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Police Traffic Divisions (M25)

Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much was given to (a) Essex and (b) Kent police traffic divisions in respect of their work on the M25 in each of the last three years; how many (i) officers and (ii) units were deployed following the road traffic accident in the vicinity of junctions 29 and 31 on 17 March; for how long they were deployed; and if he will make a statement. [163255]

Ms Blears [holding answer 23 March 2004]: Forces do not receive funding specifically for road policing. The police funding formula, on which general grants for police authorities are based, does take into account traffic management needs. It is a matter for the Chief Constable and Police Authority to decide how to allocate the available resources within any given force area.

Road and traffic expenditure by Essex and Kent Constabularies is not directly comparable. The Chief Constable for Essex police informs me that their Road Policing Units respond to all Essex's roads, not just the motorway, and that total expenditure on road policing is estimated to be £14 million per annum in each of the last three years.
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The Chief Constable of Kent police informs me that the expenditure on their traffic unit, as well as officers on areas classified as traffic, is estimated at approximately £5.5 million per annum in each of the last three years.

35 Essex police officers were deployed to the traffic accident on 17 March. A whole divisional traffic unit was dedicated to this incident, consisting of nine double-crewed vehicles. In addition, a further 10 single-crewed vehicles, two scenes of crime vehicles (one officer each) and a Traffic Investigation Unit (five officers) were involved. None of the officers were involved for the entire duration. In addition, three Metropolitan police vehicles were deployed at Junction 29 for 14 hours. Kent police had no involvement.

Dangerous Driving

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the number of people driving without requisite insurance cover. [169071]

Caroline Flint: On the basis of information from the insurance industry and other sources, we estimate that there are 1.25 million persons driving without compulsory insurance against third party risks.


Mr. Clapham: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the estimated total annual cost to the UK economy was of dealing with the drug problem in each of the last five years for which figures are available; and what factors the calculation includes. [168725]

Caroline Flint: Total direct annual Government expenditure on preventing and tackling drug misuse is as follows:
Total direct annual Government expenditure

These total figures reflect the cross Government spend on the four core strands of the Drug Strategy: protecting young people, reducing supply, safe guarding communities and treatment.

Identity Card Bill

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he will publish his draft identity card bill. [167853]

Mr. Browne: My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary published the draft Identity Cards Bill on 26 April 2004, Official Report, column 34WS, as part of a document explaining the need for legislation entitled 'Legislation on Identity Cards: A Consultation' (CM 6178).
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Road Traffic Offences

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his estimate is of the number of people who have five points or more on their driving licence. [169446]

Caroline Flint: This information is not collected centrally.

UK Border Controls

Patrick Mercer: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the cost, per unit, of establishing manned UK customs points in countries other than the UK. [169966]

John Healey: I have been asked to reply.

I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave him on 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 23W.


Investment (Infrastructure)

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what his Department's reasons are for the proportional increase in social infrastructure and services investment and the corresponding proportional decrease in economic infrastructure and services investment since 1997. [168879]

Mr. Gareth Thomas: The goal of the Department for International Development (DFID) is to eliminate poverty. DFID seeks to do this by focusing on achieving the targets agreed at the Millennium Summit, the so-called Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). DFID works with developing country Governments and other donors to achieve these goals.

Around a third of DFID's total expenditure is allocated to specific sectors. In recent years, expenditure on social infrastructure and services (by which we usually mean education, health, population and reproductive health, water supply and sanitation, government and civil society, employment and housing) has been significantly higher than that on economic infrastructure and services (for example, transport and storage, communications, energy, banking and financial services, and business). In large part, this is because DFID believes that investment in these sectors will have a greater impact on achieving the MDGs. In 2002, the latest year for which these data are available, there was a large jump in expenditure for the first group, which was not matched for scale in the second one. This was mainly due to a number of large contributions to global health funds.

North Korea

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what aid has be offered to North Korea as a result of the Ryongchon incident; and whether this offer has been accepted. [169775]

Hilary Benn: Relief supplies that arrived shortly after the train crash were sent from a Red Cross disaster preparedness warehouse, funded by the Department for
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International Development. Last year DFID provided £200,000 of support to the North Korean Red Cross's disaster preparedness activities, which included the provision of pre-positioned disaster relief supplies. A further £200,000 is committed for 2004–05.

DFID has also set aside £56,000 for support to affected households through the International Federation of the Red Cross, having judged this assistance to be the most effective way to meet the unmet needs. Initial appeals for support are well covered, and while the UK was ready to fund the replenishing of disaster relief supplies, the European Commission has pledged 200,000 Euros for this purpose. The UK's share of this pledge is approximately 38,000 Euros (£25,500).

DFID will consider further appeals as part of its continuing programme of humanitarian assistance to North Korea.

St. Helena

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what financial commitments are planned for St. Helena. [170216]

Mr. Gareth Thomas: DFID will continue to maintain substantial support for St. Helena. This will include budgetary assistance, to include a subsidy for the island's shipping service, plus funding for various development projects and the filling of key posts. A joint DFID/FCO team is currently visiting the island to negotiate proposals for our assistance over the three-year UK period 2004–05 to 2006–07. In addition, as I reported in a written statement to this House on 19 April 2004, Official Report, column 1WS, DFID is exploring options for maintaining future access arrangements.


Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what contribution the United Kingdom will make to the new United Nations appeal for the Darfur Region of Western Sudan. [169324]

Hilary Benn: The United Nations has appealed for around $115 million for the humanitarian response in Darfur, Sudan. I am considering our response and we are likely to contribute. I have set aside £10 million from our contingency reserve for our ongoing humanitarian response in Darfur, in recognition of the severity of the situation and the need to work avert a humanitarian catastrophe. This is in addition to the £9.5 million that DFID committed last financial year through the UN, Red Cross and international non-governmental organisations in response to this crisis.

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