|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Kitty Ussher: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether his Department has undertaken research on the extent to which other European Union countries (a) are self-sufficient in gas and oil production and (b) have nuclear power stations. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Departments preferred approach when making international comparisons with other EU countries is to rely on data compiled by the International Energy Agency (the IEA) or the European Commission. The IEA conducts periodic reviews of member countries energy policies, which are published in a variety of forms. A review of a member countrys energy policies will typically include an analysis of supply, demand and energy mix including whether the country uses nuclear power to generate electricity.
John Penrose: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will take steps (a) to examine the contents of his Department's file originally referenced as FT851 and (b) to re-examine his Department's view that the two master franchiser companies in the UK of a foreign-based franchise-trading scheme were both exempt from the provisions of the Fair Trading Act 1973 Part XI and its amendments, including the Trading Schemes Act 1996. 
Mr. McCartney: The matter has been reviewed and it remains the Department's view that it is possible for two identical but separate trading schemes, each with one master franchiser and a number of franchisees at the same level below that franchiser to operate in the UK in such a fashion as to be exempt from the provisions of the Fair Trading Act 1973 Part XI and its amendments, including the Trading Schemes Act 1996.
Margaret Hodge: Since September 2003 UK First, the Furniture Industry Forum, has been supported by DTI with £1.75 million over 41.5 years, to introduce productivity and process improvements to the sector. Savings to date for companies in the sector have exceeded £2.5 million. We also supported the establishment of the Furniture Industry Strategy Group in 2003 to help the sector to address key areas affecting productivity and competitiveness. The Strategy Group has led to the establishment recently of the British Furniture Confederation which is working to promote the interests of the sector.
Mr. Prisk: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will put in place measures to ensure that where, during any grant application process, (a) a person and (b) a business discloses required technical innovation information to a UK Government official outside the Patent Office, prior to a related UK patent application, that patent cannot subsequently be invalidated on the grounds of public disclosure; and if he will make a statement. 
UK Government officials have a duty to protect all confidential information they receive in the course of their duties. This responsibility extends to unprotected intellectual property disclosed during the process of applying for Government grants. Staff employed by non-departmental public bodies (NDPBs) have the same duty of confidentiality.
John Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what guidance his Department has issued to internet service providers on their responsibilities for illegal traffic hosted on their networks. 
The Department works closely with internet service providers, both in a number of
initiatives to deal with disruptive internet traffic such as spam, and to combat illegal content such as child abuse images.
In matters regarding internet content, the general law applies on-line as it does off-line. For example, the Obscene Publications Act 1959 applies to material published on the internet and the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 extended the laws on obscenity to cover material available on computer networks. Similarly laws relating to such subjects as sales of goods, copyright and libel, apply on-line as much as off-line.
The Department provides guidance to industry, including ISPs, on its website regarding the Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) Regulations 2002 (http://www.dti. gov.uk/sectors/ictpolicy/ecommsdirective/ecommosdirectiveguidance/page10142.html) which, under certain circumstances, exempt on-line service providers from liability for information they host until they are made aware of it, at which point they are required to act expeditiously to remove or disable access to it.
HM Revenue and Customs is responsible for investigating alleged illegal importation of goods into the UK, and they inform me that some 10,800 investigations have been mounted in connection with goods unlawfully shipped to the UK from Bangladesh since 2003.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps he has (a) taken and (b) plans to take to increase trade between Israel and the United Kingdom; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. McCartney: UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) provides a range of support services to British companies wishing to trade with or invest in Israel, through commercial teams based in both the UK and the British embassy in Tel Aviv.
UKTI support focuses, in particular, on business opportunities in high technology sectors, including Biotechnology, Healthcare, Aerospace, Information and Communication Technology, the Environmental Industries and Financial and Legal Services. Recent initiatives have included trade missions to Israel, inward missions by Israeli firms to trade fairs in the UK and promotional events aimed at encouraging Israeli companies to list in London.
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many of the vibration white finger claims submitted by the 50 solicitors making the most claims on behalf of miners include a claim for services;
and what percentage of the total claim was represented by services in each case. 
The following table of the 50 solicitors who have submitted the most vibration white finger
claims provides the number of claims for general damages and services submitted; the number settled by payment; the compensation paid for general damages and services; and the proportion of total compensation represented by services and general damages.
|Solicitor||Claims registered||Services claims registered||Settled by payment (gens and services)||Total damages (settled claims) (£)|
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|