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17 Dec 2003 : Column 931W—continued

Research and Development

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the total expenditure and share of GDP on (a) civil and (b) defence research and

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development was in (i) 2000–01, (ii) 2001–02 and (iii) 2002–03; and what the Government share of expenditure was in each year. [144004]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 15 December 2003]: The latest data available for Gross Domestic Expenditure on R&D (GERD) are 2001. Data for 2002 will be available in March 2004.

Expenditure (£ million cash terms)Proportion of GDPPercentage performedin the Government sector(5)Percentage funded by the Government sector(5)
Civil R&D
Defence R&D

(5) Government includes the research councils and higher education funding councils.

(6) Revised data for 2001 will be made available in March 2004.




Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when the Transtec inspectors were appointed; when they submitted their report; when the report was published; what it cost; and what the remuneration was of each inspector. [144186]

Jacqui Smith: Hugh Aldous FCA and Roger Kaye QC were appointed by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on 20 January 2000 under the provisions of section 432(2) of the Companies Act 1985. They submitted an interim report to the Secretary of State on 22 January 2001, which was published on 22 February 2001 and submitted their final report on 15 January 2003, which was published on 24 October 2003.

Costs of the inspection (net of VAT) have been as follows:

Hugh Aldous FCA including support at RSM Robson Rhodes and disbursements2,555,873
Roger Kaye QC including support in Chambers and disbursements1,025,183
Total cost3,581,056

Windscale (Decommissioning)

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on (a) difficulties encountered and (b) strategies adopted in the decommissioning of the Windscale pile number one at Sellafield; and what the cost of this exercise has been so far. [144506]

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Mr. Timms: The Pile One reactor is considered by international experts to be one of the most challenging decommissioning tasks in the nuclear industry. The key challenges include:

Strategies have been adopted for two phases of the decommissioning. Phase One of the project, that of clearing up and sealing the air and water ducts, was successfully completed in 1999. This work ensured that the reactor continues to be maintained in a condition acceptable to the nuclear regulators.

Phase Two, the current phase, involves removal of the hazardous materials and the treatment and packaging of the resulting waste. Problems with the initial design concept led to a rigorous technical review of the options for dismantling. This review is ongoing.

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Safety is UKAEA's highest priority and any decommissioning strategy must be shown to have addressed all known hazards.

Phase One decommissioning costs were £14 million. Phase Two costs to date are approximately £30 million.

Working Time Directive

Michael Fabricant: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions she has had with the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service on the working time directive's opt-out clause; and if she will make a statement. [143829]

Mr. Sutcliffe: The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) is the first point of contact for all public enquiries relating to employment law. The Department and ACAS are, therefore, in constant contact on all aspects of employment law.

The European Commission are reviewing the opt out arrangements and intend to issue a preliminary Communication, without formal legislative proposals, shortly. We hope that the Communication will present a range of options on the opt out which can be discussed with UK social partners.

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Anti-social Behaviour (Vale of York)

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations he has received on anti-social behaviour in the Vale of York. [144483]

Ms Blears: Neither myself, nor officials in the Anti-Social Behaviour Unit, have received any recent representations about anti-social behaviour in the Vale of York.

Following the launch of "together. Tackling Anti-Social Behaviour" the Government's Action Plan on the 14 October, the together Academy and together ActionLine will both be available in early 2004, to offer advice and information on all anti-social behaviour related matters. In addition, every CDRP will receive additional funding to tackle anti-social behaviour in 2004–05 and 2005–06. Taken together, existing powers and new powers introduced in the Anti-Social Behaviour Act and the Action Plan aim to make a real and lasting difference to the lives of people who are victims of anti-social behaviour.


Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether Palestinian people were specifically excluded from his Department's recent one-off exercise to grant indefinite leave to remain to up to 15,000 families who sought asylum, and had children in the United Kingdom, before 2 October 2000; and whether a decision on all Palestinian asylum cases is due to be made. [140512]

Beverley Hughes: There are no nationalities excluded from the recently announced one-off exercise for families.

Decisions on Palestinian cases were put on hold pending a Court of Appeal judgment received in August 2002. Most of those cases have now been decided and all but a handful should be decided by the end of January 2004.

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what additional budgetary resources have been redirected and allocated to cover operating costs relating to section 55 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 since 8 January. [141791]

Beverley Hughes: The Immigration and Nationality Directorate's (IND) resources cover a wide range of activities including the cost of administering work related to section 55 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002. This cost is not separately identifiable within the total IND budget.

Criminal Records Bureau

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what penalty payments Capita have made since 31 January under the terms of their Criminal Records Bureau contract. [142043]

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Ms Blears: The Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) contract contains provisions for Capita to pay service credits or liquidated damages for delay or poor performance, with service credits of £1,992,700 calculated as payable by Capita under the terms of the CRB contract from 1 February 2003 onwards.

Departmental Website

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the computer games on (a) his Department's website and (b) websites of bodies sponsored by his Department; on what date each was placed on the relevant website; how many times each has been played; and what the cost of producing each game was. [143400]

Fiona Mactaggart: The Home Office has used games to promote three of its websites.

Backchat and Chatroom Chaos were both used as part of the Child Protection on the Internet campaign to encourage young people to visit to learn about using the internet safely.

Backchat was launched February 2002 at a cost of £15,000 and has been played 128,853 times. Chatroom Chaos was launched in April 2002 at a cost of £12,000 and has been played 77,905 times.

Kebabathon and Bargain Boost were both used to promote the website www.good2bsecure to students to encourage them to think about home and personal security. The kebabathon was launched in January 2003 in a mailout to 700,000 NUS members and has been played 40,000 times. The cost was £12,000. Bargain Boost was launched on 7 November 2003. It has been mailed to 5,000 students and played 8,000 times to date. A further mailout to 40,000 students is under way.

A game was also used on the vehicle crime reduction website, Car Secured was launched in February 2002 at cost £5,000. It has been played 12,000 times since October 2002 (Statistics for February to September 2002 are not available because problems with the web analytics software used mean the data are not reliable).

Online games are a cost-effective means to promote websites to hard to reach audiences who would not naturally think of seeking information from Government websites.

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