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Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the hon. Member for Roxburgh and Berwickshire, representing the House of Commons Commission pursuant to his answer of 5 December 2002, Official Report, column 980W, what arrangements are in place to ensure best value in the provision of security arrangements within the parliamentary estate. 
Contracts for physical arrangements are let following the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply's recommended procurement practices and Government recognised best practice. Contracts below the EC threshold are subject to competitive tender and value for money considerations. Contract management procedures are to be reviewed across the House next year to ensure the arrangements deliver the quality, service and cost benefits identified in business cases.
The House's Audit Committee, chaired by the right hon. Member for Bromley and Chislehurst (Mr. Forth), is charged by the Commission with having general oversight of the work of internal audit and review, with particular emphasis on promoting economy, efficiency and effectiveness.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the comparative level of investment by the United Kingdom in national air traffic control equipment with that of the EU average. 
Mr. Jamieson: There is little financial information available from national air navigation services providers across the EU on the magnitude of investment in air traffic control equipment. Even if comparative information were available, it would be difficult to make a meaningful assessment because the level of investment by any service provider depends where that provider is in its investment cycle, for example whether or not it is currently introducing major new facilities as NATS has recently done at Swanwick.
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Mr. Jamieson: The Civil Aviation Authority has proposed new arrangements for the upper airspace over the North Sea and, as part of these changes, a small area of UK airspace amounting to less than 0.1 per cent. of North Sea airspace will, from 20 March 2003, be serviced by the Dutch national authorities. Co-operation between national air traffic control authorities is widespread and routine across Europe and is effected under the auspices of Eurocontrol andin the case of the UKthe Civil Aviation Authority. The co-operation takes the form of one national authority handling traffic which is in the national airspace of another state where this will facilitate the most expeditious movement of air traffic.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many air traffic controllers were employed by NATS on (a) 1 May 1997 and (b) 1 May 2002; and how many hours of training was provided to air traffic controllers annually in the year ending (a) 1 May 1997 and (b) 1 May 2002 
Mr. Jamieson: NATS employed 1,735 air traffic controllers on 1 May 1997 and 1942 on 1 May 2002. These figures include trainee controllers. I am informed by NATS that trainee controllers received 145,054 hours of training in the year ending 1 May 1997 and 235,346 hours of training in the year ending 1 May 2002. Information about continuing in-service training of qualified controllers is not readily available.
Mr. Jamieson: Staffing issues are matters for NATS, as the employer. NATS inform me that on 1 May 1997, 112 staff were absent out of a total of 5,142 (2.18 per cent.). On 1 May 2002, 102 staff were absent out of a total of 5,294 (1.93 per cent).
Martin Linton: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will publish the results of the two-year trial, beginning August 2000, to extend night period runway alternation at Heathrow to the hour between 6 am and 7 am; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: The trial was expected to run for about two years. During 2002 it was affected on approximately 35 per cent. of mornings by engineering works, including replacement of the instrument landing systems (ILS), runway resurfacing and replacement of runway lighting. Completion of the resurfacing work on the southern runway has also been delayed, and will resume in April. Consequently it is not possible at this stage to draw any firm conclusions from the trial, which will need to continue for a sustained period following the completion of the engineering works later this year.
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Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport which major road schemes in the local transport settlement for 2002 were (a) accepted, (b) provisionally approved, (c) considered work in progress and (d) rejected. 
Sunderland Central RouteSunderland
Ashton Northern Bypass Stage 2Tameside
Wigan Inner Relief RoadWigan
A58 Blackbrook DiversionSt. Helens
A165 Reighton BypassN. Yorks
A43 Corby Link RoadNorthamptonshire
A24 Horsham-Capel ImprovementW. Sussex/Surrey
A24 Ashington/Southwater ImprovementW. Sussex
A228 Leybourne and West Mailing BypassKent
Mereoak Roundabout ImprovementWokingham
A391 St Austell to A30 LinkCornwall
Northern GatewayNorth Tyneside
Manor Park Bends ImprovementBradford
A605 Stanground BypassPeterborough
A38-A370 Link RoadNorth Somerset
Mr. Jamieson: Our latest forecasts suggest that in 2010 CO2 emissions from road transport in England could be in the range 29.3 to 30.2 million tonnes of carbon. We do not currently have interim forecasts for levels in 2005, but will produce these shortly.
Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has to improve security at small seaports and harbours to prevent (a) acts of terrorism and (b) importation of material for use in terrorism; and if he will make a statement. 
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Mr. Jamieson: The United Kingdom already has a comprehensive security regime in place covering ports and harbours which service international ferries and cruise ship calls. In addition, the three border agencies, police Special Branch, HM Customs and Excise and the Immigration Service, control the movement of passengers and goods through small ports. Their presence at the ports is determined by a risk assessment.
This national regime will be augmented by July 2004 with the implementation of the recently agreed International Maritime Organisation's (IMO) global maritime security regime. This agreement requires signatory nations to develop and implement maritime security procedures. All ships over 500 tonnes engaged in international voyages and all ports which service such ships will be party to the security requirements.
Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what was the Local Transport Plan budget for Newcastle City in (a) 200102, (b) 200203 and (c) 200304; what the spending was in 200102; whether spending is likely to be reached in 200203; and what action was taken over underspending. 
Mr. Jamieson: Capital funding for local transport is provided by Government in two main ways: for maintenance and schemes costing below #5 million, as a block of funds over which local authorities have discretion; and for major schemes costing over #5million, as scheme-specific funding. In recent years, up to and including 200102, authorities had permission to carry over their 'block' funds from one financial year to the next.
(b) #5.992 million in respect of maintenance and schemes costing below #5 million; and #6.738 million for major schemes.
(c) #5.055 million in respect of maintenance and schemes costing below #5 million; and #1.400 million for major schemes.
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