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Lord Bassam of Brighton: All new infrastructure on the Great Western Main Line in connection with the Crossrail project will be W12 gauge which encompasses W10 gauge. Electrification under existing flat bridges will also provide W12 gauge, but not under all arched bridges. For a small number of arched bridges clearance to W12 gauge would require additional work to that for Crossrail purposes, which would be a matter for Network Rail to consider.
Whether any other member state of the European Union has given effect to Directive 2000/43/EC by confining the reverse burden of
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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): Council Directive 2000/43/ECthe race directivelaid down a framework for combating discrimination on grounds of racial or ethnic origin in the member states of the European Union. It did not cover discrimination on grounds of colour.
In the UK, the directive was implemented by secondary legislation under Section 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972. The amending regulations, which included the change to the burden of proof, could not therefore apply to grounds, such as colour, omitted from or excluded by the race directive itself.
Legislative arrangements vary from member state to member state, and each will have implemented the directive in the way it sees as most appropriate. We do not have up-to-date information on precisely how each of the other 26 member states of the European Union has implemented the race directive.
The Lord President of the Council (Baroness Ashton of Upholland): For the first time the Lisbon Treaty defines the Unions competences, setting out where the EU can and cannot act. These competences are set out in Article 2(12) of the Treaty of LisbonCm 7294 pages 52-55presented to Parliament in December 2007. The treaty explicitly states that competences not conferred on the EU remain with member states.
Baroness Ashton of Upholland: For the first time the Lisbon Treaty defines the Union's competences, setting out where the EU can and cannot act. These competences are set out in Article 2(12) of the Treaty of LisbonCm 7294 pages 52-55presented to Parliament in December 2007. The treaty explicitly states that competences not conferred on the EU remain with member states.
Whether they propose to support the draft regulations published by the European Commission on 30 January, which propose mandatory front-of-pack labelling for food products based on guideline daily amountsGDA labellinginstead of the traffic light schemes introduced by the Food Standards Agency. [HL1998]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The proposal would allow continued use of traffic light labelling. We are formally consulting stakeholders on the contents of the proposal, which will help inform the United Kingdom position, as will the results of the independent evaluation of signpost labelling schemes in the UK marketplace, due to report by the end of the year.
Further to the Written Answer by Lord Davies of Oldham on 8 JanuaryWA 196whether they will assess the impact upon the United Kingdom market of the import from the Crown Dependencies of food supplements and herbal remedies which, if placed directly on the United Kingdom market, would be illegal by virtue either of their composition or of the claims made about them. [HL1688]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The private nature of transactions involved in the personal import of food supplements and herbal remedies from the Crown Dependencies by mail order means that it is not currently possible to collate the information necessary to assess the impact on the United Kingdom market of such imports.
What evaluation has been made of the relationship between funding for assisted reproduction treatments and the prevalence of multiple births; what is the agreed timeframe for full implementation of the February 2004 National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidelines by all centres licensed to provide assisted reproduction treatments; and what is the percentage of centres licensed to provide assisted reproduction treatments which already offer National Health Service provision of three in vitro fertilisation cycles to all infertile couples. [HL2003]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority's Expert Group on Multiple Births after IVFin vitro fertilisation, which reported in October 2006, expressed the view that the lack of publicly funded fertility treatments is the most significant obstacle to an acceptance of changing embryo transfer practices towards a reduction in the twin rate in the United Kingdom.
Clinical guidelines produced by the National Institute of Health and Clinical ExcellenceNICEhave no formal timescale for implementation, but we have made it clear that the department is looking to primary care trustsPCTsto move towards the provision of three full cycles of IVF, for those who need it, as recommended in the NICE guideline.
We are working with the patient support organisation, Infertility Network UK, to help PCTs share best practice in the provision of fertility services and move to the implementation of the NICE recommendations. To build on the progress being made we are establishing an expert group on commissioning NHS fertility provision to identify the barriers to the implementation of the NICE guideline and provide guidance for PCT commissioners. Approximately 5 per cent of PCTs report that they currently provide three cycles of IVF.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): Applications for membership of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology AuthorityHFEA
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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): This information is not centrally recorded. However, the Interception of Communications Commissioner states in his most recent annual report that he is satisfied that the intelligence and law enforcement agencies that apply for interception warrants carry out this task diligently and in accordance with the law. As an example, the commissioner said in his report that the Scottish Justice Minister has confirmed that outright refusal of an application in Scotland is comparatively rare, because the requesting police forces and the senior officials in her department scrutinise the applications with care before they are submitted for her approval. All applications made to the Secretary of State are scrutinised by officials in the warrants unit within their respective departments to ensure that the statutory requirements have been met. Nevertheless, the Secretary of State personally weighs the issues and may refuse to grant a warrant if in her view the strict requirements of, for example, necessity or proportionality are not met.
Baroness Crawley: According to the immigration officials at the Syrian border the average daily number of those entering Syria from Iraq in the month of January was estimated to be 1,200. It was also estimated that an average of 700 persons in January returned to Iraq from Syria.
UNHCR has confirmed that the trends outlined above are correct, though it is difficult to verify whether all persons crossing the borders are in fact refugees and numbers crossing borders changes on a daily basis.
What measures are in place to ensure that the £2.2 million they provided for humanitarian relief in Kenya is reaching the people who need assistance and is not being misappropriated at any level.[HL1931]
Baroness Crawley: The UK's assistance to the humanitarian relief effort in Kenya is being provided through the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the Kenya Red Cross Society and Medecins Sans Frontieres. These are strong independent organisations that organise and deliver humanitarian services directly to targeted beneficiaries.
DfID has a long-standing partnership with these agencies and has found them to be well-managed and effective organisations. The work is regularly reviewed and assessed on the ground by our team based in Kenya.
What proportion of the money spent under the Youth at Risk programme in the London Borough of Waltham Forest under the Government's Neighbourhood Renewal Fund was spent outside the five targeted wards; and whether this expenditure was appropriate given the purposes of the programme.[HL1963]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): Information on the use of Neighbourhood Renewal Fund to finance the London Borough of Waltham Forest's Youth at Risk programme is not held by central government. Nor has any assessment been made on whether this was appropriate use of NRF. Prior to the introduction of local area agreements, local strategic partnerships were expected to use NRF to support the Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy and it was for the partnerships to decide which local interventions should be funded.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (Baroness Vadera): No passenger cruise liners were built in the UK in the years 2004, 2005 and 2006.
Lord Bassam of Brighton: The number of rail vehicles which are currently off lease but could be used on the passenger rail network without very significant investment is extremely low. For exact details of the numbers involved the rolling stock leasing companies should be contacted directly.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): Four notices under Section 49 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000RIPAhave been issued since the provisions came into force on 1 October 2007.
What assistance they plan to give to higher and further education in southern Sudan in the light of
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Baroness Crawley: The UK Government agree with the conclusions of the Associate Parliamentary Group (APG) report on the importance of investment in education in southern Sudan, including higher and further education. DfID has made a substantial contribution to the education sector as a whole. We are a major donor to the Multi Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) which has a £23.3 million programme in the education sector. Under this programme 1,200 teachers have been trained and 10 new schools will be built this year. Under the DfID-supported Basic Services Fund 2,000 children have returned to school and 570 additional teachers will be trained in 2008. We share the APG's conclusion on the positive impact of the UNICEF Go to School programme and will provide £2 million in support of this in 2008. DfID's £1.5 million British Council programme delivers a variety of vocational education and teacher training schemes.
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