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18 Nov 2004 : Column 1928W—continued

Export Support

Mr. Arbuthnot: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry pursuant to the answer of 16 September 2004, Official Report, column 1724W, on Export Support, on what date she raised the PSA indicator to 40 per cent.; and whether this announcement appears in the 2004 Spending Review. [195797]

Mr. Alexander: The current formulation for the PSA indicator related to new to export companies is

The SR2004 settlement sets a suite of new performance indicators for the period 2005–06 to 2007–08. The figure of 30 per cent. will therefore increase to 40 per cent. with effect from 1 April 2005.

Mr. Arbuthnot: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry pursuant to the answer of 16 September 2004, Official Report, column 1724W, on Export Support, what level of trade development resources is focused on new-to-export firms. [195798]

Mr. Alexander: The level of identifiable trade development resource currently focused on new to export firms is in the order of 30 per cent. New to export firms also benefit from resources such as the UK Trade and Investment portal website, other forms of information giving services (such as the export market research scheme) and other schemes where there is currently no management information available to identify usage by new exporters rather than all exporters.

Fast Patrol Vessel Defender

Mr. Arbuthnot: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) if her Department will investigate the circumstances surrounding the acquisition of the Fast Patrol Vessel Defender, which was donated by the Sultan of Oman to Lowestoft to support regional redevelopment; [194189]

(2) what efforts her Department has made to ascertain the (a) whereabouts and (b) condition of the Fast Patrol Vessel Defender from the time of its voyage from Oman; [194190]
 
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(3) how much (a) EU and (b) Government funding has been made available for the Fast Patrol Vessel Defender since its donation to Lowestoft by the Sultan of Oman; and to whom these funds were made payable; [194191]

(4) what report her Department has received on the whereabouts of the Fast Patrol Vessel Defender. [194192]

Mr. Alexander [holding answer 28 October 2004]: EU funding of £58,728 was made available for a project to restore the vessel, from the European Regional Development Fund. The ERDF grant was paid to the Maritime Defence Museum (Lowestoft) Ltd. and to its successor company, Lowestoft Maritime Defence Museum Ltd. No Government funding has been made available.

The Government office for the East of England, in conjunction with my Department, is currently investigating the acquisition, whereabouts and condition of the vessel. Government office officials received progress reports during the project to restore the vessel and inspected it at the Isle of Wight in October 2001, and after arrival in Lowestoft in August 2002.

Fluorochemicals

Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment she has made of the impact of the rise in UK gas prices on UK manufacturers of fluorochemicals. [199171]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Freedom of Information Act

Mr. Randall: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment she has made of the likely costs to her Department in the first quarter of 2005 of compliance with the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000; and if she will make a statement. [199077]

Ms Hewitt: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Gambling

Miss Kirkbride: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what protocols are in place governing the attendance of her departmental officials at trade conventions promoting the interests of the foreign gaming industry. [193722]

Ms Hewitt: It has not been possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Miss Kirkbride: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on what dates (a) Ministers and (b) officials in the Department have held meetings with representatives of the UK gambling industry to discuss proposed changes to legislation on gambling. [194515]

Ms Hewitt: It has not been possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.
 
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Miss Kirkbride: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list the overseas visits made by (a) Ministers and (b) officials in the Department in relation to proposed changes to legislation on gambling; what the itinerary was for each visit; how long each visit lasted; which hotels were used; what the cost was in each case; and how each visit was funded. [194541]

Ms Hewitt [holding answer 1 November 2004]: It has not been possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Gas/Electricity Supplies

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on the adequacy of gas supplies to meet peak gas demand during a (a) one in 20 winter day and (b) period of sustained cold weather in winter 2004–05. [192736]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: In its Winter Outlook report, published recently, National Grid Transco (NGT) forecast that expected beach gas supplies, combined with supplies from the interconnector, LNG and storage, would be sufficient to meet demand in an average winter. If worse than average weather is experienced, or there are supply difficulties, then an effective demand side response would be needed from the market to balance any supply shortfall.

In the unlikely event of a prolonged, severe winter (a one in 50 winter), NGT forecast that they would need an increased demand reduction to balance any supply shortfall.

Gender Pay Gap

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the average gap between men and women's pay is in (a) England and (b) the Buckingham constituency. [191059]

Mr. Sutcliffe: The information requested is as follows:

Government Buildings (Disabled Access)

Tom Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether all Government buildings in her Department within the Greater London area are fully accessible to disabled people; and if she will make a statement. [199311]

Ms Hewitt: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Hunterston A (Contaminated Soil)

Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will estimate the volume of radioactively contaminated soil within the perimeter fence at the Hunterston A Nuclear Power Plant; what the identity of the contamination is and what its average
 
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activity is per cubic meter; what the source of the contamination was; when (a) the operator and (b) her Department first learned about the contamination; whether details about and volumes of the contaminated soil are to be included in the 2004 edition of the National Radioactive Waste Inventory; what plans have been made for the removal of the contaminated material; and what the estimated cost is for dealing with the contamination. [195737]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.


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