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Margaret Hodge: Information on VAT paid by further education colleges in England was not recorded centrally by the Further Education Funding Council (FEFC), so is not available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will make a statement on the results of pilot studies into financial support for further education college students in England. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The only form of financial assistance for students in further education currently being piloted is the Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA), which is available in 56 local education authorities. The allowance is payable to eligible young people not just in colleges but also in school sixth forms.
Early findings from the evaluation show that EMA appears to have raised participation in education. The statistical analysis estimates an average gain in participation in pilot areas compared with control areas, among EMA eligible young people, of around 5 percentage points.
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Mr. Chidgey: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what change in funding (a) sixth form colleges and (b) further education colleges in England would receive for 16 to 19-year-old provision if funded at the level of sixth forms in schools. 
Margaret Hodge: It is not possible to estimate reliably what change in funding would result if sixth form colleges and other FE colleges were to be funded at the level of school sixth forms. Comparable funding figures to do this are not available.
The latest estimate of the average delegated funding per sixth form student in schools per year for 200102 is £3,330, and the total funding per full time equivalent (FTE) student in FE sector colleges per year for 200102 is £3,660. However, the FE unit funding figure includes total public funding allocated for further education, while the schools' figure is based only on delegated funds and excludes other funding the school receives centrally from LEAs which impacts on post-16 students. The figures therefore cannot be used to make comparisons. Also, separate figures for sixth form colleges and tertiary colleges are not available.
Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what is the estimated final cost to her Department of ending the education action zone scheme; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Timms: All education action zones will complete their agreed full statutory term. Each education action zone (EAZ) will need to make arrangements to dispose of any assets and to meet any employment liabilities in accordance with guidance issued by the Department for Education and Skills in the EAZ handbook.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate she has made of the impact of the climate change levy on carbon dioxide emissions (a) to date and (b) over the next five years. 
The climate change levy has only been operational since April and no assessment of delivered emissions reduction has yet been undertaken. However, the climate change levy package is forecast to deliver reductions in CO 2 emission by 5 million tonnes of carbon a year by 2010.
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Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to include policies to combat fuel poverty in her Department's aims and objectives. 
Margaret Beckett [holding answer 15 October 2001]: My Department gives high priority to policies to tackle fuel poverty as part of our provisional objective of promoting more sustainable management and use of natural resources including energy.
The UK Fuel Poverty Strategy was published on 21 November. This set out the Government's goal to seek an end to the problem of fuel poverty, with the first target to ensure that by 2010, no vulnerable householdolder people, families, disabled and long-term sickneed risk ill health due to a cold home.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what representations she received from the National Farmers' Union regarding the choice of Lord Haskins to conduct a study of rural recovery, prior to his appointment. 
Margaret Beckett [holding answer 26 October 2001]: The suggestion that my noble Friend Lord Haskins should conduct the study was first made by the NFU in Cumbria to my hon. Friend the Member for Workington (Tony Cunningham) who passed this view to the Prime Minister. Subsequently, NFU representatives confirmed to the Prime Minister that they would welcome the appointment of Lord Haskins to this role.
Mr. Moore: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for each country where foot and mouth disease exists (a) what regions are affected, (b) what is the amount of (i) sheep meat, (ii) beef, (iii) pig meat and (iv) other meat products imported directly to the UK since the first outbreak of foot and mouth disease in the United Kingdom this year and (c) what additional bio-security measures have been implemented to check imports from that country since February. 
Mr. Morley: Listed are the countries that are affected with foot and mouth disease and from which European Community legislation would normally permit imports of meat of foot and mouth disease (FMD) susceptible species. Community legislation permits imports from regions not affected by FMD and these regions may change if the disease status of individual countries improves or deteriorates. Foot and mouth disease exists in other countries but they are not listed here as imports of meat are not permitted from those countries.
Table B shows the tonnage of bovine and ovine meat imported into the UK between February 2001 and September 2001. There were no recorded imports of porcine meat or meat of any other FMD susceptible species from the countries listed during that period.
Adequate measures are already in place to control legally presented imports of meat and meat products. All meat imported into the UK from third countries must enter at designated UK Border Inspection Posts (BIPs) where it
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is subject to veterinary checks, to establish that the products meet EU import conditions. Consignments that do not meet appropriate import requirements are rejected.
When outbreaks of foot and mouth disease occur in third countries, safeguard measures are taken banning the importation of all FMD susceptible meat from the entire country. Once the situation stabilises and sufficient guarantees provided, restrictions are lifted accordingly. All enforcement authorities are kept informed of the situation.
Where outbreaks of FMD occur in other EU countries, restrictions on the export of products of FMD susceptible species from that country are put in place in accordance with Community legislation. Port health authorities and local authorities are requested to undertake checks at port of entry and at premises of destination to ensure that products not eligible for trade are detected.
Botswana: Imports banned from the whole country except from designated zones which do not necessarily follow any distinct administrative area and are only described as 'veterinary disease control zones 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 and 18'.
Brazilimports banned from the whole country except the states of Parana, minas Gerais (but not the regional delegations of Oliveira, Passos, Sa~o Gonçalo de Sapucai, Setelagoas and Bambui), Sa~o Paulo, Espirito Santo, Mato Grosso do Sul (except for the municipalities of Sonora, Aquidauana, Bodoquena, Bonito, Caracol, Coxim, Jardim, Ladario, Miranda, Pedro Gomes, Porto Murtinho, Rio Negro, Rio Verde of Mato Grosso and Corumba), Santa Catarina Goias and the regional units of Cuiaba (except for the municipalities of San Antonio de Leverger, Nossa Senhora do Livramento, Pocone and Bara~ de Melagaço), Caceres (except for the municipality of Caceres), Lucan do Rio Verde, Rondonopolis (except for the municipality of Itiquiora), Barra do Garças and the Barra do Bugres in Mato Grosso.
Swaziland: Imports banned from the whole country except the area west of the 'red line' fences which extend northwards from the river Usutu to the frontier with South Africa west of Nkalashane and excluding the designated veterinary foot and mouth surveillance and vaccination control areas.
South Africa: Imports are banned from the following regionsthe part of the foot and mouth disease control area situated in the veterinary regions of Mpumlanga and northern provinces, in the district of Ingwavuma of the veterinary regions of Natal and in the border area with Botswana east of longitude 28o, and the district of Camperdown, in the province of Kwazulu-Natal.
Uruguay: Imports banned from the whole country. From 1 November 2001 import restrictions on de-boned and matured meat have been lifted. Prior to that date imports of certain categories of meat were permitted if they had been produced before specified dates.
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Zimbabwe: Imports banned from the whole country except the veterinary regions of Mashonaland West province, Mashonaland East province (including Chikomba district), Mashonaland Central province, Manicaland province (including only Makoni district), Midlands province (including only the Gweru, Kwekwe, Shurugwi, Chirimanzu and Zvishavane districts), Masvingo province (including only the districts of Gutu and Masvingo), Matabeleland South province (including only the Insiza, Bullimamangwe, Umzingwamange, Gwanda and West Nicholson districts) and Matabeleland North province (including only the districts of Bubi and Umgusa).
|Country||Bovine meat and offal (total)||Sheep meat and offal (total)|
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on what dates between 1 December 2000 and 20 February (a) MAFF officials and (b) trading standards officers visited Burnside Farm, Heddon-on-the-Wall; what the purpose of the visits was; and what reports they submitted. 
Margaret Beckett [holding answer 28 November 2001]: MAFF staff and Trading Standards Officers together visited Burnside Farm, Heddon-on-the-Wall on 22 December 2000 and 24 January 2001. Each of these visits was on welfare grounds and a report was produced on each occasion.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if (a) departmental officials, (b) persons acting on behalf of her Department and (c) military personnel involved in handling issues relating to foot and mouth disease were invited to sign a copy of the Official Secrets Act; and if she will make a statement. 
Margaret Beckett [holding answer 26 November 2001]: All civil servants, members of the armed forces, and those acting on behalf of the Department, are bound by the provisions of the Official Secrets Act and owe a duty of confidentiality to the Crown. There is therefore no requirement for such persons to sign a copy of the Official Secrets Act for work relating to foot and mouth disease.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she has received the report, "Observations on the Foot and Mouth Disease Outbreak in Cumbria 2001", by a former member of the Veterinary Investigation Service; and if she will make a statement. 
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Margaret Beckett [holding answer 1 November 2001]: I am aware of the report prepared by Mr. Richardson, a former employee, in which he compares the working methods adopted in dealing with the outbreak in 1967 and 2001.
The recommendations of the Northumberland Committee have been taken into account, as appropriate during the current outbreak. Inevitably, conditions have changed here and in Europe since the Northumberland Committee's report, and the outbreak is clearly different in nature and extent to the 196768 outbreak. These differences have been fully documented in a report undertaken by the Cabinet Office which is available on the DEFRA website: http://www.defra.gov.uk/footandmouth/ about/current/comparisons/1967a.asp. More generally, issues raised in Mr. Richardson's report should be looked at by the independent inquiries established by the Government.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will publish the evidence in her possession of cases where resistance by farmers to culling during the foot and mouth outbreak exacerbated the spread of the disease. 
Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many animal blood tests have to be completed before Devon can be declared free of foot and mouth disease; and when she expects them to be completed. 
Mr. Morley [holding answer 23 November 2001]: Sampling in Devon was completed in the week beginning 12 November but test results were awaited from three premises, involving 426 blood samples, in the week beginning 19 November. All the laboratory results have now been received and Devon was classed as foot and mouth disease free from 27 November. Contrary to the local press reports, no samples were lost and the programme was completed on schedule.
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