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Mr. Winnick: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what steps he has taken to inform all benefit offices (a) about his statement on compensation for former POWs held by the Japanese and (b) the exemption of this compensation from social security payment regulations. 
Mr. Bayley: The contents of a War Pensions Agency press release, which summarises the statement made on 7 November by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence, and which explains how claims to the Agency for the ex-gratia payment should be made, have been made available to all benefit office staff.
Subject to normal consultation with the Social Security Advisory Committee and the local authority associations, we intend to amend the income-related benefit regulations in advance of the ex-gratia payments being made. As is normal practice, guidance will be issued to local offices 23 days in advance of the legislation coming into effect.
Mr. Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what percentage of gross domestic product in each OECD country is spent on matters which within the UK are the responsibility of his Department. 
Angela Eagle: The OECD publishes comparative information on public social expenditure in its social expenditure database. There is no accurate way to strip out non-social security expenditure so as to arrive at a DSS-equivalent figure.
We have now instituted a regular series of measurement exercises to provide an up to date estimate of the level of fraud in Income Support and Jobseeker's Allowance. The results of this exercise are published regularly by the Government Statistical Service.
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Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will make a statement about the awarding of contracts for the contents of the Millennium Dome to a company headed by Mr. Tim Pyne. 
Janet Anderson: This matter is currently under investigation by the New Millennium Experience Company and the police. It is not therefore possible to comment at this stage. A statement will be made to the House in due course.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what discussions have taken place between officials in his Department and Lord Falconer, the Minister of State, Cabinet Office regarding the report of the National Audit Office on the Millennium Dome. 
Janet Anderson [holding answer 10 November 2000]: National Audit Office (NAO) reports are routinely circulated in draft to the Accounting Officers of all parties concerned, and comments are requested to ensure factual accuracy. Comments on factual accuracy from my Department, incorporating those from Ministers, including the Minister of State, Cabinet Office, were passed on to the team drafting the National Audit Office Report.
Mr. Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will make a statement on the party planned for the Millennium Dome on 31 December, indicating the financial arrangements agreed between the New Millennium Experience Company and the Ministry of Sound. 
Janet Anderson [holding answer 30 October 2000]: The Dome will open to the public from 9.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. on 31 December. The Ministry of Sound event, in venues adjacent to the Dome, will begin at 9.00 p.m. after the Dome has closed. The risks and costs associated with staging the event (including policing, security, catering, medical etc.) are being fully borne by the Ministry of Sound. The New Millennium Experience Company (NMEC) has no exposure to losses arising from the Ministry of Sound event, and the Ministry of Sound are covering the costs to NMEC of providing the venues and the use of the technical facilities in those venues. This is an excellent value for money deal for NMEC which provides a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Britain's youth and music.
Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will list the criteria and safeguards applied to ensure fairness and probity in the awarding of contracts in respect of the Millennium Dome. 
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Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what deadline the Millennium Commission has requested for the conclusion of discussions with Legacy plc over the prospective purchase of the Dome. 
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to his answer of 30 October 2000, Official Report, columns 331-32W, what research has been conducted since May 1997 by the Broadcasting Standards Commission into public attitudes towards the portrayal of violence in broadcast programmes. 
The BSC's recently published Briefing Update Number 6, "Matters of Offence", (published as part of the BSC's continuing monitoring of public perception of broadcasting, and including results from opinion pools and panels of viewers) includes a section on violence.
Janet Anderson: Digital terrestrial television (DTT) can already be received in parts of High Peak. DTT is broadcast from the Winter Hill, Sheffield, Chesterfield and Emley Moor transmitters and maps showing the predicted coverage from each of these sites have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses on CD-ROM. The BBC and Independent Television Commission are now considering ways of improving DTT coverage across the UK. The provision of cable services is a commercial matter for the cable operators. I understand from the ITC that no operator has plans to supply cable to the High Peak Area. Terrestrial Channel 5 services are not universally available in the area but are carried free-to-air on DTT and satellite platforms.
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Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what his policy is on encouraging television subtitle-users to take up digital television prior to analogue television being switched off. 
Janet Anderson: The Broadcasting Act 1996 sets out a target of 50 per cent. of subtitling of digital terrestrial television programmes by the 10th anniversary of the start of the service. This will give viewers access to additional free-to-air and subscription channels with subtitles if they switch to digital terrestrial television. More generally, we are working with the broadcasting industry and consumer groups to ensure that viewers get accurate and sensible information about digital television. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced an agreed set of clear and simple messages on 31 October. We are keeping the rate of take-up of digital television under review to assess what further action might be needed to encourage take-up by all viewers.
I fully support the aims of the International Year of Volunteers. Everyone benefits from volunteering and the Prime Minister has issued a challenge to employers to give their employees paid time off to work in the community. My Department has accepted this challenge and issued a notice to all staff advising them that they may take at least one day of paid leave a year to undertake voluntary activity.
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