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18 Oct 2010 : Column WA95



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA95

Written Answers

Monday 18 October 2010

Abdul Baset Al Megrahi

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) does not intend to apply for this information; we do not believe these exemptions apply and we consider it is unnecessary to test them. It is not apparent to the FCO that Abdul Baset Al Megrahi currently presents a threat to the UK, in terms of national security or crime, nor that disclosure of his medical information or details of his location would reveal either.

Afghanistan

Question

Asked by Viscount Waverley

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): We encourage all of Afghanistan's neighbours to play a positive and constructive role in supporting increased stability and security in Afghanistan. We therefore welcome the role being played by the Central Asian states, particularly their development of regional infrastructure, their efforts to tackle trans-boundary threats and their practical support for International Security and Assistance Force operations in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan forms an important component of the UK's regular bilateral dialogue with the Central Asian states. This includes ministerial meetings and official-level contact with regional embassies.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA96

Afghanistan: Wheat

Question

Asked by Lord Swinfen

Baroness Verma: The UK, through the Department for International Development (DfID), is monitoring the availability of wheat in Afghanistan closely. At present, national availability is better than the previous year's average, following last year's bumper crop and better than average production this year. The World Food Programme, supported by donors including DfID, is providing wheat to traditionally vulnerable groups. DfID also supports the Red Cross in Afghanistan with £6 million for emergency relief operations.

Agriculture

Questions

Asked by Lord Boateng

Baroness Verma: Agriculture has a key role to play in helping to meet the millennium development goal of halving the proportion of people in the world suffering from extreme poverty and hunger. Seventy-five per cent of the developing world's poor, some 2 billion people, live in rural areas. The great majority depend on agriculture to provide them with jobs and incomes and to lift them out of poverty. Agriculture also contributes to wider economic growth and wealth creation in developing countries, for the benefit of all. In addition, agriculture contributes to increased food availability, helping to address the problem of high food prices and price volatility in developing countries, which hurt the poor most.

Asked by Lord Boateng

Baroness Verma: The Government recognise the competing demands between food production and environmental sustainability and the need for agriculture in both developed and developing countries to take account of its impact on the environment, particularly in relation to the management of resources, including water, carbon and biodiversity.

We supported the millennium ecosystem assessment, which looked at the links between environmental sustainability and agriculture. The fourth report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reviewed the link between agriculture and climate change.

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In addition, the UK has accepted the findings of the International Assessment of Agriculture Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD), which made recommendations on water conservation, food security, ecosystem maintenance and climate change.

The Government Office of Science expects to publish an important new report, the Foresight Report on Global Food and Farming Futures, early next year. This will set out how the international community can ensure an equitable and sustainable food supply between now and 2050, when it is estimated that the world's population will have reached 9 billion. The report will include an assessment of the choices that need to be made in maintaining biodiversity and minimising impact on the environment.

Asked by Lord Boateng

Baroness Verma: In 2008, eight countries in Africa met or exceeded the 10 per cent target for public expenditure on agriculture and food security. The Department for International Development (DfID) participates twice yearly in meetings with the African Union (AU) and member states to review this and other targets. We use these meetings and our country-level work to press for progress. In the countries where DfID is active in the agriculture sector, like Malawi and Rwanda, DfID staff work closely with those Governments to monitor progress in achieving expenditure and productivity targets. DfID is also in regular contact with the African Union to monitor our £10 million grant to the African Union's Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP).

Asked by Lord Boateng

Baroness Verma: The UK, with other members of the G8, has agreed to take concerted action to tackle global hunger under the L'Aquila food security initiative. This aims to increase food availability in developing countries, increase food affordability for the poorest and most vulnerable, help lift the rural poor out of poverty and make markets function more effectively. The Department for International Development (DfID) has committed over £1 billion to food security and agriculture over the next three years, which will indirectly support the World Bank's agriculture action plan, particularly those areas which focus on increasing agricultural productivity, linking farmers to markets, reducing risk and vulnerability and enhancing environmental sustainability.



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We have no plans to directly contribute to the implementation of the bank's action plan 2010-12, other than through our regular subscription to the soft loan arm of the bank's operations, the International Development Association.

Armed Forces: Compensation

Question

Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Astor of Hever): The Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) was introduced on 6 April 2005 and compensates for injuries sustained after that date. Applicants apply to be compensated for their injuries or illness and not for any particular amount or tariff. Payments are based on the severity of illness or injury sustained following assessment by staff in the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency.

Since the scheme's introduction there have been five personnel awarded a level 2 tariff (£470,000) and 10 personnel awarded a level 3 tariff (£380,000) in respect of injuries that include amputation. Those personnel will also receive a tax-free guaranteed-income payment for life when they leave the Armed Forces.

The AFCS has recently been independently reviewed by the noble and gallant Lord, Lord Boyce, who made several recommendations, one of which was the increase in the levels of all payments, with the exception of the top award which was recently doubled to £570,000. These recommendations have been accepted in full and are currently being implemented.

Armed Forces: Honours

Question

Asked by Lord Ashcroft

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Astor of Hever): The Australian Government commissioned an independent review of Battle of Long Tan recognition in 2007. They accepted the recommendation to upgrade the awards for several individuals, two of whom were awarded medals for gallantry while serving in the Royal Australian Army during the Battle of Long Tan in Vietnam in 1966. However, Australia is no longer part of the Imperial Honours system and it is a matter for the Australian Government to decide what medal should be awarded.



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Armed Forces: Scholarships

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Astor of Hever): This is a new initiative, fulfilling the commitment made in our Programme for Government, that we aim to implement soon. Funding will be provided by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, but no expenditure is currently taking place.

Armed Forces: Seriously Injured Personnel

Questions

Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Astor of Hever): The following table presents the number of UK Armed Forces personnel who as a result of an injury sustained while deployed on Op HERRICK (Afghanistan) or Op TELIC (Iraq) have suffered a traumatic or surgical amputation. This ranges from the loss of part of a finger or toe up to the loss of entire limbs. The term "permanently injured" is not used for categorising injuries sustained by Armed Forces personnel.

The data cover the time period 1 April 2006 to 30 June 2010, the latest date for which data are readily available. Data prior to this date are not held centrally and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Operation
Date of AmputationOp HERRICKOp TELIC

2006 (Quarters 2, 3 and 4)

7

6

2007

12

10

2008

30

~

2009

55

0

2010 (Quarters 1 and 2)

38

0

These statistics are published quarterly and can be found at www.dasa.mod.uk, under all other publications and health/medical statistics.

Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester



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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Astor of Hever): The following table presents the number of UK Armed Forces personnel who have been identified as being very seriously injured or seriously injured as a result of deployment to either Op HERRICK (Afghanistan) or Op TELIC (Iraq) and who have subsequently been permanently medically downgraded.

OperationNumber downgraded

All

118

Iraq1

49

Afghanistan2

69

Due to very small numbers of female service personnel permanently medically downgraded, it is not possible to provide a gender breakdown in response to the Question.

Although medical boards recommend medical downgrading, they do not attribute the principal disability leading to the board to either service or deployment. A medical board could take place many weeks or months after an event or injury and it is not clinically possible in some cases to link an earlier injury to a later problem which may lead to a downgrading. Decisions on attributability to service are made by the Service Personnel and Veterans' Agency.

Bahrain

Question

Asked by Lord Avebury

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The Government would be willing to consider providing technical assistance to the Government of Bahrain to implement the recommendations of the Bar Human Rights Committee, should the Bahraini Government request our assistance, and subject to resource considerations.

Bees

Questions

Asked by Lord Moynihan

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): The National Bee Unit (NBU), part of the Food and Environment Research Agency (Fera), delivers the bee health programme in England and Wales. The programme includes the provision of a free apiary inspection and diagnostic service for statutory

18 Oct 2010 : Column WA101

diseases and pests, and an extensive free training and advisory programme to enable beekeepers to become more self-reliant in combating disease through improved bee husbandry.

So far in 2010, beekeepers in England and Wales have benefited from over 30,000 colony inspections which include one-to-one training with beekeepers. In the same period, the NBU has also provided over 800 technical events attended by more than 30,000 beekeepers to help them improve skills in areas such as colony husbandry and pest and disease control.

The improvement of beekeepers' husbandry skills is a key objective of the Healthy Bees Plan delivered in partnership by Fera, the Welsh Assembly Government and key organisations such as the Bee Farmers' Association, the NFU, the British Beekeepers' Association (BBKA) and the Welsh Beekeepers' Association. This work includes a recently announced project (jointly funded by the BBKA, the National Diploma of Beekeeping Board and Defra) to produce new training materials and recruit 400 beekeeper trainers.

Asked by Lord Moynihan

Lord Henley: Operation Bumblebee is a project developed by Syngenta, taken forward in partnership with Sainsbury's. Natural England has maintained contact with this work but is not directly involved.

According to the Syngenta website, 570 farmers and growers took part and some 1100ha of land was sown with appropriate seed mixes. This resulted in a 600 per cent increase in bumblebee numbers and a 12-fold increase in butterfly numbers. The project has now expanded, as Operation Pollinator, to six other European countries and to Australia.

More information about Operation Bumblebee and Operation Pollinator, is available on the Syngenta website.

Benefits

Questions

Asked by Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud): The Government are developing their plans for the implementation of the universal credit as part of the spending review. Further details will be available when those plans are published in a White Paper later in the autumn.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA102

Asked by Lord Knight of Weymouth

Lord Freud: The information requested is not available at a local authority level.

The Chancellor's announcement of a benefit cap was informed by high-level consideration of the broad impacts when developing the policy. We are now working up the more detailed design of the caps as part of the spending review announcement on 20 October and an equality impact assessment will be published soon after. When we introduce legislation for the implementation of the caps, we shall publish a fuller impact assessment.

Asked by Lord Knight of Weymouth

Lord Freud: The Chancellor's announcement of a benefit cap was informed by high-level consideration of the broad impacts when developing the policy. We are now working up the more detailed design of the caps as part of the spending review announcement on 20 October and an equality impact assessment will be published soon after. When we introduce legislation for the implementation of the caps, we shall publish a fuller impact assessment.

Broadcasting: Digital Switchover

Question

Asked by Lord Kilclooney

Lord Shutt of Greetland: Yes.

Cambodia

Question

Asked by Baroness Scott of Needham Market

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The UK, with EU partners, has raised concerns with the Government of Cambodia about treatment of opposition members of the National Assembly including Sam Rainsy on a number of occasions. The local EU presidency raised the democratic rights of opposition parliamentarians

18 Oct 2010 : Column WA103

at a meeting with the Minister of Interior, Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng, on 15 June. EU and Cambodian representatives also discussed this issue during the Cambodia-EC Joint Committee held in Brussels on 7 and 8 October.

Officials from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office met with Sam Rainsy during his visit to the UK on 22 September.

Chemicals: Safety

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): Industry has proposed a period of 12 months from 1 December during which the requirements of the EU Regulation for the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) would be applied so as to allow downstream user companies time to respond to potential disruptions in the supply of essential chemicals that may result from the first registration deadline, working within the terms of the existing legislation. The Government fully recognise industry's concerns and the Secretaries of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and for Business, Innovation and Skills have written to the European Commission putting the case for such an approach across the European Union.

Our understanding is that industry is not asking for a delay or temporary suspension of the 2010 registration deadline for high volume or hazardous substances, and the Government would not support such a proposal.

Cyberwarfare

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Neville-Jones): Cyberwarfare is currently being considered alongside all other aspects of security and defence within the Strategic Defence and Security Review. It would not be appropriate at this time to go into any further details regarding the Government's plans before the outcome of that review is known.

Democratic Republic of Congo

Questions

Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool



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The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The UK strongly condemns these terrible crimes as stated by my honourable friend the Minister for Europe, David Lidington, on 27 August. We have called for the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) to urgently enhance efforts to protect and defend civilians and improve MONUSCO's impact in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

However the primary responsibility for the protection of civilians must rest with the DRC authorities. We agree with Margot Wallstrom's statement calling for the perpetrators to be brought to justice. We, along with our EU and UN partners, have urged the Government of the DRC to investigate and ensure a swift and fair prosecution of the perpetrators of these terrible crimes.

My honourable friend the Minister for Africa, Henry Bellingham, was in the DRC recently and raised the UK's concerns about human rights with various DRC government Ministers. He stressed that the DRC's human rights record is poor and must improve. He met Foreign Minister Thambwe on 26 September and urged the Government of DRC to implement fully President Kabila's zero tolerance policy on perpetrators of sexual violence.

Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool

Lord Howell of Guildford: Having a strong, robust and transparent minerals sector is vitally important for the prosperity of the Congolese people. The UK welcomes measures to bring an end to illegal activities in mining and the trade of minerals and to make the sector more productive and accountable.

There has been no formal assessment by the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or the Government of Democratic Republic of Congo on the effects of the mining ban. The UK is working closely with the World Bank and others to encourage the Government to move forward with comprehensive reforms of the mining sector.

Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool

Lord Howell of Guildford: This is a lengthy and detailed report cataloguing numerous abuses over a 10-year period. We recognise the importance of documenting this traumatic period in the Democratic

18 Oct 2010 : Column WA105

Republic of Congo's (DRC) history. The report highlights the need to tackle impunity in a comprehensive manner. The report contains a number of important recommendations. It is now for the UN, the DRC and other states involved to take these forward. We hope that the report will be used constructively and would encourage all parties to engage positively in the process.

Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Bill

Question

Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): The Secretary of State has noted the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act 2010 on disclosure of payments made to foreign Governments. The UK Government took a leading part in the extractive industries transparency initiative (EITI) as a voluntary agreement between corporations and Governments of resource-rich countries to disclose details of company payments and government revenues from oil, gas and mining. The Democratic Republic of Congo has achieved EITI candidate status.

There is also considerable international work currently in progress. The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), which is an independent standard setter for global accounting standards, and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) are both investigating international approaches to this kind of disclosure.

The Government will consider action when they see the outcomes of these investigations, but note that international approaches are likely to work better than any national approach.

Employment

Questions

Asked by Lord Hunt of Kings Heath

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud): The Future Jobs Fund was closed to new bids on 24 May 2010. At that time 337 bids had been approved for funding. A further 107 bids had been submitted and the result of the assessment was outstanding at the time of the Government's announcement. As a consequence of the announcement, these 107 bids were subsequently turned down.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA106

Asked by Lord Dykes

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): Job creation must come from the private sector. It is the Government's responsibility to create an environment conducive to this. Cutting the country's deficit is a necessary first step to the future creation of jobs and promotion of economic growth, but it will not be sufficient.

We published A Strategy for Sustainable Growth in July 2010 and will draw on this within a growth White Paper, to be jointly published by BIS and HM Treasury, which will follow the upcoming comprehensive spending review.

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

Baroness Wilcox: Job creation must come from the private sector. It is the Government's responsibility to create an environment conducive to this. Cutting the country's deficit is a necessary first step to the future creation of jobs and promotion of economic growth, but it will not be sufficient.

We published A Strategy for Sustainable Growth in July 2010, and will draw on this within a growth White Paper, to be jointly published by BIS and HM Treasury, which will follow the upcoming comprehensive spending review.

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud): We will begin recruiting mentors-a key element of the new enterprise allowance offer, alongside financial support worth around £2,000-and setting up the allowance from November.

We intend to phase in elements of the new enterprise allowance from January 2011, before rolling out the full offer to those areas which face the greatest unemployment challenge from April 2011.

We will announce more details shortly.

Energy: Carbon Capture and Storage

Questions

Asked by Lord Ezra



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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): The start date for construction and the length of construction time for the first carbon capture and storage (CCS) demonstration plant will depend on the identity of the successful bidder in the current CCS demonstration competition as each have proposed separate construction programmes.

Asked by Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

Lord Marland: We expect to publish the CCS road map in spring 2011. Since May we have held a senior stakeholder conference on encouraging investment in CCS in the UK and published the 2050 pathways call for evidence. Feedback from stakeholders will feed into the road map and the new CCS development forum, which we launched in July, will help guide its development.

Energy: Carbon Trust

Question

Asked by Lord Berkeley

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): Her Majesty's Government expect to provide a total funding of up to £132.87 million to the Carbon Trust in 2010-11. The purpose of the funding is to support the delivery of government climate change and energy objectives, focusing on accelerating the move to a low-carbon economy.

Energy: Nuclear Power

Question

Asked by Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): I refer the noble Lord to the Written Statement made to the House today concerning the National Policy Statement on nuclear power.

Energy: Prices

Question

Asked by Lord Ezra



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA108

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): National Grid's winter energy outlook indicates that forecast gas demand will be 0.5 per cent higher than the weather-corrected demand for winter 2009-10. Overall, gas supplies are projected to be higher than last winter, with indigenous supplies forecast to be 9 per cent lower, but with additional import capacity available.

For electricity, the generation capacity margin based on installed capacity is 35 per cent, which is higher than last winter.

The Government do not forecast energy prices.

Energy: Renewables

Question

Asked by Lord Hunt of Kings Heath

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): This Government are fully committed to taking action on renewable heat. We are considering responses to the renewable heat incentive consultation and expect to make a decision once the spending review has concluded.

Energy: Severn Barrage

Questions

Asked by Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): The conclusions of the Severn Tidal Power Feasibility Study were announced via a Written Ministerial Statement on 18 October, and all the supporting documents, including the supply chain report and the options definition report, are available

Energy: Wind Generation

Question

Asked by Lord Corbett of Castle Vale



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA109

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): The Government have not set a target to install 12 gigawatts of offshore wind power by 2012. It does not set targets for individual energy generation technologies but takes a market-based approach to energy generation. The actual amount of offshore wind delivered, and the timing, will depend on a range of factors, including market uptake, the relative cost of offshore wind compared to other options, the ability of other technologies to deliver, the potential for energy exports to other countries and the need for increased renewables capacity beyond 2020.

For reference, there is currently 1.3 GW installed capacity of offshore wind in the UK (source: Restats, https://restats.decc.gov.uk ).

Looking forward, the current pipeline for offshore wind projects shows there is currently:-

1.8GW under construction;1.9GW awaiting construction;2.3GW where planning applications have been submitted; andand some 40GW of offshore wind projects at the scoping stage.

Energy: Wind Turbines

Questions

Asked by Lord Swinfen

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): The Annual Energy Statement aims to provide market direction, set strategic energy policy and help guide investment. The energy used in constructing energy-generating infrastructure is not part of this remit.

Life cycle analysis conducted by Vestas suggests that the turbines of the type used in the Thanet wind farm will achieve energy payback within seven months, implying that over their lifetime they will produce 35 times more energy than used in manufacture and installation. This is consistent with the range of estimates in the literature on the performance of wind turbines in general.

A 2006 note from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology estimated that offshore wind energy has one of the lowest carbon footprints of any low-carbon technology at 5.25g CO2 equivalent/kWh.



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EU: Deepwater Drilling

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Marland): While continuing to be vigilant in the light of the Macondo incident, we do not believe there is currently a case for a moratorium on deepwater drilling in the UK.

The UK regime is robust-following the inquiry into the Piper Alpha disaster in 1998, a comprehensive offshore regulatory system was set up to ensure that the roles and responsibilities of all parties, including well operators, sub-contractors and regulators, are clear and well understood.

We understand in any case that, following its announcement made on 13 October, the Commission is not now proposing a moratorium but does wish to look more generally at the way in which such drilling activities are regulated across Europe with the aim of ensuring a consistent approach.

We will continue to work with European counterparts and the Commission on this and believe that the UK can provide a strong contribution given our substantial experience in this area.

EU: UK Membership

Question

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): This Government intend to play an active and activist role in the EU to ensure its success. We will champion vigorously the interests of the UK in the EU and work together to further our shared agenda. There are things that the EU can do better and we are confident in the UK's ability to drive forward change and move the EU in the right direction.

The Government have agreed that there should be no further transfer of sovereignty or powers from the UK to the EU over the course of this Parliament. The Government will also introduce a Bill in the autumn that aims to increase democratic and parliamentary control, scrutiny and accountability over EU decision-making. We are clear in our objective to restore democratic accountability of the EU and ensure that the British public are engaged and active participants in the UK's future within Europe.



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The Bill will introduce a referendum lock so that any proposed future treaty that transferred competence or power from the UK to the EU would be subject to a referendum. This will also include any ratchet clause that would amount to a transfer of power or competence from the UK to the EU.

The Bill includes a sovereignty clause as set out in my Statement of 6 October 2010.

FIFA World Cup 2018

Question

Asked by Lord Corbett of Castle Vale

Lord Shutt of Greetland: In my reply to the noble Baroness, Baroness Billingham, on 26 July (Official Report, col. 1143), FIFA have asked that details of the guarantees are treated in confidence.

However, in general, the guarantees are to do with visas, work permits, tax treatment, security, foreign exchange operations, intellectual property and telecommunications.

Fishing: Illegal Vessels

Question

Asked by Lord Jones of Cheltenham

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): We are aware of the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) report, but have made no formal assessment of it. We co-operate with EJF and value its work in highlighting the impacts of illegal fishing, notably in West Africa.

The UK has for many years taken a lead role internationally in fighting illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. UK Ministers led the international Ministerial High Seas Task Force on IUU fishing. We strongly supported the introduction of new EU rules, which came into force on 1 January 2010, designed to prevent illegal imports of fish and fish products from entering the EU market, and have implemented the necessary controls at UK ports. As part of the EU, we have signed the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation's (FAO) Port State Measures Agreement. We are actively supporting the FAO's proposal to create a global record of fishing vessels. Both are aimed at combating this serious environmental crime. We work within other UN fora, including regional fisheries management organisations, to press for concerted international action to fight illegal fishing.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA112

Finally, we work closely with other UK government departments and agencies, including the Department for International Development and Foreign and Commonwealth Office, to support initiatives aimed at preventing and eliminating IUU fishing wherever it occurs.

Flexible New Deal

Question

Asked by Lord Knight of Weymouth

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud): These costs can not be estimated until end-of-contract reconciliation negotiations are completed.

Food: Honey

Question

Asked by Lord Patel of Blackburn

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): European Council directive 96/23/EC requires member states to test their produce from food-producing animals for residues of veterinary medicinal products and certain other substances; honey is included in the surveillance programme. Commission decision 97/747 sets out the sampling requirements for honey and other foodstuffs, based on production levels. The UK takes around 100 samples per year. A range of substances are covered in the analyses, including antibiotics. The results show that beekeepers take their responsibilities seriously, with relatively few non-compliant results; these are published in the Veterinary Medicine Directorate's newsletter-MAVIS-which can be viewed on-line at www.vmd.defra.gsi.gov.uk.

The Honey England Regulations 2003 protect and control the quality of honey by setting out detailed labelling and compositional requirements for honey, including setting limits for the amount of sugars present. The rules state that honey should not contain more than 5 per cent sucrose.

Gaza

Questions

Asked by Lord Hylton



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Baroness Verma: The UK is working with other members of the international community with the objective of securing full access for aid, aid workers, reconstruction materials and other permitted imports to Gaza, and relaxation of restrictions on exports and the movement of people.

We have worked closely with key international partners including the United Nations (UN) and Office of the Quartet Representative (OQR) in pressing for full implementation of the measures to relax movement and access announced by Israel on 20 June, including through the provision of practical support to the OQR and the UN. Our funding to the UN Access Co-ordination Unit, which works with the Government of Israel, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and aid agencies, is helping to facilitate the transfer of goods into Gaza. We have also been working with the PA to address vital issues related to its role in co-ordination of crossing points and entry of goods into Gaza.

More widely, we have encouraged international partners, including the OQR, UN and World Bank, to develop robust reporting and analysis of the situation in Gaza, along with a comprehensive plan for the revival of Gaza's legal economy. We have raised directly with the Israeli Government on a number of occasions the need to allow exports from Gaza and the free movement of people.

Asked by Baroness Tonge

Baroness Verma: The quartet does not issue such reports. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) reports that they have secured approval from the Israeli Government to build eight of the 30 schools they estimate are needed, but have not yet received clearance to import all the necessary construction materials. UNRWA has recently been notified that approval for three of the eight schools has been withdrawn due to undisclosed problems with their locations. UNRWA is working with the Israeli authorities to resolve this issue.

General Pervez Musharraf

Question

Asked by Lord Ahmed

The Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Neville-Jones): We are unable to provide detailed information on the cost of security to protected individuals. To do so would compromise the integrity of the security arrangements of the individuals concerned.

We can provide details of the aggregate Home Office contribution for the dedicated security post (DSP) grant which provides a contribution towards

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the cost of police officers and staff who carry out protection duties. These duties relate to the protection of members of the Royal Family and their residences; and the protection of public figures, and their official and private residences. In 2009-10, £132 million was spent under the DSP grant. For 2010-11, the DSP grant is £128 million.

Government Departments: Salaries

Question

Asked by Baroness Thomas of Winchester

Baroness Verma: We cannot provide an accurate projection of net savings to the pay bill while departmental budgets remain uncertain pending the outcome of the 2010 comprehensive spending review.

Government Departments: Staff

Question

Asked by Baroness Morgan of Drefelin

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Hill of Oareford): There are eight officials in the Department for Education (DfE) who work to the Minister for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning. Of those eight, six work on (a) careers education and advice delivered in schools and two on (b) vocational qualifications available to 14 to 19 year-olds.

Habitual Residence Test

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord Freud): The information requested on (a) Irish and (b) other European Union nationals is not available in the requested format.

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Habitual residence test (HRT) data are recorded for the European Economic Area (EEA) rather than the European Union and, with the exception of certain accession states, the data are not available on the basis of nationality.

Data on how many of those who passed the HRT then went on to receive benefit are not available as this information is not recorded by nationality.

The table below shows the number of claims1 from EEA nationals that were subject to the HRT over the period 1 April 2008 to 31 March 2010. These figures also include decisions on repeat claims.

Habitual Residence Test2008220092010

EEA3 Failed

11,602

15,752

20,771

EEA Passed

10,809

13,041

17,086

EEA Total4

22,411

28,793

37,857

Haiti

Question

Asked by Lord Judd

Baroness Verma: The UK Government's support to the reconstruction and regeneration of Haiti will be almost entirely through our share of the programmes of multilateral agencies such as the World Bank and European Union. This will be over $100 million in 2010-11. In addition, the UK will contribute at least $53 million in 2010 for the UN peacekeeping mission in Haiti. Our bilateral support for reconstruction will be restricted to £2 million for disaster risk reduction. The UK Government made a £20 million bilateral contribution for humanitarian relief in Haiti after the earthquake.

Reconstruction programmes of the scale needed in Haiti inevitably take time to design and approve. We have been concerned at the pace of the multilateral effort and the flow of funds pledged. The pace of delivery by the multilaterals is now increasing. The World Bank, for example, has now approved $233 million of the $479 million it pledged to deliver by June 2011, and the Interim Commission for Haiti Reconstruction has now approved projects worth over $1.6 billion. We

18 Oct 2010 : Column WA116

remain concerned about the pace at which the lives of those affected by the earthquake are being improved, for example, through provision of permanent shelter for those currently living in camps, and will continue to encourage speedy implementation of approved multilateral projects.

We will work with the multilateral agencies to assess their impact and ensure effectiveness as their programmes are implemented.

Higher Education: Funding

Questions

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): The Independent Review of Higher Education Funding and Student Finance, led by Lord Browne, has now delivered its recommendations to government. We welcome this report which includes a number of progressive proposals and which makes important recommendations about the structure and level of graduate contributions.

Asked by Lord Beecham

Baroness Wilcox: Further education colleges are a vital component of the higher education landscape, providing accessible learning for approximately 10 per cent of students in the sector.

We will consider the implications for further education in the forthcoming higher education White Paper. The White Paper will make detailed proposals to which experts from the sector can react and will lead, subject to parliamentary time, to a Higher Education Bill in Autumn 2011.

Holy See

Question

Asked by Lord Kilclooney

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): There are no such restrictions on the appointment of the ambassador to the Holy See or to any other ambassadorial position in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA117

Inflation

Question

Asked by Lord Myners

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): According to the Office for National Statistics, inflation as measured by the consumer prices index (CPI) has been above the 2 per cent target set for the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England for 48 months between January 2005 and August 2010. The Bank of England terminated its use of the retail prices index as a measure of inflation in 2003 and has, since then, used the CPI as the measure of inflation.

Iraq

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): Global oil demand is set to continue to rise, and it is important to ensure that the supply of oil remains sufficient to match this. 2009 saw huge progress in the Iraqi oil industry in this regard, with the success of two major oil licensing rounds, covering reserves of around 65 million barrels of crude oil. This represents approximately 5 per cent of the world's total proven reserves. It is clear therefore that the Iraqi Government have already managed to attract significant investment. The role for HM Government is now to use their diplomatic and other resources to assist, where appropriate, with the further development of Iraq's energy sector (including, for example, skills development) and with the fulfilment of contracts emanating from the licensing round. To these ends we will continue to work closely with the Iraqi Government as well as UK commercial entities.

Israel and Palestine

Questions

Asked by Lord Dykes

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The UK will continue to monitor the situation with regard to all Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons. We call on the Israeli Government to take immediate action to ensure that all cases are reviewed by a court in accordance with fair procedures and that detainees' rights are upheld.

18 Oct 2010 : Column WA118

All Palestinian prisoners should have access to a fair trial, and Israel should ensure that it acts always in accordance with international law. We shall continue to raise our concerns with the Israeli authorities and issue statements when appropriate.

Additionally our officials started attending military court hearings in 2009. Since then, following a UK suggestion, an EU rotating team has been set up to send three EU diplomats to all hearings in human rights defender cases; the UK continues to attend more regularly than other member states.

Asked by Lord Dykes

Lord Howell of Guildford: We will continue to raise with the Israeli Government our concerns about Israeli policies in Jerusalem, which threaten to cut off East Jerusalem from the West Bank. Those policies include the routing of the barrier on occupied territory, settlement activity both within and around East Jerusalem, residency rights for East Jerusalemites and increasingly restricted access to Jerusalem for Palestinian residents of the West Bank and Gaza.

The UK has a strong record of lobbying hard on issues relating to house demolitions and settlement building. We see the situation in East Jerusalem as extremely sensitive because we view east Jerusalem fundamentally as we see the rest of the Occupied Territories. Any attempts to change the facts on the ground are therefore contrary to international law and prejudicial to the peace process itself, as well as causing unnecessary suffering to ordinary Palestinians and causing tensions. We strongly supported the statement of 30 June by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton to this effect.

We discuss these issues with our European partners and within the appropriate UN bodies.

Large Hadron Collider

Question

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): Expenditure on the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is funded from the budget of CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory. The UK Government, through the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), currently contribute 14.6 per cent of the CERN budget, which is determined in Swiss francs, and this equates to approximately £96 million per year. Due to the economic situation facing the UK

18 Oct 2010 : Column WA119

and some other CERN members, the UK initiated a debate with CERN members on a reduction in contributions. CERN council has agreed to reduce the CERN budget over the period 2011-15.

STFC undertook a scientific assessment of the value of the LHC and UK particle physics in 2009 and concluded that it was a very high priority. STFC also analysed the value of industrial contracts won by UK organisations over the LHC construction period from 1995 to 2008. This averaged around £19 million per annum or about 7.5 per cent of contracts placed and is in addition to contracts placed by the UK and other countries in relation to the LHC experiments. UK industry continues to win important contracts directly from CERN.

Local Government Improvement and Development Agency

Question

Asked by Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Hanham): Local Government Improvement and Development (LGID)-formerly the Improvement and Development Agency-is not a government agency but is part of the Local Government Group, led by the Local Government Association (LGA). Therefore, decisions about its future are a matter for the LGA. The LGA's proposals for future revenue support grant top-slice funding of bodies in the group, including LGID, were consulted on by the department between 25 August and 6 October this year, and a consultation response will be published shortly. The proposals are on the department's website at www.communities.gov.uk/publications/corporate/rsgtopsliceimprovementsconsult.

Local Strategic Partnerships

Question

Asked by Lord Greaves

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Hanham): Local strategic partnerships are non-statutory groups of local organisations, led by local authorities, coming together voluntarily to work in partnership. Decisions on their future, including composition, accountability and structures, are entirely a matter for local areas themselves.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA120

Marine Environment: Security

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): The UK, represented by the FCO, is a permanent observer to the Arctic Council, the primary regional multilateral body, which has a strong environmental focus. The UK is committed to protecting the arctic environment while defending rights to fair access.

The UK also contributes to environmental protection in the Arctic through its involvement in international organisations such as the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic (OSPAR), the United Nations Environment Programme and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species. In addition, the Joint Nature Conservation Committee represents the UK on the Circumpolar Seabird Working Group that forms part of the Conservation of Arctic Fauna and Flora Group.

Northern Ireland Office: Staff

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

Lord Shutt of Greetland: Details of the Director General's (Political) salary and allowances were published in the Northern Ireland Office resource accounts report 2009-10. The report was laid before Parliament on 19 July 2010.

Nuclear Disarmament

Question

Asked by Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The UK appreciates the continued work of the Global Security Institute and Middle Power Initiative (MPI) in support of the nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament regime. The Government are committed to the long-term goal of a world without nuclear weapons and to working with our nuclear weapon state partners to make progress on multilateral disarmament.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA121

Ambassador Duncan had planned to attend and speak at the MPI's September 14-15 conference in Geneva. Unfortunately, he was called away from Geneva at short notice. We are grateful to the MPI for their understanding and hope to be able to participate in future such discussions.

Overseas Aid

Question

Asked by Lord Boateng

Baroness Verma: Breakdowns of official development assistance by sector and region together are not available before 2005. More information is available from the online database of the Development Assistance Committee of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development at www.oecd.org/dac/stats/gwids.

In the years 1979, 1987 and 1997, total bilateral country expenditure on agriculture, forestry and fishing was as follows.

YearTotal (£millions)

1979

89.95

1987

80.18

1997

90.22

Bilateral programme expenditure on agriculture, agricultural development, agricultural research, fishing, rural development, food aid and related sub-sectors from 2005 to 2008, the last year for which figures are currently available, is as follows.

YearTotal (£millions)South and Central AsiaSub-Saharan Africa

2005

144.8

43.68

55.27

2006

170.5

64.56

74.95

2007

141.54

62.12

54.56

2008

175.43

76.31

53.87

Multilateral expenditure through the World Bank, United Nations agencies and the European Union is additional to these figures.

Pensions

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): Approximately 85,500 pensioners within the five central government pension schemes were found to be in receipt of an incorrect public sector pension. The total amount of overpayments made since 1978 across affected schemes is approximately £90 million.

A joint Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)/HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) project in 2009 discovered that there was no single cause for the overpayments, although a number of areas were identified where processes could be improved upon. Several changes have been implemented including new, simplified guidance for DWP Pension Centre staff and the introduction of checks within HMRC to identify quickly where issues may arise, enabling remedial action to be initiated more rapidly than before.

A joint Guaranteed Minimum Pension Advisory Group, chaired by HMRC with representatives from DWP and the public sector pension schemes, has also been set up to progress issues and implement changes leading to lasting improvements.

Prisoners: Employment

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord McNally): We propose to make prisons places of hard work and industry. As part of this, we are looking to expand the prisoner working week to up to 40 hours within prison industries. We want to make it easier for the private sector to get involved in training, providing work and employing prisoners on release.

These plans will increase the number of prisoners engaged in meaningful and productive work, help replicate the working week and instil dignity, a work ethic and discipline, and through improving skills for sustained employment aid rehabilitation on release.

This will form part of our wider plans for reform, details of which we will publish in a Green Paper in the autumn for consultation.

Railways: Closures

Question

Asked by Lord Faulkner of Worcester



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA123

Earl Attlee: The information is not available in the form requested. However, the table below shows the total length of National Rail route open to passenger traffic for each year from 1955.

These figures are published in Transport Statistics Great Britain (TSGB) which is available on the Department for Transport website at http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/tsgb/.

Length of National Rail route open to passenger traffic: at year end (miles)

1955

14,801

1982

8,930

1956

14,672

1983

8,932

1957

14,622

1984-85

8,888

1958

14,677

1985-86

8,892

1959

14,063

1986-87

8,888

1960

13,865

1987-88

8,887

1961

13,697

1988-89

8,891

1962

12,915

1989-90

8,897

1963

12,631

1990-91

8,896

1964

11,670

1991-92

8,880

1965

10,884

1992-93

8,896

1966

10,165

1993-94

8,921

1967

9,882

1994-95

8,922

1968

9,471

1995-96

9,322

1969

9,375

1996-97

9,342

1970

9,095

1997-98

9,335

1971

9,000

1998-99

9,344

1972

9,009

1999-00

9,344

1973

8,932

2000-01

9,347

1974

8,931

2001-02

9,347

1975

8,967

2002-03

9,347

1976

8,952

2003-04

9,248

1977

8,956

2004-05

8,903

1978

8,945

2005-06

8,920

1979

8,955

2006-07

8,919

1980

8,944

2007-08

9,000

1981

8,944

2008-09

9,006

Railways: Crossrail

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

Earl Attlee: The Government support Crossrail, which will bring substantial economic benefits to London and the UK. As the Minister of State has made clear, no decisions have been taken to change the scope of the Crossrail project.

However, in the current economic climate we have a responsibility to all those funding Crossrail to ensure that every pound invested in the project is well spent and that the scheme remains affordable.

That is why Crossrail Ltd is carrying out an ongoing programme of work focusing on value engineering, risk mitigation and indirect cost reduction to ensure that it delivers Crossrail in the most effective way.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA124

Railways: Ticketing

Questions

Asked by Lord Bradshaw

Earl Attlee: The Department for Transport regularly engages with train companies on their obligations, including those relating to ticket sales. Despite some welcome investment in, for example, self-service ticket machines, internet sales and products such as London's "Pay as You Go" scheme, many passengers still experience ticket office queues. Ministers are challenging the rail industry to make buying tickets easier for passengers.

Asked by Lord Bradshaw

Earl Attlee: Train operators must comply with the terms of their franchise agreements, including those relating to ticket sales and queueing times. In addition, work is ongoing within the rail industry to expand alternative ways to buy tickets, thus increasing choice for passengers and reducing the need to queue at ticket offices. Recent innovation has focused on areas such as online booking, self-service ticket machines, mobile phone ticketing and London's "Pay as You Go" scheme.

Regional Development Agencies

Questions

Asked by Baroness Harris of Richmond

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): The number of termination agreements reached by each regional development agency in the financial year 2009-10 containing confidentiality clauses was as follows:



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA125

RDANumberAdditional Information

AWM

2

EEDA

0

All EEDA staff have contracts of employment which include a confidentiality clause as part of their employment

EMDA

0

LDA

9

All LDA termination agreements contain confidentiality clauses

NWDA

4

ONE

0

SEEDA

8

During the 2009-10 financial year SEEDA undertook an organisation- wide programme which resulted in over 100 employees leaving the organisation through a redundancy programme

SWRDA

0

YF

1

Asked by Baroness Harris of Richmond

Baroness Wilcox: The aggregate additional compensation, beyond statutory and contractual amounts, included in termination agreements reached by each regional development agency in the financial year 2009-10 was as follows:

RDAAmount in £

AWM

23,000

EEDA

0

EMDA

0

LDA

3,072

NWDA

0

ONE

0

SEEDA

55,761

SWRDA

4,400

YF

0

Asked by Baroness Harris of Richmond

Baroness Wilcox: The aggregate additional compensation, beyond statutory and contractual amounts, included in termination agreements containing confidentiality clauses reached by each regional development agency in the financial year 2009-10 was as follows:

RDAAmount in £

AWM

23,000

EEDA

0

EMDA

0

LDA

3,072

NWDA

0

ONE

0

SEEDA

55,761

SWRDA

0

YF

0



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA126

Asked by Lord Greaves

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): Delivery of the Rural Development Programme for England has not been suspended. Regional development agencies have been asked by Defra to continue supporting programme delivery within their budget allocation for the current financial year. The only exception to this is where projects are seeking £l million or more of programme support, where decisions have been deferred until after the outcome of the spending review announced on 20 October.

No final decision has yet been made about responsibility for delivery of axis 1, 3 and 4 of the programme after the abolition of the regional development agencies.

Asked by Lord Liddle

Baroness Wilcox: The details of the Government's policy on local enterprise partnerships will be set out in the White Paper on sub-national growth due to be published shortly. Local enterprise partnerships will bring together businesses and local authorities and will have an important role in improving the environment for business growth.

Roads: Pedestrianised Zones

Question

Asked by Lord Dykes

Earl Attlee: Local authorities are responsible for the design of their local highway spaces, and they are best placed to take into account the views and needs of different road users in designing streets to suit local circumstances.

The Department for Transport provides evidence-based policy and technical advice to local authorities on the advantages and disadvantages of various street design techniques, but has no plans to promote pedestrianised zones specifically.

The Government announced last month plans for a Local Sustainable Transport Fund to support the delivery by local transport authorities outside London of packages of sustainable measures that tackle the problems of traffic congestion and other transport challenges in their areas. It will be for local authorities to determine what combination of measures would work best to meet local needs.



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA127

Roads: Speed Cameras

Question

Asked by Lord Bradshaw

Earl Attlee: Until 31 March 2007 safety camera partnerships were allowed to reclaim their costs from fixed penalties arising from offences detected at approved sites within the National Safety Camera Programme. All surplus was passed to the Treasury Consolidated Fund. Since 1 April 2007 all fine revenue from speeding offences has gone to the Treasury Consolidated Fund.

Schools: Admissions

Questions

Asked by Lord Jones of Cheltenham

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Hill of Oareford): We are considering the Chief Schools Adjudicator's recommendations to the previous Secretary of State regarding the admission to the same school of twins and other children from multiple births and will announce in due course any policy changes which may arise.

It is for schools to determine in which classes children from multiple births should be placed, but I would expect their parents to be consulted in each case.

Science and Technology

Questions

Asked by Lord Willis of Knaresborough



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA128

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): Her Majesty's Government have provided regular assessments of the impact of the science on the United Kingdom economy through its annual reports on the Science and Innovation Investment Framework 2004-14.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has published the Economic Impact Reporting Framework in each of the past five years. Research councils have separately, for the past three years, published their economic baselines in each of the past three years.

There is a wide range of historical and econometric evidence that supports the view that science, and R&D more generally, are central to productivity growth. Precise estimates should be treated with caution because of the complex methodological and data issues involved.

Asked by Lord Willis of Knaresborough

Baroness Wilcox: International comparisons of science and technology indicators are drawn from the OECD's Main Science and Technology (MSTI) Database. This is one of the most comprehensive and reliable sources of internationally comparable research indicators drawn from the respective country's statistical office.

Public spending on research and development (R&D) is best illustrated through Total Government Budget Appropriations or Outlays for Research and Development (GBAORD). Government Expenditure in Research and Development (GOVERD) was not used as this measures actual expenditure following accounting arrangements in the respective country, which are not harmonised across the OECD and may therefore limit comparability.

Table 1 below shows that the UK's GBAORD as a proportion of GDP declined year on year from 0.69 per cent in 2004 to 0.60 per cent in 2008, the most recent year for which data are available.

The OECD data further reveals that in 2008 the UK spent the least on GBAORD as a proportion of gross domestic product (GDP) of any G7 country (n.b. 2008 data for Canada are not available).

Table 1.
GBAORD as a percentage of GDP
Country200420052006200720082009

Canada

0.59%

0.60%

0.57%

0.60%

France

0.96%

0.97%

0.79%

0.73%

0.72%

Germany

0.77%

0.77%

0.74%

0.75%

0.76%

0.82%

Italy

0.67%

0.60%

0.63%

0.61%

0.60%

Japan

0.72%

0.71%

0.71%

0.68%

0.71%

0.75%

United Kingdom

0.69%

0.67%

0.65%

0.64%

0.60%

United States

1.07%

1.04%

1.02%

1.01%

1.01%

1.18%



18 Oct 2010 : Column WA129

Shipping: General Lighthouse Authorities

Question

Asked by Lord Berkeley

Earl Attlee: The role of the Joint Strategic Board is to drive forward the co-ordination of General Lighthouse Authority activity in the most effective way. It will implement relevant matters arising from government initiatives including the agreed recommendations from Atkins' report of the Assessment of the Provision of Marine Aids to Navigation around the UK and Ireland. The board will represent the views of the three General Lighthouse Authorities to the Governments of the UK and Ireland on joint strategic and policy issues and other matters of common interest.


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