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Food Safety Inspections

Mr. Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on how food products from those parts of the

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EU where regulation is poorly applied will be inspected by the relevant UK authority when breaches of food safety are found. [9432]

Ms Blears: I have been asked to reply.

Food products from the European Union, which are freely distributed within the Community, are not subject to any special checks within the United Kingdom. Foods imported from the EU are subject to the same controls and enforcement activity as UK produced food. Where problems are known, checks can be made on EU goods in transit (including at the border) and at destination. Where foods produced within the EU are found to be in breach of EU law, the Community and "competent authority" in the producer's member state is informed via the rapid alert or single liaison arrangements of the Official Control of Foodstuffs Additional Measures Directive (93/99/EEC).

In the case of meat and meat products, which are subject to veterinary checks, any breaches of EU law are reported in a letter to the Chief Veterinary Officer of the producer's member state, which is copied to the Community, under Directive 89/662.


Staff Secondments

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many (a) secondments there were from her Department to a business in the private sector; and (b) secondments there have been from the private sector to her Department in each of the last five years; and if she will provide a list of (i) the companies involved and (ii) the location of the companies. [8345]

Ms Hewitt: From the records held centrally in the Department, the total number of inward secondments from the private sector and outward secondments from my Department to the private sector commenced in each of the last five years from 1 May 1997 up to the current date, together with the names of the companies involved in each year are in the table that has been placed in the Library.

It is not possible from central records to give the location in each case and attempting to do so from other sources would first require individual checking of each of the 341 record files, many of which are now in archives. If there are specific companies on which the hon. Member would like information regarding their location I would be happy to help.

Departmental Spending (Deprived Areas)

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much of the expenditure by her Department in each of the years (a) 1996–97, (b) 1997–98, (c) 1998–99, (d) 1999–2000, (e) 2000–01, (f) 2001–02 and (g) 2002–03 (estimated) was allocated with reference to the Index of Multiple Deprivation; which expenditure programmes are allocated with respect to this Index and other measures of relative geographic deprivation; and if she will make a statement. [8939]

Ms Hewitt [holding answer 25 October 2001]: The Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD) was announced by the former Department of the Environment, Transport

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and the Regions on 22 August 2000. The following expenditure programmes by my Department are allocated with reference to this index:

£ million

Phoenix Fund1.748(2)1519
SBS Core Services funding(3)n/a7.510

(1) The figures for 2002–03 are estimates

(2) The 2001–02 figure for the Phoenix Fund is an estimate

(3) The SBS Core Services funding is delivered through the Business Links network. The amount shown is solely that part of the budget referring to the IMD; the majority of the budget is determined by the number of local businesses. SBS Core Services funding was not allocated on a deprivation basis in 2000–01

(4) DTI will have effective responsibility for all grant in aid to Regional Development Agencies from November 2001. Certain RDA expenditure programmes remain with DTLR until April 2002.

In addition, while Structural Funds are not allocated on the basis of deprivation, eligibility for the urban strand of Objective 2 of the European Structural Funds in 2000–06 was in part designated using the 1998 Index of Local Deprivation (the predecessor of the 2000 IMD). Areas eligible for the Structural Funds used this index as one of a series of indicators (e.g. unemployment rate, industrial decline, etc) in designating Objective 2 status. Also within the Structural Fund Programmes, the IMD was used to target resources to meet the needs of the most needy communities in urban and rural area.

Some DTI programmes take account of factors which are associated with deprivation: for example, the Regional Innovation Fund of £54 million allocated to RDAs in 2001–02 took account of unemployment, GDP and R&D spending.

From April 2002, the RDAs will be funded through a single pot, which will take account of the IMD as well as related factors such as labour market indicators. The figure shown here for 2002–03 is for the roughly 28 per cent. of the £2,550 million single pot which depends directly on the IMD.

As part of the Government's fuel poverty strategy a working group was set up to look at issues surrounding extension of the gas network. This working group is currently considering how the Index of Multiple Deprivation may be used in combination with other information to prioritise areas where serious consideration should be given to extending the gas network, or taking other measures to improve domestic heating and energy efficiency, with a view to alleviating fuel poverty.

Policy Advice

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what role the Institute of Management and the Institute of Directors play in contributing to policy decisions. [10094]

Ms Hewitt: Both institutes are regularly consulted by my Department about policy issues.

Stem Cell Research

Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many stem cell lines are available for research in (a) the United Kingdom and (b) the United States of America. [8178]

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Ms Hewitt: The National Institute of Health in the US has published a list of 64 potential human embryonic cell lines that can be used in the US to conduct research using public funds. These cell lines were derived in the US, Sweden, Australia, India and Israel. A small number of these lines are being actively studied by researchers in the UK, although information about the import and use of stem cell lines in the UK is not collected centrally.

Liberalisation of Trade in Services Committee

Mr. Challen: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations she has received from the Liberalisation of Trade in Services Committee in the last 12 months. [10277]

Ms Hewitt: The Liberalisation of Trade in Services Committee, a committee of International Financial Services, London (an independent member-based organisation funded by UK-based financial and related services firms), was established in 1982 as a means for the Government to consult the private sector on international trade in services. Over the past 12 months the committee has met twice at chairman/CEO level and four times at working level. Officials from the Treasury, DTI and FCO have attended as observers. Members of the Committee, one of several private sector bodies that have made representations to my Department calling for liberalisation in this area, also met my noble Friend the Minister for Trade and Investment in early September.

Foreign Investment

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry for each year between 1979 and 2001, what was (a) the total and (b) the proportion in world terms of accumulated foreign investment in (i) Britain, (ii) the eurozone and (iii) the remaining developed countries. [10132]

Ms Hewitt: The two tables show the value of inward direct investment into the UK, the eurozone and other developed countries, and also the percentage these values represent of total world investment.

Inward direct investment position

$ million
YearUKEurozoneOther developed countriesWorld

Inward direct investment position

Percentage of world total
Other developed countries323636333131

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