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Surveying Agreement

Mr. Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the working of the agreement relating to co-operation in mapping, charting and geodesy signed at Feltham and Washington on 4 and 18 July 1985. [100344]

Mr. Battle: My noble Friend the Under-Secretary will write to the hon. Member.

British Citizenship

Mr. Key: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many (a) officials in his Department, (b) officials in other Departments and (c) others are currently working on the bill to restore British citizenship to the people of British Dependent Territories. [100312]

Mr. Battle: A joint Steering Group of Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Home Office officials has been established to work on the British citizenship offer to be contained in the Overseas Territories Bill. The Steering Group membership comprises a core of some 10 people of whom six are FCO officials and the rest from the Home Office. They are supported by other members of the Overseas Territories Department of the FCO who are involved in the implementation of the White Paper. Consultations are being held with Overseas Territory Governments.

Chinese President (State Visit)

Mr. Maples: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what written record was kept of the (a) proceedings and (b) conclusions reached at meetings between the Metropolitan Police and his Department's officials in relation to the Chinese President's State Visit. [100420]

Mr. Battle: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to him on 4 November 1999, Official Report, columns 271-72W.

"Your Britain Your Europe" Campaign

Mr. Maples: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs to what extent the costs of the "Your Britain Your Europe" campaign and the tour of the Minister of State, the hon. Member for Leicester, East (Mr. Vaz), of the UK are being met from public funds. [100319]

Mr. Vaz: The costs of the "Your Britain Your Europe" Roadshow are estimated at £60,000, plus travel and accommodation.

It is Government policy to set out the benefits of the UK's membership of the EU. One of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's publicly declared performance targets is:


The Roadshow is excellent value for money, with 23 events in 11 cities in five days. We are working with a number of business, educational and other organisations which are providing their time and resources free of charge.

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Sri Lanka

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has received concerning the killings in Madhu Church, Manar, Sri Lanka. [100134]

Mr. Hain: None. I deeply regret the loss of civilian life in this incident. I urge all parties to this tragic conflict to do their utmost to avoid civilian casualties.

Export Licences (Bahrain)

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement about the six ML1 SIELS and one ML1 open individual export licences for exports to Bahrain this year. [100135]

Mr. Hain: I refer the hon. Member to the written answer I gave on 24 November 1999, Official Report, columns 148-49W.

SOLICITOR-GENERAL

David Cocks and Jonathan Goldberg

Mr. Pickthall: To ask the Solicitor-General what were the total sums received from public funds by David Cocks and Jonathan Goldberg in the period from the beginning of 1994 to the latest date for which he has figures. [99331]

The Solicitor-General: I will write to my hon. Friend shortly.

ENVIRONMENT, TRANSPORT AND THE REGIONS

Heathrow Airport

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions when he expects to announce the decision on Part 2 of the second stage consultation on options for changes to the preferential use of Heathrow Airport's runways at night. [99218]

Mr. Mullin: The Government announced their decision on 23 November 1999, Official Report, columns 62-65W.

Homelessness (Merseyside)

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions (1) what the primary reasons were for families becoming homeless within Merseyside in each year since 1993; [98601]

Mr. Mullin: Data are reported to the Department each quarter by local authorities on their activity under the homelessness provisions of the 1985 and 1996 Housing

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Acts. These identify the main reasons for loss of last settled home of homeless households accepted by local authorities as in priority need. Further classification by

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gender, or household type, is not collected. The following table summarises information provided by authorities in Merseyside since 1993:

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Homeless households in Merseyside authorities: reasons for loss of last settled home

199319941995199619971998
Relatives/Friends no longer able or willing to accommodate
Parents1,285895621483336347
Friends284440293228195173
Breakdown of relationship
Violent476786482410390395
Non-violent16617017115812086
Arrears of
Mortgage203198189177127141
Rent372843272657
End of assured shorthold tenancy204246320289253230
Loss of other rented/tied housing187233242184339286
Institution or care1601741301439583
Other reasons589435435484212197
Total households accepted3,5913,3052,9262,5832,0931,995

Note:

Prior to 1997, reported figures include a small number of households not in priority need.


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Homelessness (Sefton)

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many children formed part of families made homeless in Sefton in each year since 1996. [98600]

Mr. Mullin: Data are reported to the Department each quarter by local authorities on their activity under the homelessness provisions of the 1985 and 1996 Housing Acts. Information is not collected on the numbers of children in homeless families. The following table provides for Sefton the available data on the numbers of households with dependent children accepted as homeless.

Households accepted by the authority as unintentionally homeless and in priority need

199619971998
Total166106109
Number with dependent children1097578
Of which:
1 child--2529
2 children--2728
3 children--2221

Genetically Modified Crops

Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will place in the Library a copy of the voluntary agreement on the commercial growing of genetically modified crops between his Department and SCIMAC, which he announced on 5 November. [99543]

Mr. Meacher: Yes. The details of the voluntary agreement on the commercial growing of genetically modified crops between my Department and SCIMAC are publicly available and a copy will be placed in the Library.

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Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will list research contracts controlled by his Department for work associated with the genetically modified crop farm-scale trials. [99536]

Mr. Meacher: The Department currently has three contracts in place covering farm scale trials of genetically modified crops and farmland wildlife, worth £3.3 million. The contracts are as follows:

ContractLead contractorStart dateCompletion date
Winter oilseed rapeInstitute of Arable Crops Research9 April 199931 December 2003
Spring oilseed rapeScottish Crop Research Institute9 April 199931 December 2002
MaizeNERC Institute of Terrestrial Ecology9 April 199931 December 2002


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