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Ms Shipley: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what monitoring her Department has in place to ensure regional development agencies meet their statutory commitments to sustainability. 
Alan Johnson: Each RDA is monitored on its performance against the national level Tier 2 targets and regional Tier 3 core and supplementary milestones, as set out in their individual corporate plans. The performance monitoring framework, which came into effect alongside the Single Programme on 1 April 2002, requires the RDAs to report to Government on the achievement of Tier 3 milestones on a quarterly basis and on contribution towards the achievement of Tier 2 targets annually. This includes targets relating to sustainability.
Ms Shipley: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what investment regional development agencies are making in (a) 2002, (b), 2003 and (c) 2004 to meet their environmental commitments. 
Alan Johnson: The RDAs are required to carry out sustainability appraisals of their regional economic strategies. All of the agency's schemes and projects from 2002 onwards will be subject to a formal sustainable development assessment. This assessment covers environmental, social and economic impacts. The RDAs carry out a broad spectrum of activities in pursuit of their regional economic development role and many of their activities have an environmental component, for example in relation to land and property development, in supporting the environmental technologies sector, or in regeneration activities. The Government do not require the RDAs to provide a disaggregated figure for expenditure on environmental projects or initiatives or on the environmental aspects of sustainable development assessments.
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the (a) powers and (b) responsibilities are of regional development agencies with regard to (i) land use planning, (ii) transport issues and (iii) social inclusion. 
Alan Johnson: The regional development agencies have no powers or responsibilities in relation to land use planning and transport. RDAs are however important stakeholders in the preparation of regional planning guidance, including regional transport strategy.
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agencies, with regard to their allocation of Government money to their different areas of responsibility; and if she will place copies in the Library. 
Alan Johnson: The regional development agencies have been given a large degree of flexibility to spend their resources subject to delivery of the remaining commitments under the Single Regeneration Budget and other inherited programmes. Their corporate plans and targets have been approved by Ministers. The Department will be issuing revised guidance to the agencies on corporate planning for 200306 during the summer and copies of that will be placed in the Libraries of the House.
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many times her Department's personnel in the Oil and Gas Directorate have travelled from London to Aberdeen to meet representatives of the oil and gas industry in each year since 1994; and how much the travel costs were for these meetings. 
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many of her Department's Oil and Gas Directorate posts have been relocated from Aberdeen to London since 1997, broken down by grade. 
Mr. Wilson [holding answer 14 May 2002]: There have been changes in organisation and responsibilities at various times between 1997 and the present. No Oil and Gas Directorate posts have been relocated from Aberdeen to London.
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list the oil and gas fields in the UK Continental Shelf which are overseen from (a) the London office of the Oil and Gas Directorate and (b) the Aberdeen office of the Oil and Gas Directorate; and if she will list the transfer of responsibilities between Aberdeen and London for overseeing quadrants and blocks of the North sea that have taken place since 1994. 
Mr. Wilson [holding answer 14 May 2002]: It is not possible to quantify the transfer of responsibilities between London and Aberdeen since 1994, but broadly the Aberdeen team has continued to handle fields where operators have their production offices based in Aberdeen. Since 1994, with more companies relocating to Aberdeen from the south-east, there has been an incremental increase in the number of fields transferred to Aberdeen team.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many consultation documents and consultative drafts of legislation have been issued by her Department since January 2001; and what proportion of these have observed Criterion 5 of the Code of Practice on Written Consultation. 
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Records relating to consultations' compliance with Criterion 5 of the Consultation Code are held not centrally but by the management unit responsible for the policy area concerned. I will write to the hon. Member with the requested information as soon as possible and place a copy in the Libraries of the House.
1 January 2002 to date: 7.
Mr. Whittingdale: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will ask the Office of Fair Trading to publish, in accordance with current practice, the advice given to the Secretary of State on the acquisition of the Express Newspaper business by the Northern and Shell Group. 
Ms Hewitt [holding answer 20 May 2002]: The OFT published its report of the advice given on this acquisition on its website on Monday 27 May. Advice given by this government departments was published on the same date.
Mr. Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much was spent by her Department on paying pensions to retired employees of her Department in 200102; if she will estimate the corresponding amounts to be spent in (a) five years' time, (b) 10 years' time, (c) 20 years' time and (d) 30 years' time; if she will estimate in each case the proportion of such liabilities which will arise from (i) unfunded pension schemes and (ii) pre-funded pension schemes; and in the case of pre-funded schemes, if she will estimate the value of the corresponding pre-funded funds in each of these years. 
Ms Hewitt [holding answer 20 May 2002]: For the answer to the first part of the question, I refer the hon. Member to the reply given him by my right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister on 22 May 2002, Official Report, columns 335336W.
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the incomes of sub-postmasters of the switch to the payment of pensions and allowances through the automated credit transfer system. 
Mr. Timms: The current value to Consignia of business from the Department of Work and Pensions is some £400 million a year. The migration of benefit payments to ACT is scheduled to begin in 2003. How that migration affects the revenue of subpostmasters will depend on a number of factors, not least how benefit recipients and other post office customers respond to change.
Banking will be a central part of post offices' strategy to move forward. Universal banking services, together with Post Office Limited's plans for an expansion of network bankingthe provision of counter services for ordinary current accountsshould lead to a substantial increase in the range and volume of banking at post offices, tapping into a very much larger customer base than benefit recipients alone. This should benefit subpostmasters both directly and through increased footfall, providing a major income stream offsetting the loss over time of the benefit book related revenue.
Universal banking services are due to be introduced in 2003 when migration of benefit payments by ACT is scheduled to begin. When that happens and whatever account people chose to have their benefits paid into, the Government is committed to ensuring that those who wish to do so will be able to continue to get their benefits in cash at post offices, in full and without charge.
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