|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
1 May 2001 : Column: 565W
|Year||Index (1987 = 100)||Annual percentage change|
Mr. Worthington: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will order an inquiry by his Department into the conduct of Chester Street Insurance Holdings and related companies prior to liquidation. 
Mr. Andrew Smith [holding answer 29 April 2001]: In pursuing their duties to creditors of identifying, protecting and maximising assets, the Government would expect a provisional liquidator to report any suspicions of impropriety to the appropriate authorities.
Mr. Chaytor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what criteria are applied by the investors' compensation scheme to determine if a decision on an application for compensation can be referred to a panel of non-executive directors for review; 
Miss Melanie Johnson: Complaints about maladministration may be addressed, successfully: to the investors compensation scheme manager responsible or to a more senior member of staff; to the Chief Executive or to the board; to the scheme's Independent Investigator. The criteria for all stages in this review process are whether the claim has been handled properly and fairly. If deficiencies in the scheme's handling of a claim or in its conduct are found, these are assessed to check if the decision itself should be reviewed. The criteria for the
1 May 2001 : Column: 566W
review of a decision itself are whether the scheme's rules have been applied properly and fairly. A decision is reviewed by, successively: the manager responsible; a more senior manager; the Chief Executive. In addition, any investor may challenge the scheme's decision by judicial review.
There are no plans to review the effectiveness of these arrangements. They were introduced after the financial services compensation scheme assumed operational control of the investors compensation scheme on 1 February. The new scheme reviewed the complaints arrangements and removed the stage of the panel of non-executive directors before a complaint could reach the independent investigator.
Sir Nicholas Lyell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what representations he has received on (a) accountancy and (b) other professional charges incurred by taxpayers in calculating and submitting tax returns in respect of capital gains tax; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: The Government keep all taxes under review and decisions will be made as part of the normal Budget process. There are currently no plans to introduce 100 per cent. first-year allowances for IT-embedded investments.
Mr. Edward Davey: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to reform sections 589A and 589B of the Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988 with regard to (a) extension of the relief to an employee's spouse, (b) extension of the relief to part-time employees and (c) changing the minimum two year employment period for qualification. 
Dawn Primarolo: The Government keep all taxes under review and decisions will be made as part of the normal Budget process. There are currently no plans to reform sections 589A and 589B of the Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988.
1 May 2001 : Column: 567W
Mr. Gibb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many people were convicted of arms control offences in (a) 1996, (b) 1997, (c) 1998, (d) 1999 and (e) 2000; and what the average sentence was. 
Dawn Primarolo: During the relevant periods the following people were convicted for arms export control offences (a) 2, (b) 1, (c) 1, (d) nil, (e) nil. For those given a custodial sentence, the average was 30 months. The average fine was £15,000.
Mr. Cohen: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list the PFI and PPP totals envisaged for all projects, including London Underground, indicating how much in each case the proposed public spending content is. 
Mr. Andrew Smith: The latest Budget statement contained a breakdown by Department of the estimated private sector investment resulting from signed contracts, and those expected to reach preferred bidder stage within the next three years. A more detailed breakdown of these investments can be found in table C16 and table C17 of the FSBR 2001.
In addition to these PFIs, there are two major public- private partnerships envisaged, London Underground (LU) and National Air Traffic Services. The financial requirements of London Underground under the public- private partnership will not finally be known until negotiations with preferred bidders have been completed. It is still too early to give the precise investment associated with NATS.
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to inform schools involved in the national school fruit scheme about the advice from the Chief Medical Officer, issued in 1997 and 1998, about pesticide residues and the peeling of fruit and vegetables. 
Yvette Cooper: Fruit for the national school fruit scheme (NSFS) will be sourced from growers whose produce is grown according to the principles of integrated crop management, where pesticide inputs are minimised. In the case of United Kingdom fruit, only that from producers who meet the standards of the assured produce scheme will be used. Imported fruit used by the scheme will be required to meet similar standards.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) was established in April 2000 to protect public health from risks which may arise in connection with the consumption of food, including risks caused by the way in which it is produced or supplied, and otherwise to protect the interests of consumers in relation to food. We have consulted the FSA extensively on the detail of the NSFS including details on
1 May 2001 : Column: 568W
the preparation of the fruit. The FSA and Chief Medical Officer have approved the development of the NSFS, and in particular the FSA has advised that it would not agree to the use of any pesticide if fruit or vegetables treated with it have to be washed or peeled to make them safe to eat.
The Chief Medical Officer's original precautionary advice about washing and peeling fruit and vegetables was issued in 1997 in the light of research and surveillance on pesticide residues conducted at the time. The long-standing advice to wash fruit before consumption is to ensure that it is clean, and this still holds. However, the situation with pesticides has moved on and many of the pesticides of particular concern have been withdrawn or are undergoing review.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|