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29 Mar 2004 : Column 1164Wcontinued
Patrick Mercer: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what responsibility (a) his Department and (b) Transec will have for maritime security under the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code; 
Reporting directly to the Secretary of State, the Department for Transport's Transport Security Directorate (Transec) has the policy lead and is responsible for introducing the ISPS Code requirements to approximately 600 UK port facilities and over 600 UK flagged ships by the deadline of the 1 July 2004. Operationally Transec is responsible for UK ports and passenger shipping, and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has been delegated responsibility for non-passenger shipping, under a policy framework set by Transec.
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the size of the British merchant fleet was (a) in 1980, (b) in 1990 and (c) on the latest date for which figures are available; and what plans he has to support the merchant fleet. 
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|End year||Thousand wt.|
The Government's shipping policy to support the merchant fleet is outlined in the White Paper "British Shipping: Charting a new course". An update of the current status of the 33 actions from 'Charting' has been placed in the Libraries of the House in accordance with the answer of 24 February 2004, Official Report, column 343W.
Mr. Jamieson: The United Kingdom, as a permanent member of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), has taken a leading role in addressing the issue of action to combat piracy. Over the past five years the United Kingdom has provided expert assistance in support of several IMO counter piracy missions and seminars to piracy 'hotspot' areas.
The United Kingdom is in the process of implementing IMO requirements for all ships to have internationally agreed security measures in place by July 2004 which will help to protect them from piracy attacks.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what losses were incurred by (a) British-flagged and (b) British-managed ships owing to acts of piracy in each of the last 10 years. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Department works closely with operators of British vessels, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Ministry of Defence, the International Maritime Bureau and with the International Maritime Organisation to ensure that trends of piracy are monitored and acted upon. This work is carried out in co-operation with IMO member states and the United Kingdom has played a leading role in providing expertise and other resources to help combat acts of piracy worldwide.
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Mr. Jamieson: The issue of piracy is regularly discussed by officials in the Department with representatives of the UK maritime industry and its trade bodies; in particular the Chamber of Shipping. This is done directly or under the auspices of the National Maritime Security Committee which meets bi-annually. Similarly, meetings are held with representatives of maritime trade unions the most recent of which was with representatives of NUMAST in September 2003.
Mr. Jamieson: The Secretary of State has regular meetings with his ministerial colleagues to discuss a range of issues relevant to the business of his Department. In addition, his officials are engaged in discussions on piracy with other Government Departments including the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Ministry of Defence and external bodies, including the International Maritime Organisation and the International Maritime Bureau.
Mr. Jamieson: The financial break-even date was met on 31 March 2002. The legislation governing the Dartford Crossing (which includes the Queen Elizabeth II Bridge) allowed for tolls to be charged for a year after the financial break-even date to help build up a maintenance fund for the Crossing.
Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent discussions he has had with the Strategic Rail Authority on improving the service on the Hastings to London line; what assessment he has made of the (a) punctuality and (b) frequency of trains departing stations south of Tunbridge Wells; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. McNulty: The Strategic Rail Authority is currently consulting widely on its proposals for the train specification for the new Integrated Kent Franchise, which includes the route between Hastings and London.
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The authority also monitors the performance of train operating companies. On 11 March the authority published its quarterly reportNational Rail Trendsfor the period October to December 2003, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House. Information is provided for the services of each operator in aggregate, not by specific routes.
Patrick Mercer: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how much (a) was spent in 200304 and (b) is planned to be spent in 200405 on improving the process of scanning of ships and containers upon their arrival in British ports; 
Mr. Jamieson: My Department's Transport Security Directorate (Transec) is responsible for developing, overseeing the implementation of, and ensuring industry compliance with, Counter Terrorist security policy for the UK's major transport modes.
However, in the UK the cost of meeting these security requirements falls to industry. The "user pays" principle has been maintained throughout the country's history of regulating transport security and costs are ultimately passed on to customers.
It is not therefore, possible to give an indication of costs because they are not held centrally. However, as part of the implementation process of the IMO's new maritime security regime, Transec is conducting an Regulatory Impact Assessment, which will, when complete provide a broad picture of the costs associated with meeting the UK's new security requirements. The RIA will include consideration of the cost of enhancing the security of ports handling containers.
Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many speed cameras there are in England and Wales; and how many are covered by the special schemes introduced in 2002 to facilitate investment in safety cameras. 
Mr. Jamieson: Information from the 35 Safety Camera Partnerships currently operating, covering 38 of the 43 police authorities in England and Wales, indicates that there are currently 5,040 fixed and mobile camera locations, of which 432 are for detecting motorists going through red traffic lights. This data is currently being audited.
Mr. McLoughlin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many speed cameras (a) there are and (b) there have been in each of the last five years in (i) the East Midlands and (ii) West Derbyshire. 
Mr. Jamieson: The numbers of approved speed cameras sites operated by local Partnerships under the Safety Camera Programme for the areas covered by the Government Office for the East Midlands are as follows.
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|Derbyshire||Prior to the area's joining the Programme||53||76||84|
|Leicestershire||Prior to the area's joining the Programme||Prior to the area's joining the Programme||71||81|
(2) Figures up to the end of September 2003 (latest figures submitted)
(3) Nottingham City in early years; Nottinghamshire latterly
All figures are as reported by the partnerships and include both fixed and mobile camera sites
Mr. Pope: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to his answer of 19 January 2004, Official Report, column 1004W, on speed cameras, how much of the income generated by speed cameras in the Lancashire Safety Camera Partnership area in 200304 is returned to the partnership to cover the costs of their camera activity; and where the remainder of the income is spent. 
Mr. Jamieson: A maximum of £4.6 million of netted off fine receipts resulting from fixed penalties for speeding and red light offences has been approved to be passed to the Lancashire Safety Camera Partnership to cover the costs of its approved safety camera activity in 200304. The actual figure, which may be less but cannot be more, will be contained in the 200304 accounts. Any surplus of fixed penalties over the Partnership's approved expenditure is surrendered to the Consolidated Fund.
Mr. Jamieson: Local authorities and police forces within individual safety camera partnerships make available for public scrutiny their accounts on an annual basis. These can be viewed by local arrangement.
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 26 March 2004]: The "Handbook of rules and guidance for the operation of the national road safety programme for England and Wales, October 2003", a copy of which is in the Library of the House, sets out the standards for signing, marking, visibility and conspicuity of safety cameras. The Handbook also requires Safety Camera Partnerships regularly to review camera sites, to ensure for example that cameras are not obscured by foliage growth. The types of signs that may be used are contained in the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2002. There are no current plans to alter these signing requirements. If there is a concern about the visibility of particular camera sites, the local Safety Camera Partnership would welcome comments.
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Mr. Jamieson: North East Lincolnshire and Lincolnshire fall within the Humberside Safety Camera Partnership which has no fixed safety camera sites. The Lincolnshire Safety Camera Partnership has 59 fixed speed camera sites.
Mr. Jamieson: My Department holds information on speed cameras operated under the Speed Camera Programme for funding of approved cameras from fixed fine receipts, which began with seven Safety Camera Partnership areas in England and Wales in April 2000, increasing to 14 in 2001 and to 28 during 2002. The number of approved fixed speed camera locations for the three financial years is:
|As at end of year||Number of camera sites||Number of Partnership areas|
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Prior to the Safety Camera Programme, police and highway authorities have used cameras since 1991, under the Road Traffic Act 1991 and the Department of Transport Circular 1/92 'Use of technology for traffic enforcement: Guidance on deployment'. My Department does not hold information centrally on cameras which are not part of the Safety Camera Programme.
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