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The Prime Minister: I last met Nelson Mandela on 3 February 2004 during his visit to London. We discussed a wide range of issues, including The Commission for Africa and the UK's Presidency of the G8 this year.
John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what incentives are offered by the Government to UK manufacturers who choose not to carry out experimental testing on animals. 
Ms Hewitt: Under UK and international law new products must be tested for the purposes of environmental, workplace and consumer safety. This may involve the use of animals. If so, the use will be licensed under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986.
The principles of the Act are that animal testing may only be licensed if there are no non-animal alternatives and, where animals must be used, their numbers and suffering are to be minimised. The number of animal procedures performed each year has been falling steadily and is now at half the level it was 30 years ago. Since 1998, there has been a ban on the use of animals to test cosmetics.
The Government recognise that there are concerns about this issue and take a leading role in Europe in encouraging the development and adoption of alternatives to all forms of animal use in science. In May 2004 we established the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs), which will also be working with regulators on the acceptance of alternative methods for regulatory toxicology. The National Centre has funding of over £600,000.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on what date the Export Credits Guarantee Department issued guarantees to Alvis in connection with the sale of Scorpion and Stormer vehicles to Indonesia. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien [holding answer 3 February 2005]: Ellington Colliery did not receive any support under the UK Coal Operating Aid Scheme during 200002. In 2004, UK Coal plc. was allocated £2.168 million of Coal Investment Aid to support planned investment spend at Ellington to March 2006. One payment of £850,000 has been made from this award. This represented 28.73 per cent. reimbursement of approved investment costs incurred and defrayed during January-September 2004.
Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assistance has been given to small charities and religious organisations to ensure that they are able to comply with the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003 and the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003. 
Mr. Sutcliffe [holding answer 4 February 2005]: In addition to press and online promotional campaigns, information sessions (including a number specifically aimed at religious and other voluntary sector organisations), and Acas-published practical guidance on promoting equality in the workplace, the DTI has provided specific support for voluntary and community sector organisations on the Employment Equality Regulations. In 200304, £625,000 was made available for a range of projects across Great Britain looking at producing and disseminating guidance, training and information materials. In 200405, funding was more than doubled to £1.4 million. Much of the funding was directed at meeting the specific needs of religious organisations, lesbian, gay and bisexual groups and other voluntary sector organisations and their client and constituency groups.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many times during the (a) Italian, (b) Irish and (c) Dutch Presidency of the EU the Scientific Steering Committee met; when and where these meetings took place; what UK Government expert was present; and if she will make a statement. 
During the Italian Presidency, meetings took place on 5 September, and 5 December and in Genoa on 27 October 2003. During the Irish Presidency, meetings took place in Brussels on 29 January and 29 June and in Galway on 1 April 2004. During the Dutch Presidency, meetings took place in Brussels on 16 July, 1 October and 10 December and in Enschede on 21 October 2004.
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Officials from the Office of Science and Technology (DTI) represented the UK at all of the above meetings. Additionally Research Councils UK attended one meeting where the agenda called for their expertise in the governance of basic research systems.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much of the Renewable Energy Initiative of the Export Credits Guarantee Department has been allocated to projects; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Alexander [holding answer 3 February 2005]: While the Renewable Energy Initiative continues to produce a number of inquiries to ECGD, none of these prospects has yet developed to the stage of becoming firm business. As a result, none of the available ECGD cover has yet been allocated.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what financial support has been made available in each year since 1997 through the Export Credits Guarantee Department for (a) fossil fuel power plants and (b) carbon capture and storage sequestration technology, broken down by country of receipt. 
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