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23 Nov 2005 : Column 2039W—continued


Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what steps he intends to take to address issues raised by the operation of pedicabs; [30841]

(2) if he will bring forward amendments to the Road Safety Bill [Lords] to regulate the operation of pedicabs; and if he will make a statement; [30842]

(3) if he will discuss with (a) Transport for London, (b) the Association of London Government, (c) the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association and (d) other interested parties the operation of pedicabs. [30843]

Ms Buck: Transport for London has made clear its intention to bring forward proposals for a licensing regime for pedicabs in London which they hope to have in place by next autumn. I look forward to these proposals.

The Department is very willing to hold further meetings with interested parties but Transport for London are in the lead on the introduction of a licensing regime.

Picnic/Rest Areas

Mr. Duncan: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many picnic and rest areas have been available for public use per mile of motorway in each year since 1997. [31180]

Dr. Ladyman [holding answer 22 November 2005]: In 1996, there were 52 motorway service areas in England; the equivalent of one for each 53.26km of motorway. Since then 16 further sites, listed in the table, have been added to the network increasing the frequency to one for each 43.38 km of motorway.
MotorwayService area
M1Donnington Park
M5Cullompton (north bound)
M6Stafford (south bound)
M42Hopwood Park
2000A1(M)Doncaster North
2003M54Castle Farm (Telford)
2004M6(Toll)Norton Canes

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Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much Government funding the rail infrastructure in East Sussex has received in each year since 1997; and what the projected funding is for the next 10 years. [29816]

Derek Twigg: The Department does not hold information on Government spending and investment on rail at a regional level. This is primarily because franchise areas often encompass two or more regions and Network Rail is structured on a route by route basis which also serves more than one region.

The Secretary of State made a statement to Parliament on 10 February 2005, Official Report, columns 93–96WS, setting out Government spending plans for rail as a whole to 2008–09.

Mrs. James: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much public subsidy First Great Western Trains Ltd. has received in each year since 1997; how much has been awarded against the company in penalties in each year; and if he will make a statement. [30727]

Derek Twigg: Great Western Trains Company Limited has received the cash subsidy and penalties set out in the following table for the years ending 31 March.
£ million


Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much compensation was paid to passengers for poor services by train operating companies in (a) 1997, (b) 1998, (c) 1999, (d) 2000, (e) 2001, (f) 2002, (g) 2003 and (h) 2004; and if he will make a statement. [26957]

Derek Twigg: The Department for Transport does not hold this information, which is a matter for the train operating companies.

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the statutory powers that enable the Government to provide compensation for train operating companies involved in industrial disputes. [29209]

Derek Twigg: The Secretary of State's power to enter into Franchise Agreements is contained in Section 23 of the 1993 Railways Act. The power to reimburse net losses of the Franchise Operator due to industrial action
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is contained within individual Franchise Agreements. This power is entirely discretionary and in order to exercise it, the Secretary of State must be satisfied that the Franchise Operator has taken all reasonable steps to prevent industrial action as well as mitigating its effects.

Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many rail carriages were (a) in operation and (b) replaced in the United Kingdom in each year between 1994 and 2004. [29034]

Derek Twigg: It is not possible to provide this information on a year-by-year basis between 1994 and 2004. The number of vehicles, on lease at the sale of the Rolling Stock Leasing Companies recorded in the invitation to tender in March 1995, was 10,401 vehicles. The number of vehicles on lease now is approximately 11,000 vehicles. This includes additional vehicles required for growth which were included as replacement for Mark 1 stock on the Southern TOCs and additional rolling stock which has been required to reflect increases in passenger numbers. The number of new vehicles which have been ordered and entered service are set out as follows:
New vehicles entering service

(32) This is the position at Quarter 3 2005

Mr. Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations he has received regarding the use of the Waterloo International Terminal platforms for other international services once Eurostar has moved to St. Pancras in 2007. [29279]

Derek Twigg: Those representations that have been received by the Department have been in support of using the Waterloo International platforms for domestic passenger services. The Secretary of State confirmed in the House on 11 October 2005, Official Report, column 150, that the Waterloo International platforms would be retained for domestic passenger use once Eurostar services have moved to St. Pancras.

John Hemming: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what (a) regulations and (b) advice (i) his Department and (ii) regulatory bodies within his Department's responsibility have issued to passenger train operators regarding the efficiency of passenger trains in terms of greenhouse gas emissions. [29305]

Derek Twigg: Neither the Department nor the regulatory bodies for which it is responsible have issued any regulations or advice regarding train efficiency to passenger train operators. The Department funds a research programme run by the Rail Safety and Standards Board, in which the Association of Train Operating Companies is actively engaged, which is considering possible ways of reducing the environmental impact of trains. The Department is also
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co-ordinating the procurement of the replacement of the Intercity 125 High Speed Train and is placing significant emphasis on ensuring fuel efficiency by the replacement.



Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what estimate he has made of the cost of harmonising tax regimes for defined benefit and defined contribution pension schemes on A-day next year for (a) each of the next five years, (b) 2020 and (c) 2030; [31205]

(2) what estimate he has made of the impact on costs of applying the tax regime for defined benefit pension schemes to defined contribution schemes. [31206]

Mr. Des Browne: Pension Tax Simplification, which takes effect from 6 April 2006, replaces the numerous existing complex tax regimes with a single universal regime for tax-privileged pension savings that covers both defined benefit and defined contribution schemes. This new regime will provide greater flexibility to some 15 million pension savers and redresses the current anomalies between defined benefit and defined contribution schemes in the level of contributions that can be made and what benefits can be taken. It is not correct to assume that we have harmonised both towards the tax treatment of either defined contribution or defined benefit; and we can not provide an estimate for the exchequer cost of such a policy.

The broad estimates for the exchequer costs of pension simplification over the first three years were given in paragraph 48 of the Regulatory Impact Assessment published in December 2003, which is available in the House of Common Library and the HMRC website at this address:

Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the amount of tax relief paid on contributions to public sector pension schemes for (a) 2003–04, (b) 2004–05, (c) 2005–06, (d) 2006–07, (e) 2010, (f) 2020 and (g) 2030. [31207]

Mr. Des Browne: Latest estimates of cost of tax relief on contributions to occupational pension schemes are included in Table 7.9 of the HMRC website:

The cost of tax relief on contributions to public sector schemes is not

estimated separately from other occupational schemes.

Mr. Willetts: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 8 November 2005, Official Report, column 330W, on pensions, what the estimated proportion was of the benefit payments from unfunded public sector pension schemes in (a) 2013 and (b) at subsequent five yearly intervals relating to members who will join the scheme after April 2006. [30236]

Mr. Des Browne: The information requested could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
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