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Written Answers to Questions

Friday 14 September 2012

Business, Innovation and Skills

London Metropolitan University

Mr Lammy: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, pursuant to the answer of 7 September 2012, Official Report, column 496W, on London Metropolitan University, if he will publish the key messages and supporting questions and answers designed to provide assurance to international students, overseas Governments and other stakeholders regarding the UK Border Agency's decision to revoke the university's licence to sponsor non-EU students. [120726]

Mr Willetts: Key messages and answers to general questions are already being promoted in the public domain through information on the UK Border Agency website and on the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) website, which details action being taken by the taskforce created to help London Metropolitan University support overseas students affected by the decision.

Answers to specific questions from key stakeholders and overseas Governments are being addressed on an individual basis and a helpline has been established at London Metropolitan University to provide advice to students affected by the decision. We do not intend to publish the detail of this correspondence or communication.

Mr Lammy: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, pursuant to the answer of 7 September 2012, Official Report, column 496W, on London Metropolitan University, if he will publish the guidance issued to posts in British embassies and to partner organisations regarding the UK Border Agency's decision to revoke the university's licence to sponsor non-EU students. [120727]

Mr Willetts: We do not intend to publish Government internal communications with British embassies or other partner organisations in respect of London Metropolitan University.

Internal guidance that we have issued to date has included: the current position on London Metropolitan University's Tier 4 sponsor licence and the reason for its revocation, action being taken to address the situation and guidance on how to respond to questions received.

Advice on all these points is already available in the public domain through information being published by the UK Border Agency on their website and on the

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Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) website, which details action being taken by the taskforce created to help London Metropolitan University support overseas students affected by the decision.

Space Technology

Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (1) what UK space projects his Department is (a) fully and (b) partially funding; what plans he has to fund such projects in each of the next five years; and if he will make a statement; [119767]

(2) which space projects his Department supports; how much has been spent on each project to date; how much he plans to spend on each project in each of the next two years; what further projects are planned in each of the next two years; what discussions (a) Ministers and (b) officials in his Department have had with HM Treasury on space issues; what the outcome was of such discussions; and if he will make a statement. [119770]

Mr Willetts: The UK Space Agency has published a brochure describing the national space programme and projects 2011-12. It is available on the agency website and explains more about each of the projects listed in the following table. Most are national instrument contributions to European Space Agency or international projects.

http://www.bis.gov.uk/ukspaceagency/publications

An updated document for 2012-13 is in preparation and will be published shortly.

The UK also invests directly through the European Space Agency in a broad range of space projects in science, earth observation, telecommunications and technology. These are listed on the UK Space Agency website at:

http://www.bis.gov.uk/ukspaceagency/missions

Beyond the current spending review period, budgets have not been confirmed.

Space is a success area, and has grown through the recession at an average rate of almost 7.5% and now contributes £9.1 billion to the UK economy annually. Decisions will be made at the European Space Agency Council at ministerial level in November 2012, and there is a significant opportunity for the UK to continue to invest in space projects that will provide economic benefit and aid the UK recovery.

I wrote to the Chief Secretary to the Treasury in August 2012 setting out the range of projects that will be open to subscription. Discussions between officials and HMT officials have taken place on the costs and benefits of these projects. At this time no firm decision on the level of UK commitment has been made, but a decision will be needed by November 2012.

Principal space projects and programmes managed by the UK Space Agency
£ million
 Project spend to date (including estimate for 2012-13)Planned 2013-14Planned 2014-15

JWST Mid IR Instrument

20

1

0.4

GAIA Data Processing and Analysis Consortium + operations

10.2

2

2

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BepiColombo MIXS instrument

3.4

0.5

0.2

LISA Pathfinder Test Package

5.5

0.2

0.35

Swift instrument and operations

10.7

0.7

0.5

STEREO instrument and operations

3.2

0.15

0.15

Herschel SPIRE instrument and operations

18.9

0.7

0.4

Planck instruments and operations

19.3

1.1

0.7

Hinode instrument and operations

7.5

0.5

0.4

Solar Orbiter instruments

7

2.9

2.3

Euclid instruments

1.7

2.1

2.3

Future science mission studies

3.8

tbd

tbd

TechDemoSat-1(1)

5

tbd

tbd

UKube-1 and follow-on

0.7

0.3

tbd

ExoMars instruments and other national space exploration

28.0

5.1

5.5

NovaSAR(2)

7

14

0

National Space Technology Programme(3)

10

tbd

tbd

Centre of Earth Observation Instrumentation

5.1

tbd

tbd

(1) Technology Strategy Board is lead funder. (2) Fresh funding announced as part of 2011 autumn statement. (3) £10 million from UK Space Agency plus additional contributions from industry, TSB, SEEDA, DSTL and research councils to reach circa £27 million total.

Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills whether he plans to provide funding for space projects related to a future moon landing; what discussions the UK Space Agency has had with the US administration on this matter; and if he will make a statement. [119768]

Mr Willetts: No funds are allocated to develop missions for a future moon landing, and at present we have no firm plans to commit to a moon project. The UK Space Agency is a member of the International Space Exploration Co-ordination Group (ISECG) which includes NASA. ISECG is engaged in multi-lateral discussions on future space exploration of the Moon, Mars and asteroids, as described on its website:

http://www.globalspaceexploration.org/

Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what support he plans to provide to space exploration in each of the next five years; what recent reports he has received of assistance given to space exploration by the Governments and Administrations of (a) the US, (b) the Russian Federation and (c) each EU member state; and if he will make a statement. [119769]

Mr Willetts: The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills provides funding to the UK Space Agency for space activities. The one exploration project currently being funded through the European Space Agency (ESA) is ExoMars. This is a mission to explore the atmosphere, surface and sub-surface of Mars and is scheduled to be launched in two phases in 2016 and 2018.

It is funded by the UK at an average of €14 million per year. In addition there is a nationally funded UK activity of £5 million to £5.5 million per year to provide instruments for the ExoMars mission and to exploit the science and technology of this and other Mars exploration missions.

The United States was scheduled to be a major partner in ExoMars, but withdrew in early February 2012. The Russian Federation space agency Roscosmos has joined the programme and is expected to provide key elements including the launches.

ESA member states have agreed to support the ESA ExoMars programme as shown in the following table. Some increased financial support may be provided by some member states at the ESA ministerial meeting in November 2012. Most countries also have a national programme to support instruments. Through ESA, member states are studying options for Mars missions to follow ExoMars with the ultimate goal of returning samples of material from Mars for study in terrestrial laboratories. Germany, Spain and Portugal are also funding studies with ESA of a proposed robotic lunar lander mission to be launched around 2018. A decision on whether to proceed with this project will also be discussed at the November ESA ministerial meeting.

Participating statesExoMars (percentage)ExoMars (€ million—2008 ec)

Austria

1.25

12.5

Belgium

2.61

26.1

Denmark

0.55

5.5

France

12.9

129.0

Germany

8.96

89.6

Italy

27.82

278.2

The Netherlands

1.24

12.4

Norway

0.26

2.6

Portugal

0.21

2.1

Spain

5.83

58.3

Sweden

0.62

6.2

Switzerland

4.38

43.8

United Kingdom

16.5

165.0

Canada

1.91

19.1

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Total subscribed

85.04

850.4

The UK Space Agency is a member of the International Space Exploration Co-ordination Group which includes NASA. ISECG is engaged in multi-lateral discussions on future space exploration of the Moon, Mars and asteroids, as described on its website:

http://www.globalspaceexploration.org/

NASA continues its Mars exploration programme, notably with the landing of Curiosity in August 2012, and is building a new generation of human space exploration vehicles to take astronauts beyond Earth's orbit. Roscosmos is defining new robotic space exploration missions to the Moon and has recently announced that it may also develop a new human crew vehicle.

Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent assessment he has made of (a) the state of the space sector and (b) the development of the International Space Innovation Centre; and if he will make a statement. [119771]

Mr Willetts: The biennial “Size and Health of the UK Space Industry” report, commissioned by the UK Space Agency, assesses the UK space sector. The next report is due to be published later this month and will be accessible on our website; the last report can be found at:

http://www.bis.gov.uk/ukspaceagency/publications

Latest findings show that the total space-related UK turnover was £9.1 billion in 2010/11 (compared with £7.5 billion in 2008/09), which represents a real growth of 15.6% since 2008/09. The average annual growth rate over the last two years surveyed has been 7.5%. Together these growth rates suggest that the UK space industry has performed extremely well in difficult economic circumstances.

The International Space Innovation Centre (ISIC)—in operation since April 2011—has not yet had a formal assessment but I receive regular reports on ongoing activities, all of which demonstrate how it is already making a substantial impact in helping to accelerate development of the UK's Space economy.

Cabinet Office

Charitable Donations

Mr Buckland: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) what recent assessment he has made of the merits of introducing a licensing regime that treats commercial collectors equally with charities in respect of house to house collections; and if he will make a statement; [120522]

(2) what recent estimate his Department has made of the (a) set-up cost and (b) annual running cost of a new licensing scheme for house to house collections if national exemption orders were abolished; [120523]

(3) what recent estimate his Department has made of the cost to local authorities of processing applications

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from charities for house to house collections if national exemption orders were abolished. [120524]

Mr Hurd: As part of his recent review of the Charities Act 2006 (‘Trusted and Independent: Giving charity back to charities’) Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts considered the future licensing and regulation of charitable collections. The Government are carefully considering all of Lord Hodgson's recommendations, and are working closely with the charity sector and other interested parties to consider the evidence and develop the Government's response.

A full written response to Lord Hodgson's report will be published later this year.

Government Departments: Public Consultation

Dr Huppert: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office whether he has considered providing a regularly updated online list of all ongoing Government consultations with links to the details of such consultations. [120692]

Mr Maude [holding answer 13 September 2012]: A list of Government consultations will be published on GOV.UK which will be launched shortly as Departments migrate their existing websites to the new single domain.

Internet

Chris Ruane: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what estimate he has made of the number and proportion of (a) individuals and (b) households that do not use the internet in each (i) region, (ii) local authority area and (iii) constituency in the UK. [121064]

Mr Hurd: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Stephen Penneck, dated 13 September 2012:

As Director General for the Office for National Statistics, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question concerning what estimate has been made of the number and proportion of (a) individuals and (b) households that do not use the Internet in each (i) region, (ii) local authority area and (iii) constituency in the UK.

Estimates of Internet use by adults aged 16 years and over are published quarterly by the Office for National Statistics and are available on the Office for National Statistics website. These estimates are derived from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and have coverage of the United Kingdom (UK). Estimates are available by region (Table 1) and two lower level geographical tiers (Tables 2 and 3). A copy of these tables has been placed in the House of Commons library. The latest available estimates are in respect of 2012 Q2 (April to June 2012). Estimates of Internet use by local authority area and constituency in the UK are not available.

Estimates of household Internet access are published on an annual basis by the Office for National Statistics and are also available on the Office for National Statistics website. These estimates are derived from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey. Estimates are available by region, but for Great Britain only (Table 4). It is not possible, from this survey, to produce estimates of household Internet access by local authority area or constituency.

Ministers

Owen Smith: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) how many hon. Members and peers were appointed to Government posts (a) excluding and (b) including Parliamentary Private Secretaries on (i) 10 September 2012 and (ii) 31 August 2012; [120854]

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(2) how many paid Ministers held a Government post on (a) 10 September 2012 and (b) 31 August 2012; [120855]

(3) what the total cost was of the salaries of paid Ministerial appointments in each Government Department on (a) 10 September 2012 and (b) 31 August 2012; [120856]

(4) how many (a) paid Cabinet Ministers including the Lord Chancellor, (b) paid Ministers of State, (c) other paid Ministers heading Government Departments or office holders listed in schedule 1, part 1, of the Ministerial and Other Salaries Act 1975 who were not members of the Cabinet, (d) paid law officers and (e) paid whips there were on (i) 31 August 2012 and (ii) 10 September 2012; and what the total cost was of salaries for each category on each date. [120857]

Mr Maude [holding answer 13 September 2012]: I refer the hon. Member to the list of the Government published on the No. 10 website at:

http://www.number10.gov.uk/the-coalition/the-government/

which includes information on which Ministers are unpaid.

An updated list of Parliamentary Private Secretaries will be published in due course.

Details on the level of ministerial, salaries are set out in the Ministerial and Other Salaries Act 1975, as amended by the Ministerial and other Salaries Order 2011.

Church Commissioners

Leasehold

David Morris: To ask the hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps the Church Commissioners have taken to ensure that the leasehold contracts they offer comply with property law; and if he will make a statement. [121130]

Sir Tony Baldry: The Church Commissioners seek to ensure that all of the property leases they grant comply with the law, and with best practice. They are advised in this by professionally qualified independent solicitors and surveyors, as well as professionally qualified in-house staff.

David Morris: To ask the hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, what the Church Commissioners' policy is on right of arbitration for its leaseholders; and if he will make a statement. [121131]

Sir Tony Baldry: The Church Commissioners will consider the use of arbitration where the law or a lease allows for this, and agree to this if the law or a lease provides for this as a right.

Communities and Local Government

Community Infrastructure Levy

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the range is of community infrastructure levies being enforced in the UK. [121030]

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Nick Boles: Local authorities in England and Wales, and the Mayor of London, can choose to charge the community infrastructure levy on new developments in their area. At the present time, six authorities have approved charging schedules in place and are operating the levy. Rates for residential, retail and commercial uses range from £0 to £125 per square metre. Charges are set following consultation, public examination and independent approval. They must be demonstrated to be viable and should be kept under review by charging authorities.

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the highest fee is that a new self-builder will be required to pay through the community infrastructure levy and the affordable home levy. [121031]

Nick Boles: The amount payable by a self-builder under the community infrastructure levy will vary depending on the size of the property and the rates for residential development set by a specific local authority. Current rates for residential development in areas that have adopted the levy vary from £0 per to £105 per square metre.

Revenues from the community infrastructure levy can be used to fund a range of infrastructure to support development, but cannot be used to fund affordable housing. In some areas local authorities may use a section 106 planning obligation to collect contributions for affordable housing from small-scale new housing development. As set out in the National Planning Policy Framework, planning obligations should be fairly and reasonably related in scale and kind to the development, and should not render the development unviable.

We are currently reviewing whether there is a disproportionate impact from the levy on self-build housing.

Housing: Construction

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many new homes were being built in developments of less than five new housing units in the latest period for which figures are available. [121082]

Mr Prisk: This information is not held centrally.

Housing: Greater London

Mr Lammy: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what discussions he has had with the Mayor of London on his decision to target a reduction in the levels of severe overcrowding. [120603]

Mr Prisk: The London Housing Strategy, published in February 2010, includes a commitment to halve severe overcrowding among social tenants by 2016. The strategy was discussed in detail with my officials before publication.

Housing was devolved to the Mayor through the Localism Act 2011, which came into effect in April this year. My Department continues to work closely with the Greater London Authority on housing matters where there is a shared interest. The framework for this relationship is provided by a memorandum of understanding which has been agreed between both organisations.

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Local Government: Trade Union Officials

Geoffrey Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps he is taking to discourage the employment of full-time trade union officials in local government. [119334]

Brandon Lewis: At a time when all councils need to make sensible savings to protect front-line services and help tackle the deficit inherited from the last administration, Ministers would urge councillors to review the subsidies and funding being provided to trade unions at taxpayers' expense.

The Cabinet Office recently launched a formal consultation with civil service unions on reforming trade union facility time and facilities in the civil service. The consultation closed on 7 September 2012. Once my Department has reviewed the outcomes of the Cabinet Office consultation, we intend in due course to provide specific guidance for local councils to help inform their own local reviews, reflecting that it is for local councils, as employers, to decide how to manage their own local workforces.

We hope this guidance will give local authorities assurance and practical help on how they can review and, if they see fit, cut back both so-called “pilgrims” and the provision of other subsidies like free office facilities. However, a number of councils have already undertaken reviews recently of facility time to cut costs, highlighting that local authorities already have discretion and powers to act without the permission of central Government.

We would encourage such matters to be debated openly in council meetings—with councillors declaring any prejudicial interests on union support, as required under The Relevant Authorities (Disclosable Pecuniary Interests) Regulations 2012.

Councils should ensure that arrangements for collecting union subscriptions through the payroll do not burden taxpayers. We want to raise awareness of the fact that councils are already allowed under law to levy a local administration charge to trade unions for providing this service, or they simply can exercise their right not to offer this payroll facility.

My Department is currently considering the merits of issuing an updated local government transparency code to ensure greater transparency over the cost to local taxpayers of providing trade union facility time.

Travellers

Mr Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps he is taking to ensure local authorities co-operate in the production of cross-authority plans on provision for the travelling community; and what sanctions he is considering for authorities which do not co-operate. [120956]

Brandon Lewis: Local authorities must work together on planning issues that cross administrative boundaries under the duty to cooperate introduced by the Localism Act 2011. Planning policy for traveller sites makes clear that, under the duty, local authorities should consider the production of joint plans that set targets on a cross-authority basis, to provide more flexibility in

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identifying traveller sites (particularly if a local authority has special or strict planning constraints across its area).

The duty to co-operate requires local authorities to work together constructively, actively and on an ongoing basis on planning for strategic cross-boundary matters in local plans. Local authorities are required to demonstrate that they have complied with the duty when their plans are examined at the independent local plan examination. Failure to demonstrate compliance may mean that the local plan may not pass the examination process.

Migration: Children

Kate Green: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance has been given to local authorities to safeguard children identified as in need or at risk as a result of migration of families when support with housing costs through (a) local housing allowance and (b) universal credit is reduced. [113447]

Mr Timpson: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Education.

Statutory arrangements are in place to identify children who are in need or at risk or who have special educational needs and their families. Should any families with such children have to move as the result of changes to housing allowances and the introduction of universal credit then schools and local authorities will have the duties to transfer information.

Schools are under a duty when a pupil changes school to transfer the pupil's educational records and the Common Transfer File, which includes information on a child's special educational needs. Where a child who has a statement of special educational needs moves between authorities, local authorities are under a duty to transfer the statement to the new authority and may also transfer any opinion they have received under the Disabled Persons (Services, Consultation and Representation) Act 1986 that the child is disabled. Upon transfer of the statement, the new authority becomes responsible for maintaining the statement and for providing the special educational provision specified in it.

No guidance has been specifically given to local authorities about children identified as in need or at risk as a result of families migration.

Statutory guidance, ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children’ and the ‘Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families’, provides clear guidance for professionals to follow when they suspect a child may be suffering or likely to suffer harm, or is in need. Local authorities have a statutory duty under the Children Act 1989 to promote the welfare of children and carry out an assessment if they suspect a child may be suffering harm.

This guidance is currently the subject of a national consultation. While professionals' basic responsibilities will not change, revised guidance aims to clarify these roles and responsibilities and to reduce bureaucracy, giving them more scope to focus firmly on the needs of the child.

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Culture, Media and Sport

Media Ownership

Simon Danczuk: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what plans she has for the future regulation of media ownership. [120645]

Maria Miller [holding answer 13 September 2012]: Regulation of media ownership is of paramount importance to the health of our democracy and our media industries. Lord Justice Leveson has been asked to consider media ownership as part of his report on the culture, practices and ethics of the press. I will therefore wait to receive his report before considering any changes to the existing regime.

Sport England

Steve Rotheram: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport whether she has any plans to increase the statutory powers of Sport England. [120962]

Maria Miller: The Department has no plans to increase Sport England's statutory powers.

Defence

Air Force

Mr Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to celebrate the centenary of the creation of the Royal Air Force. [120816]

Mr Francois: Plans to celebrate the centenary of the Royal Air Force in 2018 have yet to be formulated. These celebrations are likely to form part of the wider commemoration of the first world war.

Armed Forces: Sexual Offences

Mrs Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to the answer of 26 June 2012, Official Report, column 195W, on armed forces: sexual offences, how many cases of (a) rape and (b) sexual assault were reported by (i) civilian staff and (ii) armed forces personnel in each service and the reserve forces in each of the last three years; and if he will make a statement. [119115]

Mr Francois: I refer the hon. Lady to the answers given by my predecessor the Minister for the Armed Forces, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Leicestershire (Mr Robathan) on 25 June 2012, Official Report, column 3W, and on 26 June 2012, Official Report, column 195W. Further information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Defence Business Services

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will estimate the number of people who will be employed by his Department's Defence Business Services in (a) Scotland, (b) England, (c) Northern Ireland and (d) Wales in 2014. [120308]

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Mr Francois: The number of people who will be employed by the Defence Business Services in 2014 is estimated at 1,672. Within this estimate around 13 posts will be located in Scotland, five in Northern Ireland, two in Wales, seven overseas and the remaining 1,645 in England. This estimate is based on planned headcount numbers as at 31 March 2014 which were agreed in planning round 12. It does not reflect additional savings that are currently being reviewed in the current annual budgeting cycle, or any potential changes, which may result from the transformation of corporate services within the Ministry of Defence.

Departmental Pay

Rachel Reeves: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the likely (a) highest, (b) median, (c) median full-time equivalent and (d) lowest full-time equivalent salary to be paid by his Department in 2012-13. [120833]

Mr Francois [holding answer 13 September 2012]: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my predecessor, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Leicestershire (Mr Robathan), on 18 June 2012, Official Report, column 654W). The figures for 2012-13 will not be available until after April 2013, and no meaningful estimate can be readily made in the meantime.

Territorial Army

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) successful and (b) unsuccessful applications to join the Territorial Army (TA) have been made since May 2010; and whether his Department plans to increase funding for TA recruitment campaigns. [120590]

Mr Francois [holding answer 12 September 2012]: There have been approximately 11,000 successful applications and 3,000 unsuccessful applications to join the Territorial Army (TA) since May 2010. As part of the Future Reserves 2020, the Army plan to spend £5 million in financial year (FY) 2012-13 on the TA recruiting campaign and are now drawing up plans for the marketing campaigns in FY 2013-14.

UK National Codification Bureau

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what assessment he has made of the potential effect on the UK's NATO commitments of planned reductions in spending on the UK National Codification Bureau; [119069]

(2) how many jobs will be lost from (a) the UK National Codification Bureau and (b) Ministry of Defence Abbey Wood, Bristol in the period from 2012 to 2015; [119070]

(3) what consultations he has held with trade unions about the proposed transfer of staff from the UK National Codification Bureau to Ministry of Defence Abbey Wood, Bristol; [119071]

(4) how many jobs are being transferred from the UK National Codification Bureau to Ministry of Defence Abbey Wood, Bristol. [119072]

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Mr Francois: The UK currently meets all of its NATO commitments with respect to codification and will continue to do so.

Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S), currently employs approximately 17,400 people. Following the Strategic Defence and Security Review announcement in October 2010, the total number of staff within DE&S is expected to reduce to approximately 14,400 by the end of financial year 2014-15. The number of overall jobs that will be based at the DE&S Abbey Wood site in 2015 has yet to be determined.

The MOD is considering the future size and shape of the UK National Codification Bureau and the Engineering and Through Life Support Team. A decision on the future of both organisations is expected to be announced shortly. Recognised trade union consultations are being undertaken.

Education

One North West

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what funding (a) his Department and (b) its agencies have given to One North West. [119687]

Mr Laws: The Department and its agencies have not provided any funding to an organisation by the title of One North West.

16-19 Bursary Fund

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how much education maintenance allowance was paid to residents of each local authority in 2010-11; and what the value was of discretionary 16-19 bursaries paid to residents of each local authority in 2011-12. [119246]

Mr Laws [holding answer 5 September 2012]:Details of education maintenance allowance (EMA) payments made to young people in local authorities in England during the academic year 2010-11 has been placed in the House Libraries.

The 2011-12 academic year is the first in which the 16-19 Bursary Fund has been operating. There are two types of bursary available under the fund: discretionary payments and a separate £1,200 bursary for young people from defined vulnerable groups. A breakdown is not yet available on the proportion of the total Bursary Fund paid as discretionary payments separate from the proportion paid to vulnerable groups. During 2011-12, in addition to the 16-19 Bursary Fund, transitional EMA payments were paid to students who had received EMA in previous years. Data on Bursary Fund payments and the EMA transitional arrangements during 2011-12 are being collected at local level and will be available in early 2013.

Financial Services: Education

Mark Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what comparative assessment he has made of the level of financial education in schools in England and other nations; and if he will make a statement. [118938]

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Mr Laws: We have limited robust evidence available on the level of financial education in schools in England across all age groups. Research suggests that financial education outcomes are difficult to measure and are likely to be acquired long-term. Ofsted report on financial education as part of their Personal Social Health and Economic (PSHE) inspection and in 2010 noted that financial education provision was patchy, although it commented that where it was good pupils could grasp key concepts and terms and demonstrate the ability to make sound financial decisions; and they could apply knowledge and skills to real situations. Devolved Administrations adopt different approaches and financial education is determined locally in Scotland whereas the Welsh Assembly has laid down detailed learning outcomes. Northern Ireland provides compulsory financial education within the curriculum from ages four to 14 as part of its 'Mathematics with Financial Capability' lessons.

Free School Meals

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps his Department is taking to ensure full take-up of free school meals by eligible children. [112046]

Mr Laws [holding answer 18 June 2012]:The Government are committed to increasing take-up of free school meals for all pupils who are entitled to them. We want disadvantaged children to benefit from a nutritious meal, and for their schools to receive Pupil Premium funding which will help them to help raise the attainment of disadvantaged pupils. We have taken a number of steps to achieve this aim.

In addition to the work that we have funded the School Food Trust to undertake on our behalf to increase the take-up of school lunches, the Department encouraged take-up of free school meals in November 2011 by sending registration messages to parents, schools and local authorities.

The school census figures published on 21 June 2012 show that registration for free school meals increased by 0.1% in both primary and secondary schools nationally.

Our funding for the School Food Trust enables it to carry out further work to improve the take-up of healthy school lunches, and specifically to increase take-up of free school meals. The trust has just published the results of its annual take-up survey, which shows that take-up of school lunches was 46.3% in primary schools and 39.8% in secondary schools. This represents an increase over 2010-11 of 2.2 percentage points in both the primary and secondary sectors. This equates to about 167,000 more pupils taking school lunches in 2011-12 than in the previous financial year.

Finally, we have streamlined the application process for free school meals by developing an on-line Eligibility Checking System, which allows local authorities to check data held by the Department for Work and Pensions, HM Revenue and Customs and the Home Office to establish a family's free school meal eligibility quickly. We are encouraging local authorities to increase their use of this resource, which, as well as reducing bureaucracy and cost at a local level, is also encouraging more parents to sign up their children for a free school lunch. For those authorities that choose to use it, the

14 Sep 2012 : Column 421W

Eligibility Checking Service allows parents to check their own eligibility and to apply on-line for free school meals.

Migration: Children

Kate Green: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) what steps he has taken to identify families with children identified as in need or at risk or who have special educational needs who may have to move home following a reduction in their family's entitlement to housing costs through (a) local housing allowance and (b) universal credit; [113446]

(2) what guidance has been given to local education authorities to safeguard children identified as in need or at risk as a result of migration of families when support with housing costs through (a) local housing allowance and (b) universal credit is reduced. [113445]

Mr Timpson: Statutory arrangements are in place to identify children who are in need or at risk or who have special educational needs, and their families. Should any families with such children have to move as the result of changes to housing allowances and the introduction of universal credit, schools and local authorities will have the duties to transfer information.

Schools are under a duty when a pupil changes school to transfer the pupil's educational records and the Common Transfer File, which includes information on a child's special educational needs. Where a child has a statement of special educational needs moves between authorities, local authorities are under a duty to transfer the statement to the new authority and may also transfer any opinion they have received under the Disabled Persons (Services, Consultation and Representation) Act 1986 that the child is disabled. Upon transfer of the statement, the new authority becomes responsible for maintaining the statement and for providing the special educational provision specified in it.

No guidance has been specifically given to local authorities about children identified as in need or at risk as a result of families’ migration.

Statutory guidance, ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children and the Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families’ provides clear guidance for professionals to follow when they suspect a child may be suffering or likely to suffer harm, or is in need. Local authorities have a statutory duty under the Children Act 1989 to promote the welfare of children and carry out an assessment if they suspect a child may be suffering harm.

This guidance is currently the subject of a national consultation. While professionals' basic responsibilities will not change, revised guidance aims to clarify these roles and responsibilities and to reduce bureaucracy, giving them more scope to focus firmly on the needs of the child.

Pupils: Disadvantaged

Andrew Percy: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many pupils have attracted payment of the pupil premium in (a) the Brigg and Goole constituency and (b) Yorkshire and the Humber in the latest period for which figures are available. [120625]

14 Sep 2012 : Column 422W

Mr Laws [holding answer 12 September 2012]: The pupil premium was introduced in April 2011. Pupil premium funding is provided to schools which have on roll pupils known to be eligible for free school meals (the deprivation premium); children in care who have been continuously looked after for at least six months (the looked-after child premium); and children whose parents are serving in the armed forces (the service child premium).

In financial year 2011-12, 1,340 pupils in the Brigg and Goole constituency were eligible for either the deprivation premium or service child premium, attracting £645,000 of funding. It is not possible to identify, at constituency level, the number of pupils eligible for the looked-after child premium or the number of pupils eligible for the deprivation premium in alternative provision settings.

In financial year 2011-12, 136,820 pupils in Yorkshire and the Humber were eligible for the deprivation, service child and looked-after children premiums, attracting £65.644 million.

The number of pupils eligible for the pupil premium in 2012-13 has not yet been confirmed. The provisional estimate is that 2,130 pupils in the Brigg and Goole constituency will be eligible for either the deprivation premium or the service child premium and will attract £1.267 million of funding. This estimate is based on January 2011 school census data and data for pupils eligible for free school meals since 2006. It reflects the decision to extend eligibility for the deprivation premium to those eligible for free school meals in the previous six years.

The provisional estimate for Yorkshire and the Humber is that 197,200 pupils will be eligible for the deprivation, service child and looked-after child premiums in the financial year 2012-13, attracting £116.957 million.

Schools: Dudley

Margot James: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many students (a) entering secondary schools in Dudley and (b) from each local authority area are taking part in the summer school programme in 2012. [118927]

Mr Laws: The Department does not currently have information about the number of students taking part in the summer school programme in 2012, although a list of secondary schools which opted into the programme is available on the Department's website at:

http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/pupilsupport/premium/summer/b00204241/ssprog

We will shortly be collecting information from secondary schools about the number of students taking part this year. I shall write to the hon. Lady once we have received this information from schools.

Schools: Playing Fields

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what his policy is on the sale of school playing fields; and if he will make a statement. [119661]

Mr Laws: Strict controls concerning the disposal of school playing fields are in place. Approval must be sought from the Secretary of State before publicly funded school playing fields can be sold. Decisions on applications

14 Sep 2012 : Column 423W

to dispose of school land are not taken lightly. In every case Ministers take into account all relevant matters before coming to a decision. This can include information provided by the applicant, objectors, the school playing field advisory panel and Department for Education officials, as well as consideration of what is best for pupils' education and their wider school life.

This Government have only approved sales if the school has closed, has merged, or it is proposed that equal or better facilities are put in their place. This is to ensure that any disposal of playing fields does not have a detrimental effect on young people's opportunity to access sporting provision.

Secondary Education: Birmingham

Mr Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many vacant secondary school places there were in (a) Birmingham, Hall Green constituency and (b) Birmingham City Council area in each of the last five years for which figures are available. [111409]

Mr Laws: The Department collects information from each local authority on the number of unfilled places in maintained secondary schools (except special schools) via an annual survey. The following table shows the number of unfilled places in maintained secondary schools in Birmingham between 2007 and 2011, which is the most recent data available. The number of unfilled places is reported at local authority level and not broken down by constituency.

Unfilled places in maintained secondary schools (figures for 2010 and 2011 include unfilled places in Academies), Birmingham City Council
 Unfilled places

2007(1)

3,107

2008(1)

3,543

2009(1)

3,823

2010(2)

4,026

2011(2)

4,827

(1) Number of places relate to position as at January 2007, 2008 and 2009. (2) Number of places relate to position as at May 2010 and May 2011. Source: Surplus Places Survey and School Capacity Collection

Teachers

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether he has considered licensing teachers in the same way that members of the medical profession are licensed to practice. [120589]

Mr Laws [holding answer 12 September 2012]: We have no plans to introduce a requirement for teachers to hold a licence to practise.

Teachers: Criminal Proceedings

Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) how many teachers were suspended from teaching while facing criminal charges in the last five years; and how many such teachers were reinstated; [120599]

(2) what the average length of time was for which a teacher facing criminal charges was suspended from school prior to the matter being resolved in the courts and a final decision on their employment being made in the latest period for which figures are available. [120600]

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Mr Laws: The operation of disciplinary procedures in schools, including those that result in suspension, is a matter for local determination. Accordingly the information requested on the number of teachers suspended from teaching while facing criminal charges and the length of those suspensions is not held centrally.

Vocational Education: Qualifications

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what recent guidance his Department has given to Ofsted inspectors following the BTECs review. [118203]

Mr Laws: The Department has not issued any recent guidance to Ofsted on BTECs.

Energy and Climate Change

Electricity: Prices

Steve Rotheram: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will estimate the average costs for domestic electricity customers living in (a) Merseyside, (b) Oxfordshire, (c) Cambridgeshire and (d) Surrey who consumed the standard consumption of 3,300 kWh per annum in each of the last three years. [121069]

Mr Hayes: The UK electricity market is divided into regions based on Public Electricity Supply (PES) areas. Electricity suppliers vary prices between these regions but not within them, with the same tariffs available to all customers within the area.

Counties can fall in multiple electricity supply regions, and so customers in any one county may be subject to different prices depending on their PES area. Following is a list of the requested counties and the electricity supply regions in which they fall.

(a) Merseyside—Merseyside and North Wales electricity board (MANWEB)

(b) Oxfordshire—Southern, West Midlands, East Midlands

(c) Cambridgeshire—Eastern

(d) Surrey—South Eastern Electricity Board (Seeboard), Southern

DECC publishes in Quarterly Energy Prices average annual domestic standard electricity bills based on standard consumption of 3,300kWh per annum for the above electricity supply regions on average, and broken down by payment type. The table below shows the overall average bills by PES area.

£
 200920102011

East Midlands

411

403

447

Eastern

417

407

446

Manweb

444

431

474

Seeboard

416

408

438

Southern

434

424

445

West Midlands

419

409

449

Most customers in Oxfordshire will be paying 'Southern' prices

Most customers in Surrey will be paying 'Seeboard' prices.

14 Sep 2012 : Column 425W

Energy

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many staff in his Department are employed to work exclusively on co-operative or mutual energy policy. [120739]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 13 September 2012]: There is no member of staff in the Department working exclusively on co-operative or mutual energy policy. There are, however, a number of teams in the Department that are involved in co-operative and mutual policy as part of their work, including the Green Deal, Smart Meters, Energy Company Obligation and Renewable Heat teams.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

South Sudan

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the ongoing negotiations between Sudan and South Sudan and related events in summer 2012; and what role the Government plans to play in supporting that process as it continues. [121029]

Mark Simmonds: We regret that the two Governments were not able to reach full agreement by the UN Security Council's deadline of 2 August. But we welcome the deal the two sides have agreed on oil and other steps that have been made, for example, in de-escalating tensions at the border, in reducing inflammatory rhetoric, and in withdrawing security forces from Abyei. We urge both Governments to show the political vision at the current round of talks to bridge the final gaps on security, borders, citizenship, and the final status of Abyei.

Britain is offering financial and expert advisory support to the African Union (AU) High Level Implementation panel, who lead the facilitation of negotiations between the two countries. The British Special Representative is attending the current rounds of talks in Addis Ababa and our ambassadors and officials in both countries continue to engage with Government ministers, advisors and senior military officers on a regular basis, making clear to both that they should comply with the AU roadmap and UN Security Council resolution 2046 and reach agreement on all outstanding issues.

Syria

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what non-lethal assistance is being provided to anti-Government fighters in Syria. [121090]

Alistair Burt: I refer the hon. Member to the statement on Syria the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), made to the House on 3 September 2012, Official Report, columns 53-68. Our non-lethal assistance is intended to include communication equipment, water purification and power generators and is targeted at unarmed opposition groups and human rights activists. We have also provided training

14 Sep 2012 : Column 426W

to support the documentation of human rights abuses. The support we provide will be consistent with our own laws and values.

Health

Alcoholic Drinks: Prices

Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on a minimum price for alcohol. [120585]

Anna Soubry: The Government's approach to alcohol was explained in the Government's Alcohol Strategy, published on 23 March. The Home Office has lead responsibility for alcohol pricing issues.

The strategy announced that we will reduce the availability of cheap alcohol by introducing a minimum unit price. The Government will consult on the level of minimum unit price in the autumn.

Ambulance Services

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many ambulance trusts did not achieve the category A8 standard in each of the last five years. [120946]

Anna Soubry: The A8 target for ambulances states that 75% of Category A (immediately life-threatening) calls should receive a response within eight minutes.

The number of ambulance trusts which did not achieve the A8 standard in each of the last five years is shown in the following table:

 Number of ambulance trusts not achieving A8 standard

2007-08

2

2008-09

5

2009-10

5

2010-11

5

2011-12

0

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre Form KA34

Cancer

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress the Health and Social Care Information Centre has made on the development of one and five- year cancer survival rate indicators for inclusion in the Commissioning Outcomes Framework 2013-14. [119772]

Norman Lamb: The Health and Social Care Information Centre is working with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to develop a methodology for measuring cancer survival at clinical commissioning group population level for potential inclusion in the Commissioning Outcomes Framework. These are complex measures that require linkage of ONS population statistics with cancer registry data and attribution to clinical commissioning groups, as well as testing the robustness of the measures. It is likely to take some months to complete this work.

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The NHS Commissioning Board will decide on the content of the Commissioning Outcomes Framework and is expected to publish the list of measures for 2013-14 in the autumn. If not included in the 2013-14 framework, the board may choose a separate publication route for the data that do exist, to ensure the information is available transparently to the public.

Dentistry

Sir Paul Beresford: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many graduates from UK dental schools have not been allocated a place on the Dental Foundation Training Programme for 2012-13. [R] [121045]

Dr Poulter: 35 dental graduates from dental schools in England and Wales were unsuccessful in obtaining a dental foundation training (DFT1) place out of an overall total of 1,145 eligible applicants. The postgraduate dental deans are seeking to make arrangements whereby these dentists can maintain their skills pending the 2013 DFT1 recruitment exercise, in which some training places will be available from February 2013.

Sir Paul Beresford: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment his Department has made of the relative skills, competencies and experience of (a) UK and (b) overseas dental graduates upon their admission to the Dental Foundation Training Programme; and how any such assessment is made. [R] [121046]

Dr Poulter: In 2011-12 the Department commissioned the London postgraduate dental deanery to run the first national recruitment programme to dental foundation places. We are aware that 41 overseas dentists were successful at interview involving a test of communication and clinical skills and management and leadership skills. The individual trainers of foundation dentists will tailor the training they provide to meet the needs of individual trainees. Trainers receive advice from directors of foundation training programmes working under the direction of postgraduate dental deans.

Sir Paul Beresford: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the cost to the public purse is of training each graduate of a UK dental school. [R] [121047]

Dr Poulter: The information available to the Department is for university dental schools in England. We estimate that the cost of training undergraduates for the five- year Bachelor of Dental Surgery course is about £200,000, of which students, who are not eligible for support under the arrangements to help low-income families, can be expected to contribute £45,000.

Sir Paul Beresford: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what number and proportion of places on the Dental Foundation Training Programme for 2012-13 have been allocated to dental graduates from overseas; and from which schools such students have graduated. [R] [121048]

Dr Poulter: There are 951 placements, 41 of which are dental graduates from overseas. This is 4.3% of the total number of placements.

14 Sep 2012 : Column 428W

The breakdown can be found in the following table:

CountryDental schoolNumbers

Ireland

Dublin Dental University Hospital, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland

16

Ireland

Cork University Dental School and Hospital

7

Brazil

Federal University of Minas Gerais

1

Czech Republic

Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Medicine in Hradec Kralove

7

Czech Republic

Masaryk University

1

Hungary

University of Debrecen, Medical and Health Science Centre

7

India

Saurashtra University, Gujarat, India

1

Trinidad and Tobago

University of the West Indies

1

Exercise

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will consider introducing a public health campaign to encourage people to walk, cycle or use other modes of transport involving physical activity; and if he will make a statement. [120950]

Anna Soubry: The Department promotes walking and cycling through the Change4Life campaign, and works with the Department for Transport to encourage active travel.

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to encourage NHS employees to walk, cycle or use other modes of transport involving physical activity when travelling to and from work or as part of their working day. [120951]

Anna Soubry: The Department supports the promotion of physical activity among national health service employees through its contribution to the funding of the NHS 2012 Challenge for Sport and Physical Activity.

Fractures

Amber Rudd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, with reference to Age UK and the National Osteoporosis Society's report “Breaking Through: Building Better Falls and Fracture Services in England”, if he will commission the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence to develop a quality standard on fractures excluding those of the hip and head. [120947]

Norman Lamb: A quality standard on fractures, excluding head and hip, was referred to the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in March 2012 as part of a library of approximately 180 national health service quality standard topics.

General Practitioners

Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the cost of assessment centres overseen by the NHS Leadership Academy has been for staff being considered for accountable officer roles in the new clinical commissioning groups. [120571]

14 Sep 2012 : Column 429W

Anna Soubry: By the beginning of September, 493 accountable officer and chair applicants went through the assessment centre and related development offer at a cost of £1.75 million to the NHS Leadership Academy.

Tessa Munt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether commissioning bodies funding specialist services are obliged to consider patient choice when considering funding applications. [120618]

Dr Poulter: Currently legal directions issued alongside the NHS constitution require primary care trusts to ensure that patients have a right to choice when they are referred for their first consultant-led outpatient appointment. This is enabled by choose and book, which is an electronic referral and booking system that primary care health professionals can use when offering patients choice of specialist consultant-led outpatient appointments.

As a result of the Government health care reforms, from April 2013 the NHS Commissioning Board will be responsible for commissioning specialist services and will be required to have regard to the duties set out in the Health and Social Care Act 2012. The Act requires the NHS Commissioning Board and clinical commissioning groups to

"promote the involvement of patients, and their carers and representatives (if any), in decisions which relate to—

(a) the prevention or diagnosis of illness in the patients, or

(b) their care or treatment."

Tessa Munt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) whether commissioning bodies funding specialist services are required to accept the medical recommendations of clinicians applying for funding for their patients; [120619]

(2) whether commissioning bodies funding specialist services are permitted to refuse funding based on their own medical opinion. [120620]

Dr Poulter: The NHS constitution sets out the right of patients to receive drugs and treatments that have been recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and that their doctors consider clinically appropriate for them.

However, at a strategic level, it is for national health service commissioners to decide which services to fund for their local population. Local health-care priorities will vary from area to area. There are no specific rules or guidance for commissioners that set out a hierarchy of clinical evidence and advice to use when seeking to make funding decisions.

In the absence of NICE technology appraisal guidance on a particular treatment, it is for local NHS commissioners to make funding decisions based on an assessment of the available clinical evidence to support the benefits and cost effectiveness of a particular treatment and on the basis of an individual patient's clinical circumstances.

The NHS constitution also sets out patients' right to expect local decisions on the funding of drugs and treatments to be made rationally, following a proper

14 Sep 2012 : Column 430W

consideration of the evidence. If a NHS commissioner decides not to fund a drug or treatment, then it should explain the reason for coming to that decision.

General Practitioners: Telephone Services

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many GP surgeries in (a) England, (b) the west midlands and (c) Coventry use telephone numbers that charge patients more than the equivalent cost of calling a geographical number to contact the NHS. [121043]

Dr Poulter: The Department has made no assessment of the proportion of general practitioner surgeries in England that use telephone numbers that charge patients more than the equivalent cost of calling a geographical number to contact the national health service.

The Department issued guidance and directions to NHS bodies in December 2009 on the cost of telephone calls, which prohibit the use of telephone numbers which charge the patient more than the equivalent cost of calling a geographical number to contact the NHS. It is currently the responsibility of primary care trusts to ensure that local practices are compliant with the directions and guidance. The Department issued further guidance on 23 February 2012 clarifying these directions.

Health Services: Hartlepool

Mr Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on (a) hospital and (b) health service reconfigurations in respect of (i) the University Hospital of Hartlepool and (ii) health services provided to residents of Hartlepool constituency; and if he will make a statement. [120953]

Anna Soubry: The reconfiguration of health services is a matter for the national health service locally.

Where there is a compelling need to change the way in which services are delivered, and where they are delivered from, change must be underpinned by the four tests for service reconfiguration.

Namely, any local plans must demonstrate support from general practitioner commissioners, strengthened public and patient engagement, clarity on the clinical evidence base and support for patient choice.

The “Momentum: pathways to healthcare” reconfiguration programme, which includes proposals for changes to services at the University Hospital of Hartlepool, has been developed locally by the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, in liaison with the Tees primary care trust cluster, to implement the recommendations made by the independent reconfiguration panel in 2006.

Hospitals: Infectious Diseases

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the infection rate was in NHS hospitals in (a) Coventry, (b) the west midlands and (c) England in each of the last five years. [121035]

Dr Poulter: For the years that the data are available, the information requested is set out in the following table:

14 Sep 2012 : Column 431W

14 Sep 2012 : Column 432W

Numbers of infections—total reported specimens attributed to Coventry PCO, west midlands and England
 April 2007 to March 2008April 2008 to March 2009April 2009 to March 2010
 Coventry PCOWest midlandsEnglandCoventry PCOWest midlandsEnglandCoventry PCOWest midlandsEngland

MRSA bacteraemia

24

510

4,451

13

307

2,935

6

161

1,898

Clostridium difficile infection

337

6,959

55,498

164

4,074

36,095

121

3,039

25,604

MSSA bacteraemia


 April 2010 to March 2011April 2011 to March 2012
 Coventry PCOWest midlandsEnglandCoventry PCOWest midlandsEngland

MRSA bacteraemia

1

156

1,481

4

97

1,114

Clostridium difficile Infection

153

2,626

21,707

148

2,383

18,005

MSSA bacteraemia

48

935

8,708

Notes: 1. The numbers of infections shown in the table are total reported specimens attributed to primary care organisations (PCO). 2. Mandatory surveillance of E.coli began in June 2011. Data before that date are not available. 3. Mandatory surveillance of MSSA bloodstream infections began in January 2011. Data before that date are not available. 4. Data prior to 2008 were collected in a different way and may not be strictly comparable.

Hospitals: Waiting Lists

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many operations were cancelled in (a) Coventry, (b) the West Midlands and (c) England in each of the last five years. [121034]

Anna Soubry: The information is shown in the following table:

Number of elective operations cancelled at the last minute for non-clinical reasons
 University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS TrustWest Midlands SHAEngland

2007-08

303

5,587

57,382

2008-09

634

6,444

63,644

2009-10

537

6,589

62,296

2010-11

612

6,434

58,297

2011-12

575

6,077

57,087

2012-13 (Q1)

117

1,564

14,184

Source: Department of Health datasets QMCO

Hyperactivity: Drugs

Steve Rotheram: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much his Department has spent on drug treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder since May 2010. [121078]

Norman Lamb: The available information on the cost to the national health service of medicines listed in British National Formulary section 4.4—central nervous system stimulants and drugs used for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder—in primary and secondary care is in the following tables.

Primary care: Prescription items dispensed in the community in England
PeriodNet ingredient cost (£000)

2010 (May-December)

24,450.0

2011 (January-December)

40,466.9

2012 (January-June)

21,415.7

  

Total(1)

86,332.7

(1 )Total may not sum due to rounding. Source: Prescribing Analysis and CosT tool (PACT) system supplied by the NHS Information Centre.
Secondary care: Medicines supplied in hospitals in England
PeriodNet ingredient cost (£000)

2010 (May-December)

1,195.1

2011 (January-December)

1,800.5

2012 (January-March)

428.5

  

Total(1)

3,424.0

(1) Total may not sum due to rounding. Source: IMS HEALTH: Hospital Pharmacy Audit supplied by the NHS Information Centre.

Home Department

Firearms: Licensing

Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people under the age of 18 have shotgun and other firearms certificates in the (a) UK and (b) North East. [118793]

Damian Green: The total number of shotgun and other firearm certificates granted to persons aged under 18 years in England and Wales, as of September 2012, is 4,952. For the North East region, consisting of Cleveland, Durham, and Northumbria police forces, the figure is 159.

Data for Scotland and Northern Ireland are matters for their respective Administrations.

The data were extracted from the National Firearms Licensing Management System (NFLMS). The NFLMS is an operational system, continuously updated by police forces in England and Wales, which holds data on all firearm and shotgun certificates they issue. While some statistical data from this system are published annually by the Home Office, the figures on age are not part of this publication and not subject to the same quality assurance checks.

14 Sep 2012 : Column 433W

House of Commons Commission

Written Questions

Chris Ruane: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, pursuant to the answer of 4 September 2012, Official Report, column 320W, on written questions, how many written questions were tabled on average per day, including non-sitting days (a) in each session since 2005-06 and (b) from the introduction of the restriction on e-tabling to date. [121098][Official Report, 18 September 2012, Vol. 550, c. 7MC.]

John Thurso: The information requested is as follows.

(a) The following table shows the number of written questions tabled on average per sitting day in each session since 2005-06:

Time periodNumber of sitting daysNumber of WPQs tabledAverage

Session 2005-06 (17 May 2005 to 8 November 2006)

208

97,201

467

Session 2006-07 (15 November 2006 to 30 October 2007)

146

58,837

403

Session 2007-08 (6 November 2007 to 26 November 2008)

165

75,000

455

Session 2008-09 (3 December 2008 to 12 November 2009)

139

57,054

410

Session 2009-10 (18 November 2009 to 8 April 2010)

601

24,0931

402

Session 2010-12 (25 May 2010 to 1 May 2012)

295

98,256

333

Session 2012-13 to date (9 May 2012 to 7 September 2012)

39

13,350

342

(b) The restriction on the number of e-tabled questions was introduced at the rising of the House on 21 October 2011. During the period 24 October 2011 to 7 September 2012, the number of sitting days was 125, the number of written questions tabled was 40,322. The number of written questions tabled on average per sitting day over this period was 323.

Averages are calculated against sitting days only (information is not readily available to disaggregate questions tabled on sitting and non-sitting days over this timeframe).

International Development

Democratic Republic of Congo

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of the PROMINES minerals sector reform programme. [119677]

Justine Greening: The UK co-funds the mining reform programme PROMINES with the World Bank. There were delays to the programme, from September 2010 to October 2011, whilst the World Bank and Congolese Government agreed a Governance Economic Matrix (a

14 Sep 2012 : Column 434W

set of conditions to enhance transparency and accountability in natural resource and public expenditure management and the business environment). Following these delays we have been working with the World Bank to put the programme back on track. We have recently seen a number of positive trends in enhancing transparency in the sector, including the publication of 136 mining contracts. For further information please see the following link to the World Bank website:

http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P106982/drc-growth-governance-mineral-sector?lang=en

Developing Countries: Urban Areas

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how her Department assesses poverty and vulnerability in urban areas. [121065]

Mr Duncan: DFID draws on a range of information sources, including national poverty surveys and consultations with poor people, to assess poverty and vulnerability in urban areas.

The Department is working with others to improve the tools to measure and understand urban poverty. For example, in Vietnam we are supporting a special poverty survey for urban areas. In Bangladesh, DFID supports the Urban Partnership for Poverty Reduction Programme, which has developed a new way of measuring and monitoring urban poverty that includes people living in slums and informal settlements, who were previously excluded from the official statistics.

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment she has made of her Department's expertise in urbanisation and urban development. [121066]

Mr Duncan: DFID has built up internal expertise in urbanisation and urban development over the past decade. DFID has experience from India and other settings in urban development, experience which can be leveraged as we develop our urban programming going forward.

DFID's expertise on urban issues resides in a number of technical advisory groups, especially in infrastructure, climate and environment, livelihoods, private sector development, economics, governance, social development and humanitarian. An internal network of 60 DFID specialists working on urban issues was created in early 2012 to promote improved understanding of the challenges of urbanisation by drawing on the existing knowledge and expertise and to share experience across DFID's country programmes. Themes of current interest include poverty, health, migration, enterprise development, climate change adaptation and disaster resilience.

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment she has made of the vulnerabilities of refugees in urban areas. [121067]

Mr Duncan: DFID recognises that, in developing countries, refugees in urban areas often face a wide range of risks which include threat of arrest and detention, exploitation, inadequate shelter, human trafficking, prohibition on movement and residence and lack of documentation. This is why DFID is providing support

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to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to deliver protection and assistance programmes in urban areas. DFID has also funded research, through the Norwegian Refugee Council, to identify the most effective approach for assisting urban refugees, on which humanitarian organisations can draw to improve their programmes of support.

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps her Department is taking to address the needs of refugees and internally displaced persons in urban settings through its (a) bilateral and (b) multilateral aid programmes; and if she will make a statement. [121068]

Mr Duncan: DFID provides bilateral and multilateral funding to several agencies in order to meet the assistance and protection needs of refugees and internally displaced persons, including those in urban situations. These agencies include the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM). This funding enables agencies to respond to ongoing and unforeseen humanitarian situations, including those in urban settings such as the situation in Syria and neighbouring countries.

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions she has had with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and UN-Habitat on steps to address the growing number of refugees and internally displaced persons residing in urban areas. [121070]

Mr Duncan: DFID regularly holds discussions with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and other organisations which provide assistance to refugees. DFID has also recently met with UN-Habitat. The former Secretary of State for International Development, my right hon. Friend the Member for Sutton Coldfield (Mr Mitchell), met UNHCR on 25 July to discuss the refugee situations in Burma, South Sudan/Sudan, Sahel and Syria. These discussions included the circumstances faced by refugees in urban areas and how best to assist them.

India

Mr Ivan Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if she will publish a summary of each project her Department has supported as part of its bilateral aid programme in India in the last two years. [121079]

Mr Duncan: Summaries of all DFID projects are available on the DFID website.

Mr Ivan Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much her Department has spent (a) in bilateral aid for each project and (b) through each multilateral organisation in India in the last two years. [121080]

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Mr Duncan: Department for International Development (DFID) bilateral spending in India for 2010-11 is set out in the following table. Data for 2011-12 are not yet available.

2010-11
ProjectTotal (£)

State level projects

 

Andhra Pradesh Health Sector Reform Programme

452,712

Bihar Governance Reform

2,005,576

Bihar Nutrition and Health Sector Support

14,656,016

Bihar Strengthening Urban Management Programme

2,282,670

Bihar Urban Reforms

7,851,169

Madhya Pradesh Power Sector Reform—Phase 2

3,952,774

Madhya Pradesh Rural Livelihoods Project—Phase 2

10,368,372

Madhya Pradesh Urban Services for the Poor

10,973,699

Madhya Pradesh Strengthening Performance Management in Government

1,299,481

Madhya Pradesh Health Sector Support

20,112,424

Orissa Health Sector Support

17,664,055

Orissa Modernising Economy, Government and Administration

154,160

Orissa Tribal Empowerment and Livelihoods Programme

32,825

Western Orissa Rural Livelihoods

6,119,401

West Bengal Civil Society Support Programme

55,250

West Bengal Kolkata Urban Services for the Poor

26,585,353

West Bengal Public Sector Enterprise Reform—Phase 2

5,349,362

West Bengal Strengthening Rural Decentralisation

7,357,946

National projects

 

National AIDS Control Programme Phase III

24,289,430

Rastriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA—Secondary Education)

161,869

Reproductive and Child Health Programme Phase II

35,467,595

Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan II (Universal elementary education)

49,212,086

Mahila Samakhya (Gender equality and women's empowerment)

4,105,081

Support to National Policies for Urban Poverty Reduction

453,152

Capacity Building for Poverty Reduction

1,599,173

  

Private sector

 

Poorest States Inclusive Growth Programme

174,604

Small and Medium Enterprises project

3,243,727

  

Civil society and multilaterals

 

Poorest Areas Civil Society Programme II

1,161,386

Support to WHO for Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program

1,500,000

UN Conference on Trade and Development Globalisation Trust Fund

901,699

UNICEF Strategic Partnership in India

13,000,000

International NGOs Partnership Agreement Programme

4,649,530

MoU with International Development Research Centre

934,854

  

Other

808,623

  

Grand total

278,936,052

Some of the projects above are delivered through multilateral organisations. Total UK aid delivered through multilateral organisations in India as part of the bilateral programme is as follows:

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Multilateral2010-11 (£)2011-12 (£)

Asian Development Bank (AsDB)

4,000,000

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)

901,699

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

13,000,000

10,000,000

World Health Organisation (WHO)

1,500,000

World Bank

6,000,026

Total

15,401,699

20,000,026

UK aid is also channelled through multilateral organisations through core contributions. It is not possible to track directly the funding down to the country or sector level.

DFID estimates the UK share of multilateral spend in countries based on the overall proportions of ODA to each country reported by multilaterals and DFID's share of total core contributions.

The UK's imputed multilateral share of ODA to India was £36 million in 2009-10 and £273 million in 2010-11 (the latest year for which estimates are available).

West Africa

Chris Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps her Department is taking to help avert a food crisis in West Africa. [120426]

Justine Greening: In response to the unfolding crisis, my predecessor, my right hon. Friend the Member for Sutton Coldfield (Mr Mitchell), announced direct UK contributions totalling £25.4 million to the region in 2012.

Through this assistance, British aid this year will support 1.6 million people at risk of hunger across Mali, Niger, Chad, Mauritania and Burkina Faso.

These direct funds are in addition to £32 million of UK contributions also being provided in 2012 to the Sahel region through multilateral agencies such as the European Commission Humanitarian Office (ECHO) and the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).

My officials and I will continue to monitor the situation closely and liaise with our opposite numbers in other Governments to urge other countries also to take their fair share of the response.