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RPA launched a CSC on 14 February 2005. This was done to streamline single payment scheme and customer registration telephone enquiries into the agency through one route, to allow staff to concentrate on processing. More importantly, this system aims to ensure that customers receive consistent answers and any, more complex enquiries can be directed to specialist areas of the business to call the customer back.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the average time taken for the Rural Payments Agency to process applications for payments to farmers and agricultural businesses has been in each year since 2001, broken down by scheme. 
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will make a statement on the differences between the Rural Payments Agency's computer systems at the offices in Reading and at the offices in Newcastle. 
Barry Gardiner: The primary computer systems used by the Rural Payments Agency are the same at each office, including Newcastle and Reading. A specialist Document Management Unit (DMU), supported by dedicated computer systems, operates only at the Newcastle office. Dedicated teams of staff at each office are assigned to work on specific schemes or supporting activities and they will use the computer system relevant to that scheme or activity.
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) how many
live sea turtles were imported into the UK in each of the last five years, broken down by species; from which countries they were imported; how many live sea turtles were exported from the UK in each year, broken down by species; and to which countries they were exported; 
(2) what the weight of sea turtle products (a) imported into and (b) exported from the UK was in each of the last five years; from which countries such products were imported; and to which countries such products were exported. 
|Species||Origin||Quantity and further information|
|Species||Origin||Quantity and further information|
200179 scientific specimens of the species Chelonia mydas. All quantities were recorded as number of pieces. No net. Mass (Kg.) details are available.
200222 scientific specimens of the species Chelonia mydas. All quantities were recorded as number of pieces. No net. Mass (Kg.) details are available.
2003856 scientific samples as follows:
Chelonia mydas: 412 scientific samples;
Eretmochelys imbricata: 244 scientific samples;
Caretta caretta: 100 scientific samples;
Lepidochelys olivacea: 100 scientific samples.
All quantities were recorded as number of pieces. No net. Mass (Kg.) details are available.
20042,300 scientific samples as follows:
Chelonia mydas: 1,350 scientific samples;
Eretmochelys imbricata: 900 scientific samples;
Caretta caretta: 50 scientific samples.
Only the number of items have been added. Net. Mass (Kg.) details are only available for four shipments.
20051,500 scientific samples, 1 Kg in total:
Chelonia mydas: 500 tissue samples (0.500 Kg);
Eretmochelys imbricata: 1,000 tissue samples (0.500 Kg).
20061 scientific sample of the species Eretmochelys imbricate.
|Species||Origin (all wild)||Quantity and further information|
Mr. Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what provision the Government have made to reimburse farmers for the interest incurred due to delays in paying the single farm payment; and if he will make a statement. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if his Department will repay the interest charges on loans
taken out by those farmers who have not received single farm payments. 
Barry Gardiner: The question of interest only arises in respect of payments made after the legal deadline of 30 June. We have not reached that point yet and I do not want to deflect from the Rural Payments Agency in the interim period from concentrating on its main priority, which is to ensure that outstanding payments are made as soon as possible.
Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many single farm payments have been made of (a) less than £1, (b) between £1 and £1.99, (c) between £2 and £4.99, (d) between £5 and £9.99, (e) between £10 and £19.99, (f) between £20 and £49.99, (g) between £50 and £99.99, (h) between £100 and £199, (i) between £200 and £499, (j) between £500 and £999, (k) between £1,000 and £1,999, (l) between £2,000 and £4,999, (m) between £5,000 and £9,999, (n) between £10,000 and £19,999, (o) between £20,000 and £49,000, (p) between £50,000 and £99,999, (q) between £100,000 and £199,999, (r) between £200,000 and £499,999, (s) between £500,000 and £999,999, (t) between £1 million and £1,999,999 and (u) between £2 and £5 million; what percentage of total payments each category represents; and if he will make a statement. 
Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps her Department is taking to help farmers in hardship because of the late payment of single farm payments. 
Barry Gardiner [holding answer 27 April 2006]: To date, over £1.3 billion has been paid out under the 2005 Single Payment Scheme (SPS), representing some 88 per cent. of the total sum to disburse. SPS claimants will be best served by the Rural Payments Agency maintaining its focus on ensuring that outstanding sums are paid as soon as possible. In addition, in view of the cash-flow problems faced by some farmers, the Department has substantially increased the amount of funding available to key rural support organisations who help farmers deal with hardship issues.
Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what research her Department has undertaken into levels of personal debt incurred by farmers due to the late payment of single farm payments. 
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