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Mr. Hepburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer of 24 April 2002, Official Report, column 259W, what discussions he had with ministerial colleagues regarding the financial and order book position of Cammell Laird prior to the announcement of AWSR Ltd. as preferred bidder for the Strategic Sealift Service on 26 October 2000. 
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what (a) consultation he has had with and (b) guidelines he has issued to the emergency services about dealing with large-scale terrorist attacks; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how many claims by ex-service men for pensions claimed as a result of ill health stemming from their service on (a) Christmas Island and (b) other nuclear test sites are outstanding; 
(3) how many ex-service men have been awarded pensions as a result of health problems resulting from their service on (a) Christmas Island and (b) other nuclear test sites; 
(4) how many claims by ex-service men for pensions based on health problems claimed to result from their service on (a) Christmas Island and (b) other nuclear test sites have been (i) refused and (ii) appealed to the Pensions Appeal Tribunal within the last five years; 
However, as at 16 May 2002, there were 21 claims to War Disablement Pension outstanding from ex-service men relating to service in the South Pacific (Christmas Island and the Malden Islands) and three from other nuclear test sites.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what target time scale he has for payment of backdated sums awarded by the Pensions Appeal Tribunal to ex-service men who have successfully appealed refusals
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of pensions claimed as a result of ill health stemming from their service on (a) Christmas Island and (b) other nuclear test sites; and how many awards have been paid within the target period. 
Statistics relating to clearance of awards following Pensions Appeal Tribunal decisions are not separately available for nuclear test veterans. However, figures are held relating to clearance of all cases following PAT decisions (successful and unsuccessful). Latest available figures show that of 3,204 cases cleared from April 2001 to December 2001, 2,679 were cleared within the 15-day target period.
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how far limitations on the use of C17s have been compensated for by the lease of heavy lift civilian aircraft; and what the costs have been for operations in (a) Afghanistan and (b) the Balkans. 
Mr. Ingram: The sheer size of the operational deployment in Afghanistan, the lack of viable surface lines of communication into a land-locked country together with a very significant sustainment package has required the use of both the heavy lift Antonov and IL-76 civilian aircraft in parallel with the C-17, so that military and political timelines could be achieved.
The cost of heavy lift civilian aircraft for operations into Afghanistan chartered by the Ministry of Defence up to 31 May 2002 is £35 million. No such aircraft have been chartered for operations in the Balkans.
Dr. Murrison: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the impact on spending on the Defence Medical Services of the Chancellor's recent announcement on NHS funding. [57510R]
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Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what communications his Department has had with the Chemring Group in respect of the manufacture of fragmentation land mines; and if he will list the contracts with their respective values his Department has had each year since 1997 with the Chemring Group. 
The Chemring Group of companies includes five separate groupings (Air/Land/Sea Countermeasures, Marine Safety, Defence Pyrotechnics, PW (Australia) and Aerospace Wiring Harness). The number and annual value of contracts placed by the MOD with the Chemring Group since 1997 are as follows:
|Number of contracts||Approximate value (£ million)|
Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what representations he has received from the Canadian Government on the state of purchased former RN submarines; what the cost was of estimated repairs; what the recommended cost was of maintaining these submarines in mothballs; what the actual cost was; what assessment he has made of the operational readiness of other mothballed assets; and if he will make a statement. 
Dr. Moonie: Ministry of Defence officials have not received any representations from the Canadian Government about the condition of the two ex Upholder Class submarines handed over to Canada, and as such have no information about the cost of repairs. Mothballing is not a term that is recognised. Assets are held following decommissioning for possible sale to other friendly and allied Governments. These assets are not operationally ready and they are not declared in our declared force levels. To maintain these assets prior to sale, the minimum amount of maintenance is performed on them to keep them seaworthy and safe.
The cost of maintaining the Upholder Class submarines before their reactivation is commercially sensitive and I am withholding the information in accordance with Exemption 13 of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information.
Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to preserve serving (a) aircraft carriers and (b) landing craft platforms for the nation; and if he will establish such as the basis for a museum. 
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Dr. Moonie: The Ministry of Defence has no plans to preserve any of the current serving aircraft carriers as a museum when they are taken out of service. Similarly there are no such plans for the Landing Platform Dock (Assault) ships HMS Intrepid and HMS Fearless which were withdrawn from service in July 2001 and March 2002 respectively. As normal practice, ex-service assets are disposed of to maximise the receipt to the taxpayer. While the Ministry of Defence is supportive of work carried out by military museums, the preservation of ships is mainly carried out by charitable trusts.
As I said in my answer on 9 January 2002, Official Report, column 828W, to the hon. Member for North Essex (Mr. Jenkin), the current strength of the TA, including those mobilised on operations and on full-time reserve service, almost exactly matches the overall target size of the TA set as a result of the Strategic Defence Review. It is, therefore, in good shape, although there are some specific areas where numbers fall short of target, most notably the Army Medical Service (TA). The "Time to get fitTA" awareness campaign launched in December last year received a good response, although the overall effectiveness of the campaign will not be known until the new figures come out later this year. The annual National Recruiting Campaign which concluded on 18 May with TA Day, and a further Regional Recruiting Campaign to be launched in the autumn, are excellent opportunities for the general public to find out more about the TA. The aim of these campaigns is to keep the TA in its currently healthy state and under current plans they will continue to be a significant feature of the TA recruiting operation.
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