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Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on what date her Department began to record the basic facts of meetings between Ministers in her Department and outside interest groups as required under paragraph 63 of the Ministerial Code of Conduct and Guidance on procedures for Ministers; and in what form this information is recorded. 
Ms Hewitt: DTI Ministers meet a wide range of outside interest groups and individuals in the course of their official duties and I can confirm that the facts of such meetings are recorded in accordance with the Ministerial Code. This is a long established practice.
(15) Defined as a case which was either successful or dismissed at a hearing (either for being out of scope or other reasons).
(16) Due to changes to the ETS database of case records, no statistical information is available for this period.
Cases with multiple jurisdictions are only counted once.
Employment Tribunals Service
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Ms Hewitt: The Employment Tribunals Service, the government agency that provides the administrative support to the Employment Tribunals, seeks to ensure that 75 per cent. of single tribunal applications reach a first hearing within 26 weeks of receipt. However, due to the complexity of individual cases and the need to ensure proper judicial consideration it is not possible to ensure specific periods of time are achieved in individual cases if justice is to be done.
Clare Short: Twenty-four counties have now qualified for relief under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative, the latest being Ethiopia which qualified last week. Three countries have completed the process. More than $54 billion of debt relief has been agreed for those countries, which together owe about $75 billion, so a major part of their debt has been written off. The money released is being spent on poverty reduction. Social expenditure in these countries is projected to rise by some $1.7 billion per year, on average.
Clare Short: In Sierra Leone the UK is the leading player in providing humanitarian aid and help to reconstruct the institutions of government. We are supporting a wide range of reforms including better policing, the anti-corruption commission and preparations for elections due in May 2002.
10. Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent assessment she has made of the (a) actual and (b) potential value of remittances from expatriates working in the UK as a contribution to aid to developing countries. 
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Clare Short: Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that declared remittances from expatriates in the UK to developing countries in 2000 were £1.25 billion. This represents an increase of about 50 per cent. on 1996 figures.
11. Hugh Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on the World Trade Organisation's response to the proposal in paragraph 229 of her White Paper, "Eliminating World Poverty: making globalisation work for the poor". 
Clare Short: The ministerial declaration from the WTO meeting in Doha made strong commitments to the interests of developing countries. The ministerial declaration resulted in agreement on the need to reduce subsidies and barriers to trade in agriculture, manufacturing and services, which could potentially produce enormous benefits for developing countries. The agreement on TRIPS recognised the need for a flexible interpretation of TRIPS to enable developing countries to protect public health. The challenge now is to ensure that these commitments become a reality.
Action on some 50 measures form the developing countries' Implementation agenda from the Uruguay Round.
On agriculture, commitment to real progress on market access and action on export subsidies.
Continuing negotiations on services, which offer real prospects for developing countries to make substantial benefits through liberalisation and economic growth.
Commitment to tackle tariff peaks, high tariffs and tariff escalation as well as non-tariff barriers.
A commitment to a work programme on trade, debt and finance.
Systematic attention throughout the text to the issue of capacity building.
A comprehensive set of commitments on the particular needs of the least-developed countries, including a commitment to the objective of duty and quota free market access plus a commitment to make their accession process faster.
A review of Special and Differential treatmentacross all WTO business areasto strengthen these provisions and make them more precise, operational and effective.
Clare Short: The UK is committed to negotiations which bring real benefits to developing countries. The ministerial declaration includes a number of commitments in areas of vital importance to developing countries
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including, agricultural liberalisation and action on tariff peaks for industrial goods. Of particular importance is the agreement on TRIPS and public health.
The ministerial declaration also places a heavy requirement on donor countries to meet the trade-related technical assistance requirements, both in terms of financial resources but also to ensure effective delivery. This will require changes in working practices by both bilateral and multilateral agencies. The UK has taken the lead in this area and has pledged £20 million over the next three years for trade-related technical assistance. We hope other countries will make corresponding pledges.
17. Tony Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps she is taking to implement resolutions of the WTO meeting at Doha to promote fairer terms of trade for developing countries. 
Clare Short: The UK has been working for many years to support a round which will benefit developing countries. The ministerial declaration includes a number of commitments in areas of vital importance to developing countries including, for example, agricultural liberalisation and action on tariff peaks for industrial goods. Of particular importance is the agreement on TRIPS and public health.
The ministerial declaration also places a heavy requirement on donor countries to meet the trade-related technical assistance requirements, both in terms of financial resources but also to ensure effective delivery. This will require changes in working practices by both bilateral and multilateral agencies. The UK has taken the lead in this area and has pledged £20 million over the next three years for trade-related technical assistance. We hope other donor countries will make corresponding pledges.
30. Mr. Win Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will make a statement on the implications of the Doha ministerial meeting on trade for her Department. 
Clare Short: The ministerial declaration represents a welcome development agenda for multilateral trade talks for which we have worked for a number of years. But this is only the beginning of negotiations. To achieve Development round we will continue to work to try to ensure that these commitments become a reality.
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