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28 Nov 2002 : Column 447W—continued

Renewable Energy

Mr. Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much Government financial support has been given to the renewable energy sector in each year since 1990, broken down by (a) research grants, (b) renewables obligation, (c) non-fossil fuel levy and (d) other sources. [82795]

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Mr. Wilson [holding answer 27 November 2002]: Financial support to the renewable energy sector through research grants and other sources and through the non-fossil fuel levy for each year since 1990 is set out in the table.

The renewables obligation, which took effect from 1 April 2002, does not involve direct Government funding as it is a market-led measure. In this, the first year of the obligation, suppliers are expected to provide 3 per cent. of the electricity supplies from eligible renewable resources. They may meet their obligation through providing a proportion of their supplies from renewables, through buying renewable obligation certificates (ROCs) in the market or through paying the buy-out fee.

Electricity from renewable sources now also benefits from exemption from the climate change levy (which was introduced in April 2001). In addition, the Government have made provision of £250 million over three years for capital grants for renewable energy.

£ million

Renewable energy funding(29)Fossil fuel levy

(29) This column sets out payments from the DTI's new and renewable energy R&D programme. In addition, some relevant projects will have been funded by research councils.

(30) The reduction in levy funding compared to the previous year was primarily due to a fall in generated output for hydro (46 per cent. reduction) and wind (20 per cent. reduction) caused by mild weather and drought conditions during 1995–96.

(31) Figures from 1996–97 on include payments from the fossil fuel levy (Scotland) which commenced in that year.

(32) The reduction was due to the effect of termination of NFFO 1 and 2 contracts on 31 December 1998.

(33) The significant reduction was due to the full-year impact of the termination of NFFO 1 and 2 contracts.


Dr. Jenny Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions she has had with (a) the World Diamond Council and (b) representatives from the UK jewellers industries regarding promoting the Kimberley Process. [83773]

Mr. Rammell: I have been asked to reply.

In November 2001, my right hon. Friend the then Minister for Europe (Mr Peter Hain) met with Gary Ralfe, Managing Director of the De Beers Group, part of the World Diamond Council, to discuss the Kimberley Process.

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FCO officials have had regular contact with the World Diamond Council for the past two years and are in close touch with the British Jewellers Association.

In preparation for implementation of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme in January 2003, further discussions with the UK diamond industry, including the Jewellers Association, are due to take place at the FCO on 6 December.


Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what the level of (a) manufacturing

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output and (b) employment in the manufacturing sector in each of the last five years were in each region of the UK; [83922]

Alan Johnson: The available information is given in the following tables.

Table: Manufacturing Gross Value Added(34) by English regions, Wales, Scotland and
Northern Ireland 1995–99 (million)

United Kingdom(35)139,789146,079152,299153,408152,402
North East6,9197,3307,3487,3446,654
North West16,40716,91917,44217,82817,577
Yorkshire and the Humber13,16213,95314,59013,93413,567
East Midlands10,32011,03611,79011,86211,671
West Midlands22,50122,67424,56523,87723,415
South East16,00416,66517,80018,64219,229
South West8,9659,3599,8069,89410,482
Northern Ireland2,7302,9903,1023,1243,264


(34) Estimates of regional gross value added in this table are on a residence basis, where the income of commuters is allocated to where they live, rather than their place of work.

(35) Excluding 'Extra-Regio'which consists of gross value added which cannot be assigned to regions.


Office for National Statistics 'regional gross value added' 21 November 2002.

Table: Employee jobs in manufacturing by English Regions, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland 1997—2001 (December)

United Kingdom4,176,0004,147,0004,019,0003,904,0003,745,000
North East191,000187,000173,000176,000169,000
North West532,000530,000514,000499,000474,000
Yorkshire and the Humber425,000410,000394,000384,000368,000
East Midlands424,000423,000399,000383,000365,000
West Midlands561,000553,000533,000495,000478,000
South East440,000442,000444,000437,000427,000
South West318,000321,000314,000302,000291,000
Northern Ireland108,000107,000101,000104,00099,000


1997–2000 DTI analyses of employment statistics from Annual Business Inquiry (GB) and Short Term Employment Survey (Northern Ireland) taken from NOMIS (ONS' labour market database). 2001 from 'Labour Market Trends' (ONS), Table B16, November 2002.

Post Office

Mr. Coleman: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans the Post Office has to close (a) main post offices and (b) sub post offices in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham; and if she will make a statement. [84040]

Mr. Timms: The programme to restructure the urban post office network has only just started and is being taken forward in consultation with individual sub-postmasters, the community, Members of Parliament, other local stakeholders and Postwatch in accordance with the Code of Practice. There is no pre-determined closure list. Under the code, Post Office Ltd. is required to consult Postwatch and other interested parties on its specific proposals for change.

The objective of the urban network restructuring programme is to ensure that ad hoc closures which would leave gaps in the network are prevented. It is envisaged that the restructured urban network will provide modernised and improved facilities which meet customers' needs and expectations and are in the right location for the local community.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations her Department has received from the Post Office regarding the relocation of the main Elgin Post Office in the

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constituency of Moray; if she will seek clarification on the future location of this post office; and if she will make a statement. [84003]

Mr. Timms: The Department has received no representations about the relocation of the main Elgin Post Office. Decisions on the location or relocation of individual post offices are an operational matter for Post Office Ltd. Any proposal to relocate a post office is subject to consultation with the local community under the Code of Practice agreed between Post Office Ltd. and Postwatch.

Steel Production

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the required (a) capacity and (b) capability of steel production in the UK is in order to meet UK manufacturing needs. [83920]

Alan Johnson: The UK steel industry makes a wide, and increasingly sophisticated, range of products to meet the needs of the manufacturing industry in the home market and overseas. In 2001, UK production of primary steel products was 13.5 million tonnes, while capacity stood at 18.9 million tonnes at the end of that year. In the same year, UK demand for primary steel products was 13.7 million tonnes.

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