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David Cairns: The Scotland Office subscribes to the energy efficiency policies adopted by the Department for Constitutional Affairs. I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by my hon. Friend, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs (Bridget Prentice), on 21 March 2006, Official Report, column 301W.
David Cairns: Certain provisions of the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill trigger the Sewel Convention. The Scottish Parliament's consent is therefore required for those provisions in Part 3 of the Bill which will widen the powers available to the Scottish Ministers to implement EC obligations and give greater flexibility in the use of section 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what his Department's employer contribution rates to the principal civil service pension scheme are; what assumed rate of return underlies those contribution rates; and what the contribution rate would be if the assumed rate of return was in line with current redemption yield on index-linked gilts. 
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what total amount of employers' normal contributions accruing superannuation liability charge has been accounted for by his Office in each of the last five years for which data are available. 
The Government are actively working to build an evidence base on the economics of carbon capture and storage (CCS). At Budget 2006, HM Treasury launched a consultation exercise on barriers to
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wide-scale commercial deployment of the technology and the potential role of economic incentives in addressing those barriers. The results of this exercise will be fed into the Energy Review.
Consideration of whether there is a need for economic incentives for CCS in the UK is taking place in addition to support which has been made available for demonstrations of CCS through the Department for Trade and Industry's Carbon Abatement Technologies Strategy. The Strategy is providing capital grant funding of 35m for demonstration projects of carbon abatement technologies over four years starting in 200607.
In reflection of the global challenge which carbon emissions present, during the UK's presidency of the EU and G8, the Government initiated a project aiming to build a demonstration zero emissions coal plant with CCS, as the centrepiece of the EU-China Partnership on Climate Change. It is providing £3.5 million to fund the initial phase of this project.
John Healey: The social rates of return to R&D vary. For the UK they are estimated at over 80 per cent. for manufacturing and 30 per cent. for public R&D in pharmaceuticals. Just under 200 new university spin-off firms were set up in 200203 compared to 70 a year on average from 199499. Over the past two years, 20 university spin out companies have floated on the stock market with a combined market value of over £1 billion.
Dawn Primarolo: Any decision on the future of additional payments to pensioners must be taken within the context of Sir Michael Lyons' ongoing review into local government funding due by the end of 2006 and the Government White Paper on Pensions due later this spring.
Treasury Ministers and officials discuss a wide range of issues with organisations in the public and private sectors as part of the process of policy development and analysis. As was the case with previous Administrations, it is not the Government's practice to provide details of all such discussions.
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John Healey: In the Budget we announced a comprehensive package of measures to promote the UK as the leading location for inward investment. This included a new five year strategy for a step-change in the Government's drive to market UK economy internationally and a new strategy to promote London internationally as the world's leading financial centre. The Government will also implement a £9 million international R&D strategy, in partnership with the academic and business communities. These strategies will be supported by a reformed UK Trade and Investment.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the cost was at current prices of child benefit in each year since 199697; and what percentage of the costs was accounted for by administration in each year. 
|Expenditure (£ million)||Administration cost (pence per £ paid)|
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