Previous Section Index Home Page

17 May 2007 : Column 867W—continued


These figures are drawn from the operational client management systems maintained the Connexions Service. They include 16-18 year olds known to the Connexions; young people who attended independent schools or were at school outside England may be excluded. The age relates to those of calendar year age 16-18 on the date of measurement. The figures are for the average percentage NEET between November and January each year.

This NEET measure is that used for setting and monitoring local authority NEET targets. The definition differs from that used to measure the national departmental PSA NEET target. Along with not covering the entire population, the Connexions
17 May 2007 : Column 868W
NEET measure excludes those on gap years, or in custody. The PSA measure is for academic rather than calendar age 16-18.

Youth Services

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether the Government is on target to meet the aim, identified in section 4.2 of Youth Matters: Next Steps, of a London-wide prospectus of summer opportunities; and what steps are being taken to give opportunities for summer activities to teenagers from areas of the country other than London. [137336]

Mr. Dhanda: On behalf of DfES, Summer Uni London is developing a website as an online prospectus to highlight the wide range of opportunities available to London’s young people during the summer months, and enable them to sign up for those activities. When the website is launched this summer, more than half of the 33 London boroughs will detail the activities on offer in their areas through that website, and we expect all London boroughs to do so by summer 2008.

In respect of areas outside of London, the Department previously managed the Positive Activities for Young People programme (PAYP) which provided diversionary and developmental activities for young people across the country aged 8-19 during the school holidays. This funding stream passed to local area agreements (LAAs) from April 2007. It is now the legislative duty of all local authorities to provide positive activities in their locality. They are best placed to take decisions according to local need.

Trade and Industry

Direct Mail: Prosecutions

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many successful prosecutions the Information Commissioner made against direct mailers in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [137280]

Vera Baird: I have been asked to reply.

The Information Commissioner has not made any prosecutions against direct mailers in any of the last five years.

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what powers the Information Commissioner has to curb irresponsible direct mailers; and if he will make a statement. [137281]

Vera Baird: I have been asked to reply.

The Information Commissioner has regulatory powers to bring about compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998. In serious cases involving direct mailing, the Commissioner has the power to issue an enforcement notice requiring an organisation or individual to take specified action to comply with the Act. Failure to comply with such a notice is a criminal offence.


17 May 2007 : Column 869W

The Commissioner also has the ability to seek an enforcement order under the Enterprise Act 2002 in cases to require an organisation to cease conduct, which is harmful to consumers.

Measures: EU Action

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry following the announcement of revised policy on weights and measures in the EU Trade and Industry Commissioner’s recent statement, if he will press for the late Mr. Steven Thoburn to receive a posthumous Royal Pardon. [137410]

Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 15 May 2007]: The Government have no such plans.

Nuclear Power: Research

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps his Department is taking to support research into nuclear fusion. [136677]

Malcolm Wicks: The UK invests in fusion research through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Almost all UK fusion research currently takes place at UKAEA Culham, which will receive grant support from EPSRC of £95 million over the four years to 2007-08. This is in addition to the EU funding for the Joint European Torus and other activities at Culham, and the EU participation in the ITER project.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Australia: Whales

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions she has had with the Australian Government on whaling. [138172]

Mr. McCartney: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has had no recent discussions with the Australian Government on the subject of whaling.

The UK and Australia share very similar views in their opposition to commercial whaling.

The UK Commissioner to the International Whaling Commission (IWC) discussed whaling with the Australian Alternate Commissioner, and others, at a meeting of like-minded anti-whaling countries in Washington in January. The UK Commissioner also held discussions with the Australian Commissioner bilaterally in London in December 2006, and then again in New York in May. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs officials continue to work closely with staff at the Australian high commission in London, and directly with the Australian IWC delegation, with whom we have an excellent working relationship. The UK and Australia will be represented at ministerial level during this year's IWC meeting in Anchorage on 28 to 31 May, during which the Ministers will hold regular discussions.


17 May 2007 : Column 870W

Embassies

Mr. Francois: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which Cabinet Ministers stayed at the British Embassy in (a) Beijing between 19 and 24 February 2005 and (b) Dubai between 19 and 23 September 2003. [136324]

Mr. Hoon: No Cabinet Ministers stayed in these embassies. My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer was in Beijing for one day during this period. He was also in Dubai from 19 to 22 September 2003 to attend the Annual Meetings of Boards of Governors of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund (IMF). As chairman of the International Monetary and Financial Committee the IMF provided and paid for his accommodation.

Iraq

Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what estimate she has made of the proportion of unspent funds in the Iraqi budget in each of the last three financial years. [137181]

Mr. McCartney: The following table contains estimates of Government of Iraq (GoI) planned and actual revenue and expenditure between 2004 and 2007 in millions of Iraqi Dinars. The financial year in Iraq runs on our calendar year. We do not hold accurate estimates for expenditure figures for 2004 as this marks the transition from the Coalition Provisional Authority to the Interim Iraqi Government.

2004 2005 2006 2007

Budget estimate of revenues(1)

21,729,100

28,958,608

45,392,304

42,064,530

Budget estimate of expenditures(2)

n/a

35,981,168

50,963,161

51,727,468

Estimate of final revenues(3)

26,595,000

36,655,000

49,265,000

n/a

Estimate of final expenditures(4)

n/a

29,130,000

38,922,000

n/a

(1) Source: GoI budget. This excludes some items including grants from donors and some government operations including sale of State Owned Enterprises.
(2) Source: GoI budget. This excludes some items including donor financed spending and subsidies in kind to state owned enterprises.
(3) Source: International Monetary Fund (IMF) published reports
(4) Source: IMF published reports.

Iraq: Christianity

Mr. Clappison: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what reports she has received on persecution of the Christian community in Iraq; and what estimate she has made of the number of Christians who have (a) been displaced from their homes in Iraq and (b) left Iraq. [137230]

Mr. Hoon: We monitor the situation of Iraq’s Christian and other minority communities closely through our regular contacts with the Government of Iraq, Christian politicians and community representatives in Iraq and London. Most recently, on 10 May our embassy in Baghdad raised the issue of threats against Christians in the Dora district of Baghdad with the Iraqi Minister of Interior and encouraged the Iraqi Government to take action.


17 May 2007 : Column 871W

We remain deeply concerned about the impact of violence on all Iraqis and continue to press the Government of Iraq to improve security and support international efforts to care for those affected by violence. Since the beginning of 2007 we have allocated £10 million for the humanitarian effort co-ordinated by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and International Committee of the Red Cross. This brings our total humanitarian contribution in Iraq to over £125 million since 2003.

While there are no comprehensive or reliable figures available on the number of Christians displaced or who have left Iraq since 2003, the International Organisation for Migration estimates that 7-8 per cent. of people internally displaced in Iraq in 2006 were Christians.

Uganda: International Conferences

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the total cost will be of the three-day Commonwealth meeting in Uganda in November 2007; how much will be met by (a) her Department and (b) other UK Government Departments; and if she will make a statement. [137528]

Mr. McCartney: The Government of Uganda will meet overall costs of hosting the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting, which takes place in Kampala in November. The Government are not contributing to these costs. However, UK officials' and Ministers' travel and accommodation costs will be met by their parent Departments.

UN Resolutions

Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which states have not presented to the Security Council Committee a first report on steps they have taken or intend to take to implement resolution 1540 (2004). [137086]

Mr. McCartney: As of 1 May, the following states had not submitted to the Security Council Committee, established pursuant to resolution 1540, a first report on steps they had taken or intended to take to implement UN Security Council resolution 1540: Afghanistan; Barbados; Bhutan; Botswana; Burundi; Cameroon; Cape Verde; Central African Republic; Chad; Comoros; Congo; Cote d’lvoire; Democratic People’s Republic of Korea; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Equatorial Guinea; Ethiopia; Fiji; Gabon; Gambia; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Haiti; Lesotho; Liberia; Madagascar; Malawi; Maldives; Mali; Mauritania; Mauritius; Micronesia (Federated States of); Mozambique; Nauru; Niger; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Rwanda; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Saint Lucia; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; San Marino; Sao Tome and Principe; Seychelles; Sierra Leone; Solomon Islands; Somalia; Sudan; Suriname; Swaziland; Timor-Leste; Togo; Zambia; and Zimbabwe.

Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if she will place in the Library a copy of UK reports to the Security Council
17 May 2007 : Column 872W
Committee established pursuant to resolution 1540 (2004). [137096]

Mr. McCartney: The UK reports to the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1540 (2004) will be placed in the Library of the House and a copy of the reports will be sent to the right hon. Member.

Justice

Courts: Custodial Treatment

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice what the average cost was per prisoner per night of housing a prisoner in a court cell in each of the last six months for which figures are available. [136760]

Mr. Sutcliffe: To date, one invoice to the value of £120,000 (excluding VAT) has been paid to cover the contingency of having places available in court cells between 17 January and 6 February.

This covers the availability of 380 places in court cells (19 places for 20 nights), giving a cost per place of around £300.

12 prisoner nights were spent in court cells during this period.

Home Detention Curfews

Mr. Jeremy Browne: To ask the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (1) what the cost per prisoner was of the Home Detention Curfew scheme in each year since 1999; [137160]

(2) how many electronic tags were used as part of the Home Detention Curfew scheme in each year since 1999; and what the cost is of an individual electronic tag. [137161]

Mr. Sutcliffe: The current daily cost of monitoring a person on HDC is about £14. This and other financial data related to HDC can be found in paragraphs 1.14-1.16 of the National Audit Office report on Electronic Monitoring of February 2006 at:

The cost per prisoner of operating the Home Detention Curfew (HDC) scheme in each year since 1999 has not been calculated centrally and could be provided only at a disproportionate cost.

For information on the number of prisoners subject to electronic monitoring under HDC I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to him on 1 May 2007, Official Report, column 1582W. The exact number of tags used for this purpose is not calculated centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

The amount payable under the contracts for delivering the service is not broken down by individual tag or other equipment costs.

Parking: Fines

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice how many parking tickets were issued by post in each of the last 12 months; and how many such fines entailed increased payments as a result of late payment. [136831]


17 May 2007 : Column 873W

Mr. Sutcliffe: Data are not collected centrally to the details required.

The penalty charge notices (PCNs) and fixed penalty notices (FPNs) collections held by the Office for Criminal Justice Reform do not distinguish between obstruction, waiting and parking contraventions. Tickets issued by post are not identified.

Prison Accommodation

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice in which prisons each of the 20,000 new places provided in the last 10 years were located; and when the contracts in respect of these places were let. [137114]

Mr. Sutcliffe: Of the 20,000 places provided in the prison estate since 1997, around 17,000 are new build places. Around 3,000 places have been provided as crowded accommodation within the newly built places.

Nine new prisons have opened since 1997, providing around 6,000 of the 17,000 new build places. The contract dates for each are shown in the following table.

Establishment Contract date

Pare

4 January 1996

Altcourse

20 December 1995

Lowdham Grange

7 November 1996

Ashfield

1 July 1998

Forest Bank

6 July 1998

Rye Hill

23 July 1999

Dovegate

27 September 1999

Bronzefield

20 December 2002

Peterborough

4 February 2003


Next Section Index Home Page