Previous Section Index Home Page

14 May 2007 : Column 483W—continued

The Enterprise Act 2002 was updated by the Enterprise Act 2002 (Part 8 Community Infringements Specified UK Laws) (Amendment) Order 2005, which designated enforcement powers to the Information Commissioner to enable him to apply to the courts to stop traders infringing a range of domestic consumer
14 May 2007 : Column 484W
protection legislation where the infringements harm the collective interests of consumers, including these regulations.

In December 2006 the Information Commissioner's Office served Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations enforcement notices on six organisations. A further seven cases, under the Enterprise Act, are currently under investigation, but are not yet complete. All these cases relate to unsolicited marketing telephone calls made to consumers.

Research: Breast Cancer

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much his Department spent on research into the causes of breast cancer through the Research Councils in (a) 2004-05 and (b) 2005-06. [136678]

Malcolm Wicks: Research Councils spend on research relating to breast cancer is listed in the following table.

£ million
Research Council 2004-05 2005-06







Science: Finance

Dr. Iddon: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what financial support his Department gives to (a) science centres and (b) other projects which (i) promote engagement in science to the general public and (ii) are involved in adding value to the teaching of those subjects in schools. [136251]

Malcolm Wicks: Promoting engagement with science and enhancing the science learning experience in schools are key objectives behind the commitments set out in the Government's science strategy document “The Science and Innovation Investment Framework 2004 to 2014 Next Steps”, and are supported by the Department and the Department for Education and Skills (DfES).

(a) The Department provided £1 million, as part of a £2 million joint DfES/DTI funding package, to science centres in 2004 to 2006 to help alleviate short term funding problems. Between November 2006 and March 2008, we are providing £500,000 to Ecsite UK, the science centre umbrella body, to fund a £750,000 project to help science centres become financially viable. Specifically, this project aims to enable the science centres to:

In addition, £33,000 was provided to Ecsite UK in 2006-07.

(b) OSI works closely with DfES to promote the teaching of science in schools, and drive forward the recommendations set out in the 2006 STEM programme report. OSI has also continued to fund a number of related projects and activities to develop effective public engagement in science and technology through a number of key mechanisms:

14 May 2007 : Column 485W

Promoting public engagement in science

Adding Value to Science Teaching

Science: Newcastle upon Tyne

Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what funding and support the Government have provided to Newcastle-upon-Tyne as a science city. [135637]

Margaret Hodge: The Government, through the Regional Development Agency One NorthEast, have to date contributed £10,733,333 in respect of the Newcastle science city site. This is inclusive of acquisition, stamp duty, fees and demolition.

One NorthEast has also contributed £2,427,000 to the programme management for Newcastle science city.

Weights and Measures: EC Law

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what recent discussions he has had with the European Commission on the permissibility of supplementary indications relating to weights and measures. [136937]

Malcolm Wicks: The Government have consistently supported the continued availability of supplementary indications. In March this year, in responding to the
14 May 2007 : Column 486W
European Commission’s consultation on possible updating of the Units of Measurement Directive, the Government proposed that the current permission should now be extended without a further time limit.

International Development

Afghanistan: Drugs

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development when he last visited Afghanistan to review progress in the eradication of poppy fields. [136436]

Hilary Benn: I last visited Afghanistan in June 2006 to review progress on the DFID programme in Afghanistan. During this visit I took time to visit Helmand, the remote province in southern Afghanistan that produces much of Afghanistan's opium.

Ministers continue to receive regular updates on the progress of Her Majesty's Government's operation in Afghanistan from officials based in Kabul and Helmand. Just two weeks ago, DFID’s permanent secretary participated in a joint visit with the permanent secretaries of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Ministry of Defence, where they reviewed progress on a range of issues, including the UK's contribution to the counter-narcotics effort in Afghanistan.

The UK has committed £270 million from 2006-09 in support of the Government of Afghanistan's national drug control strategy, which represents the best means of tackling the problem. The policy of the Afghanistan Government is to target eradication in areas where alternative livelihoods already exist. This is an approach which we strongly support.

Departments: Consultants

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what his Department’s spending was on research and consultancy services in 2006-07, broken down by programme. [133495]

Mr. Thomas: In total, DFID spent £179 million on bilateral knowledge and research programmes in 2005-06. This represented 4.1 per cent. of total DFID expenditure. A summary breakdown was published in Statistics on International Development 2001/02-2005/06 and the figures are reproduced in the following table.

DFID Programme: Bilateral Technical Co-operation: Knowledge and Research, 2005-06
Sector £000

Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries






Economic and Social






Total Knowledge and Research


14 May 2007 : Column 487W

In total, DFID spent £252 million on consultancy in 2005-06. This represented 5.7 per cent. of total DFID expenditure. A summary breakdown is shown in the following table. The majority is consultancy to deliver parts of our development programme (as published in Statistics for International Development), where the services are usually provided to third parties such as recipient governments. These are funded through programme costs. The rest is consultancy to DFID as an organisation and is funded from its administrative budget. The table excludes low value contracts issued by DFID Departments and overseas offices of which there are no consolidated records held centrally.

DFID consultancy spend, 2005-06

Total consultancy funded through development programmes


Of which:

Africa Division


Asia and Pacific Division


Europe, Middle East and Americas Division


Policy Division


Consultancy for services to DFID


Total consultancy


Departments: Energy

Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what (a) instructions are issued to staff in his Department and (b) technical procedures are in place to shut down computers at night. [136099]

Mr. Thomas: As part of DFID's commitment to the sustainable operations on the Government Estate targets, all staff are encouraged to switch off IT equipment through regular intranet notices, poster campaigns and stickers on the equipment. Security staff also complete regular energy checks to ensure no IT equipment has been left on. DFID only buys computers and monitors which conform to the Quick Wins product standards for energy efficiency. DFID does not use software tools to shut down equipment automatically.

Departments: ICT

Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the (a) originally estimated, (b) most recently estimated and (c) outturn cost was of the five largest information technology contracts agreed by his Department with outside suppliers over the last five years. [135685]

Mr. Thomas: DFID has let four major IT contracts in the last five years.

The human resource (HR) system had a projected supplier cost at tender of £1.18 million. The total supplier cost at outturn was £1.22 million.

The HR system project was superseded by an HR transformation project which aims to radically change the way HR services are delivered and improve people
14 May 2007 : Column 488W
management. The HR transformation project had an original budget of £6.5 million. It is primarily a business change project but it includes enhancements to the existing HR system and a number of smaller IT enabled components. The most recent cost estimate is £5.9 million, but options may be taken up in the future at additional cost.

The Quest Electronic Document and Record Management system had a projected supplier base cost at tender of £8.98 million. The current projected total supplier cost is £11.68 million. This includes a number of additional cost options available under the original contract.

The Aries Finance, Procurement and Reporting System, had a projected base supplier cost at tender of £11 million. The most recent estimate of £13.5 million reflects an agreed change to the scope of the project. It also includes additional consultancy support for change management and development of end-user training materials. Further options including assistance with training and roll out may be taken up in the future.

DFID has also let a number of small IT related contracts. However, our central records do not distinguish IT contracts, so provision of details for these contracts would incur disproportionate costs.

Developing Countries: Death

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what estimate he has made of the proportion of mortality in developing countries caused by (a) malaria, (b) tuberculosis, (c) road accidents and (d) HIV/AIDS in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [135704]

Mr. Thomas: The most recent estimates of the proportion of mortality in developing countries by cause are provided by the Disease Control Priorities Project (DCPP) 2006 publication “Global Burden of Disease and Risk Factors”, and the March 2006 World Health Organisation (WHO) Bulletin. These publications also explain the difficulties involved in measuring and estimating causes of mortality, for example for countries where up-to-date data and information may be lacking. Such estimates can therefore not be accurately provided on a year-on-year basis.

The DCPP publication reports that in 2001, the latest year for which estimates are provided, HIV/AIDS, TB, malaria and road traffic accidents accounted for 5.3 per cent., 3.3 per cent., 2.5 per cent. and 2.2 per cent. respectively, of all deaths in low and middle income countries. As these countries develop, the proportion of mortality attributable to non-communicable disease causes—including road traffic accidents—is expected to rise.

North Korea

Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what activities his Department undertakes in North Korea. [137388]

14 May 2007 : Column 489W

Mr. Thomas: DFID does not have, and has never had, a bilateral programme in North Korea. We contribute as normal to the current EU programme of humanitarian assistance. Since 1995, around €118 million has been allocated to assist the most vulnerable people. Humanitarian assistance was provided to cover the immediate needs of flood-affected populations, to address food/nutritional problems, improve access to water as well as health care.

Next Section Index Home Page