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6 Dec 2005 : Column 1183W—continued

West Papua

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to satisfy himself of the appropriate use of British-made arms equipment in West Papua; and if he will end the granting of licences for arms exports to Indonesia. [34176]

Ian Pearson: We follow up any credible allegations that British supplied military equipment has been used for human rights abuses. All export licence applications, including those for Indonesia, are rigorously assessed on a case by case basis against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria taking account of the circumstances prevailing at the time.

World Trade Organisation

Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what role he will play in the World Trade Organisations talks in Hong Kong. [33888]

Mr. Douglas Alexander: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary will not attend the World Trade Organisation Ministerial Conference in Hong Kong (13–18 December). He will be at the European Council in Brussels on 15 and 16 December.

The UK delegation at Hong Kong will be led by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (Alan Johnson), whose Department leads on trade issues within the Government. He will be accompanied by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Margaret Beckett), my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for International Development (Hilary Benn) and my hon. Friend the Minister for Trade (Ian Pearson). Representatives from a number of Select Committees of the House, will be part of the UK
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delegation. The Confederation of British Industry, the Trades Union Congress and development non governmental organisations will also be represented.

Zirconium Silicate (Iran)

Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when his Department became aware that the Bulgarian authorities at the beginning of September had intercepted a truck travelling from the UK to Iran containing zirconium silicate; when other United Kingdom authorities were alerted to this event; what the subsequent involvement of his Department in the investigation was; and if he will make a statement. [34699]

Mr. Douglas Alexander: The truck was stopped on 31 August by the Bulgarian authorities. This was reported in the Bulgarian press on 2 September. Our embassy in Sofia informed the relevant authorities in London on 7 September. We arranged for the carrying out of necessary checks and confirmed on 28 October that the cargo was legitimate. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office therefore had no further involvement.



Mr. Hayes: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will list the 10 largest amounts of damages paid out by her Department in the last year for which figures are available, indicating in each case the nature of the claim. [27726]

Bridget Prentice: The 10 largest amounts of damages paid out by the Department during the financial year ended 31 March 2005 are included in the following table.
Reason for paymentType of paymentDateValue (£)
Court Service was alleged to have maladministered a case in which these costs arose—delay in payments from CFO, interest for delay, cost of solicitors to pursue the matterCosts14 September 200418,910.00
Maladministration of claim—weak arguments and adjourned hearings—led to additional loss/costs. Court lost Judge's notebookCompensation26 May 200415,922.71
Court failed to serve interim 3rd party debt order which led to successful maladministration orderCompensation and costs8 July 20049,664,08
Strick liability arising out an accident in a lift which was properly maintainedInjury compensation9 November 20049,644.00
Costs arose as a result of pursuing an appeal on behalf of clients. Failure to serve notice into court meant wrong courses of action takenCompensation (fees)20 May 20047,905.35
Worcester Combined Court Centre made errors in handling the case which resulted in the orderWasted costs order11 February 20057,413.21
Alleged poor investment decisions. Would not agree on inherent risk in the market. Payment is to dispose of potential litigation and costsSpecial payment for the ex-sultan of Zanzibar due to loss of interest16 March 20056,786.73
Delay in appeal being heard. Court did not get transcripts in time for the hearing. Appeal order was delayedCosts17 December 20046,323.84
The Department disputed some of the solicitors costs arising in this caseCompensation for wrongful imprisonment24 June 20046,071.57
The caseworker failed to keep the Inland Revenue informed of the position regarding the administration of the estateLiability for interest and penalties— late payment of CGT4 March 20054,552.38

Departmental Estate

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what (a) land and (b) property her Department (i) owns and (ii) rents in each constituency; and if she will make a statement. [33254]

Ms Harman: My Department has:

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Cities of London and Westminster Boro Constituency

Holborn and St. Pancras Constituency

Islington North Constituency

Archway Tower, Junction Road, London N19

Bristol West Boro Constituency

Bristol North West Boro Constituency

Cardiff South and Penarth Boro Constituency

Manchester Central Boro Constituency

Leeds Central Boro Constituency

Edinburgh North and Leith Burgh Constituency

Licensing Applications (Good Practice Guide)

Mrs. May: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will place in the Library a copy of the good practice guidance published by the Magistrates' Association and the Justices' Clerks Society in 1999 on the demand/needs test for licensing applications. [34503]

James Purnell: I have been asked to reply.

I am arranging for a copy of the 2001 updated version of the Justices' Clerks' Society good practice guide to be placed in the Libraries of both Houses. This guidance relates to the Licensing Act 1964 which was repealed on 24 November 2005.

Public Defender Service

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will publish the report commissioned by her Department into the public defender service; and if she will make a statement. [35083]

Bridget Prentice: Independent academic research has been carried out into the public defender service and the report of their findings will be published in the new year.

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