21 Nov 2012 : Column 481W

21 Nov 2012 : Column 481W

Written Answers to Questions

Wednesday 21 November 2012

Attorney-General

Burglary

Mr Hollobone: To ask the Attorney-General how many successful prosecutions there were for burglary in Northamptonshire in each of the last five years. [129037]

The Solicitor-General: Tables have been deposited in the Library of the House showing the number of burglary cases prosecuted in Northamptonshire in the last five years, and the outcome of those prosecutions, together with comparable data for the whole of England and Wales.

Internet

Chi Onwurah: To ask the Attorney-General what assessment he has made of the level of public understanding of the legal framework applicable to the internet. [129033]

The Solicitor-General: The legal framework applicable to the internet is, in essence, the same as that which applies beyond the internet. An offence committed on the internet remains an offence. It is my belief that public awareness and understanding of this has been raised by a number of high profile cases and court proceedings over recent months. These have resulted in both fines and imprisonment for the offenders and have been widely reported.

The Law Commission is currently reviewing the law of contempt and will look at the issue of contempt and the internet. A public consultation will shortly commence. The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) also intends to issue guidance to prosecutors on how offences involving social media and the internet should be prosecuted. As part of that process, the DPP has embarked on a series of roundtable discussions with interested parties.

Business, Innovation and Skills

Credit: Interest Rates

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills if he will review the effectiveness of the revised Codes of Practice of the trade associations representing the payday and short-term loan industry published on 25 July 2012; and if he will make a statement. [128946]

Jo Swinson: The Government welcomed the strengthened Codes of Practice and new Customer Charter published in July by the four main payday and short-term lending trade associations. These are due to be implemented by individual lenders no later than 26 November. We expect

21 Nov 2012 : Column 482W

these revised codes to deliver enhanced consumer protections as well as provide greater transparency about how these loans work. Citizens Advice and the four trade associations will be monitoring lenders' compliance.

The trade associations will carry out review of the effectiveness of the Charter and Codes of Practice in summer 2013. I look forward to considering the outcomes of that review.

New Businesses

Mr Umunna: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills from which budget funding for his Entrepreneurs and Education Programme has been allocated. [128754]

Michael Fallon: Funding for the Entrepreneurs and Education programme is being provided under Section 12 of the Industrial Development Act 1982 and has been allocated from the budget available to the Department's Enterprise Directorate.

Mr Umunna: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what benchmarks and targets (a) he and (b) his officials have set for his Entrepreneurs and Education Programme. [128755]

Michael Fallon: Indicative targets have been set for the Entrepreneurs and Education programme. By March 2015, 72 events are expected to have been held under the programme, reaching over 10,500 staff and students from 100 higher and further education institutions and directly engaging 80% of student enterprise societies.

Mr Umunna: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many entrepreneurs he expects to receive support from his Entrepreneurs and Education Programme. [128756]

Michael Fallon: The Entrepreneurs and Education programme is aimed at higher and further education institutions, not at individual entrepreneurs. It will support entrepreneurship through engaging with over 10,500 staff and students from higher and further education institutions and 80% of student enterprise societies. The programme will help those institutions become more entrepreneurial, support the commercialisation of research projects and will give practical support in raising student enterprise aspirations.

South East

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps his Department is taking to raise awareness of its trade support service amongst small and medium-sized businesses in the South East. [128470]

Michael Fallon: UK Trade & Investment (UKTI), the Government’s trade promotion organisation, undertakes a wide range of activity to promote awareness of trade support services among small and medium-sized businesses in the South East. UKTI’s website at

www.ukti.gov.uk

provides a range of information and advice to businesses interested in exporting, access to over 5,000 business opportunities in addition to information on events,

21 Nov 2012 : Column 483W

countries and sectors. Information specifically for firms in the South East may be found at

www.ukti.gov.uk/southeast

UKTI is also supporting Open to Export (OpenToExport.com) a new free online business community, designed to bring companies best-practice knowledge and advice, helping them to successfully enter new markets and operate overseas.

UKTI’s South East team supplement those sources of help and information with a range of activity across the region which includes:

events and training—focused on a range of sectors and overseas markets;

partnership working—with a range of business representative organisations and professional bodies;

social media—where the strategy includes engagement with business via Twitter and LinkedIn; and

online communications—where UKTI’s South East team communicates regularly with clients via a monthly "Dates for the Diary" e-magazine which reaches 25,000 companies.

UKTI's South East team will also signpost relevant partner activities and promote access to events run by UKTI and the wider support network.

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what assessment he has made of the extent to which new start-ups have contributed to economic growth in the South East. [128476]

Michael Fallon: One of the main contributions of new start-ups to economic growth is the number of jobs created. The best estimate we have is that start-ups are responsible for a third of all jobs created(1).

According to Companies House, there were 450 000 new company registrations in Great Britain in 2011/12—the highest since records began in 1997/98 and up from 360,000 in 2009/10. However, the above data is not available at a regional level.

The Office for National Statistics publishes the data only on start-ups that is broken down to a regional level. However, note that the data is not comparable to the Companies House figures provided above because it relates to VAT/PAYE registered business start-ups. According to the ONS, there were 36,910 business births in the South East in 2010. Information for 2011 will be published next month.

(1)( )http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/biscore/enterprise/docs/j/11-1326-job-creation-and-destruction-uk-1998-2010

World War II: Females

Toby Perkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Hertford and Stortford of 3 February 2011, Official Report, column 938W, on World War 2, what consideration has been given to the recognition of women conscripted and serving in munitions factories during the Second World War. [128418]

Michael Fallon: Careful consideration was given by the Department of possible formal recognition of the enormous contribution made by all those who worked in munitions factories during the second world war. Unfortunately, it was concluded that, given the lack of

21 Nov 2012 : Column 484W

records and the consequent difficulties in verifying any entitlement, it would not be practical to find a way to recognise the contributions of individual civilian workers.

However, an All Party Parliamentary Group on Recognition for Munitions Workers was set up last year to explore ways to ensure that the valiant collective efforts of all those who worked in munitions factories are not forgotten—chaired by the hon. Member for Ogmore (Huw Irranca-Davies). I am pleased to report that this Remembrance Sunday, for the first time, munitions workers—both male and female—participated in the march past the Cenotaph. I understand the all-party group is continuing its work, which includes a partnership with the Imperial War Museum (supported by BAE Systems) to record the achievements of munitions workers, along with a possible national memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum in Shropshire.

Cabinet Office

Business Appointments Advisory Committee

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office whether the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments has raised any concerns with Ministers regarding commercial employment contracts agreed by former military personnel post-retirement since May 2010. [123933]

Mr Maude: No. The role of the independent Advisory Committee on Business Appointments is to advise the Prime Minister, Foreign Secretary and former Ministers on applications made to it under the Business Appointment Rules about appointments that former Ministers, senior civil servants and other Crown servants, including the most senior military personnel, wish to take up on leaving Government.

Commissioning Academy Programme

Chris White: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office (1) what steps he has taken to integrate social value into his Commissioning Academy programme; [126336]

(2) when he plans to publish guidance for public sector commissioners on the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012; and if he will make a statement. [126742]

Miss Chloe Smith: Guidance for public sector commissioners on the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012 is currently being developed and will be issued in due course.

The Commissioning Academy is currently being piloted. We are bringing together commissioners from different parts of the public sector to learn from the most successful commissioning organisations, developing a cadre of professionals that are progressive in their outlook on how the public sector uses the resources available.

Commissioners need to have the confidence, skills and know-how to create, shape and manage new markets for service provision that did not exist in the past. This is bringing commissioners closer to the communities they serve, working in ways that involve co-design and co-production with service users and providers.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 485W

Communities and Local Government

Affordable Housing

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what affordable housing has been built in each of the last five years. [128319]

Mr Prisk: Statistics on newly built affordable housing, taken from the National Statistics on affordable housing supply in England, are published in live table 1009 on the Department for Communities and Local Government's website, which is available from the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/live-tables-on-affordable-housing-supply

Council Tax Benefits

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent discussions he has had with local authorities on the costs they will incur if they have to carry out new consultations on council tax benefit schemes; and whether it is his policy that new consultations will be treated as new burdens and attract Government funding. [129093]

Brandon Lewis: Ministers within the Department for Communities and Local Government regularly meet colleagues from the local government sector to discuss a range of matters.

Whether or not further consultation is required by authorities who wish to apply for the transitional grant is a decision for individual local authorities. Each local authority will have to make a judgment, taking into account the scope of its own initial consultation, the scale of any changes that are required and whether these require further consultation. Nothing prevents a local authority undertaking such public engagement as part of any wider consultation on its draft budget.

For this reason, and because this is a voluntary scheme offering additional funding, Government do not consider this a new burden, and do not intend to make available additional new burdens funding for this purpose, above the £100 million it has already made available for this scheme.

Family Intervention Projects

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate he has made of the change in spending on family intervention programmes in each local authority area since May 2010. [128770]

Brandon Lewis: The Government do not require local authorities to report expenditure on family intervention projects or comparable services.

By June 2012, all upper-tier local authorities in England had signed up to the Troubled Families programme, committing to turn around an agreed number of families in their area. The Government will contribute up to £4,000 per family towards the cost of successfully intervening with eligible families across England.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 486W

The Government are not instructing local authorities to do this work in a particular way, but it expects there to be an increase in the use of family intervention work, which has been shown to deliver results

Members: Correspondence

Amber Rudd: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to an email about a licensed developer scheme for local planning proposals from the hon. Member's constituent, when his Department will respond to the letters from the hon. Member for Hastings and Rye of (a) 15 August 2012 (Ref: AR/EQ/1221), (b) 19 September 2012 (Ref: AR/EQ/1506) and (c) 6 November 2012 (Ref: AR/LS/4595). [129166]

Nick Boles: I replied to my hon. Friend on 14 November.

Right to Buy Scheme

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many people have taken advantage of the right to buy scheme in each of the last five years. [128318]

Mr Prisk: Figures for right to buy sales for the last five financial years are shown in the following table:

Financial yearLocal authority right to buy salesRegistered provider right to buy and preserved right to buy salesTotal right to buy and preserved right to buy sales

2011-12

2,610

1,110

3,720

2010-11

2,730

960

3,690

2009-10

2,370

800

3,170

2008-09

2,880

1,000

3,870

2007-08

11,960

3,150

15,110

Source: Social Housing Sales, England, 2011-12

Right to buy discounts were increased in April 2012, and we are taking steps to inform local tenants of the reinvigorated right to buy.

Right to Buy Scheme: Havering

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many people in the London borough of Havering have taken advantage of the right-to-buy scheme in each of the last five years. [128216]

Mr Prisk: Figures for right-to-buy sales for the last five financial years are as follows:

Financial yearRight-to-buy sales (London borough of Havering)

2011-12

5

2010-11

(1)

2009-10

13

2008-09

12

2007-08

52

(1) Not currently available. Source: Social Housing Sales, England, 2011-12

21 Nov 2012 : Column 487W

Right-to-buy discounts were increased in April 2012, and we are taking steps to inform local tenants of the reinvigorated right-to-buy.

Culture, Media and Sport

BBC Trust

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what discussions she, her Ministers and her officials had with Lord Patten, Chairman of the BBC Trust, between 1 October 2012 and 12 November 2012. [128641]

Maria Miller [holding answer 19 November 2012]: I have spoken to Lord Patten on a number of occasions in the last month. We have discussed a range of issues in relation to the three strands of inquiry which the BBC have initiated into Savile and related matters (the Pollard Review into Newsnight, the Smith Review into child protection issues and Dinah Rose QCs oversight of an internal review into sexual harassment) as well as the latest MacQuarrie investigation into inaccurate allegations on Newsnight, and he informed me of the resignation of the Director General. While these issues are clearly a matter for the BBC Trust to manage, through our conversations Lord Patten has kept me up-to-date with the latest developments and has answered my questions regarding the thoroughness and transparency of these investigations. Officials have also liaised with officials of the BBC Trust on a number of occasions, both on matters relating to the inquiries under way at the BBC into Savile and Newsnight and on routine issues.

Broadband

Helen Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport when she expects to receive state aid clearance from the European Commission for her Department's local broadband projects. [120192]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 10 September 2012]:The European Commission confirmed approval of the UK umbrella support scheme for investments in next generation access (NGA) broadband networks on 20 November 2012. The UK National Competence Centre (NCC) will, with immediate effect, be able to assist local authorities in designing and implementing successful broadband support measures in line with EU competition rules.

Graham Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport with reference to her Department's press notice of 21 February 2012, whether she has contingency funds available if funding is insufficient to compensate everyone whose television reception is affected by the launch of 4G. [129095]

Mr Vaizey: As set out in my letter to the chief executive of Ofcom, published on 10 July 2012, the Government is confident that £180 million will be sufficient for the foreseeable tasks to address interference from 4G mobile services to digital terrestrial television reception to be undertaken. This sum includes a significant contingency which, if not used, will be returned to the mobile network operators when the scheme closes.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 488W

Graham Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport when she plans to publish full details of compensation schemes for those who have had their television reception interrupted as a result of the launch of the 4G service. [129096]

Mr Vaizey: The Government have made clear that the new 800MHz licensees will be required to take steps to mitigate interference so that viewers do not lose access to television services.

Graham Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what estimate she has made of when people whose television reception is interrupted due to the launch of the 4G service can expect to have service fully restored. [129097]

Mr Vaizey: The Government have made clear that it requires the new 800 MHz licensees to take steps to mitigate interference for those households which are likely to be affected by the roll-out of 4G in the 800 MHz band, who rely on digital terrestrial television for their primary viewing.

The licensees will deliver assistance through a jointly funded, owned and operated company, Digital Mobile Spectrum Ltd, a body the current Mobile Network Operators have established for this purpose.

National Lottery: Olympic Games 2012

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what the total contribution was to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games from the (a) Big Lottery Fund and (b) National Lottery Distribution Fund. [128630]

Hugh Robertson: £1.085 billion was transferred from the National Lottery Distribution Fund to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, of which the contribution in respect of the Big Lottery Fund was £638 million.

National Lottery: Sports

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what total Lottery funding was for each type of sport in each year since 2000. [128631]

Hugh Robertson: The information the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) hold on Lottery funding for sport is not broken down by type of sport. The DCMS Lottery Grants Database—searchable at:

www.lottery.culture.gov.uk

—uses information on Lottery grants supplied by the sport Lottery distributors, as well as the grants made by the Big Lottery Fund and its predecessor bodies to a wide range of community and grassroots sports projects.

Olympic Lottery

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what information her Department holds on how much has been raised from dedicated London 2012 Olympic Lottery games in each year since their introduction. [128532]

21 Nov 2012 : Column 489W

Hugh Robertson: Dedicated Olympic Lottery games raised the following annual amounts for the London Olympics:

 £ million

2005-06

16.486

2006-07

113.323

2007-08

147.320

2008-09

135.397

2009-10

86.458

2010-11

106.849

2011-12

(1)136.028

Total

741.861

(1) Unaudited.

The target of £750 million has since been reached, though a final total will not be known until later in the year. Any excess in the Olympic Lottery Distribution Fund will be returned to the National Lottery Distribution Fund for distribution to the non-Olympic good causes in due course.

Sports: Kent

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport how much her Department has spent on each sport in (a) Gillingham and Rainham constituency and (b) Medway since 2005; and how much has been spent on each such sport in each such area through Lottery funding. [128632]

Hugh Robertson: This information is not held by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in the manner requested.

DCMS provides grant in aid funding to public bodies that help deliver our strategic aims and objectives for sport. The grant in aid allocated to the Department's sporting bodies since 2005, can be found in the Department's annual reports, and more recently, in funding allocation letters, which can be found at the following links:

http://www.culture.gov.uk/about_us/our_annual_report/1052.aspx

http://www.culture.gov.uk/images/publications/Annual_Report_and_Accounts_2010_11.pdf

and

http://www.culture.gov.uk/publications/9020.aspx

The information we hold on lottery funding for sport in the Gillingham and Rainham constituency and in Medway, is not broken down by type of sport. The DCMS lottery grants database, searchable by constituency and local authority, at:

www.lottery.culture.gov.uk

uses information on lottery grants supplied by the sport lottery distributors, as well as the grants made by the Big Lottery Fund and its predecessor bodies to a wide range of community and grassroots sports projects.

Sport England also publishes details of the exchequer and lottery funding that they have allocated to grassroots sport, since 2007, by constituency and local authority on its website, at the following link:

http://www.sportengland.org/funding/local_spending_data.aspx

21 Nov 2012 : Column 490W

UK Sport is responsible for investing exchequer and lottery funds in Britain's best Olympic and Paralympic sports and athletes, this is not region specific.

Between 2004 and 2010, exchequer funding was provided by DCMS towards School Sports Partnerships, which was distributed by the Department for Education (then Department for Children, Schools and Families).

Staff

Mike Freer: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport how much her Department spent on (a) recruitment agency fees, (b) outplacement agency fees for displaced or redundant staff and (c) staff training in each of the last 12 months. [125680]

Hugh Robertson: The information is as follows:

(a) It is not currently possible to disaggregate recruitment fees from those paid to recruitment agencies for members of agency staff within the Department. Total fees paid to recruitment agencies during the past 12 months are as follows:

£
 TotalOf which: BDUKTotal less BDUK

October 2011

41,599

0

41,599

November 2011

99,266

49,525

49,741

December 2011

50,215

0

50,215

January 2012

37,261

0

37,261

February 2012

79,385

0

79,385

March 2012

81,760

0

81,760

April 2012

23,552

0

23,552

May 2012

137,603

62,361

75,242

June 2012

292,958

236,985

55,973

July 2012

110,262

47,439

62,823

August 2012

-5,120

-76,614

71,494

September 2012

100,470

9,266

91,204

Total

1,049,211

328,962

720,249

(b) No fees were incurred for outplacement agency usage in the last 12 months. This Department operates a contract whereby costs are frontloaded to ensure that our employees are able to access outplacement services as and when needed. In 2010, we paid £52,000 for outplacement services, covering all costs incurred between 2010 and 2012. In the last 12 months, 90 people accessed these services.

(c) Staff training costs during the past 12 months are as follows:

 £

October 2011

26,920

November 2011

34,105

December 2011

14,559

January 2012

27,622

February 2012

63,098

March 2012

94,783

21 Nov 2012 : Column 491W

April 2012

59,723

May 2012

*-34,903

June 2012

7,437

July 2012

10,734

August 2012

10,591

September 2012

4,174

* The negative spend figure in May 2012, is an adjustment to previous months in which pre-payments were made for block bookings of training events which fell in the next financial year.

Defence

Afghanistan

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people have served on tours of duty of longer than six months in Afghanistan; and what the (a) tour dates, (b) rank, (c) regiment and (d) reasons for the length of tour was. [128512][Official Report, 8 January 2013, Vol. 556, c. 1MC.]

Dr Murrison [holding answer 19 November 2012]: The Ministry of Defence does not hold this information centrally in the form requested, and in the interests of anonymity we do not release information of individual tours.

The MOD is able to confirm that at present around 110 posts out of 9,500 in Afghanistan are subject to tour lengths of longer than six months to provide continuity to the campaign. These posts are broken down as shown in the following table:

Army ranks (or equivalent) representedLength of continuity posting (months)Number of personnel (to the nearest 10)

Staff Sergeant

8

10

Warrant Officer Class 2

  

Warrant Officer Class 1

  

Captain

  

Major

  

Lieutenant Colonel

  
   

Captain

9

20

Major

  

Lieutenant Colonel

  
   

Staff Sergeant Major

12

50

Lieutenant Colonel

  

Colonel

  

Brigadier

  

Major General

  

Lieutenant General

  
   

Major

18

<10

   

Private

24

20

Lance Corporal

  

Corporal

  

Sergeant

  

Major

  

21 Nov 2012 : Column 492W

Lieutenant Colonel

  

Colonel

  

Major General

  

Mrs Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the involvement has been of UK military personnel in the villages of (a) Al Aqaba and (b) Khirbet Tana in Afghanistan. [128926]

Dr Murrison [holding answer 20 November 2012]:I assume the hon. Member is referring to Israel and the Occupied Territories. We have no record of deploying UK military personnel to either Al Aqaba or Khirbet Tana.

Armed Forces: Allowances

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will review the disturbance allowance to ensure that extra costs for overseas moves are adequately reflected. [128452]

Mr Francois: Disturbance allowance will be reviewed as part of the New Employment Model programme.

Armed Forces: Children

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the timeliness of nursery education payments for Army personnel. [128437]

Mr Francois: Isolated detachment nursery allowance is paid to service communities, small stations and isolated detachments overseas where service children's education facilities are not available for three and four-year-old children. This forms an important part of the support given to our service personnel at these overseas posts.

I am not aware of any delays in making these routine payments to our families where entitled.

Armed Forces: Education

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he plans to take to improve provision of educational programmes for members of the armed forces. [128432]

Mr Francois: Under the Defence systems approach to training quality standards, all training and education is subject to continuous improvement through evaluation and review in order to ensure that it remains current and relevant. This process ensures that educational programmes for members of the armed forces are updated or improved as necessary.

Armed Forces: Officers

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he is taking to improve retention of highly experienced officers in the armed forces. [128445]

Mr Francois: All members of the armed forces continue to receive an attractive package of terms and conditions

21 Nov 2012 : Column 493W

of service, and targeted incentives are employed as a means of tackling shortages in particular areas. We do not, however, consider that there is a specific issue to be addressed regarding the retention of highly experienced officers.

The Ministry of Defence does, however, recognise that the current employment model for service personnel has not changed much in the last 40 years and requires improvement to better meet the needs of today's modern armed forces. The New Employment Model programme has been established to redesign existing employment arrangements for service personnel, and aims to promote greater stability in service life balanced against the requirement to deliver operational capability. It will be designed to meet the expectations of a generation that has yet to join, but it must be delivered in a way that continues to support and motivate existing personnel. It is anticipated that a period of consultation with service personnel will commence in summer 2013.

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many officers left the armed forces before retirement age in each of the last five years. [128446]

Mr Francois: The information is not held in the format requested. The armed forces retirement age varies according to the terms of service for the individual's branch or trade, their length of commission or engagement and operational requirements. In the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force, the usual age for termination of service is 55, but the retirement age may be extended subject to the demands of the service.

The Ministry of Defence does, however, regularly publish information relating to outflow of personnel from the Department, including specific statistics about outflow of officers. This information is available in the public domain in the National Statistics Publications section of the

www.dasa.mod.uk

website in tables 7 and 8 of ‘TSP 19—UK Regular Forces Intake and Outflow by Age’, Table 7a of the ‘UK Armed Forces—Quarterly Personnel Report’, Table 8 (on page 13) of the ‘UK Armed Forces—Annual Manning Report’ and Table 8 (on page 14) of the ‘UK Armed Forces—Annual Personnel Report’.

Canada

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what representations he has received on the adequacy of the overseas living allowance for Army families living in Canada. [128436]

Mr Francois: There have been no specific representations made recently to the Ministry of Defence regarding local overseas allowance (LOA) in Canada. The LOA rate is reviewed annually.

In addition, as part of the New Employment Model programme, consideration will be given to the future needs of service personnel and their families, including any specific needs of personnel assigned overseas.

Employment Agencies

Catherine McKinnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is on the use of offshore

21 Nov 2012 : Column 494W

employment companies in the supply of public sector workers in his Department and its associated public bodies. [128731]

Mr Francois: A new framework agreement covering the use of temporary labour by all Government Departments, is currently under consideration.

Libya

Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on how many occasions UK personnel flew armed remotely-piloted air system missions during Operation Ellamy. [124378]

Dr Murrison: During Operation Ellamy last year, UK personnel embedded with United States forces contributed to around 200 armed remotely piloted air system missions as part of the NATO mission in support of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973.

Maritime Surveillance

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how he intends to provide maritime surveillance capability. [128705]

Mr Dunne [holding answer 20 November 2012]: The UK's maritime surveillance capabilities are delivered by a wide range of platforms and assets, including ships, submarines, aircraft and space and sea-bed based capabilities, and every Royal Navy vessel at sea carries out maritime surveillance routinely and continually.

Military Alliances

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions he has had with his American and French counterparts on co-operation on (a) training and (b) weapons. [128998]

Dr Murrison: The Secretary of State for Defence, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), is in regular communication with his American and French counterparts on a broad range of defence issues.

Military Bases: Recycling

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the value of savings achieved through recycling at British Army Training Unit Suffield. [129001]

Mr Francois: The Army has recently joined the Canadian Armed Forces' recycling contract at British Army Training Unit Suffield and expects to save £950,000 per year as a result. By continuing to work with the Canadians, other potential recycling opportunities are being identified, which may produce further savings in the future.

Navy

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what non-military uses are made of data collected by Royal Navy survey vessels. [129000]

21 Nov 2012 : Column 495W

Dr Murrison: The Royal Navy survey vessels are primarily involved in military data gathering in support of the Defence Hydrographic programme. Wherever possible Royal Navy survey assets, within limitations of programming, support the Civil Hydrographic programme, the National Hydrographic programme and assist in meeting the obligations imposed by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and Safety of Life at Sea.

Further examples include the support of the Royal Navy Ice Patrol Ship to the British Antarctic survey, the Meteorological Office, and the collection of side scan sonar and bathymetric data in UK waters for the British Geological survey.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 496W

Sick Leave

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence for how many and what proportion of days, on average, staff of his Department at each pay grade were absent from work as a result of ill health in each of the last five years. [127182]

Mr Francois: The information requested is shown in the following table. Grade equivalent rates, used in Cabinet Office absence reporting, include non-industrial, industrial and trading fund personnel, but exclude Royal Fleet Auxiliary and locally engaged civilians for whom sickness absence data is not readily available.

Grade (equivalent) 1 April 2007 to 31 March 20081 April 2008 to 31 March 20091 April 2009 to 31 March 20101 April 2010 to 31 March 20111 April 2011 to 31 March 2012

AA

Total number of days worked(1)

2,549,450

2,279,750

2,187,280

2,093,030

1,786,700

 

Total number of days lost

138,840

116,840

115,620

103,780

92,850

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

5.45

5.12

5.29

4.96

5.20

       

AO

Total number of days worked(1)

6,213,020

5,911,770

5,821,540

5,581,000

5,111,180

 

Total number of days lost

277,480

255,700

253,890

232,630

217,850

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

4.47

4.33

4.36

4.17

4.26

       

EO

Total number of days worked(1)

3,040,950

3,050,110

2,882,890

2,690,590

2,596,500

 

Total number of days lost

105,560

104,290

101,120

91,620

88,970

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

3.47

3.42

3.51

3.41

3.43

       

HEO

Total number of days worked(1)

2,503,210

2,607,200

2,584,840

2,541,890

2,489,830

 

Total number of days lost

64,950

64,240

64,730

68,970

65,740

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

2.59

2.46

2.50

2.71

2.64

       

SEO

Total number of days worked(1)

1,513,640

1,705,880

1,643,840

1,576,440

1,554,890

 

Total number of days lost

31,700

35,890

36,350

32,070

33,640

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

2.09

2.10

2.21

2.03

2.16

       

G7

Total number of days worked(1)

471,680

670,360

654,870

626,390

607,160

 

Total number of days lost

7,240

9,810

10,670

10,490

9,920

 

Proportion of Days Lost

1.54

1.46

1.63

1.67

1.63

       

G6

Total number of days worked(1)

162,500

189,110

182,640

173,560

173,260

 

Total number of days lost

1,930

2,070

2,560

1,970

2,170

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

1.19

1.09

1.40

1.14

1.25

       

21 Nov 2012 : Column 497W

21 Nov 2012 : Column 498W

SCS

Total number of days worked(1)

67,520

71,900

71,660

68,270

63,070

 

Total number of days lost

670

660

580

610

400

 

Proportion of days lost (percentage)

0.99

0.92

0.81

0.90

0.64

(1) Data presented reflects the current Cabinet Office definition, setting a maximum absence of 225 days per person, and excludes data for weekends, annual leave and bank holidays. Excludes personnel on zero pay. Source: DASA (Civilian)

Trident

Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many staff were (a) employed and (b) consulted on the production of the 2006 White Paper entitled The Future of the UK Independent Nuclear Deterrent. [128979]

Dr Murrison: The 2006 White Paper entitled The Future of the UK Independent Nuclear Deterrent (Cm 6994) was produced by the Deterrent Options Policy Group, which consisted of around 10 people. This group consulted widely within the Ministry of Defence, other Government Departments and the wider stakeholder community.

Type 45 Destroyers

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the unit production cost of the Type-45 frigate is. [128704]

Mr Dunne [holding answer 20 November 2012]:The Type-45 destroyer unit production cost is £651 million, as reported in the National Audit Office Major Projects Report for 2011.

Veterans: Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he is taking to address the needs of ex-service personnel in Northern Ireland affected by post traumatic stress disorder. [128424]

Mr Francois: The healthcare of our former service personnel is a matter that this Government continues to take very seriously. The provision of healthcare in Northern Ireland is a devolved issue and matter for the Northern Ireland Executive. Mental health and the extension of services, including psychological therapy for all citizens, is a Northern Ireland Executive priority. However, in recognition of their special circumstances, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) funds the provision of the Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) and the Royal Irish Regiment Home Service (R Irish (HS)) After Care Service which provides medical, vocational, welfare and benevolence support to former UDR and R Irish (HS) soldiers and their families.

The MOD also offers a thorough mental health assessment to ex-service personnel deployed on operations since 1982, including those living in Northern Ireland, who may be concerned that they have a mental health problem related to their military service. This is provided through the Veterans and Reserves Mental Health Programme (previously the Medical Assessment Programme). The MOD Service Personnel and Veterans Agency and Veterans Welfare Service are also able to provide support and assistance to ex-service personnel residing in Northern Ireland.

World War II: Anniversaries

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans his Department has to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic in 2013. [128623]

Mr Francois: The Government is considering a number of commemorative events for both world war one and world war two.

The Ministry of Defence is considering several requests to support civil society-led commemorations of the Battle of the Atlantic and discussions are ongoing.

Deputy Prime Minister

Elections

Mr Hanson: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will bring forward legislative proposals to require all who stand for election to Parliament, the devolved assemblies, police and crime commissioner posts and local authorities as independent candidates to declare any political party membership that they hold at the time of nomination. [129446]

Miss Chloe Smith: The Government has no plans to require those wishing to stand as independent candidates to disclose any political party membership they might hold at the time of nomination. It is for prospective candidates to decide whether they wish to stand independently or on behalf of a registered political party.

Trident

Alison Seabeck: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what contact members of the armed forces in the (a) Army, (b) Royal Navy and (c) Royal Air Force have had with the Cabinet Office team responsible for the Trident Alternatives Review through (i) meetings and (ii) correspondence including emails; and what the rank was of each such member of the armed forces in each such category. [126988]

Danny Alexander: I have been asked to reply as the Minister responsible for the Trident Alternatives Review.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 499W

To date, the Cabinet Office team has sought advice from a range of specialists within all three services of the armed forces up to Rear Admiral/Major General/Air Vice Marshal.

A detailed breakdown of meetings and correspondence between the armed forces and the Cabinet Office Team, including the ranks of those who have been involved, is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Education

Children in Care

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Education when he plans to publish his proposals for reducing the number of children in care placed out of area in residential homes. [129036]

Mr Timpson: The Out of Area Placements Task and Finish Group has been considering how to ensure that there is much better scrutiny, planning and assessment of needs and risks before decisions are taken to place a child at a distance. It has also been discussing how to improve arrangements, and the quality of care and support, for looked after children who are placed ‘out of area’ by their local authorities. Chaired by the Department, the group has comprised senior expert representation from children's services, local authorities, providers, Ofsted and others. The Task and Finish Group has met frequently since July.

This Task and Finish Group is working in parallel with two other expert groups established to take forward work on the reform of children's residential care: a group focusing on improving data about looked after children who go missing from care, and a further group with a broad remit to consider how to improve the overall quality of children's residential provision.

We are considering the Task and Finish group's proposals, alongside those made by the other expert groups, and will announce the action we intend to take in due course.

Children: Corporal Punishment

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Education pursuant to the answer of 8 November 2012, Official Report, column 688W, on children: corporal punishment, when he expects to (a) complete his consideration of Sir Roger Singleton's report and (b) bring forward proposals. [129034]

Mr Timpson: The Government is considering the recommendations made in Sir Roger Singleton's report. All supplementary schools and alternative care and learning settings must abide by child protection and safeguarding laws. The Government also continues to encourage parenting programmes which promote the use of alternative forms of discipline rather than physical punishment. Research in England and Wales shows that fewer parents now choose to use physical punishment and more parents are using alternative approaches to discipline.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 500W

There are no existing commitments to bring forward new proposals related to Sir Roger Singleton's report but we will continue to consider whether that would be appropriate.

Dyslexia: Apprentices

Andrew Stephenson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what support his Department provides to help young people with dyslexia apply for apprenticeships. [128935]

Matthew Hancock: The National Apprenticeship Service is responsible for delivery of the Apprenticeship programme including supporting all prospective applicants; it runs an online apprenticeship vacancies system and provides advice on applying for apprenticeships on the internet or by phone. The National Careers Service also has advisers who can help with applications.

Peter Little’s report, “Creating an inclusive apprenticeship offer” found that in 2010/11 12,100 apprentices reported that they had dyslexia. This number has increased each year from 4,400 in 2005/6. Mr Little made a number of recommendations to help improve the accessibility of apprenticeships. The Government's response has now been published in the form of an action plan and includes a number of measures to support learners with LDD in preparing for and applying for apprenticeships–for example: work with providers and employers to promote positive statements in relation to the recruitment of apprentices with learning difficulties or disabilities and roll out the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) two ticks scheme which indicates that the employer is positive about employing disabled people.

Special Educational Needs

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will ensure that Parliament has an opportunity to examine the value for money and outcomes achieved by the special educational needs direct payments pilot schemes before consideration of the Children and Families Bill. [128775]

Mr Timpson: The implementation of the SEN (Direct Payments) (Pilot Scheme) Order 2012, including requirements in the order for local authorities to consider the efficient use of public funds, is subject to a discrete evaluation as part of the ongoing wider evaluation of the SEND Green Paper pathfinder programme.

The evaluation is focusing on the development processes and challenges involved in setting up direct payments for special educational provision and, in doing so, is seeking to provide evidence in relation to:

The level of demand from families for SEN Direct Payments;

The practicalities of introducing SEN Direct Payments; and

The implications for wider provision.

In addition, the full evaluation is, among other issues, seeking to establish whether the pathfinders demonstrate value for money, by looking at the cost of our reform programme and associated benefits.

To date, the Department for Education has published two quarterly reports and most recently, on 18 October 2012, an interim evaluation report. All are available on

21 Nov 2012 : Column 501W

the Department's website and were sent to the Education Select Committee as part of the process of pre-legislative scrutiny:

http://www.education.gov.uk/researchandstatistics/research/researchpublications

The final evaluation report will be published in the summer of 2013 and, as such, will be available to help Parliament in its considerations of our reforms.

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education pursuant to the answer of 30 October 2012, Official Report, column 205W, on special educational needs, for what reasons each of the publications listed was removed from his Department's website; and what additional training materials relating to special educational needs have been commissioned or accredited by his Department and published on its website since May 2010. [128778]

Mr Timpson: Each of these publications was archived as part of a move away from bureaucratic, central prescription of how children should be taught. The intention is to give greater control to teachers and enable them to use their professional judgement.

The Department for Education and the Teaching Agency are working with specialist organisations (such as the Dyslexia-SpLD Trust, Autism Education Trust and Communications Trust) to make sure that those materials that professionals and families find most useful remain available.

As noted in the previous response, there are two sets of additional training materials that have been developed since May 2010 and remain available on the Department's website.

The first set was commissioned by the Teaching Agency in response to recommendations made in the Salt Review in 2010. These materials have been developed for use by any audience with an interest in the teaching of children and young people with severe learning difficulties (SLD); profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) and/or complex learning difficulties and disabilities (CLDD). They can be used by anyone with an interest in special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

There is also a set of advanced-level training materials for teachers working with children with the most common forms of SEN: specific learning difficulties (including dyslexia and dyscalculia); autism; behavioural, emotional and social difficulties; as well as speech; language and communication needs. These were commissioned following the Lamb enquiry which highlighted the importance of teachers acquiring advanced skills around the five main SEND areas.

Young People: Departmental Coordination

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what plans he has to mark the first anniversary of Positive for Youth. [129035]

Mr Timpson: Officials are currently working on plans for marking the one year anniversary of the publication of Positive for Youth, including the publication of information and data showing progress that has been made in the sector since December 2011 and events to highlight innovations that have taken place. I will be releasing more details shortly.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 502W

Energy and Climate Change

Fuel Poverty

Sarah Newton: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what recent assessment he has made of the number of people in fuel poverty in the UK. [129181]

Gregory Barker: Fuel poverty is measured at a household rather than individual level. In 2010, the latest year for which data are available, an estimated 4.75 million households in the UK were in fuel poverty. This represented approximately 19% of all UK households.

Fuel Poverty: Devon

Alison Seabeck: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many households were in fuel poverty in (a) Plymouth, (b) Devon and (c) Torbay in (i) 2010, (ii) 2011 and (iii) the latest period for which figures are available. [129513]

Gregory Barker: In 2010, the latest year for which data is available, the number of households in the county of Devon estimated to be in fuel poverty was 81,100 (17%). In the local authorities of Plymouth and Torbay, it was 15,000 (14%) and 9,800 (16%) respectively.

Offshore Industry

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what discussions he has had with Ministerial colleagues in the Department for Transport on the Air Accident Investigation Branch's initial report into the causes of the emergency ditching of a Super Puma EC225 in the North Sea on 22 October 2012; and if he will make a statement. [128093]

Mr Hayes: DECC Ministers meet regularly with Ministers in BIS to discuss a range of issues. As has been the case with successive administrations, it is not the Government's practice to provide details of all such meetings.

Renewable Energy

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the oral answer from the Prime Minister of 31 October 2012, Official Report, column 229, on investment in renewable energy, how much investment there has been in renewable energy in each of the last 13 years. [128188]

Mr Hayes: We do not hold details of investment in renewable energy on an annual basis for each of the past 13 years. However the official departmental electricity capacity data as published in Dukes(1) shows the annual renewable electricity capacity. The UK is on track to double its renewable electricity capacity from 8GW at the end of 2009, to 16GW(2) by the end of 2012.

(1)( )Source:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/statistics/energy_stats/source/renewables/renewables.aspx

(2) DECC internal analysis

21 Nov 2012 : Column 503W

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Ash Dieback Disease

Simon Reevell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on what date his Department was notified about the discovery of Chalara fraxinea in the UK; for what reasons the plant health order was not put into place until 29 October 2012; and what steps his Department is taking to prevent the contamination of UK seedlings. [128533]

Mr Heath: “Chalara fraxinea” was first confirmed in the UK on 7 March 2012, following investigation on 20 February 2012 of suspect symptoms during a routine inspection at a nursery in Buckinghamshire by the Food and Environment Research Agency's Plant Health and Seeds Inspectorate. At this stage there was no reason to consider that this was other than a single finding, given there was no history of the disease in the UK nor in traded plants. Following further findings, in planted sites, a Pest Risk Analysis was undertaken and then a consultation launched to establish the scale of the problem and, given the previous scarcity of information about the trade in ash plants, to obtain the views of those in the forestry and horticultural industries before we took any final decisions. This was done outside of the planting season and finished well before the planting season was due to begin. The consultation closed on 26 October. The Government acted once it became clear restrictions on ash imports were necessary and supported by those involved in the industry. We needed to assess the situation and consider the impact before seeking approval for legislation which came into force on 29 October and followed a voluntary moratorium by the industry.

The Government recently brought together scientists, campaigners, charitable groups and woodland agencies to discuss what action should be taken to address the disease. The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs set out an immediate plan of action that was agreed on 9 November at the COBR meeting. Over the coming weeks the Government will work with scientific experts and other interested groups to develop further and implement the measures in the plan, and to set a longer term approach to tackling “Chalara fraxinea”. With regard specifically to young trees, newly-planted diseased trees and diseased trees in nurseries will be traced and destroyed, as once young trees are infected they succumb quickly.

Birds of Prey

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many breeding pairs of hen harriers there are nesting in each constituent part of the UK. [127421]

Richard Benyon: According to the most recent national hen harrier survey in 2010, it is estimated that there are a total of 633 territorial pairs of hen harriers in the UK. In each constituent part of the UK the estimates are as follows:

 Number

England

12

Northern Ireland

59

21 Nov 2012 : Column 504W

Scotland

505

Wales

57

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what measures are in place, and what steps his Department is taking, to protect the hen harrier. [127536]

Richard Benyon: All wild birds are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and it is an offence to kill or injure any wild bird; take, damage or destroy the nest of any wild bird while that nest is in use or being built; and take or destroy an egg of any wild bird. Some birds are further protected by their listing on Schedule 1 to the Act; it is also an offence to intentionally or recklessly disturb them while they are building a nest, or are on, in, or near a nest containing eggs or their young. Hen harriers are listed in Schedule 1.

In addition to this strict legal protection, a number of measures are being taken. Raptor persecution is one of the six wildlife crime priorities for the UK with the hen harrier being one of six species highlighted for particular attention. DEFRA is involved with the Environment Council-facilitated Hen Harrier Dialogue Working Group and recently DEFRA officials have established a Hen Harrier Sub-Group (part of the Uplands Stakeholder Forum) where work with stakeholders is ongoing to consider which actions will best assist to secure the future of the hen harrier in England by reversing the decline in the population.

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many prosecutions there have been of offences relating to the killing of hen harriers in the last five years. [127537]

Richard Benyon: The Ministry of Justice Court Proceedings Database holds information on defendants proceeded against, found guilty and sentenced for criminal offences. This database holds information on offences provided by the statutes under which proceedings are brought but not all the specific circumstances of each case. It is not possible to separately identify from this centrally held information the number of prosecutions for offences relating to the killing of wild birds which related specifically to the killing of hen harriers.

Common Agricultural Policy

Huw Irranca-Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) whether he has assessed the potential effect on (a) each agricultural sector, (b) upland hill farm incomes and (c) agri-environment schemes of (i) any delay in agreement on the EU budget and (ii) the time taken to reform the common agricultural policy; [128677]

(2) what assessment he has made of the potential impact on (a) farming in the UK and (b) reform of the common agricultural policy of any failure to agree an EU budget. [128691]

Mr Heath: If there is a significant delay in agreement to the EU budget for 2014-2020 there is the potential for it to have a knock-on effect to the common agricultural

21 Nov 2012 : Column 505W

policy (CAP) post 2013. The European Commission's aim is to implement the reformed CAP by January 2014. However, this has always been a very ambitious target and the UK has consistently called for sufficient time to implement CAP reform successfully.

On that basis the UK will continue to work proactively with the European Commission to make sure CAP implementation happens at the earliest appropriate date and to ensure that there are the necessary transition arrangements in place where they are needed. This means legislation which enables a smooth transition between programmes with minimal disruption so we can continue payments to all types of farming.

Huw Irranca-Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the number of farmers reliant on agri-environmental schemes for income; and what consideration he has given to measures to support their livelihoods in the event that a reformed common agricultural policy does not enter into force on 1 January 2014. [128692]

Mr Heath: As at 24 September there were 53,717 farmers in England's agri-environment schemes. EU rules require that payments under these agreements can cover only additional costs and income foregone resulting from the commitment made, including transaction costs. These payments contain no element of income support.

The EU Commission and Council have an ambition to secure agreement on a new rural development regulation by the summer of 2013 in order to allow implementation of the new programme from 1 January 2014. However, it is likely that negotiations could last well into 2013 and therefore implementation may be delayed.

DEFRA is working to prepare for a planned transition from the current Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) to a new programme (2014-20) to reduce the impact on the farming and forestry sectors as well as wider rural business and rural communities. DEFRA is keeping key stakeholders regularly informed regarding the transition to the next programming period.

I will continue to work proactively with the European Commission to make sure CAP implementation happens at the earliest appropriate date and to ensure that there are the necessary arrangements in place to secure a smooth transition.

Huw Irranca-Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions he has had with Ministers in the devolved Administrations on any adverse effects arising from delays in agreement on the EU budget. [128693]

Mr Heath: The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the right hon. Member for North Shropshire (Mr Paterson), and I work closely with the devolved Administrations. Our most recent meeting on 19 November addressed CAP reform and other issues. Our discussions will inform the joint UK negotiating position at Council in November and December.

We all believe that the European Commission's aim to implement the reformed CAP by January 2014 is a very ambitious target, as the UK considers it does not allow enough time to implement the proposals fully. I will continue to work proactively with the European

21 Nov 2012 : Column 506W

Commission to make sure CAP implementation happens at the earliest appropriate date and to ensure that there are the necessary transition arrangements in place where they are needed.

Eggs: Imports

Neil Parish: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs by what means the value of egg imports for each commodity product code is used to calculate the quantity of eggs imported. [129053]

Mr Heath: The value of egg imports is sourced from HM Revenue and Customs data.

The value of egg imports is used to derive an estimate of the volume of imports. This is because the value data are generally considered to be of greater reliability than the volume data.

For shell eggs, a constant coefficient is applied to the value of imports to estimate the volume of imports. This coefficient has been derived from historical analysis of relative values and volumes.

For egg products, different coefficients are applied, depending on the product and therefore its estimated whole egg content. These are then used to derive whole egg equivalent volumes for egg products.

Neil Parish: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs by what means the value of egg imports by commodity product code is represented in his Department's quarterly egg import figures. [129054]

Mr Heath: The value of egg imports is not published in the quarterly egg statistics notice. However, the value of egg imports is used as the basis for calculating the volume of imports in the notice.

The value of egg imports and exports is published on the DEFRA website at:

http://www.defra.gov.uk/statistics/foodfarm/food/overseastrade/

Horses: Exports

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to improve the welfare arrangements for the export of horses for slaughter. [129031]

Mr Heath: The Government support the recommendation made by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) that the maximum journey time for horses going to slaughter should be reduced from 24 hours to 12 hours. We will continue to press the Commission to introduce this change at the earliest possible opportunity.

Livestock: Exports

Mr Watts: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to ensure that thorough animal health inspections are undertaken on livestock when loaded for export and upon arrival at port. [128725]

21 Nov 2012 : Column 507W

Mr Heath: The Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA) is responsible for implementation of the EU rules on the protection of animals during transport (Council Regulation (EC) 1/2005). AHVLA has recently increased the inspection rate of animals and vehicles at the point of loading to 100% and will remain at that level until the risks involved merit a more normal risk-based percentage of inspections.

The checks undertaken by AHVLA inspectors at the point of loading include consignment details, transporter/driver details, journey details and a separate checklist of 33 questions on the suitability of the vehicle and the welfare of the animals being transported. Any non-compliances are recorded and the necessary action taken by AHVLA inspectors. A further check is made by AHVLA inspectors at the port to ensure nothing untoward has occurred during the transport from the point of loading.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Fiji

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the UK's relationship with Fiji. [128397]

Mr Swire: The UK maintains full diplomatic relations with Fiji, often against a difficult backdrop following the 2006 military coup which led to Fiji's suspension from the Commonwealth.

The UK-Fiji relationship is multi-faceted—there are around 2,500 Fijians in the British armed forces and we have active trade links, particularly around Fijian sugar. On the political front, while we continue to have concerns about the human rights situation and the lack of democratic elections, we are cautiously encouraged by a number of positive developments, including the launch of a Constitution Commission and electoral registration. I have therefore instructed my officials to intensify contacts over the next crucial months, co-ordinating closely with our international partners, in order to encourage the Fijian authorities to continue to take steps towards elections in 2014 and a possible return to democracy.

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many officials of his Department are stationed in Fiji. [128398]

Mr Swire: The UK has full diplomatic relations with the Republic of Fiji where there are approximately 20 staff currently working at our high commission in Suva. This includes UK based civil servants and staff employed locally.

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether he plans to visit Fiji in the next 12 months. [128399]

Mr Swire: There are currently no plans for the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), to visit Fiji in the next 12 months. However, I have instructed my officials to intensify contacts over

21 Nov 2012 : Column 508W

the next crucial months, co-ordinating closely with our international partners, to encourage the Fijian authorities to continue to take steps towards elections scheduled for 2014.

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps his Department is taking to promote democracy and good governance in Fiji. [128401]

Mr Swire: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) continues to urge Fiji to return to democracy. We regularly raise progress with the Fijian authorities and with the Fijian High Commissioner in London. The then Minister of State, the hon. Member for Taunton Deane (Mr Browne), underlined the importance of maintaining progress towards the scheduled democratic elections in Fiji when he met the Fijian President in August 2012.

The FCO has provided political and material support to the Constitution Commission as they engage with the local Fijian population on the forming of a new Fijian Constitution, including contributing £49,000 to the NGO Conciliation Resources to help gather submissions from the Fijian people on the shape of the country's new Constitution. We also encourage our international partners to do likewise. We ensured the European Union included a specific focus on elections and human rights issues in Fiji in the EU-Pacific Island Development Partnership agreed in June 2012. With UK support, the EU has also undertaken to provide €1.3 million funding to support consultation on the new Constitution from the EU Instrument for Stability (IFS) fund.

Palestinians

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his policy is on recognising Palestine as a non-member observer state at the United Nations General Assembly on 29 November 2012. [129098]

Alistair Burt: The British Government is clear that a negotiated two-state solution is the best way to give the Palestinian people the state that they need and deserve, and the Israeli people the security and peace they are entitled to.

This requires Israelis and Palestinians to return to negotiations. Israel to stop illegal settlement building, Palestinian factions to reconcile with each other and the international community led by the United States and supported by European nations to make a huge effort to push the peace process forward as a matter of urgency.

While there is any chance of achieving a return to talks in the coming months, we continue to advise President Abbas against attempts to press for Palestinian observer state status at the United Nations through a vote in the UN General Assembly. We judge that this would make it harder to secure a return to negotiations, and could have very serious consequences for the Palestinian Authority.

Our collective goal must be a two state solution based on 1967 borders with agreed land swaps. Jerusalem as the capital of both states, and a just settlement for refugees. So while we support Palestinian aspirations and understand the pressures on President Abbas, we

21 Nov 2012 : Column 509W

have urged him to lead the Palestinians into negotiations and not to risk paralysing the process. We have also urged Israel to make every effort to restart negotiations, before the window for a two-state solution closes altogether.

Pay

Mr Raab: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many employees in his Department are paid in excess of (a) £80,000 and (b) £100,000. [128943]

Alistair Burt: Policy for the remuneration for all senior civil servants is set centrally by the Cabinet Office.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has a global network of over 270 diplomatic offices (including embassies, high commissions and consulates). The heads of these diplomatic offices help safeguard Britain's national security and build Britain's prosperity, as well as supporting British citizens overseas. As a result we have a high number of staff in these senior roles which command relatively high salaries.

Approximately 97% of FCO employees receive a salary of less than £80,000. Of the remainder, 109 employees, of which 64 are based overseas, receive a salary of between £80,000 and £99,999; and 34 employees, of which 22 are based overseas, receive over £100,000. This is correct as at 31 October 2012.

The FCO publishes salary data on all staff at senior civil service Grade 2 and above (minimum salary £82,900). This publication includes names and salaries in £5,000 bands. The latest version currently available is at 30 September 2011 published in November 2011:

http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/publications-and-documents/transparency-and-data1/fco-staff-salary/

The 2012 publication is being prepared for publication and is expected to be released at the end of this month.

The FCO also publishes salary data for all staff whose basic salary is greater than £150,000. The latest publication was in November 2012:

http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/resource-library/senior-civil-servants-high-earners-salaries

Somalia

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with his Somali counterpart on human rights in Somalia. [128406]

Mark Simmonds: The appointment of a new Government in Somalia on 13 November provides us with the opportunity to discuss a range of key issues with new interlocutors. Human rights will be a priority on this agenda. We will press the new Government on the urgent need to improve the human rights situation in Somalia and to tackle the significant concerns which have been raised by the UN and other organisations. One of the main problems is securing safe access; but we hope that recent security gains will promote stability and enable greater access to monitor and address human rights violations.

I discussed President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud's priorities for government—including security, justice and good governance—with him when I visited Mogadishu on 4 October. I stressed that the UK is committed to working with the Somali Government on these issues.

21 Nov 2012 : Column 510W

The UK also welcomed the 24 September Human Rights Council resolution on Somalia and the recommendations of the Independent Expert, including calls for greater monitoring of violations. FCO officials are in close contact with the new Somali authorities and will be encouraging them to develop this approach.

Somaliland

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his policy is on the application of Somaliland for observer status in the Commonwealth of Nations. [128403]

Mr Swire: While the UK acknowledges Somaliland's aspirations for independence, Somaliland is not recognised as an independent sovereign state. The only category of membership in the Commonwealth is that of a sovereign state as full member. In 2007 Commonwealth Heads of Government endorsed the recommendation of the Commonwealth Committee on Membership not to establish observer status.

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with his Somali counterpart on UK aid expenditure in Somaliland. [128405]

Justine Greening: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for International Development.

Department for International Development (DFID) officials attended the High Level Aid Co-ordination Forum (HLACF) in Hargeisa, Somaliland on the 11 and 12 September 2012. This is a six-monthly forum attended by several Government of Somaliland Ministers and chaired by the United Nations Resident Co-ordinator for Somalia. The Government of Somaliland presented its mid-term review of aid effectiveness showing that the UK ranked first out of 11 other bilateral donors. DFID delivered a presentation on future plans for UK development assistance.

Health

Cancer

Grahame M. Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) with reference to his Department's document on the value for money addendum to the strategic outline case for the national proton beam therapy service development programme, what financial due diligence, aside from the informal costings conducted by University College London hospital, his Department has undertaken in relation to the projected capital costs of the proton beam equipment to be installed in (a) University College London Hospital and (b) the Christie NHS Foundation Trust; [128483]

(2) with reference to section 2 of his Department's document on the value for money addendum to the strategic outline case for the national proton beam therapy service development programme, whether the comparative conventional radiotherapy referred to includes intensity modulated radiation therapy, stereotactic ablative radiotherapy and radiosurgery; [128484]

21 Nov 2012 : Column 511W

(3) whether proton beam therapy programmes in Germany were included as part of any of the international evidence considered in the value for money addendum to the strategic outline case for the national proton beam therapy service development programme document. [128489]

Anna Soubry: The cost and benefits of the national health service acquiring two proton beam therapy (PBT) facilities hosted at University College London Hospital and Christie NHS Foundation Trust have been based on the best available international information and a market testing exercise. The approach taken has followed the Treasury guidance to mitigate financial risk while providing good value for money. The risk inherent in a project of this size and complexity has to be balanced against the loss of potential benefits to patients by not providing this treatment.

The modelling to demonstrate the benefits of PBT used the best available alternatives currently offered as a comparator, including intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), if it was clinically indicated. PBT is fundamentally different to other forms of radiotherapy (including IMRT, stereotactic ablative radiotherapy and radiosurgery) in that the treatment beam can be focused deep within the body to an accuracy of less than one millimetre. This makes it particularly suitable for the treatment of tumours close to vital organs, especially in small children. The best expert evidence available has suggested that the benefit PBT will have over conventional radiotherapy for the tumour sites we have considered is unlikely to reduce, even with developments that are currently in the pipeline. Some countries, including Germany and Japan, have investigated using heavy ions as a form of radiotherapy. This approach uses PBT accelerator technology, but is still in the experimental stage. The NHS has not considered investing in this technology as the results are currently mixed. Benefits of heavy ion technology would be for a different group of patients.

Death

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the incidence of morbidity in people under the age of 65 was in each of the last 10 years. [128678]

Norman Lamb: The information is not held in the format requested. However, the following table shows the estimated prevalence of adults living in private households in England having at least one psychiatric condition(1).

Age rangeAdults meeting the criteria for, or screening positive for, one or more psychiatric condition(1, 2)

16-24

32.3

25-34

30.0

35-44

22.9

45-54

25.0

55-64

18.7

65-74

12.7

75+

10.5

Percentage all

23.0

21 Nov 2012 : Column 512W

(1) 'Psychiatric conditions' include the most common mental disorders (namely anxiety and depressive disorders) as well as: psychotic disorder; antisocial and borderline personality disorders; eating disorder; posttraumatic stress disorder; attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; alcohol and drug dependency; and problem behaviours such as problem gambling and suicide attempts. These are defined according to different classification criteria and refer to a variety of different, reference periods, as detailed in the background information provided. Mixed anxiety and depressive disorder was defined following the exclusion of other common mental disorders. (2) Figures above were calculated by subtracting the prevalence of adults with no psychiatric condition from 100. Note: This table is an excerpt from Table 12.1 in Chapter 12 (Co-morbidity) of the APMS 2007 report: http://www.ic.nhs.uk/pubs/psychiatricmorbidity07 Source: Adult Psychiatric Morbidity (APMS) Survey 2007.

Dementia

Mr Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to review the usefulness of the cognitive assessment tools available to GPs to help them decide whether to refer a patient to a memory service. [128948]

Norman Lamb: Guidance on cognitive assessment tools to support the diagnosis of dementia will be published shortly.

Mr Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people with dementia (a) in total and (b) in each primary care trust area were offered planned admissions to acute hospitals for routine operations in the last year for which figures are available. [129060]

Norman Lamb: Information on how many people with dementia in each primary care trust area were offered planned admissions to acute hospitals for routine operations is not collected centrally.