr. Spellar: The RAF commits significant resources to the Air Training Corps, in recognition of its importance as a highly successful national youth organisation, as a significant contributor to the public's perception of the RAF, and a source of high quality recruits to the Services.


Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his oral statement of 18 January 2000,

31 Jan 2000 : Column: 413W

Official Report, column 823, for what reason the (a) health and (b) other records of everyone employed at Nancekuke have not been kept. [106748]

Mr. Spellar [holding answer 24 January 2000]: In my statement, I explained that we are not aware of any comprehensive database from which to obtain the sum total of people employed at Nancekuke over the period in question. It is, however, the case that at least some individual personal files relating to former employees at Nancekuke have been kept and are held at the Defence Storage and Distribution Centre (Llangennech). We are not aware of the whereabouts of any separate medical records.

Earl's Court

Mr. Duncan Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department paid for the use of the Earl's Court facilities in each of the last five years. [106500]

Mr. Hoon [holding answer 24 January 2000]: The MOD has not incurred any expenditure for the use of the Earl's Court facilities over the last five years.

Service Personnel (NHS Treatment)

Mr. Viggers: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what priority service personnel are given for treatment within the National Health Service. [107446]

Mr. Spellar: I will write to the hon. Member and a copy of my letter will be placed in the Library of the House.

Defence Helicopter Flying School

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what is the value of the PFI contract at the Defence Helicopter Flying School; and what is the length of the contract. [100284]

Mr. Spellar: The value of the Defence Helicopter Flying School PFI contract is in the region of £500 million at current prices. I am withholding the exact value of the contract under Exemption 11 of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information. The contract period is 15 years from 1 April 1997.


Employment Relations Act 1999

Mr. Bennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry which sections of the Employment Relations Act 1999 have been implemented and on what date; and what is the timetable for the implementation of the remaining sections. [107477]

Mr. Alan Johnson: The table shows which sections of the Employment Relations Act 1999 have been brought into force and on what date.

ProvisionDescriptionBrought into forceS.I. Number
s.2Detriment related to trade union membership25 October 19991999/2830
s.3Blacklists25 October 19991999/2830
s.7Maternity and parental leave15 December 19991999/2830
s.8Time off for dependants15 December 19991999/2830
s.9Consequential amendments15 December 19991999/2830
s.13(1) to (3)Interpretation25 October 19991999/2830
s.18(1) to (5)Agreement to exclude dismissal rights25 October 19991999/2830
s.18(6)Agreement to exclude dismissal rights30 September 19991999/2509
s.19Part-time work: discrimination25 October 19991999/2830
s.20Part-time work: code of practice25 October 19991999/2830
s.21Code of practice: supplemental25 October 19991999/2830
s.22National minimum wage: communities25 October 19991999/2830
s.23Power to confer rights on individuals25 October 19991999/2830
s.26ACAS: general duty25 October 19991999/2830
s.27ACAS: reports25 October 19991999/2830
s.28Abolition of Commissioners25 October 19991999/2830
s.29The Certification Officer25 October 19991999/2830
s.30Partnerships at work25 October 19991999/2830
s.31Employment agencies25 October 19991999/2830
s.32Employment rights: employment outside Great Britain25 October 19991999/2830
s.33Unfair dismissal: special and additional awards25 October 19991999/2830
s.34(4)Indexation of amounts, &c.25 October 19991999/2830
s.34(1)(2) (3)(5)(6)Indexation of amounts, &c.17 December 19991999/3374
s.35Guarantee payments25 October 19991999/2830
s.36(1) (partially)Sections 33 to 35: consequential25 October 19991999/2830
s.36(a) (to extent that not already in force)(2)(3)Sections 33 to 35: consequential17 December 19991999/3374
s.37Compensatory award etc.: removal of limit in certain cases25 October 19991999/2830
s.38Transfer of undertakings9 September 19991999/2509
s.39Minimum wage: information25 October 19991999/2830
s.40Dismissal of school staff25 October 19991999/2830
s.42Orders and regulations9 September 19991999/2509
s.43 Finance25 October 19991999/2830
s.44 (partially)Repeals
Sch.2Union membership: detriment25 October 19991999/2830
Sch.4Leave for family reasons etc.15 December 19991999/2830
Sch.6The Certification Officer25 October 19991999/2830
Sch.7 (partially)Employment agencies25 October 19991999/2830
Sch.9 (partially)Repeals25 October 19991999/2830

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The Maternity and Parental Leave etc. Regulations (S.I. 1999/3312) were made on 10 December 1999 under powers in the Employment Rights Act 1996, as amended by sections 7 and 9 and Schedule 4 of the Employment Relations Act 1999. They came into force on 15 December 1999.

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The first order under section 34 of the 1999 Act, the Employment Rights (Increase of Limits) Order (S.I. 1999/3375) was made on 17 December 1999 and will come into force on 1 February 2000.

The Government's intentions for implementing the remaining provisions of the 1999 Act were set out in the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Bradford, North (Mr. Rooney) on 21 October 1999, Official Report, column 613W.


Mrs. Brinton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment he has made of the economic (a) advantages and (b) disadvantages of a public support scheme for solar electricity such as that which operates in Germany. [107480]

Mrs. Liddell: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given to the hon. Member for Blaby (Mr. Robathan) on 27 January 2000, Official Report, column 290W.

Mrs. Brinton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry which solar photovoltaic applications can be connected to the national grid via a regular socket; what statutory powers apply to such connections; and what assessment he has made of their potential contribution to meeting the Government's target of achieving 10 per cent. of electricity supply from renewable sources by 2010. [107479]

Mrs. Liddell: Under the Electricity Supply Regulations 1988 (SI 1057 and amendments), "no person may operate a generating plan in parallel with a Regional Electricity Company's (REC's) [Public Electricity Supplier's (PES's)] system without the written agreement of the REC [PES]". This includes small PV generators connected to a socket outlet.

Technical requirements for connection of embedded generators are covered by Engineering Recommendation G59--"Recommendations for the Connection of Embedded Generating Plant to the Regional Electricity Companies' Distribution Systems"--published by the Electricity Association. Following discussions between the electrical supply and photovoltaic industries, we understand that the Electricity Association are shortly to publish a draft Engineering Recommendation G77--"UK Technical Guidelines for Inverter Connected Single-Phase Photovoltaic (PV) Generators up to 5kVA". In both documents it is implied that a fixed connection should be made from the embedded generator to an appropriate connection point at, or leading to, the distribution system.

With respect to the second part of the question, I refer my hon. Friend to a recent assessment by my Department. This has been reported in "New & Renewable Energy: Prospects in the UK for the 21st Century. Supporting Analysis. March 1999. ETSU R-122". We have not carried out any specific assessment looking at PV systems connected to socket outlets.

UK Competitiveness Indicators

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what measures he proposes to address the criticism of United Kingdom management made in his report, the United Kingdom Competitiveness Indicators 1999; and if he will make a statement. [106521]

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Ms Hewitt: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry and the Secretary of State for Education and Employment have decided to establish the Council for Excellence in Management and Leadership, under the Chairmanship of Sir Anthony Cleaver, with the overall aim of enabling UK managers to attain and sustain world class performance. It will achieve this by identifying the main issues for management and leadership and the key stakeholders who need to take action. It will address, in particular, the needs of small firms. The Council will review the quality of management education and training, advise on action to be taken, and report annually to Government and stakeholders on progress.

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