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Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 14 September 2010

Home Department

Asylum: Deportation

Pete Wishart: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what the rate of deportations of (a) failed asylum seekers and (b) illegal immigrants by the UK Border Agency was in each of the last 12 months; [13209]

(2) what the rate of deportations of children of (a) failed asylum seekers and (b) illegal immigrants has been in each of the last 12 months. [13210]

Damian Green: We have interpreted "deportations" to mean "removals" and "illegal immigrants" to mean "non asylum offenders".

We have interpreted children to mean a dependant of a main applicant who is under 18 so have not included figures in relation to unaccompanied asylum seeking children.

Table 1 shows the latest published statistics for asylum cases and non asylum cases removed from the UK in each month during the period July 2009 to June 2010.

Table 2 shows internal management information for the number of dependants (under 18) of failed asylum seekers and non-asylum offenders that were removed from the UK in each month during the period July 2009 to June 2010.

Table 1: Total cases removed or departed voluntarily from the United Kingdom, excluding non-asylum cases refused entry at port and subsequently removed( 1,)( )( 2,)( )( 3,)( )( 4, ) July 2009 to June 2010
Total asylum cases Non-asylum cases Total removals

July 2009

1,025

2.115

3.140

August 2009

1,010

2,250

3.260

September 2009

1,005

2,550

3,555

October 2009

920

2,535

3,455

November 2009

995

2,685

3,680

December 2009

855

2,525

3.380

January 2010

900

2,565

3,465

February 2010

920

2,480

3,400

March 2010

1,050

2,285

3.335

April 2010

690

2,250

2,940

May 2010

855

2,675

3,530

June 2010

835

2,370

3,200

Total

11,060

29,285

40,340

(1 )Figures are provisional, rounded to the nearest 5 and may not sum to the totals shown because of independent rounding.
(2) Includes persons departing voluntarily after notifying the UK Border Agency of their intention to leave prior to their departure, persons leaving under assisted voluntary return programmes run by the International Organisation for Migration and persons who it has been established left the UK without informing the immigration authorities.
(3) Removals and voluntary departures recorded on the system as at the dates on which the data extracts were taken. Figures will under record due to data cleansing and data matching exercises that take place after the extracts are taken.
(4) Excludes non-asylum cases refused entry at port and subsequently removed.

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Table 2: Total dependants under 18 removed or departed voluntarily from the United Kingdom, excluding non-asylum cases refused entry at port and subsequently removed, July 2009 to June 2010
FAS dependants (under 18) Non-asylum dependants (under 18) Total removals

July 2009

39

150

189

August 2009

41

101

142

September 2009

31

121

152

October 2009

44

128

172

November 2009

56

111

167

December 2009

39

91

130

January 2010

35

101

136

February 2010

37

88

125

March 2010

52

73

125

April 2010

31

80

111

May 2010

36

99

135

June 2010

11

94

105

Total

452

1,237

1,689

Notes:
1. Failed Asylum Seeker (FAS)-Where an asylum application has been refused and all appeal rights exhausted during this period of stay in the UK (whether leave to enter/remain was extant or not)
2. Non asylum offender (NAO)-any other person subject to immigration controls in breach of their given leave to enter/remain. Overstayers and all other categories except Asylum Seekers.
3. Age calculated as at date of removal
4. All data subject to CID data quality issues.
5. All data is subject to continual reconciliation and cleansing; treated as Management Information only within UKBA.

Alan Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions she has had with the UK Border Agency on the effect on (a) the management of deportation of families seeking asylum and (b) the number of deportations of the decision no longer to detain families scheduled for deportation. [14050]

Mrs May: The Government are committed to ending the detention of children for immigration purposes. I am having ongoing discussions with the UK Border Agency about how this can be achieved in a way which promotes the welfare of children while ensuring the return of families who have no right to be in the UK.

Borders: Personal Records

Alan Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment she has made of the likely effects on the e-borders programme of not proceeding with second generation biometric passports; and if she will make a statement. [14133]

Mrs May [holding answer 7 September 2010]: I refer the right hon. Gentleman to the response I gave him on 22 June 2010, Official Report, column 525W.

British Citizenship

Alan Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether she intends to implement the provisions in the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 in respect of the pathway to citizenship. [13665]

Mrs May [holding answer 8 September 2010]: I believe that broad reform to the path to settlement and citizenship is necessary and I am currently considering the best way to achieve that. Applicants for British citizenship continue to be considered under the current requirements contained in the British Nationality Act 1981.


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Departmental Payments

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many payments to suppliers were made by (a) her Department, (b) its agencies and (c) its non-departmental public bodies (i) within 30 days of, (ii) over 30 days after, (iii) over 60 days after
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and (iv) over 90 days after the date of invoice in the latest period for which figures are available. [13926]

Nick Herbert: Invoice payment information for the Home Department, inclusive of its agencies and non-departmental public bodies, for paying suppliers in the latest periods for which figures are available is as follows:

Period (i) Within 30 days (ii) 31 to 60 days (iii) 61 to 90 days (iv) Over 90 days

(a) Home Office Head Quarters

August 2010

1,843

73

19

24

(b) Criminal Records Bureau

August 2010

212

23

9

1

(b) Identity and Passport Service

August 2010

946

8

1

0

(b) UK Border Agency

August 2010

4,715

115

52

85

(c) Independent Police Complaints Commission

August 2010

296

0

0

0

(c) Independent Safeguarding Authority

August 2010

130

0

0

0

(c)The National Police Improvement Agency

August 2010

891

276

94

104

(c) The Office of the Immigration Service Commission

August 2010

9

0

0

0

(c) Security Industry Authority

August 2010

152

3

0

0

(c) The Serious Organised Crime Agency

30 July to 3 September

1,772

340

149

108


Departmental Official Hospitality

Greg Mulholland: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much her Department spent on hospitality for events hosted by each Minister in the Department in each of the last three years. [13480]

Nick Herbert: The Home Office finance system does not separately identify the cost of individual hospitality events hosted by individual Ministers from overall hospitality costs. This information could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

DNA Database

Mark Reckless: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when she expects to bring forward legislative proposals to limit the retention of DNA profiles taken from those arrested but not convicted; for how long from the point of arrest she proposes that profiles of those arrested but not convicted in cases deemed serious should be retained before removal; and by what date she expects existing DNA profiles of those arrested but not convicted in cases not deemed serious to have been removed from the database. [14384]

James Brokenshire: The Government will bring forward proposals in the Freedom Bill later this autumn to adopt the protections of the Scottish model.

This will mean that DNA from the un-convicted is only held in the case of those arrested for serious offences-and then only for a limited period of three years, extendable for two years with the approval of a court. DNA taken in respect of those arrested for but not convicted of a minor offence will not be retained. Further details will be announced to the House in due course.

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 13 July 2010, Official Report, column 632W, on DNA: databases, if she will estimate the number of DNA matches made with the National DNA Database since 4 December 2008 in respect of individuals whose DNA profiles would have been removed from the database by the changes proposed by the Government in light of the judgement of the European Court of Human Rights in the case of S and Marper. [14458]

James Brokenshire: The information requested is not available.

Domestic Violence

Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps her Department is taking to engage with specialist frontline service's and women's sector organisations to ensure women fleeing violence can access effective support. [13986]

James Brokenshire: There is currently a range of work streams across Government Departments to ensure that partners and frontline services are engaged. The Government provide funding for a number of victim services and works with the women's sector to deliver these. The Home Office has already committed over £8 million in 2010-11 to support some of these key services.

The Government are currently considering their approach to tackling violence against women and girls and a new strategy will be delivered in the spring.

Domestic Violence: Immigrants

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the scheme allowing women in the UK on spousal visas to access refuge accommodation for a fixed period of time; whether she plans to extend that scheme; and if she will make a statement. [14436]

James Brokenshire: A Home Office pilot project for victims of domestic violence with no recourse to public funds commenced in November 2009 and was scheduled
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to run to the end of August 2010. On 16 July, the Home Secretary announced an extension to the pilot until the end of March 2011 and a commitment to find a long-term funding solution to the issue. The pilot is monitored on a monthly basis and a full evaluation will take place following completion of the pilot.

EU Law

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many officials in her Department work (a) full-time and (b) for most of their time on the negotiation, implementation or administration of EU legislation and consequent policies. [13782]

James Brokenshire: The negotiation, implementation and administration of EU legislation and policies impacts on most areas of Home Office responsibility and is consequently integrated into the work of Department officials. In addition, within the Department about 30 members of staff work full-time on EU policy with the EU institutions and member states, with a particular focus on justice and home affairs.

Female Genital Mutilation

Valerie Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will take steps to strengthen enforcement of legislation prohibiting female genital mutilation; and if she will make a statement. [14879]

James Brokenshire [holding answer 13 September 2010]: The Government are committed to developing a strategy to tackle violence against women and girls and this will include female genital mutilation. Legislation alone cannot eliminate the practice so our resources will be aimed at raising awareness of the law on female genital mutilation and the health implications with communities and front-line practitioners.

Offensive Weapons: Internet

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps her Department takes to ensure that illegal weapons are not purchased in the UK via the internet; and if she will make a statement. [11151]

James Brokenshire [holding answer 26 July 2010]: The UK has some of the toughest firearms laws in the world.

UK Border Agency are responsible for intercepting and seizing a wide range of prohibited and restricted goods at the border, including firearms and other weapons, their parts and ammunition. International parcel and courier post are targeted because they are assessed as a high risk for delivery of weapons bought over the internet. In addition, the Association of Chief Police Officers lead a multi-agency programme under the UK organised crime control strategy which aims to detect, deter and disrupt the acquisition, use and trafficking of firearms by organised criminals. This includes activity with UK and international partners focussing on internet sales of firearms, replica firearms, ammunition and component parts.


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In the case of knives, in 2009, 21 major retailers signed up to a six point plan to tackle under-age knife sales. A particular concern was online retail sales, and the majority of these major retailers removed online sales of knives from their websites.

Police: EU Countries

Andrew Percy: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much was spent by police forces in the UK on evidence-gathering for police forces of other EU member states in the last three years. [14714]

Nick Herbert [holding answer 13 September 2010]: UK police forces do not have specific officers who deal solely with these requests. Each request is different and will be executed by different police officers. Consequently, neither the Home Office nor individual police forces have such information available.

Police: Finance

Liz Kendall: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of funding for each police force was (a) provided from central Government (b) raised locally and (c) raised from other sources in the latest period for which figures are available. [14035]

Nick Herbert: The amount of funding provided from central Government and raised locally is available from the following web link:

Information on funding from other sources is not held centrally but can be found in the 2008-09 actuals or 2009-10 estimate statistics from the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA).

Police: Kent

Tracey Crouch: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) police community support officers, (b) uniformed officers and (c) civilian staff have been recruited by Kent Police in each year since 2000. [15116]

Nick Herbert: The available data are provided in the following table:


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PCSOs, police officers and police staff joiners( 1) in Kent( 2) 1999-2000 to 2009-10( 3)
Financial year Police community support officers( 4, 5) Police officers( 6) Police staff( 5, 7, 8)

1999-2000

-

174

-

2000-01

-

269

-

2001-02

-

286

-

2002-03

-

370

291

2003-04

5

326

544

2004-05

42

225

382

2005-06

10

257

385

2006-07

109

274

331

2007-08

217

205

329

2008-09

95

268

404

2009-10

44

166

297

(1) Figures include the following types of joiners: 'Standard Direct', 'Rejoining', 'Previously Special' and 'Transfer'. (2 )This table contains full-time equivalent figures for Kent. They have been rounded to the nearest whole number. (3) Figures prior to 2002-03 are not comparable with figures after that date. Prior to 2002-03 transfers were excluded from joiner figures. Also prior to 2002-03 figures are on a headcount basis. (4) Police community support officers (PCSOs) came into operation in September 2002, therefore figures are not available prior to 2003-04. (5) Figures for PCSOs and police staff are provisional and have not been verified by forces. (6 )Figures for uniformed officers are not collected therefore figures for police officers have been provided. (7 )Police staff includes designated officers but excludes police community support officers and traffic wardens. (8 )Figures for police staff joiners are not available prior to 2002-03. Prior to 2002-03 transfers were excluded from joiner figures and figures for joiners were on a headcount as opposed to a full-time equivalent basis. Note: Prior to 2002-03 transfers were excluded from joiner figures and figures for joiners were on a headcount as opposed to a full-time equivalent basis.

Police: Pay

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many and what proportion of police officers in Essex will have their pay frozen as a result of the decision to freeze the wages of public sector workers. [4565]

Nick Herbert: My right hon. Friend, the Home Secretary announced at the 2010 Police Federation Conference that the Government would honour the remainder of the three-year pay deal for police officers, which ends on 31 August 2011. Thereafter the Government's policy is to freeze the pay of public sector workers earning over £21,000 for two years. We would expect this to apply to police officers, taking account of any recommendations from the Police Negotiating Board.

Police: Reform

Priti Patel: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps she plans to take to (a) improve the efficiency and productivity of police forces in England and Wales, (b) reform police working practices and (c) reduce the administrative burden on police forces. [11054]

Nick Herbert [holding answer 26 July 2010]: The steps that the Government plan to make on all of these issues were announced by the Home Secretary on 26 July 2010 and are set out in a consultation paper "Policing in the 21(st) Century: Reconnecting Police and the People". A copy can be found on the Home Office website at:

Public Order Act 1986: Arrests

Mr Raab: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been (a) arrested, (b) charged and (c) convicted of a criminal offence under Part 3A of the Public Order Act 1986 in each year from 2006 to 2010. [13683]

Nick Herbert [holding answer 9 September 2010]: The information requested on arrests is not collected centrally.

The arrests collection held by the Home Office covers arrests for recorded crime (notifiable offences) only, broken down at a main offence group level, covering
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categories such as violence against the person and robbery. From these centrally reported categories it is not possible to separately identify offences under part 3A of the Public Order Act 1986.

Figures provided by the Ministry of Justice on the number of persons proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty at all courts for offences under part 3A of the Public Order Act 1986 in each year from 2006 to 2008 (latest available) can be viewed in the table.

Charging data are not held on the Ministry of Justice's proceedings database. Figures for those proceeded against at magistrates courts are provided in lieu of these.

Figures for 2009 will be published in Criminal Statistics for England and Wales 2009 on 21 October 2010. Figures for 2010 the autumn of 2011.

Number of persons proceeded against at magistrates courts and found guilty( 1, 2) at all courts for offences relating to part 3A of the Public Order Act 1986( 3) , England Wales, 2006 - 08( 4)
Proceeded against Found guilty

2006

13

7

2007

12

9

2008(4)

14

14

(1 )The figures given in the table on court proceedings relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.
(2) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts and police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations ere taken into account when those data are used.
(3) The following statutes and corresponding offence descriptions have been used:
Public Order Act 1986 S.18
Use of words or behaviour or display of written material intended or likely to stir up racial hatred
Public Order Act 1986 S.19
Publishing or distributing written material intended or likely to stir up racial hatred
Public Order Act 1986 S.20
Public performance of play intended or likely to stir up racial hatred
Public Order Act 1986 S.21
Distributing, showing or playing a recording intended or likely to stir up racial hatred
Public Order Act 1986 S.22
Broadcasting or including a programme in programme service intended or likely to stir up racial hatred
Public Order Act 1986 S.23
Possession of a racially inflammatory piece of material
Public Order Act 1986 S.29B
Using words or behaviour or display of written material (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29C
Publishing or distributing written material (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29D
Public performance of a play (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29E
Distributing, showing or playing a recording (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29F(1) and (2)(a)
Provider of programme broadcasting or including programme in programme service (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29F(1) and (2)(b)
Producer or Directorate of programme broadcasting or including programme in programme service (acts intended 10 stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29F(1)(2)(c)
Person using offending words or behaviour-broadcasting or including programme in programme service (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
Public Order Act 1986 S.29G
Possessing inflammatory material (acts intended to stir up religious hatred)
(4) Excludes data for Cardiff magistrates court for April, July, and August 2008.
Source:
Justice Statistics Analytical Services-Ministry of Justice.

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Smuggling: Wildlife

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether she expects the UK border police force to take steps to reduce the level of smuggling and illegal trade in wildlife under her proposals for that police force. [10886]

Nick Herbert: The Coalition programme for government includes a commitment to establish a border police force to enhance national security, improve immigration controls and crack down on the trafficking of people, wildlife, weapons and drugs.

Terrorism Legislation

Karl Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department who she plans to consult as part of the review of anti-terror legislation. [9706]

Nick Herbert: The arrangements for the review of counter-terrorism and security powers were announced to Parliament on 13 July 2010, Official Report, columns 797-809.

My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary made clear in that announcement that the Government want the review to be conducted as openly and as transparently as possible. Independent oversight of the review will be provided by Lord Macdonald of River Glaven who will ensure that the review is properly conducted, that all the relevant options have been considered and that the recommendations of the review are fair and balanced.

We have also asked Liberty to contribute to the review and are similarly keen to involve civil liberty, human rights, law and community organisations from across the United Kingdom. The review will be conducted by the Home Office with the full involvement of the police, security and intelligence agencies and other Government Departments including those in Scotland and Northern Ireland. We would also welcome anyone with an interest to submit their views to the Home Office. Contributions to the review should be sent to:

Mr Hanson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the oral statement of 8 June 2010, on the Terrorism Act 2000 (Section 44), what discussions she has had with (a) the Police Service of Northern Ireland, (b) the Association of Chief Police Officers and (c) the Metropolitan Police Service on the content of her Statement prior to its delivery. [8166]

Nick Herbert [holding answer 13 July 2010]: Home Office Ministers and officials acting on their behalf discussed the approach to section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 in the light of the European Court of Human Rights' judgment with the Police Service for Northern Ireland, the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Metropolitan Police Service. My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary also spoke to the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. Those discussions informed the content of the statement delivered by my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary on 8 July 2010, Official Report, columns 540-48.


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Vetting

Alan Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when she expects her review of the vetting and barring scheme to report. [13678]

Mrs May [holding answer 8 September 2010]: A further announcement on the terms of reference for the review is expected shortly. It is anticipated that the review will report by December 2010.

Wales

Jonathan Edwards: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will make an assessment of the likely effects on Wales of her Department's planned spending reductions. [8991]

Nick Herbert: No departmental expenditure limits (DELs) have yet been set for the years after 2010-11. DELs for the four years from 2011-12 will be set in the spending review on 20 October 2010.

With regard to the impact of the planned spending reductions in 2010-11 on Wales, I refer the hon. Member to my previous answer of 23 June 2010, Official Report, column 229W.

Transport

Aviation: Climate Change

Sir Alan Haselhurst: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he plans to respond to the December 2009 report of the Committee on Climate Change on meeting the UK Aviation Target. [15211]

Mrs Villiers: I refer my right hon. Friend to my answer of 8 July 2010, Official Report, column 370W.

Bus Services: Concessions

Mr Umunna: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has for the future provision of funding by his Department for concessionary bus travel for (a) pensioners, (b) disabled people and (c) young people. [14101]

Norman Baker: The Government's commitment to protect key benefits for older people, such as free bus travel, is set out in the Coalition Agreement. The Government are looking to make further savings in the scheme through administrative and reimbursement reform, which will be considered as part of the spending review.

The Department for Transport has no current plans to provide funding for concessionary bus travel for young people though it remains open to individual local authorities to make local provision if they wish to do so.

Cycling

Paul Blomfield: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress has been made on the development of cycle hubs at each of the 10 railway stations for which they are planned. [15252]

Mrs Villiers: The first of the 10 planned cycle hubs opened in Leeds on a trial basis on 18 August 2010. The 'CyclePoint' will officially open for business on 27 September 2010.


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The Cycle-Rail Integration Task Force has been assessing the remaining nine cycle hub locations. They have been considering likely levels of usage and the arrangements to be made at different sized locations. The further implementation of plans is dependent on the outcome of the spending review.

Cycling: Business

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many employers have participated in the cycle to work scheme in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Wales and (d) Northern Ireland in each of the last five years. [13324]

Norman Baker: The Department for Transport does not hold information on the number of employers participating in the Cycle to Work scheme. The scheme is the responsibility of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.

Departmental Fines

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many transport-related fines his Department has settled on behalf of its staff in each year since 2005; and what the cost to the public purse was in each such year. [13306]

Norman Baker: The Department for Transport's staff are personally liable for any transport related fines that they may incur; the Department would only settle such a fine in the most exceptional circumstances.

Driving: Safety

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he last met representatives of the Institute of Advanced Motorists to discuss the contribution to road safety of continuous post-test training for all road users; and if he will make a statement. [14701]

Mike Penning: I met Institute of Advanced Motorists to talk about various aspects of driver training in July. The Driving Standards Agency also has a long-standing working relationship with them in connection with their advanced driving products.

Electric Vehicles

Mr Bain: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment of the impact on the electric powered vehicles market of the level and quantity of subsidies set by his Department for the purchase of such vehicles, as compared with the plans of the previous Government, was undertaken prior to their announcement. [14374]

Norman Baker: On 28 July, the Secretary of State confirmed that the plug-in car grant would go ahead from January 2011, providing subsidy for qualifying ultra-low emission vehicles of 25% of the purchase price, up to a maximum of £5,000.

The Secretary of State considered a range of evidence before concluding that there is a clear case for supporting the early market in ultra-low emission vehicles. This will
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deliver a number of strategic benefits to the UK interest: ensuring that we make meaningful reductions in emissions from road transport; supporting growth and job-creation in the green economy; and strengthening our position in relation to security of energy supply.

The level of the subsidy will be reviewed regularly to ensure that the UK remains competitive and taxpayers get value for money. The first review will be in January 2012, at which point the level will be set for subsequent years.

Mr Bain: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport which criteria will be used in the review of the subsidies for the sale of electric powered vehicles announced by his Department in July 2010. [14375]

Norman Baker: On 28 July, the Secretary of State for Transport confirmed that motorists will receive up to £5,000 towards the purchase of an ultra-low carbon car from January 2011.

The grant is confirmed as 25% of the value of the car up to a maximum of £5,000 up to the end of March 2012. A commitment beyond 2011-12 has not yet been made and decisions around future funding will be confirmed as part of the Spending Review.

The level of incentive will be reviewed regularly to ensure that the UK remains competitive and taxpayers get value for money. The first review will be in January 2012, after which point the level will be set for subsequent years. Criteria to be used in this review have not yet been set, however, a number of factors will be taken into account, such as the cost of vehicles and the development of the early market.

Mr Bain: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether it is the policy of his Department to install (a) up to 2,500 plug-in points for use by electric powered vehicles by April 2011 and (b) up to 11,000 points over the next three years via the plug-in places scheme. [14376]

Norman Baker: On 28 July 2010, the coalition Government confirmed that the plugged-in places electric vehicle infrastructure programme would continue. The £8.8 million awarded to London, Milton Keynes and the North East for this financial year to support their plans to install up to 2,500 charge points remains available.

Funding for a second round of projects will be determined subject to the outcome of the Spending Review. The number of charge points installed over the life of the programme will depend upon the number and size of projects successful in any second round of funding.

Heathrow Airport

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) whether the Noise Action Plan for Heathrow Airport will include a 55dB(A) Lden noise level target; [13904]

(2) whether the European Commission has agreed that the Noise Action Plan for Heathrow Airport does not have to be revised until 2015; [13905]

(3) when he plans to publish the Noise Action Plan for Heathrow Airport. [13906]


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Mrs Villiers: Following submission of Heathrow airport's draft noise action plan, officials from both the Department for Transport and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) met with airport representatives to discuss the draft. As a result, Heathrow airport is currently preparing a revised plan for further consideration. Once the plan has been formally adopted by Government, it will be published on both DEFRA's and the airport's website by the end of 2010.

The Noise Action Plans are required by EC law to cover a five-year period. The scope for the second stage of implementation of EC directive 2002/49 (the environmental noise directive) has yet to be determined.

Major airports in England have been encouraged to include an annual review as part of their plan rather than reviewing the plan after five years. In the case of Heathrow, the airport is also proposing to make the plan subject to independent audit.

Airports were required to produce strategic noise maps covering a range of metrics including Lden. While the directive requires airports to include provisions for evaluating the effect of actions proposed in the plan, there is no specific requirement for an Lden target. However Heathrow, in common with other airports, is understood to be considering the use of annual and forecast noise contours as an evaluation measure.

London Airports: Night Flying

Sir Alan Haselhurst: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what timescale he has set for his Department's consultation on the night flying restrictions for Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted for the period 2012 to 2017; [15206]

(2) whether the night flying restrictions for Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted for the period 2012 to 2017 will include measures to reduce the effects of night noise on local communities in line with the recommendations of the World Health Organisation. [15207]

Mrs Villiers: There have been restrictions on night flights at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted for many years. The Government fully recognise the importance of the protections afforded by these restrictions for communities affected by airport noise. The restrictions are subject to periodic review. The current regime introduced in June 2006 runs until October 2012. An announcement about the scope of proposals for post 2012 arrangements will be made in due course.

Sir Alan Haselhurst: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will consider the merits of adding Luton to the controlled night noise regime for London airports by making it a designated airport. [15208]

Mrs Villiers: The Government fully recognise the importance of the need to protect communities affected by aircraft noise. Noise control measures including restrictions on night flights at the three London strategic airports (Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted) have been in place for many years. Elsewhere we believe that airports should engage actively with their communities in determining what noise control measures provide the right local solution. This process has recently been strengthened by the requirement for airports to develop and publish noise action plans in consultation with communities living around airports. These plans and
14 Sep 2010 : Column 918W
the associated consultation process will play a central role in ensuring that airports mitigate against noise at a local level.

Network Rail: Lincoln

Karl McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions (a) he and (b) Ministers in his Department have had with Network Rail on measures to mitigate the effect of increased level crossing closures on Lincoln High Street through funding of (i) a replacement pedestrian footbridge and (ii) the proposed east-west relief road. [14920]

Mrs Villiers: Department for Transport Ministers and officials communicate regularly with Network Rail. The operation of the level crossing on Lincoln high street is an operational matter for Network Rail.

Network Rail has advised Department for Transport officials that the company is aware that current proposals to increase freight capacity through Lincoln will have an impact on the level crossing. I have been informed that Network Rail is working closely with Lincolnshire county council on this issue and will continue to work with all parties to achieve an appropriate solution.

Official Cars

Mr Allen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when the last spot check was made on Ministerial cars running their engines for heating or cooling purposes on the Parliamentary Estate; and what the findings of this spot check were. [14823]

Mike Penning: The Government Car and Despatch Agency reminds its drivers regularly, through internal notices, that it is unacceptable to park on the parliamentary estate with their engines running. However, spot checks are not carried out.

Road Traffic

Eric Ollerenshaw: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent estimate he has made of the cost of traffic congestion to business. [13852]

Norman Baker: The 2006 Eddington Study estimated the costs imposed by congestion to business and other travellers, using the Department for Transport's National Transport Model. It was found that the direct costs to business of congestion in England were approximately £7 billion (in 2003, at 2002 prices). This figure is based on the difference between the actual time taken to make a journey and the time that would be taken under theoretical 'free- flow' conditions. It does not necessarily represent the net benefit that would result from removing congestion.

The study report is available at:

South Eastern Trains: Correspondence

Heidi Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he plans to reply to South Eastern Trains' inquiry regarding franchise conditions and the partial closure of the platform 4 exit at Lewisham station. [14916]


14 Sep 2010 : Column 919W

Mrs Villiers: Southeastern submitted a modification proposal relating to the permanent closure of the platform 4 entrance at Lewisham station during July 2009. The company subsequently withdrew their proposal stating they would submit a new one once the Access for All Scheme major improvements and the station gating scheme at Lewisham station were completed. No further proposal has yet been received.

Speed Limits: Cameras

Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what guidance he has issued to local authorities on the removal of static road safety camera shells since 12 May 2010; [12107]

(2) what his policy is on the use of road safety cameras. [12108]

Mike Penning [holding answer 6 September 2010]: The Coalition's programme for government made a commitment to:

On 24 June I wrote to all local authorities in England and Wales explaining how I planned to implement this policy, and the Government's wider position on speed enforcement. My letter and the programme for government are both available in the Libraries of the House.

Local authorities remain free to fund current and future camera operations from their own resources, if they believe that this approach delivers safety improvements in the most effective way.

Camera operations will have a continuing role, but we want to see authorities considering the potential of the full range of local road safety interventions, including educational and engineering solutions.

No guidance has been issued to local authorities on the removal of static road safety camera shells since 12 May 2010.

International Development

Cereal Prices

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent assessment he has made of (a) the level of global grain prices and (b) its implications for his Department's policies; and if he will make a statement. [15173]

Mr O'Brien: The international wheat price has increased in recent weeks due to supply fears following poor harvests in southern Russia and Ukraine. It now stands at around $250 a tonne. The price of maize has also risen recently. The price of rice has come down lately following good harvests in major supplier countries.

The poor wheat harvest in southern Russia and Ukraine will only reduce global production by about 3%. World stocks of the main cereals commodities remain healthy, and the international prices of wheat and maize should reflect these conditions as markets adjust to these underlying factors.

The Department for International Development is working to increase global food security by helping to improve sustainable agricultural production in developing countries, and by seeking to raise the incomes of the poorest and most vulnerable people. We will continue to
14 Sep 2010 : Column 920W
support humanitarian operations in those countries in greatest need. At the same time, we are working to make the international trading system function more effectively, to enable shortfalls in one region to be balanced by surpluses in others.

China: Sustainable Development

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what his policy is on the continuation of the UK-China Sustainable Development Dialogue after 2011. [14488]

Mr Paice: I have been asked to reply.

We will be considering our future approach to the Sustainable Development Dialogue with China once the result of the Government's spending review is known. This will involve considering options for future engagement that offer best value for money and are in line with broader Government objectives for relations with emerging powers such as China.

Developing Countries: Malaria

Jeremy Lefroy: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps he is taking to reduce malaria mortality in countries where there is limited access to health workers. [14683]

Mr O'Brien: The Department for international Development (DFID) is currently developing its plans on how best to tackle malaria mortality in high burden countries. DFID will focus on increasing the use of interventions which work for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of malaria, and will work to ensure that coverage extends to the most vulnerable, especially through prevention services like insecticide treated bednets.

We want to ensure that our impact is sustainable by strengthening health services and national capacity to deliver malaria interventions. As a component of this health systems strengthening, DFID funding supports the training and deployment of health care workers through our bilateral programmes, direct support to national health plans of partner countries, and our funding to multilateral organisations and global funding instruments such as the World Bank, and the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria.

Developing Countries: Maternity Services

Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development in which (a) countries and (b) regions his Department's maternal and newborn health programme aims to reach marginalised populations. [15005]

Mr O'Brien: Improving reproductive, maternal and newborn health programmes are major priorities for the Coalition Government and are central to the Bilateral and Multilateral Aid Reviews currently under way. These reviews are due to report in early 2011 and they will inform our decisions on all future health programmes at both country and regional level.

The Department for International Development (DFID) is also developing a new business plan for reproductive, maternal and newborn health. A 12-week public consultation, to invite views on where DFID should be concentrating its efforts, ends on 20 October.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 921W

Food Supply

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent assessment he has made of the level of security of global food supplies; and if he will make a statement. [14425]

Mr O'Brien: At a global level, physical supplies of all the main cereals remain secure. 2010 is likely to produce the world's third largest cereals harvest ever. Food stocks, following two years of excellent harvests, remain high, at around 23% of annual consumption.

This summer's drought in Russia and Ukraine has significantly reduced the size of the harvest there, but this is only likely to reduce global wheat production by about 3% compared with earlier forecasts. The international price of wheat has risen steeply since June, reflecting current market concerns about possible shortfalls. Our assessment is that the price should adjust over the autumn as this summer's cereals crop is harvested.

We shall continue to monitor the situation carefully, and encourage national governments to liberalise trade in agricultural commodities to enable shortfalls in one region to be balanced by surpluses in others. As part of the G20, we will also discourage governments from imposing export bans and from panic buying, actions which exacerbate price volatility.

Pakistan: Overseas Aid

Rory Stewart: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assistance his Department has provided to Pakistan in the last 12 months. [14638]

Mr O'Brien: In the last 12 months, the Department for International Development (DFID) has provided aid to Pakistan to help put more children into school, improve macroeconomic stability, and support the efficient and effective delivery of basic services, resulting, in the previous financial year DFID providing £140 million worth of aid to Pakistan.

In the last six weeks, the UK has played a leading role in the international response to the devastating flooding in Pakistan. Our humanitarian aid is helping to support:

The UK humanitarian commitment totals £64 million.

UN Development Funds

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much the UK's (a) assessed and (b) voluntary (i) core and (ii) additional financial contributions were to UNIFEM in each of the last three financial years. [14680]

Mr O'Brien: Contributions to the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) are not assessed and the contributions of all Governments are
14 Sep 2010 : Column 922W
voluntary. The UK's core and additional financial contributions to UNIFEM in the last three calendar years were as follows.

$
Core funding( 1) Additional financial contributions Total

2007

6,085,000

6,301,000

12,387,000

2008

5,217,000

4,338,000

9,555,000

2009

4,800,000

1,851,000

6,651,000

(1) UK core funding for UNIFEM was £3 million for each of the three years. Differences between the above figures in US dollars reflect changes in the exchange rate.
Source:
UNIFEM's annual report 2007, 2008 and 2009.

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the UK's (a) assessed, and (b) voluntary (i) core and (ii) additional financial contributions were to UNICEF in each of the last three financial years. [14681]

Mr O'Brien: Contributions to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) are not assessed and the contributions of all Governments are voluntary. The UK's core and additional financial contributions to UNICEF in the last three calendar years were as follows.

$ million
Core funding( 1) Additional financial contributions Total

2007

42

l53

195

2008

38

175

213

2009

34

148

182

(1) UK core funding for UNICEF was £21 million for each of the three years. Differences between the above figures in US dollars reflect changes in the exchange rate.
Source:
UNICEF audited accounts 2007. 2008, 2009.

Defence

Animal Experiments

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make it his policy to reduce the number of animals used in experiments by his Department. [14441]

Peter Luff: The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) at Porton Down undertakes the animal research conducted within the Ministry of Defence. Part of the remit of Dstl Porton Down is to provide safe effective countermeasures for the UK and its armed forces and to develop medical and surgical techniques to enhance the treatment of battlefield casualties and save lives.

The research involving the use of animals is only one small aspect of a much wider research programme and animal studies are only ever undertaken if there is no viable alternative. Dstl Porton Down operates a continuous policy in accordance with the principles of the 3 R's (replacement, reduction and refinement) and has an active programme to increase the implementation of the 3 R's by exploring the use of non-living models in order to reduce the requirement for animal experimentation. Accordingly, tissue and cell cultures, physical or computer-based modelling, are used wherever possible and commensurate with good practice. Dstl continues to actively develop and further investigate the use of non-living
14 Sep 2010 : Column 923W
models to reduce the requirement for animal studies. However, where these alternatives are considered inadequate as a means of predicting the overall human response, experiments on animals will continue to be necessary.

Armed Forces: Empty Housing

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost to the public purse was of maintaining empty service accommodation in each of the last five years; and what the Cost to the public purse was of dilapidation and remedial costs on such properties in that period. [14292]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 13 September 2010]: The total maintenance, dilapidation and remedial costs for all empty accommodation are not separately identifiable from that for occupied accommodation.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) currently rents some 41,000 Service Family Accommodation properties in England and Wales from Annington Homes Ltd (AHL). Under the terms of the agreement with AHL, when no longer required by the MOD properties must be returned in good tenantable repair or the Department has to pay compensation in the form of a dilapidation charge.

Total dilapidation payments to AHL in each of the last five financial years were:

Financial year Dilapidation payment (£ million) Properties handed back

2005-06

3.7

670

2006-07

1.4

303

2007-08

3.0

460

2008-09

3.7

480

2009-10

4.6

722


United Kingdom Support Command manages 13,000 German Federal SFA Properties and some 5,000 leased properties located in Germany.

The costs attributed to dilapidations in empty accommodation in Germany are as follows:

Financial year Dilapidation payment (Euro) Properties handed back

2005-06

37,000

325

2006-07

574,000

499

2007-08

269,000

655

2008-09

271,000

1,349

2009-10

12,000

218


It is not possible to separate cost for the maintenance of empty service accommodation on the Overseas Permanent Joint Operating Bases from that of occupied accommodation.

Armoured Fighting Vehicles

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) when he expects to let the contract for the first batch of light protected patrol vehicles; [14293]

(2) whether the Government plan to proceed with the planned contract for the second batch of light protected patrol vehicles; and if he will make a statement; [14294]

(3) when he expects the first batch of light protected patrol vehicles to be delivered to theatre. [14295]


14 Sep 2010 : Column 924W

Peter Luff [holding answer 13 September 2010]: The Ministry of Defence expects to be in a position to place a contract for the first batch of light protected patrol vehicle (LPPV) in the coming weeks. While milestones such as delivery dates will be subject to agreement with the contractor, we expect the first vehicles to be delivered to training in late 2011, with deliveries to operations in 2012. Any further buys of LPPV will be subject to the confirmation of our wider requirement, which is being assessed in the Strategic Defence and Security Review.

Atomic Weapons Establishment

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence at what intervals the Atomic Weapons Establishment's Nuclear Safety Committee met in the last 12 months; and what the names are of the committee members. [2026]

Peter Luff: Meetings of the Atomic Weapons Establishment's Nuclear Safety Committee are held on a monthly basis. Additional meetings are held as required in response to business requirements, but no such meetings have been required in the last 12 months.

With regard to the names of the committee members, I will write to the hon. Member shortly.

Substantive answer from Peter Luff to Caroline Lucas:

Defence Equipment

Diana R. Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the significance for the UK economy of (a) defence exports and (b) the UK's defence manufacturing capability. [14159]

Peter Luff: We recognise the important contribution made to the UK economy and specifically to manufacturing industry by companies supplying the defence sector.
14 Sep 2010 : Column 925W
The UK was the second most successful global exporter in 2009, with new defence export orders of over £7 billion. We aim to publish a White Paper in spring 2011 setting out MOD's industrial and technology policy for the next five years.

Defence Research

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library a copy of the (a) Radar Additional Study and (b) Data Transport Study. [14595]

Peter Luff [holding answer 13 September 2010]: Both the Radar Additional and the Data Transport Studies contain information that is considered to be sensitive, both in terms of national security and to the commercial interests of the Ministry of Defence. I am, therefore, withholding both documents while work is being carried out to review them and produce versions that can be released without prejudicing those interests. This work is expected to be completed by the end of this month, when copies will be placed in the Library of the House.

Departmental Payments

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many payments to suppliers were made by (a) his Department, (b) its agencies and (c) its non-departmental public bodies (i) within 30 days of, (ii) over 30 days after, (iii) over 60 days after and (iv) over 90 days after the date of invoice in the latest period for which figures are available. [13936]

Peter Luff: The Ministry of Defence measures its payment performance by the number of invoices paid against the Government's prompt payment initiative and against commercial debt legislation. The legislation requires correctly presented invoices to be paid within 30 calendar days from the date of invoice or date of delivery of goods or services, whichever is the later. The Department does not collate this information against organisational subunits other than trading fund agencies and is therefore unable to break this performance down without disproportionate cost. On this basis the commercial debt performance for August 2010 for the periods specified was:

MOD Number

Within 30 days

372,065

Over 30 days

1,799

Over 60 days

722

Over 90 days

398


Departmental Contracts

Hugh Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence to how many contracts under the private finance initiative (a) his Department is and (b) its agencies are party; how much was spent on such contracts in each year since 2005; and what the (i) name and (ii) monetary value is of each such contract worth over £1 million a year. [13773]

Peter Luff: The Ministry of Defence (including its agencies) has entered into 54 PFI projects, of which 45 are still operating.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 926W

Details of the monetary value and spending on these projects is already in the public domain and can be found on the HM Treasury website at the following link:

Hugh Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence to how many contracts not under the private finance initiative (a) his Department is and (b) its agencies are party; how much was spent on such contracts in each year since 2005; what the (i) name and (ii) monetary value is of each such contract worth over £1 million a year; and whether any such contracts have been terminated before the end date originally specified in the contract during the last 12 months. [13774]

Peter Luff: The total number of contracts that appear on the Ministry of Defence's Financial Management Shared Service Centre (FMSSC) database at the end of each financial year; the total payments made against those contracts during that financial year; the number of contracts that are valued at over £1 million; and the number of contracts where spending of over £1 million was recorded in that financial year, are shown in the following table:

Financial year Number of contracts on database( 1) Total payments against these contracts (£ million) Number of contracts valued at over £1 million Number of contracts where over £1 million paid

2005-06

42,952

13,483

6,771

1,521

2006-07

31,376

14,048

5,952

1,437

2007-08

43,974

15,676

7,205

1,467

2008-09

33,943

17,323

6,149

1,580

2009-10

33,961

18,160

6,297

1,540

(1) These figures do not include miscellaneous contracts or PFI contracts
Note:
Many contracts will appear in more than one year

MOD are unable to provide all the information requested, as it is not held centrally and it could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Future Large Aircraft

Mr Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his most recent assessment is of progress in the delivery of the A400M military transport aircraft; and if he will make a statement. [14592]

Peter Luff [holding answer 13 September 2010]: In November 2008 EADS/Airbus Military announced difficulties in proceeding with the programme as contracted, proposed a new way ahead and announced that they wished to discuss details of the A400M programme with Partner Nations.

In April 2009 the UK joined other Partner Nations in a "standstill" agreement with Airbus Military. This enabled a period of discussions on options and possible outcomes for the A400M programme to take place whilst the rights of all parties under the existing contract were protected. Discussions continued throughout the remainder of 2009 and into 2010, culminating in agreement in principle on the future of the A400M programme being reached in March of this year.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 927W

Non-legally binding Heads of Terms signed at this time with Airbus Military by the European armaments agency OCCAR acting on behalf of Partner Nations are intended to form the basis of an amended contract. Subject to agreement of the amended contract, the UK off-take will be reduced by no more than three aircraft to a total fleet of 22 A400M. As intensive discussions on the details of the amended contract are ongoing, I am unable to provide any further information at present, save that we expect it to be concluded later this year.

Over this period positive achievements have included the first flight of the A400M prototype in Seville on 11 December 2009. The second prototype made its maiden flight on 8 April 2010 and the third on 9 July 2010. All three aircraft are now involved in the flight trials programme which is progressing to target with over 575 flying hours achieved to date.

Gibraltar: Armed Forces

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many children of British military personnel who are (a) under 10-years-old and (b) between 10 and 18-years-old are being educated in Gibraltar. [14625]

Nick Harvey: The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is currently educating 91 children under 10-years-old and 25 children between the ages of 10 and 18 in its schools in Gibraltar. It is not possible to split these numbers between children of military personnel and those of UK-based civilians. Not all parents choose to educate their children within the MOD school system.

The schools also educate the children of MOD contractors and some local community children on a fee-paying basis. In addition to the numbers above there are currently two children under 10-years-old and one child aged between 10 and 18 being educated on this basis.

Hebrides Missile Range

Mr MacNeil: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many pairs of fibre-optic cables his Department has between Hebrides Range and the mainland of Scotland. [14019]

Peter Luff: The Ministry of Defence has no fibre optic cables running between the Hebrides Range and the mainland of Scotland.

Iraq: Peacekeeping Operations

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent reports he has received on the progress of the Iraqi authorities in apprehending those responsible for the deaths of six Royal Military Police Officers from Colchester at Majar al-Kabir in June 2003. [14824]

Nick Harvey [holding answer 13 September 2010]: The Ministry of Defence receives formal weekly reports from officials in Baghdad providing updates on key developments in the criminal investigation into the murders of the six Royal Military Policemen in Iraq.

We were recently informed that the Iraqi Investigative Judge has indicated that a case against two of the seven
14 Sep 2010 : Column 928W
suspects detained in Iraqi custody should be referred to trial at the Central Criminal Court of Iraq. Dates for these trials have yet to be set. Five suspects are no longer suspected of having any involvement and we have received confirmation that they have been released.

Additionally, there are seven outstanding arrest warrants being actively pursued.

I have written twice to the families in recent weeks. My officials are in regular contact with the soldiers' families and communicate all significant developments directly to them. As soon as we have confirmation of a trial date or of any arrests against the outstanding warrants, families will be notified.

Lynx Helicopters

Gemma Doyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has spent on the Future Lynx/Wildcat project; and to what expenditure on the project it is contractually committed. [14752]

Peter Luff [holding answer 13 September 2010]: As at 31 August 2010 the contracted value of the Lynx Wildcat Design and Manufacture contract and supporting contracts is some £1.4 billion, of which about £560 million has been spent to date.

Military Aircraft

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of each flight hour of the (a) Tornado GR4, (b) Typhoon F2, (c) Harrier GR7, (d) Tornado F3 and (e) Harrier GR9. [13568]

Peter Luff: The estimated average full cost per funded flying hour is provided in the following table:

Aircraft Cost, financial year 2010-11 (£/hour)

Tornado GR4

35,000

Typhoon FGR4 (previously known as F2)

70,000

Harrier GR7/GR9

37,000

Tornado F3

43,000


These figures include forward and depth servicing, fuel costs, crew costs, training costs, cost of capital charge, depreciation and amortisation. The Typhoon cost per flying hour reflects the build up of the fleet with smaller numbers of aircraft currently in service; this cost is expected to reduce significantly over the in-service life of the aircraft.

Strategic Defence and Security Review

Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether research and development into bio-technology (a) defence counter-measures and (b) offensive measures are included in the Strategic Defence and Security Review. [14150]

Peter Luff: The UK's total defence science and technology requirement is being considered in Strategic Defence and Security Review. The UK does not have an offensive chemical or biological weapons programme.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 929W

Graham Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what account he is taking of the likely effects on the manufacturing industry in the North West of changes in expenditure on defence contracts in the conduct of the Strategic Defence and Security Review; [14419]

(2) what assessment he has made of the likely effects on the manufacturing and aerospace industries in the North West of proposed reductions in defence spending. [14420]

Peter Luff: We recognise the major contribution made to UK defence by industry throughout the north-west of England. The Strategic Defence and Security Review is still under way and therefore it would be premature to speculate about the impact of future levels of expenditure on defence contracts.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Agriculture: Regulation

Rory Stewart: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what proposals she has for the reduction of the regulatory burden on the agricultural industry; and if she will make a statement. [14224]

Mr Paice: We are very aware of the need to reduce burdens on farmers, increase competitiveness and trust in business and maintain standards. The Task Force on Farm Regulation, appointed in July, will consider how to reduce regulatory burdens, deliver risk-based and integrated compliance and inspection. It will consider all regulation that bears on farmers, and has started a wide consultation to understand which issues cause farmers most concern.

Agriculture: Subsidies

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how long on average it took to process a Single Farm Payment claim in the latest period for which figures are available. [14312]

Mr Paice: The complexity of the single payment scheme (SPS) and system processes in place to validate claims in accordance to the Commission regulations, means that it is not possible to provide a meaningful assessment of the average time to process a claim.

The regulatory payment window runs from 1 December to 30 June. The Rural Payments Agency paid 85% of customers by the end of December 2009. A further 9% were paid by the end of March 2010 and all but 300 customers had received some form of payment by the 30 June, the end of the payment window.

The estimated total claimant population for 2009 was 107,500. A number of applications resulted in no payment being due. This situation arises where, for example, customers hold entitlements for the wrong area type, have submitted duplicate claim forms or will receive payments from the devolved Administrations.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 930W

Bats: Licensing

George Freeman: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate her Department has made of the average cost per application of obtaining the expert advice required to support an application for a bat licence. [15100]

Richard Benyon: Neither DEFRA nor Natural England collate this information therefore an accurate average cost figure cannot be produced. The costs of obtaining expert advice to support a European protected species licence application may vary considerably according to the specifics of each site and proposal and will to a large extent be dictated by market forces.

Natural England provides general species advice and guidance to a range of customers and operates the licensing service for European protected species. Costs may be incurred when employing the services of a professional consultant adviser to provide the evidence needed to meet both planning and licensing requirements.

Bats: Nature Conservation

George Freeman: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what responsibilities her Department has for protection of bats; and if she will make a statement. [15101]

Richard Benyon: The European Habitats Directive places member states under an obligation to ensure that species listed in annex IV to the directive are given strict legal protection and this includes all species of bats. All public bodies are also under a general legal obligation to have regard to the requirements of the Habitats Directive in the exercise of their functions by virtue of regulation 9(1) of the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010. Measures taken to comply with these obligations can take many forms dependent on the individual circumstances of the case in question, and the extent of any feasible or necessary measures will very much depend on the degree of harm to the species that is foreseen.

The UK is a party to the Agreement on the Conservation of European Bats (the Eurobats Agreement) which promotes their protection internationally. In addition the Joint Nature Conservation Committee contributes to the National Bat Monitoring Programme, and Natural England carries out work to protect bats.

George Freeman: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much her Department spent on protection of bats in the most recent year for which figures are available. [15102]

Richard Benyon: The UK is a party to the Agreement on the Conservation of European Bats (the Eurobats Agreement) which promotes their protection internationally and for which the UK subscription in 2010 was £64,266. In addition the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC) contributed £87,000 to the National Bat Monitoring Programme in 2009-10. Natural England estimates that it has spent approximately £350,000 on work to protect bats in 2009-10.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 931W

Biofuels

Priti Patel: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her policy is on the European Commission's proposal to establish a mandatory separated collection system for bio-waste as referred to in the Green Paper on management of biowaste in the EU (2009/2153(INI)). [15011]

Richard Benyon: The Government believe that local authorities, working with local communities, are best placed to decide on the most appropriate options for waste management, including collection. For example, there are differences in what suits urban areas compared to suburban or rural areas in terms of the most appropriate waste collection types and frequencies.

The Review of Waste Policy announced in June will look at policies surrounding bio-waste, to see what can be done to reduce further the amount that ends up in landfill.

Bovine Tuberculosis

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate she has made of the number of cattle affected with bovine tuberculosis which have been slaughtered in each of the last five years; and what estimate she has made of the monetary value of compensation awarded to farmers in respect of livestock so slaughtered. [15174]

Mr Paice: The number of cattle slaughtered in England under bovine tuberculosis control measures, either as test reactors or direct contacts, and the amount of compensation paid in each of the last five years is shown in the following table.

Number of cattle slaughtered( 1) Compensation paid (£million)( 2)

2009

25,557

30.6

2008

27,455

28.6

2007

19,794

13.6

2006

16,007

16.3

2005

23,135

31.4

(1) VetNet - Animal Health database
(2) DEFRA Oracle Financial system
Note:
All figures are subject to change as more data becomes available.

Climate Change

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she plans to take to promote the use of supplementary Green Book guidance on accounting for the effects of climate change in the development, appraisal and evaluation of policies, programmes and projects in Government Departments. [14486]

Richard Benyon: The Government want to ensure the supplementary guidance is fully used by public sector
14 Sep 2010 : Column 932W
bodies, including Government Departments, in making investment decisions, particularly for major long-term investments.

DEFRA has already taken a number of steps to promote the use of this guidance. The Treasury hosted a Government Economic Service conference in March 2010 to raise awareness among those responsible for policy development and appraisal. All departmental chief economists have been asked to promote the guidance. It has been downloaded over 20,000 times from DEFRA's website since it was put in place in 2009, and 13 Departments reference to it in their Departmental Adaptation Plans. We intend to evaluate the impact of the guidance in the coming year and continue to promote its use.

Dangerous Dogs

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for the Home Department on dangerous dogs. [14218]

Mr Paice: Regular discussions take place at official level as DEFRA is represented on the Home Office's Antisocial Behaviour Steering Group whose remit includes dangerous dogs.

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many respondents to her Department's consultation on dangerous dogs supported the introduction of mandatory permanent identification as a means of promoting responsible dog ownership. [14219]

Mr Paice: DEFRA is not yet in a position to publish the summary of responses to the consultation on dangerous dogs.

Departmental Fines

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many transport-related fines her Department has settled on behalf of its staff in each year since 2005; and what the cost to the public purse was in each year. [13315]

Richard Benyon: The Department does not expect to pay such fines; these would be the responsibility of the person who committed the offence.

Departmental Furniture

Matthew Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many chairs her Department and its predecessor purchased in each year since 1997; how much was spent in each such year; and what the five most expensive chairs purchased in each such year were. [12801]

Richard Benyon: The information requested is tabled as follows.


14 Sep 2010 : Column 933W

14 Sep 2010 : Column 934W
Chair description Number purchased Individual cost of item purchased (£) Total spend (£)

2003

Task Chair

80

83

6,640

2004

Task Chair

87

224

-

Orthopaedic Chair

11

522

-

Meeting Chair

330

181

-

Reclining Chair

1

349

-

2 Seater Sofa

17

1,506

185,440

2005

Task Chair

535

251

-

Meeting Chair

754

275

-

Tall Kitchen Chair

50

221

-

Breakout Chair

86

120

-

2 Seater Sofa

4

1,327

-

Reclining Chair

1

1,175

282,510

2006

Meeting Chair

36

220

-

Orthopaedic Chair

1

545

6,214

2007

-

-

-

-

2008

Tall Kitchen Chair

27

221

-

Breakout Chairs

24

292

13,089

2009

Reception Chairs

10

450

-

Task Chair

9

102

-

Tall Kitchen Chair

2

241

-

Sofa

3

1,100

10,936

2010

Task Chair

126

174

-

Meeting Chair

72

190

-

Breakout Chair

28

412

-

Orthopaedic Chair

1

788

42,332


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