Written Answers To Questions
Friday 14 May 1982
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he now has available any information on the number of fines remaining unpaid.
There is no central record of the number of unpaid fines. However, on 31 December 1981, the latest date for which figures are available, the amount of unpaid fines outstanding in England and Wales, excluding inner London, was £37,556,000, to the nearest £1,000. An unknown proportion of this sum consists of fines in respect of which the time allowed for payment had not expired.
Crime (Rural Wales)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what are the main reasons for the substantial increase in crime in rural Wales since 1980; and if he will make a statement.
In the police areas of North Wales and Dyfed Powys, which cover the major part of rural Wales, the percentage changes between 1980 and 1981 in serious offences recorded by the police differed little from the corresponding percentages for Wales, or England and Wales, as a whole. On the general question of reasons for the increase in recorded crime, I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to questions by the hon. Member for Ormskirk (Mr. Kilroy-Silk) and the hon. Member for Aberdare (Mr. Evans) on 22 April.—[Vol. 22, c. 403.]
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the answer given to the hon. Member for Birkenhead on 6 April, Official Report, c. 273, what would be (a) the price and (b) the percentage increase in fees for British citizenship if the fee were still payable on the acquisition of citizenship rather than upon application for citizenship.
It is estimated that to have retained the system of payment of the fee only on approval of an application for citizenship could have necessitated increases of 80 per cent., and hence a fee of £270 for naturalisation and discretionary registration, £90 for miscellaneous registrations, mainly entitlements, and £45 for minors.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will publish in the Official Report the annual figures for each of the last five years until the latest date for which figures are available (a) the total number of unnatural deaths resulting in inquests, (b) the total number of coroners' court cases concerning unnatural deaths where a jury was mandatory, (c) the total number of cases concerning unnatural deaths where the coroner sat alone and (d) the total number of such cases where the coroner exercised his discretion to empanel a jury.
The information available on (a) and (c) is published for the years 1970 to 1980 in tables 5 and 6 of the Home Office statistical bulletin "Coroners' Statistics: England and Wales 1980", Issue 10/81, a copy of which is in the Library of the House. Information is not available centrally on (b) and (d).
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he has any plans to introduce legislation to amend the law relating to coroners' courts; and if he will make a statement.
As my right hon. Friend indicated in his response to the report from the Select Committee on Home Affairs on deaths in custody on 11 November 1980—[Vol. 992, c. 151–2]—we accept the principle that all deaths in custody should be reported to the coroner that inquests should be held with a jury on all such deaths, and that coroners' juries should be selected by the process used for juries in other courts. These matters will require legislation in due course. We have no other plans to amend the law relating to coroners' courts.
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will take powers to require that a veterinary surgeon is in attendance at all greyhound tracks, whether licensed or unlicensed, in view of the policy of the British Veterinary Association on this matter.
I have been asked to reply.No. The extension to all tracks of the National Greyhound Racing Club rules requiring the attendance of a veterinary surgeon is a matter entirely for them, the British Veterinary Association and the management of the tracks concerned.
Foreign And Commonwealth Affairs
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether he will list the countries to which he has made an approach, since the unprovoked aggression in the Falkland Islands, requesting that these countries should not supply arms and munitions to the Argentines; and what was the nature of the response in each stated instance.
The hon. Member will be aware that European Community members, the United States and Canada have all announced a ban on arms sales to Argentina. In addition, approaches have been made to a number of other arms producing nations to seek their co-operation in suspending arms sales to that country.
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether any consideration has been given in recent years to the setting up of facilities in the Falkland Islands to enable lamb to be stored for sale in the United Kingdom and other markets.
Yes. The major obstacles have hitherto been the problem of an assured supply in sufficient quantities and the distance from possible markets. A promising inquiry was received from Birds Eye Walls Ltd. in February 1982 which the Falkland Islands Government was actively following up at the time of the invasion.
Weather Damage (Costs)
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he has received the estimated repair bills from district councils as a consequence of the winter's severe weather which caused broken pipes, flooding and other damage to council homes; and if he will list individually such estimated cost of the councils.
I shall reply to the hon. Member as soon as possible.
Education And Science
Teachers (Shortage Subjects)
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what consideration is being given to designing special bachelor of education courses to attract mature entrants to teach in shortage subjects.
The Department has encouraged training institutions to prepare courses of this kind; and my right hon. Friend has approved proposals for them from a number of institutions. Other institutions are known to be considering the mounting of such courses. My right hon. Friend will consider carefully the advice which he has recently received from the advisory committee on the supply and education of teachers about shortened courses of initial training in craft, design and technology, business studies and music.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to attract mature entrants to teach in shortage subjects.
The Government offer through the Manpower Services Commission a special scheme of training awards and grants to mature entrants who wish to train to teach the shortage subjects. This scheme has provided support for more than 1,600 mature students on initial training courses since it started in 1977. Arrangements for its operation in the 1982–83 academic year were recently publicised in the national press. Provision for the training and further training of teachers in shortage subjects after 1982–83 is currently the subject of consultation.
Margam Coal Mine
asked the Secretary of State for Wales on what date the plan for a new coal mine at Margam was cancelled; what was the reason for this cancellation; and if Her Majesty's Government will reconsider their involvement in the matter.
I understand that proposals for a new development at Margam remain under review by the National Coal Board. This is a matter for the Board's commercial judgment.
asked the Prime Minister what were the contents of the telegram she received on 27 April from the President's Council of the Methodist Church about the Falkland Islands situation; and what reply she has sent.
It is for those who send telegrams or letters and who receive my replies to publish the contents if they so wish.
asked Prime Minister if she will list in the Official Report the conditions imposed on the use of official stationery from 10 Downing Street; and if she is satisfied that business and commercial transactions are not conducted utilising official notepaper or forms.
The proper use of the range of official stationery at 10 Downing Street is well understood and the imposition of conditions of use are, as such, unnecessary. Members of a Prime Minister's family who live at No. 10 are properly entitled to use the address in correspondence and to make use of the informal uncrested notepaper. I am satisfied that there has been no misuse of official stationery.
Driver And Vehicle Licensing Centre
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether a decision has been made about the procurement of replacement computers for the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Centre, Swansea.
Yes, the new computers for DVLC will be procured by international competition. It is intended to advertise the requirement in the Official Journal of the European Community later this month.
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish the equivalent of table 1·9 of Cmnd. 8491 in terms consistent with the previous public expenditure series as given at table 1·7 of Cmnd. 8175 in 1980 survey prices.
[pursuant to his reply, 13 May 1982]: No. Public expenditure is now planned in cash. I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 31 March to the right hon. Member for Stepney and Poplar (Mr. Shore).
National Society For The Prevention Of Cruelty To Children
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will increase his Department's grant to the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.
My right hon. Friend announced on 15 January—[vol. 16, c. 171]—an increased grant totalling £450,000 over the next three years.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what would be the cost of reducing the State retirement age to 60 years for (a) underground workers in the mining industry and (b) foundry workers.
The estimates requested are not available and could be produced only at disproportionate cost.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list for each regional health authority in Great Britain the ratio of people over the age of 70 years to beds allocated for geriatric purposes.
The latest figures, for 1980, for England and Wales are as follows. The provision of health services in Scotland is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland.
|Number of available beds in departments of geriatric medicine per 1,000 population aged 70 years and over|
|Regional Health Authority||Number|
|North West Thames||10·0|
|North East Thames||11·7|
|South East Thames||10·2|
|South West Thames||9·4|
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list for each of the district health authorities in the South-West region the ratio of people over the age of 70 years to geriatric bed provision (a) according to the figures most recently available and (b) for those five years ago.
This is a matter for the South Western regional health authority. I suggest that the hon. Member should take up any matters of concern with that authority.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) if he will give for 1981 the location and number of the beds allocated for the use of geriatric patients within the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly health authority;
(2) if he will list for each unit of geriatric accommodation within the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly health authority the number of patients admitted during the year, the average stay and the percentages of those admitted to geriatric accommodation over the last five years whose stay was greater than (a) two years, (b) one year, (c) six months, (d) three months and (e) one month.
These are matters for the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly health authority. I suggest that the hon. Member should take up any matters of concern with that authority.
Regional Health Authorities (Resources)
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the percentage under-funding of the Cornwall and Isles of Silly health authority by comparison with the resource allocation working party formula; and if he will make a statement.
This is a matter for the South Western regional health authority. I suggest that the hon. Member should take up any matters of concern with that authority.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list for the regional health authorities in England the percentage each receives of its target share of national resources.
The revenue allocations of the regional health authorities in 1982–83 expressed as percentages of their targets calculated on the basis of the Resource Allocation Working Party formula are as follows:
|North West Thames||114|
|North East Thames||109|
|South East Thames||109|
|South West Thames||106|
National Health Service (Private Contractors)
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether his Department has issued any guidelines to local health authorities on contracting out ancillary services in the National Health Service to private firms.
We shall shortly be issuing guidance to district health authorities to assist them in making decisions about the contracting out to the private sector of hospital domestic, catering and laundry services.
State Chiropodist Service
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many people he estimates receive treatment through the State chiropodist service because they have feet of two different sizes and therefore wear shoes of the wrong size.
I have no information on which such an estimate could be based.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he has considered changing the supplementary benefit regulations to exempt adoption allowances; and if he will make a statement.
We have noted the concern that has been expressed on the way the supplementary benefit regulations will apply to a family in receipt of an adoption allowance, and my right hon. Friend is considering the points that have been made.
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many appeals have been made to the social security commissioners over supplementary benefit; in how many cases leave to appeal has been granted in (a) under one month, (b) within three months, (c) within six months and (d) over six months; and if he will break down these figures to show the appeals being made by his Department and those by claimants.
[pursuant to his reply, 10 May 1982, c. 200]: As at 6 May 1982, 1,322 applications for leave to appeal on supplementary benefit cases have been received by the social security commissioners since November 1980. 1,194 of these have been made by claimants and 128 by the supplementary benefit officer. Of those applications determined, leave to appeal has been granted in 114 cases within one month of the application; in 76 cases within 3 months; in 131 cases within 6 months; and in 75 cases in over 6 months. Leave to appeal has been granted to claimants in 287 cases and to the supplementary benefit officer in 109 cases.
Board And Lodging Payments
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when he expects the chief supplementary benefits officer to reply to the representations made by the Central London social security advisers forum about ceilings for board and lodging payments which commenced with its letter of 22 June 1981.
I understand that the reply to the Central London social security advisers forum was sent on 12 May and that the chief supplementary benefit officer has apologised for the very long delay in replying.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he will introduce legislation to provide victims of alleged rape the right to separate legal representation to protect their interests in court proceedings.
A major review of the law relating to sexual offences generally is presently being conducted by the Criminal Law Revision Committee in consultation with the policy advisory committee on sexual offences. The suggestion that there should be separate legal representation for victims of alleged rape is one which is to be considered by the Criminal Law Revision Committee. I cannot anticipate the Committee's recommendations, but the Government will be looking very closely at the law in Northern Ireland in the light of the Committee's recommendations and any changes in the law in England and Wales.
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether any investigations have been carried out into the proportion of the salmon runs bound for the Lough Foyle river system and rivers in the rest of Northern Ireland which are taken by drift net fishermen in the Republic of Ireland; and with what result.
No investigations have been carried out for this specific purpose.
Housing Repair Grants
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he will consider, together with the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, the possibility of raising the minimum valuation for entitlement to housing repair grants.
I intend to cover this matter generally in proposals for a draft housing Order in Council to be published later this year.
Council House Sales
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what information he has received about Mid-Suffolk district council's sales of council houses since the enactment of the right-to-buy provisions.
Mid-Suffolk did not include this information in its latest quarterly statistical return for the last quarter of 1981. It has been asked to do so in future.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if, in view of the fact that some council tenants seeking to purchase their homes from Mid-Suffolk council have experienced delays of up to two years or more, he will call for a report on this authority's refusal to sell to certain tenants the whole of their gardens.
The Department has taken up this matter with the authority.
Birmingham City Council
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will advise Birmingham city council to waive the pre-emption clause in the existing house purchase contract between it and Mr. Panelli of 201 Waterloo Avenue, Chelmsley Wood, Birmingham.
Local authorities have been advised that it is my Department's view that, where pre-emption conditions exist, it is open to them to release the right to pre-emption by virtue of section 186 of the Law of Property Act 1925, if they and the purchaser agree.
Wildlife And Countryside Act 1981
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will bring into immediate force part III of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981; and if he will make a statement.
It will not be possible to bring part III of the Act fully into operation until the necessary regulations and advice to local authorities have been prepared and changes in the Department's administrative arrangements for dealing with rights of way work, arising from the transfer of jurisdiction to inspectors, have been implemented. As I said in my reply to the hon. Member for Stockport, North (Mr. Bennett) on 21 April—[Vol. 22, c. 270.]—my right hon. Friend expects to bring the outstanding provisions of part III into effect by the autumn.
Lorries And The Environment
asked the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the statutory provisions under which local authorities may take steps to minimise the impact of heavy lorries upon the local environment.
Local authorities have wide powers under the Road Traffic Regulations Act 1967 as amended by the Heavy Commercial Vehicles (Controls and Regulations) Act 1973 to control the movement and parking of heavy lorries. About 850 orders involving lorry bans have been made on amenity grounds in recent years. We have recently issued further advice on the use of these powers and urged local authorities to adopt a more vigorous approach.
Invalid Chairs (Kerbside Crossovers)
asked the Secretary of State for Transport, in view of the problems suffered by disabled persons with their invalid chairs getting up and down pavement kerbstones, whether he will now advise all local authorities to arrange for these kerbs to contain runways to and from the roads at frequent intervals.
Section 1 of the Disabled Persons Act 1981 requires local authorities to
My Department hopes shortly to issue advice to local authorities on how best to meet this requirement. Ramps are of great benefit to wheelchair users but they can, in some cases, create a hazard for blind pedestrians who need an indication of where the pavement ends and the road begins. In framing its advice, my Department is consulting closely people who have direct experience of the problems of wheelchair users and blind pedestrians."have regard to the needs of disabled persons when considering the desirability of providing ramps at appropriate places between carriageways and footways".
Connah's Quay Power Station
asked the Secretary of State for Energy what plans his Department has for the development of combined heat and power schemes in Wales; and if he will consider such a scheme for the the Connah's Quay power station.
The electricity supply industry continues to review the possible scope for CHP schemes in Wales and elsewhere, but has no plans for such a scheme at Connah's Quay power station.
Domestic Fuel Prices
asked the Secretary of State for Energy what has been the percentage change in domestic fuel prices since 1979 for (a) coal, (b) gas, (c) electricity and (d) oil and paraffin.
Percentage increases in domestic fuel prices from May 1979 to March 1982 are as follows
Source: General Index of Retail Prices, Department of Employment.
Gas And Electricity (Disconnections)
asked the Secretary of State for Energy how many domestic consumers were disconnected for debt by each electricity and gas board during the three months ended 31 March.
The figures are as follows:
|Area Electricity Board|
|Merseyside and North Wales||1,785|
District Heating And Combined Heat And Power
asked the Secretary of State for Energy (1) what information he has now received from other EEC countries in relation to cities heated by power station waste, district heating and combined heat and power plants; and if he will set out as much information as is available to him as to the names of those cities, their populations, the number of houses and industries receiving such heating, what percentage it represents of the heating load and the saving in coal equivalent;(2) what savings he now estimates in coal equivalent that in the United Kingdom combined heat and power plants providing district heating on the domestic, commercial and industrial heat load of the United Kingdom would make, applying the criteria set out by his Department's combined heat and power group;(3) what it the expected completion date of the industrial combined heat and power scheme in Whitehaven, Cumbria; what is now the expected cost of the project; how much grant is being given by his Department; and under what conditions;(4) what estimated energy savings are claimed by the firms using the Hereford 15 megawatt plant opened in 1979; and whether the intention that the plant would save importing 15,500 tonnes of coal worth £1½ million in foreign currency has been realised;(5) what is now the estimated cost of the combined heat and power scheme by the Midlands electricity board at Fort Dunlop; and what is the estimated date of completion;(6) if he has further considered the likely date when he will be announcing lead cities as the most likely sites for pilot district heating schemes; and how he now proposes to fund them.
I shall answer the hon. Member as soon as possible.
asked the Secretary of State for Energy what is the current total output of advanced gas-cooled reactor nuclear power stations; what percentage of total electricity generating capacity this represents; and what percentage of total energy consumption from all sources this represents.
[pursuant to the reply, 10 May 1982, c. 172]: I am advised by the CEGB that 5,810 gigawatt hours of electricity were supplied by its AGR capacity in 1981–82, equivalent to 2·8 per cent. of total CEGB supplies in that year. At 30 April 1982 the board's net AGR capacity of 1,040 megawatts represented 1·9 per cent. of its total net generating capacity. The AGR output equates to under 1 per cent. of estimated United Kingdom energy consumption in 1981–82.Electricity in Scotland is the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland.
asked the Secretary of State for Industry what consideration he is giving to sponsoring the establishment of a showpiece factory where automation is total.
The Government are anxious to encourage the rapid adoption by British industry of automated, flexible manufacturing systems where they can assist the quality and competitiveness of British products. A support scheme is in preparation under which an automated factory project could qualify. However, any such project would have to be commercially viable in the longer term and not merely a showpiece factory.
Gross Domestic Product
asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will evaluate the product-moment correlation coefficient and its level of significance between (a) the average annual number of males out of work for one year or more and (b) the incidence of industrial accidents in premises covered by the Factories Act per 100,000 at risk for the latest 10-year period for which figures are available.
The result of testing the product-moment correlation coefficient for the data described over the latest 10-year period shows that the supposed correlation between the two series is not significantly different from zero even at the 10 per cent. level of significance.
asked the Secretary of State for Employment what is his estimate of the number of unregistered unemployed persons in (a) the North-West (b) Merseyside, (c) Kirkby and (d) Ormskirk.
The information requested is not available.
asked the Secretary of State for Employment how many firms have notified his Department of redundancies and cited loss of orders from Argentina or other South American countries as a factor in the redundancies; and if he will name the firms and the total number of redundancies involved.
I am aware of only one such case, involving 60 proposed redundancies. Information given to my Department under section 100 of the Employment Protection Act 1975 is given in confidence.
asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will publish in the Official Report figures giving the numbers of redundancies notified in the Ashton-under-Lyne travel-to-work area in the years 1979, 1980 and 1981 in total and subdivided by standard industrial classification order.
There are no comprehensive statistics of redundancies. The numbers of redundancies, in groups of 10 or more employees, reported to the Manpower Services Commission as due to occure in the Ashton-under-Lyne travel-to-work area in 1979, 1980 and 1981 are shown, in total and by Standard Industrial Classification Order, in the following table:
|I||Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing||—||—||—|
|II||Mining and Quarrying||—||—||—|
|III||Food, Drink and Tobacco||186||48||231|
|IV||Coal and Petroleum Products||—||—||—|
|V||Chemicals and Allied Industries||21||104||39|
|X||Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering||—||—||—|
|XII||Metal Goods not elsewhere specified||—||753||60|
|XIV||Leather, Leather Goods and Fur||—||95||—|
|XV||Clothing and Footwear||47||607||130|
|XVI||Bricks, Pottery, Glass, Cement etc.||—||—||35|
|XVII||Timber, Furniture etc.||—||60||111|
|XVIII||Paper, Printing and Publishing||71||128||140|
|XIX||Other Manufacturing Industries||—||158||115|
|XXI||Gas, Electricity and Water||—||—||—|
|XXII||Transport and Communication||—||—||—|
|XXIV||Insurance, Banking, Finance and Business Services||35||177||390|
|XXV||Professional and Scientific Services||—||—||—|
|XXVII||Public Administration and Defence||—||—||—|
|All Industries and Services||1,099||4,909||3,121|
Imports And Exports
asked the Minister for Trade, further to his reply dated 5 May, Official Report, c. 61, concerning profit margins on exports of finished manufactures in the year ending January 1982, whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing for the latest 12 months for which figurers are available the change in unit values of United Kingdom and West German exports of finished manufactures, motor cars or motor vehicles, consumer goods, investment goods, and products in section 7 of the Standard Industrial Trade Classification.
Following is the information:
|Exports of Manufactured Goods|
|Percentage Changes in Unit Values February 1982/February 1981|
|United Kingdom‡||Federal Republic of Germany ║|
|Passenger Motor Cars||+21·9||+5·9|
|Section 7 (SITC)||+11·0||+5·1|
* UK Figure excludes passenger motor cars
† UK Figure in Respect of 'Capital' Goods
‡Department of Trade
║ Preise and Preisindizes fur Die Ein and Ausfuhr—FRG
Estate Agents Act 1979
asked the Minister for Trade when he intends to implement sections 16 and 22 of the Estate Agents Act 1979.
I refer my hon. Friend to the reply my hon. Friend, the then Under-Secretary of State, gave to the hon. Member for Birmingham Handsworth (Miss Wright) on 1 March.—[Vol. 19, c. 15.]
asked the Minister for Trade what information he has as to the number of crossbows manufactured and sold in the United Kingdom in the years 1979 to the most recent date and the total number of crossbows imported into the United Kingdom in the same years.
Because crossbows are not separately identified in the statistics, the information requested is not available.
asked the Minister for Trade how many firms have notified his Department of loss of orders or contracts from Argentina or other South American countries; and if he will assist such firms financially.
We know of one case where a United Kingdom company has lost an order from Argentina. A number of other cases have been notified of firms experiencing uncertainty which might ultimately result in the loss of orders. It is possible that companies with firm orders which are concelled may be able to claim on ECGD if they are appropriately insured. But it is not otherwise the Government's policy to pay compensation for such losses.
asked the Minister for Trade if he will list any trade delegations or visits to the United Kingdom sponsored or arranged by the British Government since 3 May 1979 for Argentine Ministers, officials or business persons, together with the names of any British Ministers or officials who met them; and if he will place in the Library copies of any press statements issued or speeches made in the course of or about such visits.
[pursuant to the reply, 10 May 1982, c. 174–5]: The following officially sponsored trade-related visits have taken place since 3 May 1979:
28 April-3 May 1979—HE Dr. Jose Martinez de Hoz (Minister of Economy)
30 April-6 May 1979—Sr Ing D. Brunella (Secretary of State for Energy)
2–15 September 1979—Mr. O. Calgagno (Director General of Combustible Fuels YPF)
2–15 September 1979—Ing O. Mussini (Director of Drilling YPF)
10–14 September 1979—Capt Dolberto Frederico Valquez Salazar
10–14 September 1979—Admiral Carlos Albertos Barros
1–11 October 1979—Col D. Hector N. Iglesias
The Department of Trade does not have the transcripts of speeches made by these visitors. There were no press statements issued about these visits. The cost of attempting to establish the identities of the United Kingdom persons who met the visitors would be disproportionate.10–15 May 1981—General de Brigada Augusto Alemanzor
asked the Minister for Trade if he will list those Ministers, officials and business persons who have visited Argentina since 3 May 1979 on official trade delegations; and if he will place in the Library copies of any press statements issued or speeches made in connection with such delegations, including those associated with visits by Ministers or officials of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
[pursuant to the reply, 10 May 1982, c. 174–5]: The following official trade delegations have visited the Argentine since 3 May 1979:
6–12 June 1980—Lord Limerick, Chairman BOTB, led the British delegation to a BEAMA Symposium, accompanied by R. Howie, Private Secretary and A. B. Clarke Fairs and Promotions Branch, DOT.
5–10 August 1980—Right hon. Cecil Parkinson, Minister for Trade, accompanied by K. Long, Private Secretary, H. R. Owen, Commercial Relations and Exports Division, DOT, D. Woods, Press Office, DOT, C. R. Armstrong, Lloyds Bank International Ltd., P. E. G. Bates, Plessey Electronic Systems Ltd., E. Hawes, Rendel, Palmer and Tritton, H. W. Jackson, GEC Ltd., R. J. Dowding, Hawker Siddeley International Ltd.
19–25 September 1980—Right hon. Peter Walker, Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food accompanied by G. Waters, Principal Private Secretary, T. Dawes, Chief Information Officer and P. Parkhouse, Under Secretary, External Relations Group MAFF, J. A. Miller, Milk Marketing Board, W. T. Mee and J. Bowcock, Sir Alexander Gibb and Partners, Lord Edward Fitzroy, Imperial Food Industries Technical Services S. A. Saker, Wolseley Hughes Export Ltd., T. Gardiner, Rowntree Mackintosh
27 May-1 June 1981—Mr. Kenneth Clarke QC, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department of Transport, accompanied by N. T. Hoyle, Private Secretary, and D. G. Clark, Director Traffic Control and Communications Division, Department of Transport, A. Goldstein, R. Travers Morgan, G. Kennedy, N. Rothschild, H. W. Jackson, GEC Ltd., K. V. Smith, Transmark Ltd.
Copies of press notices will be placed in the Library. Transcripts of speeches delivered in the course of these visits, are not available.18–23 September 1981—Right hon. Peter Walker, Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food accompanied by Miss K. Timms, Private Secretary, P. Parkhouse, Under Secretary MAFF, T. Dawes, Press Officer, J. Frapell and E. Carden, Milk Marketing Board, N. Saphir, Chairman Central Council for Agricultural and Horticultural Cooperation, M. C. Deverell, Barclays Bank.
Hms "Edinburgh" (Salvage Contract)
asked the Minister for Trade whether, pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Southampton, Itchen, on 5 May, Official Report, c. 61–62, any public announcement was made by his Department on 16 April when the matter of the contract for salvaging the gold on HMS "Edinburgh" was referred to the Director of Public Prosecutions; and if he will make a statement.
[pursuant to the reply, 13 May 1982]: No announcement was made.
asked the Minister for Trade, further to his reply of 10 May and to the reply of the hon. Member for Aberdeen, South (Mr. Sproat) on 6 April, Official Report, c. 228, to the hon. Member for Holborn and St. Pancras South, how many of the 17,000 people who held scheduled tickets on Skytrain referred to in his answer of 10 May bought them between the date in December when Ministers were first officially informed of Laker Airways financial difficulties and the eventual collapse of the company.
[pursuant to the reply, 13 May 1982]: This information could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Scottish Airports Policy
asked the Minister for Trade if there have been any recent changes in the responsibility of the British Airports Authority in connection with airport policy in Scotland.
Lowland Scottish Airports
asked the Minister for Trade if his Department was consulted by the Scottish Development Agency in connection with the commissioning of a report from consultants on the Lowland Scottish airports.
asked the Minister for Trade if he will make a statement of the policy of Her Majesty's Government on the future of the three Lowland Scottish airports.
[pursuant to the reply, 13 May 1982]: The Government's policy towards the Scottish Lowlands airports was set out in the then Secretary of State for Trade's reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Lincoln (Mr. Carlisle) on 13 May 1981.—[Vol. 4, c. 273–5.] There has been no change since that date.