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Questions

Asked by Lord Laird

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The UK does not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan. The British Trade and Cultural Office in Taipei was established in 1993 to promote Britain's commercial and cultural interests in Taiwan.

Asked by Lord Laird

Lord Howell of Guildford: The UK does not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan, but working-level visits occur to take forward the UK's substantial trade and investment interests. Lord Green visited Taiwan in November 2011 to promote the UK and Taiwan's trade and investment interests.

Asked by Lord Laird

Lord Howell of Guildford: The UK does not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan, but working-level visits occur to take forward the UK's substantial trade and investment interests. Dr Sheng-Chung Lin visited London in October 2011 to promote EU-Taiwan trade and investment co-operation.

Asked by Lord Laird



23 Jan 2012 : Column WA196

Lord Howell of Guildford: The UK does not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan, but working-level visits occur to take forward the UK's substantial trade and investment interests. We anticipate further such visits in 2012.

UK: Union

Question

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord McNally): The Scottish National Party won an overall majority in the elections to the Scottish Parliament last year on a platform that promised a referendum on the future of Scotland's place in the United Kingdom. The Scottish Parliament does not have the legal power to deliver a referendum on independence. It is for this reason that the Government have published a consultation document that will allow a legal, fair and decisive referendum to take place in Scotland.

The Government have no plans to hold referendums elsewhere.

Water Supply: Meters

Question

Asked by Lord Kennedy of Southwark

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Taylor of Holbeach): Ofwat-the economic regulator for the water and sewerage sectors in England and Wales-does not collect metering figures broken down by borough boundaries. However, figures are available for the total number of metered households within a water company's entire service area although the water companies that serve the London boroughs also serve geographical areas beyond London. For example, Thames Water not only operates a water service in many of the London boroughs, but also in Reading, Swindon and large parts of Oxfordshire.

Figures from the year 2010-11 showed that Thames Water had 962,808 metered customers (28.9 per cent of its household customer base). Veolia Central, which operates a water service in the London Boroughs of Barnet, Brent, Ealing, Harrow and Hillingdon, had 468,617 metered customers (39.9 per cent of its household customer base). Sutton and East Surrey Water, which operates a water service in parts of the borough of Croydon, had 88,966 metered customers (34.6 per cent of its household customer base).


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