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Written Answers

Volume 127: debated on Friday 19 February 1988

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Written Answers To Questions

Friday 19 February 1988

Wales

Education Expenditure

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what, in constant prices, was the level of spending per pupil in Wales in (a) primary schools and (b) secondary schools in 1978–79 and in the latest year for which figures are available.

The information is as follows:

Net recurrent institutional costs1at 1986–87 prices2
Pounds per pupil
PrimarySecondary
1978–797491,036
1986–8739091,320
1 Net recurrent institutional costs exclude expenditure on school meals and milk, school transport and pupil support.
2 Figures have been expressed at 1986–87 prices, using the GDP deflator.
3 provisional.

Hospital Charges

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what sums were collected by each of the Welsh area health authorities from non-United Kingdom residents for hospital charges in 1985–86 and 1986–87; and what is the estimated net sum after deduction of costs of administration.

The income collected from charges to overseas visitors by each district health authority in Wales in the past two years was as follows:

£ Thousand
District Health Authority1985–861986–87
Clwyd5·2-2·9
East Dyfed6·62·0
Gwent19·79·3
Gwynedd12·02·4
Mid Glamorgan0·00·0
Pembrokeshire3·80·2
Powys0·40·0
South Glamorgan17·6-0–4
West Glamorgan-0·10·1
Wales65·210·6
CountryAirlineAircraft typePeriod of exemption
CyprusCyprus Airways1 Boeing 70731 December 1988
PortugalTAP1 Boeing 70731 December 1988
SudanSudan Airways3 Boeing 707s31 March 1988 (2 flights)
BelgiumTrans European Airways1 Boeing 70731 December 1988
NetherlandsKLM11 McDonnell Douglas DC9s31 December 1988
FranceMinerve1 Caravelle6 February 1988

Source: Health Authorities' Annual Accounts.

Notes:

1. Figures may not add up due to roundings.

2. Figures relate to charges authorised by regulations made under Section 121 of the National Health Service Act 1977 (which provides for the recovery of charges in respect of services provided to persons not ordinarily resident in Great Britain.

The structure of the health authorities' annual accounts does not allow the associated administration costs to be estimated.

Welsh Grand Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make it his policy to invite all the members of the Welsh Grand Committee to attend the press conferences organised by himself or his officials and held during the sittings of the Grand Committee on the subject being discussed by the Grand Committee.

I will continue to have the courtesy to speak to any person who wishes to question me on a speech I have made, as I am sure the hon. Gentleman would if he had ever been asked.

Transport

Airports (Noise)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if, in view of his Department's undertaking to bring about a progressive improvement in noise climate around airports, he will list the exceptions granted to foreign airlines, enabling them to continue to operate non-noise certificated subsonic jet aircraft to and from United Kingdom airports after the date from which such aircraft were banned, as detailed in the 1985 airports White Paper; and if he will give his reasons for doing so.

The exemptions are as listed in the table. Foreign-registered non noise-certificated subsonic jet aeroplanes have been banned from the United Kingdom 1 January under the Air Navigation (Noise Certification) Order 1987. Exemptions under article 16 of the order are made by the Civil Aviation Authority in consultation with my right hon. Friend. All exemptions are limited to day time operations. So far, 44 applications for exemption have been turned down.Under the terms of EC directives 80/51 and 83/206 exemptions have been granted by the CAA where a non noise-certificated aeroplane is to be replaced by one meeting the stringent Chapter 3 ICAO noise certification standard. (The period of exemption is dependent on the delivery date of chapter 3 replacement aeroplanes. The exemption for each aeroplane expires on 31 December 1988 or when the replacement aeroplane is delivered, whichever is the sooner).

Exemptions have been granted in exceptional circumstances beyond the airlines' immediate control. Such circumstances include the late delivery of hush-kits or hush-kit parts, the unavailability of a compliant aeroplane for technical reasons and cases where passengers would

Country

Airline

Aircraft type

Period

Reason

LebanonMiddle East Airlines2 Boeing 707s11 January 1988 (4 flights)Hush-kit delays
NigeriaFlash Airlines1 McDonnell Douglas DC831 January 1988 (5 nights)Hush-kit delays
UgandaUganda Airlines1 Boeing 7071 January 1988 (1 flight)Flight delay. Hardship to passengers
Saudi ArabiaPrince Talol1 BAe 1–11 (1 flight)3 January 1988Picking up hush-kit parts, en route for hush-kit fitment
ZimbabweAir Zimbabwe5 Boeing 707s3 to 7 February 1 to 10 June 1 to 20 JuneHush-kits being fitted pending delivery of Chapter 3 aircraft
LebanonMiddle East1 Boeing 70726–27 January (1 flight)Noise compliant aircraft grounded due to technical problems
KenyaKenya Airways1 Boeing 70727–28 January (1 flight)Noise compliant aeroplane grounded due to engine damage
SwitzerlandJet Aviation Business Jets1 BAe 1–1129 January 1988–31 March 1988 (9 flights)Hush-kit delays
Saudi ArabiaAviation Management Consortium1 BAe 1–1111 February 1988–30 June 1988Hush-kit delays
LebanonMiddle East Airlines1 Boeing 70723–26 January (2 flights)En route hush-kitting
ZambiaZambia Airways1 Boeing 70729 February-5 March (2 flights)Compliant aeroplane being maintained
GambiaGamair1 McDonnell Douglas12February-25March(6 flights)Hush-kits
LebanonMiddle East Airlines1 Boeing 7201 February 1988Compliant aeroplane unavailable due to technical problems

Exemptions have been granted for flights to and from the United Kingdom specifically for maintenance purposes. Such exemptions stipulate that the aeroplane is flown empty, in both directions, to reduce its environmental impact to a minimum. A total of 19 maintenance flights have been exempted involving 13 airlines and 15 aircraft—eight B707, five BAel-11 and two DC8.

Transport Studies

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will list all transport studies relating to London and the south-east (a) proposed, (b) under way or (c) completed within the last year by or on behalf of his Department, British Rail and London Regional Transport; and if he will give details of each inquiry of the estimated time scale, the estimated cost and the names of any consultant firms involved;(2) if the will list all transport studies relating to London and the south-east

(a) proposed, (b) under way or (c) completed within the last year by or on behalf of his Department or the London Docklands Development Corporation; and if he will give details for each inquiry of the estimated time scale, the estimated cost and the names of any consultant firms involved.

It would not be practicable to list the many studies relating to transport in London and the south-east in which my Department is involved by reason of its day-to-day responsibilities. Studies conducted by LDDC, BR and LRT are matters for the managements of those organisations.

otherwise suffer serious hardships. In additions two flights by the Saudi royal flight and one flight by the royal Brunei executive were exempted for diplomatic reasons in January and early February.

A6 Disley High Lane Bypass

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the representations which he had received about the line of route of the proposed A6 Disley high lane bypass before he recommended his preferred choice.

We consulted local councils and public bodies before announcing the preferred route choice. There was general support for a bypass and most authorities supported the proposed option.

M62-M1 Link

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects to announce the outcome of the study he has commissioned on a possible new link between the M62 in the area of junction 25 and the M 1 in the area of junction 40.

The feasibility study into a possible trunk road link between junction 38 or 39 on the M1 and the M62 in west Yorkshire is now being examined. This scheme will be considered for inclusion in the national trunk road programme at the next major review.

Passenger Transport Authorities (Financing)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many replies his Department has received to its consultation paper on financing passenger transport authorities; how many of the replies support his Department's proposals; if he will now reconsider the proposals in the light of the comments received; and if he will make a statement.

As of 18 February 1988, my Department had received 20 responses to the consultation paper, containing a number of comments on the proposal. I will of course take all these comments into account in coming to a decision on the proposal.

Tyre Treads (Ec Directive)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he now intends to introduce legislation to bring into effect the European Community directive on the introduction of a minimum tread depth regulation of 1·6 mm over the entire tread surface of tyres.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Cambridgeshire, South-West (Sir A. Grant) on 15 January Official Report, columns 457–8.

London Buses (Colour)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he has any proposals to introduce legislation for the control of the colour of London buses.

Northern Ireland

Fair Employment Commission

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will describe the likely staffing procedure for the proposed Fair Employment Commission; and if he will make a statement.

Final decisions have not yet been taken on new measures to promote equality of opportunity in employment. My right hon. Friend intends to make an announcement shortly on the Government's proposals.

Fishing

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people have been employed in the fishing industry in the ports of Ardglass and Kilkeel in each of the last 10 years.

The information is as follows:

Full-timePart-timeTotal
Ardglass
1978n/an/an/a
197916258220
1980n/an/an/a
198120561266
198221958277
198321557272
198422449273
198525760317
198626558323
198725954313
Kilkeel
1978n/an/an/a
1979587226813
1980n/an/an/a
1981656168824
1982729220949
19839322161,148
19849282561,184
19858552321,087
19868482201,068
19879962101,206

No records are held for 1978 or 1980 as their compilation did not become a regular annual exercise until 1981.

Electricity (Installations)

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what rate of interest Northern Ireland Electricity charges on extended credit for installation costs.

The current rate of interest is 34 per cent. APR: the facility is available only to domestic consumers.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what proportion of electricity installation charges are on average attributable to (a) labour, (b) material and (c) other costs.

This information is not readily available and could only he provided by Northern Ireland Electricity at a disproportionate cost. The proportions sought vary widely depending on the nature of the installation and an average figure would therefore have little meaning.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will give the basis on which charges for electricity installation are made by Northern Ireland Electricity.

I refer the hon. Gentleman to the reply I gave to the hon. Gentleman, the Member for Foyle (Mr. Hume) on 16 February 1988 at column 595.

Prime Minister

Kurt Waldheim

To ask the Prime Minister whether she will instruct Her Majesty's ambassador to the United States to seek access to any American copies of records relating to the alleged interrogation of British service men in the Balkans by Lieutenant Kurt Waldheim: with a view to making a statement on them to the House.

We now have a copy of the relevant file from the United States authorities, and are examining it.

To ask the Prime Minister whether, in the course of the Government's review of the fate of the captured British service men in the Balkans, allegedly interrogated by the then Leiutenant Kurt Waldheim, she or her representatives will meet Professor Gerald Fleming, the British member of the historian's commission established by the Austrian Government.

Arrangements are in hand for Government research staff to meet Professor Fleming.

To ask the Prime Minister whether she will institute an inquiry into the reasons for the destruction in 1978 of British Foreign and Commonwealth Office files relating to the alleged interrogation of British service men in the Balkans by the then Lieutenant Kurt Waldheim.

No. The files were destroyed in accordance with the guidelines for the preservation and destruction of public records.

To ask the Prime Minister whether she will instigate inquiries into the information available to Her Majesty's Government in 1971 concerning the war record of President Kurt Waldheim prior to the decision to support his candidature for Secretary General of the United Nations; and if she will make a statement.

No. It has been the practice of successive Governments not to reveal how they voted in secret ballots in the United Nations, or why they voted as they did. I am informed that at the time of Dr. Waldheim's election as United Nations Secretary-General no doubts were raised about his wartime record.

Forestry Commission

To ask the Prime Minister if she will make a statement on the present division of ministerial responsibility for the Forestry Commission as between the Scottish Office and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

The Secretary of State for Scotland and the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food exercise their responsibilities for the Forestry Commission's territorial activities in relation to Scotland and England respectively. General policy and other matters affecting Great Britain as a whole are dealt with

External finance limits for water authorities: 1979–80 to 1988–89
1979–801980–811981–821982–831983–841984–851985–861986–871987–881988–89
Northumbrian
Cash33·941·048·535·820·020·022·018·22·03·0
Real100·0104·0110·476·040·638·640·132·23·44·8
North-West
Cash52·672·086·984·079·087·084·558·049·444·0
Real100·0117·7127·5114·9103·3108·399·366·153·845·9
Severn-Trent
Cash55·349·467·361·966·340·055·27·9-7·5-11·5
Real100·076·893·980·682·547·461·78·6-7·8-27·8
Yorkshire
Cash34·740·042·553·430·034·031·032·820·015·0
Real100·099·194·5110·859·564·255·256·633·023·7
Anglian
Cash69·570·074·987·485·060·046·045·734·023·5
Real100·086·683·290·584·156·540·939·428·118·6
Thames
Cash18·122·06·0-3·0-10 ·5-34·0-60·0-82·0-95·0-100·0
Real100·0104·525·6-11 9-39·9-1230-205·0-271·5-300·9-303·1
Southern
Cash37·445·052·040·733·523·011·02·0-5·0-13·5
Real100·0103·4107·378·361·640·318·23·2-7·7-19·8
Wessex
Cash13·813·316·021·727·316·021·026·823·019·5
Real100·082·989·5113·2136·175·994·1116·495·677·5
South-West
Cash9·411·013·013·812·511·04·94·70·72·0
Real100·0100·6106·8105·791·576·632·230·04·35·8
Wales
Cash29·324·029·025·223·022·621·017·313·39·1
Real100·060·966·053·546·743·738·330·622·514·7

Notes:

1. Cash figures are in £ million.

2. Real figures are in index form: 1979–80= 100·0

3. The inflation index used is RPI.

4. EFLs were introduced for most authorities in 1979–80.

by the two Ministers and the Secretary of State for Wales, acting jointly, with the Secretary of State for Scotland taking the lead.

"Security And Counter Intelligence"

To ask the Prime Minister when she intends to announce her decision on the approval for publication of the book "Security and Counter Intelligence," by Mr. Anthony Simkins.

No decision has made been with regard to publication of "Security and Counter Intelligence."

Environment

Water Authorities

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish a table in the Official Report showing the external financing limits for each water authority for each year from 1978–79 to the latest available date; and, if he will also give the same information in real terms using 100 as a base for 1978–79.

Woolwich Polytechnic Lower School

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when he expects to reach a decision on any request from the Inner London education authority for assistance towards the cost of rebuilding the boundary wall at the Woolwich polytechnic lower school under the inner urban programme for 1988–89.

This project was not included in the inner area programme for 1988–89 submitted by the London borough of Greenwich.

Rural Areas (Assistance)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish figures on assistance through the Development Commission or its equivalents for rural areas on a per capita basis for (a) England, (b) Scotland and (c) Wales.

I regret that it is not possible to do this, because accurate information for England, Scotland and Wales is not available on a comparable basis.

Nuclear Waste Management

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what progress has been made in each of the six tasks and three projects being developed in nuclear waste management under the European Council decision of 12 March 1985, programme number 85 199 Euratom.

Work on the six tasks has been proceeding and will continue until the end of the current research programme in 1989. Projects 1 and 2 are also proceeding, but no progress has been made in project 3. As a result the programme for tasks 1–6 is being extended slightly in 1988 and 1989.

Metropolitan Residuary Bodies

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will make a statement on metropolitan residuary body appointments.

The following have been reappointed to the metropolitan residuary bodies for the period 1 April 1988 to 31 March 1990 or until dissolution of the body, whichever is sooner:

Greater Manchester Residuary Body

  • Chairman: J. P. B. Hadfield, JP, DL
  • Members: K. J. Alford, OBE
  • Councillor A. B. Coyle, JP
  • B. Scholes, OBE, DL
  • C. H. Singleton, OBE
  • R. M. Willan

Merseyside Residuary Body

  • Chairman: N. G. Brodrick
  • Members: P. D. Carter, CBE
  • J. D. M. Forbes
  • W. C. W. Hughes
  • L. O. Jones Councillor J. R. Lloyd
  • G. B. Marsh

South Yorkshire Residuary Body

  • Chairman: B. E. Cotton, CBE
  • Members: Councillor R. Rigby
  • M. C. Simpson
  • The Hon. Neil Turner
  • P. I. Wolf

Tyne and Wear Residuary Body

  • Chairman: A. S. Robertson
  • Members: K. Douglas
  • Councillor V. Fitzpatrick, JP
  • W. H. Foakes
  • R. A. S. Sisterson
  • R. C. Spoor

West Midlands Residuary Body

  • Chairman: Dr. M. D. Skillicorn
  • Members: Councillor J. Adams, OBE
  • G. N. Jackson, CBE
  • J. P. Meering
  • W. S. Page, CBE
  • K. Williams

West Yorkshire Residuary Body

  • Chairman: T. McDonald, OBE
  • Members: K. J. Bridge
  • D. Hanson
  • F. A. Mallet, CBE
  • Councillor G. E. Mudie
  • R. W. Suddards, CBE

These reappointments reflect my right hon. Friend's satisfaction with the impressive progress made so far by the residuary bodies and his confidence in members' ability to maintain the momentum towards the bodies' eventual wind up.

The financial benefits resulting from the removal of an unnecessary tier of local government are now being realised. Within three years of abolition of the Greater London council and the metropolitan county councils successor boroughs and districts can expect to receive from the residuary bodies some £240 million in revenue balances that can be directly applied to reduce the rates, and approximately £305 million in capital receipts from property that can be used to enhance capital programmes. Taken together with the estimated annual long-term savings of £100 million resulting from staff savings, this brings direct benefits to the ratepayers of London and the metropolitan areas.

Rate Support Grant

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will make a statement about the status of the Rate Support Grant Supplementary Report (England) (No. 4) 1983–84.

I laid the fourth supplementary report for 1983–84 before the House on 5 February (HC 252). It emerged, however, that a number of figures in appendix I to annex IV had been wrongly printed. I therefore withdrew the report on 15 February, and I have today laid before the House a new report.I have taken the opportunity to incorporate a revised rateable value for block grant purposes for one rating authority, and as a result the national grant-related poundage (GRP) for spending at GRE has increased by 0.0004p. GRPs at GRE for all classes of authority have been adjusted accordingly and the abatement multipliers of four authorities have been slightly altered as a consequence. Otherwise all the determinations remain as they were in the report which was withdrawn.The supplementary report requires the approval of the House of Commons. Subject to that, I plan to make the revisions to grant payments to reflect this report and two others approved by the House on Wednesday 17 February early in April.Copies of the report and tables showing revised; grant entitlements are being sent to local authority associations and to each authority.

Asbestos (Housing Estates)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will establish special funds for councils undertaking removal of asbestos from housing estates where the health of tenants is threatened; and if he will make a statement.

No. Local authorities have the opportunity to draw any special needs to the attention of the Department in their annual housing investment programme submissions and meetings. Funds are not made available specifically for asbestos removal programmes, but rate support grant is paid in support of local authorities revenue expenditure generally, including expenditure on asbestos. It is for local authorities themselves to determine their own priorities for expenditure within the resources available.

Defence

Military Equipment (United States Procurement)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will meet the United States Secretary of Defence to discuss the scope for an increase in United States procurement of British military equipment, including within the NATO procurement framework; and if he will make a statement.

No. My right hon. Friend already has frequent discussions with the United States Secretary of Defence on a wide range of issues including procurement.

Nuclear Weapons

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether it is planned that a nuclear warhead will be developed for the multiple launch rocket system.

I understand that this is an option being considered by the United States Government.

Bullying

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what response he has received following his announcement of measures to counter bullying in the Army.

The measures I announced on 26 January to combat bullying in the Army have been well received in the Army and have been welcomed by Members of this House. The media and public response has also recognised the value of these measures.

Irish Republic (Rescues)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what charges are made to the Government of the Irish Republic for rescues effected (a) of Irish citizens and (b) in Irish waters by British military search and rescue units; and if he will make a statement.

Charges for civil search and rescue incidents are the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Transport. The Ministry of Defence recovers costs from the Department of Transport for the search and rescue services which it provides, but does not make charges to other Governments or individuals.

Armilla Patrol

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he intends to reply to the letter of the hon. Member for Hamilton dated 29 December 1987, regarding policy on the Armilla patrol, addressed to the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and passed on to him on 11 January.

Clyde Nuclear Emergency Monitoring Team

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence for what purpose the Clyde nuclear emergency monitoring team was called out on 26 January; and for what period of time personnel from the team were deployed at the scene of the incident.

I refer the hon. Member to my replies to the hon. Member for Dumbarton (Mr. McFall) on 18 February at columns 739–40.

Hms Resolution

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what was the cause of the emergency on board HMS Resolution on 26 January; and what steps have been taken to prevent a repetition of this type of incident.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether he will make a statement about the incident affecting the cooling system of the nuclear reactor of the submarine HMS Resolution on 26 January.

I refer the hon. Members to my reply to the hon. Member for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley (Mr. Foulkes) on 18 February at column 738.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) military personnel and (b) civilian employees were exposed to levels of radioactivity greater than the permitted dose as a result of the emergency on board HMS Resolution on 26 January; and how many of these were suspended from duty as a result.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether any release of radioactivity occurred (a) within the vessel, (b) into the atmosphere, and (c) into the sea as a result of the incident on board HMS Resolution on 26 January.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what notification was given to (a) the local liaison committee, (b) the civil police and (c) the civil fire service concerning the incident on board HMS Resolution on 26 January.

The electrical malfunction which occurred on board HMS Resolution on 26 January posed no danger to the submarine's reactor, its crew or the public. There was therefore no occasion to notify the local liaison committee or emergency services under the terms of the Clyde area public safety scheme.

Soldiers And Horses (Molestation)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many cases have been reported of the molestation of soldiers and horses on duty outside palaces and other public buildings; what steps he is taking to prevent this; and if he will make a statement.

There have been no complaints recorded of cases of molestation of soldiers or horses whilst on duty outside palaces or public buildings. If such an occurrence were to take place, adequate arrangements exist to enable the sentry to summon assistance.

Nuclear Tests

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he takes to monitor the research activities and findings of individuals looking into the consequence of the nuclear tests conducted on Christmas island in the 1950s; and if he will make a statement.

I refer the hon. Member to my answer of 28 January to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Salisbury (Mr. Key) at column 309 concerning the study carried out by the National Radiological Protection Board into the mortality and cancer incidence in UK participants in the British nuclear test programme. The study was carried out by the National Radiological Protection Board under contract from the Ministry of Defence. The conduct and form of the study was, however, entirely a matter for the NRPB, with the advice of its medical and epidemiological consultants.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence in how many cases claims for compensation or additional pension rights have been made in connection with the 1950s, nuclear tests; and in how many cases payments have been made.

Full records are not available but any such claims from members of the armed forces would be barred by section 10 of the Crown Proceedings Act 1947. A small number of claims have been received from civilians who participated in the tests, but no payments have been made. Claims for war pensions are a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Social Services.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what diseases the National Radiological Protection Board considered in the course of preparation of its report on nuclear test veterans; what criteria it used in deciding which diseases or conditions to exclude; and if he will make a statement.

The responsibility for deciding which diseases would be considered in the course of the National Radiological Protection Board study was entirely a matter for the National Radiological Protection Board, with the advice of its medical and epidemiological consultants.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many questionnaires on the medical effects of nuclear tests were sent in 1956 to ex-service men; how those ex-service men to whom it was sent were selected; how many returned a completed questionnaire; what representations he had received from ex-service men present at nuclear tests who did not receive a questionnaire; what response he has made; and if he will make a statement.

Questionnaires on the medical effects of nuclear tests were not sent to service men or ex-service men, in 1956 or at any other time.

Mine Countermeasure Vessels

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the United Kingdom's mine countermeasure vessels capability in the Gulf area.

We have been reviewing the size of our MCMV force in the Gulf. In the light of our experience to date in operations to clear mine danger areas both in the Gulf of Oman and off Qatar, we have concluded that in the present circumstances the mine clearance task can be met satisfactorily by retaining three MCMVs and associated afloat support in the Gulf area to operate in support of the Armilla patrol. To this end Her Majesty's ships Dulverton, Middleton and Atherstone are in the course of taking over the mine counter-measures task in the Gulf hitherto fulfilled by Her Majesty's ships Hurworth, Bicester, Brocklesby and Brecon. The support vessel HMS Abdiel is also returning to the United Kingdom, and is due to be paid off in about six months' time. HMS Abdiel's support role in the Gulf is now being carried out by HMS Herald.

Equipment

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what degree of lateral stability was called for in the DROPS statement of requirement for the medium mobility vehicle; and if he will make a statement;(2) what lateral stability was achieved by the validation model DROPS medium mobility trucks on their tilt test at the Royal Armaments Research and Development Establishment; and if he will make a statement;(3) to what tests DROPS vehicles were submitted subsequent to tilt tests, with the test weights turned upside down; what effect this had on the centre of gravity; what stability was achieved; and if he will make a statement;(4) what stability is expected once the DROPS vehicle has been fitted with small tyres; and if he will make a statement;(5) whether the DROPS vehicle, once fitted with small tyres, will comply with the statement requirements in respect of the maximum ground pressure; and if he will make a statement;(6) what was the stated minimum stability requirement for low mobility, road-use only, vehicles; and if he will make a statement;(7) why, after the first round of trialling, it was considered desirable to subject DROPS RTE to a second round of full open competition to determine best value for money; why this course of action was considered undesirable in respect of DROPS itself; whether it was considered desirable to submit simplified RTE equipment to a second round of full open competition; and if he will make a statement;(8) what was the difference between RTE/CLOTS equipment and Simple RTE/Simple CLOTS equipment; and if he will make a statement;(9) which company was selected in 1983 to provide Simple RTE; which other companies were selected in 1985; and if he will make a statement;

(10) whether RTE (rail transfer equipment) supplied by EKA Ltd., was selected for trials in 1983; and if he will make a statement;

(11) whether (a) the 1982 or (b) the 1986 specification required the rail transfer equipment to operate at different step heights; to what extent this requirement was deemed essential in stating the 1986 requirement; whether any of the equipments tendered in 1986 met this essential requirement; and if he will make a statement;

(12) what have been the changes in operational circumstances that have made rail transfer equipment operation under power cables and at different step heights essential at the time of stating the requirements and dispensable at the time of selecting equipment against those requirements; and if he will make a statement;

(13) which of the requirements of the 1986 rail transfer equipment specification are not met by the ordered equipment; and if he will make a statement;

(14) whether the equipment ordered for rail transfer equipment is an existing commercially available design; and if he will make a statement;

(15) what are the factors that led to the attempt to enhance the mobility of a DROPS vehicle by fitting large wheels; and if he will make a statement;

(16) whether the original DROPS trials equipment achieved medium mobility; whether cross-country mobility is still required; and if he will make a statement;

(17) whether the DROPS medium mobility vehicle is required to be used off-road; whether it was ever intended to have suitable mobility for off-road use; and if he will make a statement;

(18) in precisely what respects the performance requirements called for in respect of the current procurement of 209 DROPS trailers differ from the performance requirements called for in respect of the 295 trailers ordered pursuant to the original DROPS 1982 statement of requirement; where in the 1982 statement of requirement these performance requirements were stated; and if he will make a statement.

[holding answer 16 February 19881: I will write to my right hon. Friend shortly.

Trade And Industry

Devon And Cornwall Investment Bureau

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster how many industrial companies new to Devon and Cornwall have commenced investment projects as a result of the work of the Devon and Cornwall Investment Bureau in the years 1985–86 and 1986–87; and what is the estimated figure for 1987–88.

My Department provides grant-aid to the Devon and Cornwall Development Bureau (DCDB) to promote the region as a location for investment by overseas companies. I am advised that in the years specified, the number of start-ups by overseas companies new to Devon and Cornwall with which the DCDB has been actively involved is as follows:

Number
1985–861
1986–874
1987–8816
1 Estimate

These projects are expected to create around 1,000 new jobs.

In addition, the DCDB assists overseas companies with their plans to expand in Devon and Cornwall, and can claim to have been actively involved with 11 such successful projects over the period in question. These projects are expected to create a further 600 new jobs.

My Department's contribution to the DCDB does not cover work to encourage United Kingdom companies to relocate within Devon and Cornwall, and I have no information on the level of this activity.

Structural Funds

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing the United Kingdom share of the structural funds in the past three years, the forecast for this year and the forecast under the new arrangements; and if he will give the figures in percentages at European currency unit and sterling;(2) pursuant to the statement on the meeting of the European Council,

Official Report, 15 February, columns 705–17, whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing the United Kingdom's share of the structural funds in the past three years, the forecast outturn for 1987–88 and the forecast under the new arrangements; and if he will give the figures both as percentages and in European currency unit and £ sterling.

The figures for the United Kingdom share of the structural funds for the past three years are given in the table. The drop in our percentage shares between 1985 and 1986 followed the accession of Spain and Portugal to the European Community.It is not possible to forecast our share of the funds for this or future years. However, as the Prime Minister said in her statement on the outcome of the European Council at Brussels, we hope to increase our payment receipts from the funds to about £1,000 million in 1992.

United Kingdom share of the commitments of the structural funds
1985198611987
Mecu1,2231,0141,244
£ Million7227142896
per cent.22·715·616·7
1 Estimate.
2 Equivalent to about £750 million in payments.

Securities Association

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if a decision has been reached on whether to give leave for the recognition under the Financial Services Act of the Securities Association.

In accordance with the procedures laid down in the Financial Services Act, the Director General of Fair Trading has submitted to my right hon. and noble Friend a report on the rules and guidance submitted by TSA to the SIB. Having considered the Director General's report, my right hon. and noble Friend has concluded that on the basis of the information presently available to him he does not consider TSA's rules and guidance have, or are intended or are likely to have, to any significant extent, the effect of restricting, distorting or preventing competition. He has, therefore, today given his leave to the SIB for the recognition of TSA.

Patent Office

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether his plans have advanced for the relocation of the Patent Office.

As I told the House on 10 December 1987 Official Report, column 239, I have been examining the possibility of relocating the Patent Office to Cardiff or Newport. In consultation with my colleagues, the Secretaries of State for Wales and for the Environment I have decided that Newport should be the preferred location, on a site already occupied there by the business statistics office, which is a division of my Department. The trade marks branch of the Patent Office opened an examining group on the Newport site on 3 February, as the first phase of the relocation. The move of the rest of the office, except for a modest public office which will remain in London, will take about three years and I estimate that at least 500 jobs will be created locally.

Insolvency Service

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether he intends that any staff in the insolvency service of his Department who are currently based in London will be relocated elsewhere; and if he will make a statement.

I have decided that 148 London-based insolvency service staff will be relocated in Birmingham in 1989. The decision to relocate these staff follows a thorough review of my Department's scope for moving staff to locations other than London, where the cost of accommodation is very high. The type of work carried out by the staff concerned does not require their location in any particular area. The proposed move will improve the cost-effectiveness of my Department in our use of public funds for staff accommodation.I also believe that moving these important Civil Service posts to Birmingham will make a worthwhile contribution to the strong revival of the local economy in the west midlands that is now under way. The insolvency service already has a considerable presence in Birmingham in terms of staff numbers, including one of its major official receiver's offices.

Education And Science

Horniman Museum

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what plans he has for the continued operation of the Horniman museum after the abolition of the Inner London education authority.

The Government wish to ensure a secure future for the museum, and are considering what arrangements would best achieve that objective.

University Places

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will publish the number of places offered by each United Kingdom university for each of the past 10 years (a) in total, (b) by degree course subject and (c) by country of origin of student, Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland and others.

The available information for full-time undergraduate new entrants to universities in 1986 is shown in the table. It is taken from "University statistics, 1986–87, volume one (students and staff)", published by the Universities Statistical Record. Information for earlier years is published in previous editions. Figures by subject for 1986 relate to the new subject classification, which is not directly comparable with the classification used prior to 1985. Readily available unpublished information for country of domicile for 1986 entrants is also shown.

Full-time undergraduate new entrants to universities: United Kingdom 1986
Number
Aston1,001
Bath946
Birmingham2,615
Bradford1,106
Bristol2,012
Brunel671
Cambridge3,317
City817
Durham1,460
East Anglia1,190
Essex932
Exeter1,430
Hull1,423
Keele817
Kent1,37
Lancaster1,547
Leeds2,724
Leicester1,255
Liverpool2,060
London Business School
London9,583
Loughborough1,428
Manchester Business School
Manchester2,883
Manchester Institute of Science and Technology1,108
Newcastle2,130
Nottingham1,983
Oxford3,080
Reading1,531
Salford1,083
Sheffield2,208
Southampton1,832
Surrey911
Sussex1,334
Warwick1,774
York1,051
Total England62,629
Aberystwyth University College915
Bangor University College818
Cardiff University College1,695
St. David's, Lampeter242
Swansea University College1,404
University of Wales College of Medicine76
University of Wales Institute of Science and Technology672
Total Wales5,822
Total England and Wales68,451
Aberdeen1,491
Dundee835
Edinburgh2,505
Glasgow2,694
Heriot-Watt1,060
St. Andrews989
Stirling899
Strathclyde1,838
Total Scotland12,311

Number

Total Great Britain80,762
Queen's University Belfast1,887
University of Ulster2,760
Total Northern Ireland4,647
Total United Kingdom85,409

Full-time undergraduates new entrants to universities in Great Britain, 1986—by subject

Number

1. Medicine and dentistry
Medicine4,054
Dentistry861
Total medicine and dentistry4,915
2. Studies allied to medicine
Anatomy and physiology267
Pharmacology187
Pharmacy688
Ophthalmics237
Nursing369
Other and combined studies allied to medicine317
Total studies allied to medicine2,065
3. Biological sciences
Biology1,688
Botany129
Zoology346
Genetics102
Microbiology323
Biochemistry1,129
Psychology954
Other and combined biological sciences484
Total biological sciences5,155
4. Veterinary science, agriculture and related studies
Veterinary science337
Agriculture510
Forestry81
Food science191
Other and combined agricultural sciences187
Total veterinary science, agriculture and related studies1,306
5. Physical sciences
Chemistry2,289
Physics2,320
Astronomy64
Geology792
Geography469
Other and combined environmental and physical sciences579
Total physical sciences6,513
6. Mathematical sciences
Mathematics2,463
Statistics165
Computer studies1,652
Other and combined mathematical sciences524
Total mathematical sciences4,804
7. Engineering and technology
General engineering922
Civil engineering1,520

Number

Mechanical engineering1,988
Aeronautical engineering461
Electrical engineering397
Electronic engineering1,748
Production engineering263
Chemical engineering825
Minerals technology173
Metallurgy106
Other materials technology170
Maritime technology109
Biotechnology62
Other and combined studies in engineering and technology2,068
Total engineering and technology10,812
8. Architecture and related studies
Architecture552
Building227
Town and country planning151
Other related studies including combinations43
Total architecture and related studies1,023
9. Social sciences
Economics2,499
Sociology707
Social policy and administration282
Applied social work116
Anthropology147
Psychology583
Geography1,516
Politics910
Law3,869
Other and combined social services1,429
Total social sciences12,068
10. Business and financial studies
Business and management studies1,450
Financial management234
Accountancy700
Institutional management224
Land and property management216
Other and combined business and financial studies525
Total business and financial studies3,349
11. Librarianship and information science
Librarianship33
Other related studies including combinations48
Total librarianship and information science81
12. Languages and related studies
Linguistics151
English2,812
American studies182
Classical studies401
French1,037
German362
Hispanic studies156
Russian144
Other European languages321
Chinese76
Other Oriental/Asian/African languages94
Other and combined languages and related studies2,804
Total languages and related studies8,540
13. Humanities
History2,813
History of art337
Archaeology263
Philosophy430

Number

Theology and religious studies696
Other and combined humanities278
Total humanities4,817
14. Creative arts
Fine art151
Design studies135
Music588
Drama252
Other and combined creative arts151
Total creative arts1,277
15. Education
Teacher training490
Academic studies in education302
Other and combined education studies282
Total education1,074
16. Multi-disciplinary studies
Combinations of groups 2, 3 and 4132
Combinations of groups 2–4 with 5 and 6323
Combinations of groups 5 and 6351
Combinations of groups 2–6 with 7 and 8 and 7 with 8608
Combined or general science1,515
Combinations of groups 9, 10 and 11764
Combined or general social science1,479
Combinations of group 12 with 13–151,297
Combinations of groups 13, 14 and 1545
Combined or general arts662
Combinations of groups 5 and 6 with 9–11838
Combinations of groups 2–4, 7 and 8 with 9–11394
Combinations of groups 5 and 6 with 12–15250

Full-time students in 1986

Universities in

England

Wales

Scotland

Northern Ireland

United Kingdom

Total233,53820,55647,23014,966316,290
Numbers domiciled in
England188,31611,7899,073675209,853
Wales7,0195,6242432812,914
Scotland2,93812930,44912533,641
Northern Ireland2,3561991,17712,11015,842
Other132,9092,8156,2882,02844,040
Total100100100100100
Percentages domiciled in
England815719566
Wales327104
Scotland1164111
Northern Ireland112815
Other11414131414
Percentages may not sum due to rounding

1 Includes those domiciled in other United Kingdom and overseas.

Independent Schools

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what information he has for each of the past five years as to what percentage of those school pupils whose principal address is in an inner London borough attended an independent school; and as to what

Number

Combinations of groups 2–4, 7 and 8 with 12–15127
Combinations of groups 9–11 with 12968
Combinations of groups 9–11 with 13–151,238
Other general and combinations1,982
Total multi-disciplinary studies12,973
All subjects80,762

Full-time undergraduate new entrants by domicile, 1986

Number

Universities in Great Britain of which domiciled in80,762
Scotland8,588
England57,385
Wales3,645
Northern Ireland1,109
Others10,035

Universities (Wales And Northern Ireland)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will republish a table, in the manner of his answer of 12 February, Official Report, columns 375–6, showing the numbers and percentages of (a) Welsh and (b) Northern Irish students and relating to (i) Welsh and (ii) Northern Irish universities.

The complete cross classification of country of location by country of domicile is shown in the following table:is the percentage of the pupil population of

(a) outer London, (b) south-east England and (c) England who attend independent schools.

Information on pupils' home addresses is not held centrally. The number of pupils in independent schools as a percentage of all pupils in school in each of the last five years in the following areas was:

Pupils in independent schools as a percentage of all pupils in the Inner London Education Authority, Outer London, Other South East and England in January of each year

1983

1984

1985

1986

1987

ILEA10·711·211612·012·4
Outer London7·37·47·67·78·1
Other South East9·59·79·910·110·4
England6·26·46·56·66·9

University Funding

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will give details of any revised cash limits for his Department's votes in respect of university funding in 1987–88.

Subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary Supplementary Estimate, the cash limit on class XII, vote 3 is being increased by a total of £7·583 million to facilitate the creation of a new university institution in Cardiff. The effect of this change is as follows:

Class, Vote and Description of Expenditure
£'000
XII 3 Universities, etc
Current cash limit1,706,618
Revision+7,583
Revised cash limit1,714,201
The Supplementary Estimate will include provision for a repayable grant of £4·402 million (of which £4·279 million will be charged to the Reserve, after taking account of offsetting savings), with repayments benefiting the Reserve in future years. The remainder, £3·304 million, will be funded by a transfer of £1·652 million from Welsh Office provision (class XVII, vote 5) and £1·652 million from the Reserve. The increase will not add to the public expenditure planning total.

Home Department

Taxi Drivers (Assaults)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many deaths have resulted for each of the last five years as a consequence of attacks on licensed taxi drivers.

In the period 1982–86, in England and Wales, five licensed taxi drivers are known to have been victims of homicide.

Written Question (Cost)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will estimate the cost in time and money of the preparation of the answer to the written question from the hon. Member for Nottingham, East (Mr. Knowles) answered on 29 January, Official Report, column 395.

Dog Fighting

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has as to the extent of foreign involvement in the promotion of and betting upon dog fighting; and if he will make a statement.

None, although we are, of course, aware of the recent allegations of such involvement. The police work closely with officials of the RSPCA in the investigation of alleged offences relating to dog fighting.

European Parliamentary Constituencies

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the Boundary Commission for Wales intends to conduct any supplementary review of European parliamentary constituencies.

The commission has informed me of its intention to consider the making of a supplementary report on three European parliamentary constituencies in Wales. These are Mid and West Wales, South East Wales and South Wales.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the Boundary Commission intends to conduct any supplementary reviews of European Parliamentary constituencies in England.

The commission has informed me that it intends to consider the making of a supplementary report on the following 34 European parliamentary constituencies in England:

  • Durham
  • Cleveland and Yorkshire North
  • York
  • Humberside
  • Lancashire Central
  • Lancashire East
  • Yorkshire West
  • Cheshire West
  • Cheshire East
  • Derbyshire
  • Cambridge and Bedfordshire North
  • Suffolk
  • Oxford and Buckinghamshire
  • Bedfordshire South
  • Hertfordshire
  • Essex South West
  • Essex North East
  • Bristol
  • Wiltshire
  • Cornwall and Plymouth
  • Sheffield
  • Nottingham
  • Lincolnshire
  • Shropshire and Stafford
  • Staffordshire East
  • Midlands Central
  • Leicester
  • Devon
  • Somerset and Dorset West
  • Dorset East and Hampshire West
  • Hampshire Central
  • Wight and Hampshire East
  • Kent West
  • Kent East

Attorney-General

Christmas Island (Nuclear Tests)

To ask the Attorney-General for what reasons certain records relating to the nuclear tests conducted on Christmas Island during the 1950s have been held back from release under the Public Records Act for 75 years.

It has not been possible, from the information given, to identify the records referred to in the hon. Member's question. In so far as any such records have been withheld from release, they have been so withheld under section 3(4) of section 5(1) of the Public Records Act 1958.

Bona Vacantia Department

To ask the Attorney-General if he will introduce new regulations for the distribution of intestacy proceeds from the Bona Vacantia Department to pass to charities in untraceable cases.

I have been asked to reply.No. The Treasury Solicitor is already authorised by the Treasury to make payments from Bona Vacantia to those for whom a person dying intestate might reasonablly have been expected to provide. A charity will therefore benefit from an estate where it has helped the deceased, or where it is clear that the deceased intended it to benefit. There is no intention to extend these principles to benefit charities in any other circumstances.

Intestacy

To ask the Attorney-General if he will introduce legislation to provide new ways to enable companies and organisations to allocate or distribute long-standing funds where intestacy has resulted in an inability to trace claimants.

I have been asked to reply.No. The distribution of the property of persons dying intestate is a matter for their personal representatives. Where there is no one entitled following an intestacy, the matter should be referred to the Treasury Solicitor as Bona Vacantia.

The Arts

Asian Artists

To ask the Minister for the Arts how many Asian artists and companies received financial support from the Arts Council in each of the past five years.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Brent, South (Mr. Boateng) on Monday 15 February, at columns 698–99.

National Finance

Vat (United States Forces)

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what administrative arrangements are in place for the offsetting of value added tax payments for United Kingdom traders by United States forces not having to pay value added tax under special agreement.

There are no offsetting arrangements. Traders do not charge VAT when supplying United States forces authorities under the special agreements.

Outturn Expenditure

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his latest estimate of outturn expenditure for 1987–88; and what are the figures for each Department.

I refer the hon. Member to table 1·8 of volume I of the 1988 public expenditure White Paper (Cm. 288).

Value Added Tax

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what invitations to respond to the proposals of the Commissioner of the European Community for harmonisation of value added tax and excise duties was contained in the global communications from the Commission to Her Majesty's Government; and if he will publish in the Official Report its text, together with any response.

[holding answer 18 February 1988]: The global communication contained no specific invitations to respond; member states were invited only to evaluate the Commission's tax approximation proposals. The Economic and Financial Affairs Council (ECOFIN) has referred the proposals to the Economic Policy Committee (EPC) for economic analysis and will discuss them in the light of EPC's report, which is expected in the spring. The Commission should be in little doubt about the Government's view on United Kingdom zero rating. A copy of the global communication, together with a copy of each of the Commission's proposals, has been placed in the Library.

Employment

Dock Workers (Dismissals)

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many permanent registered dock workers in the Liverpool local dock board area in each year from 1980 to 1986 have been dismissed by their employer for an offence justifying summary dismissal under the disciplinary provisions of the dock labour scheme; and how many of these men have been reinstated by order of the local dock labour board and appeal tribunals.

1980

1981

1982

1983

1984

1985

1986

Brought forward from previous year6
Permanent workers dismissed for offence justifying summary dismissal12556222
Reinstated by order of Liverpool Dock Labour Board and appeal tribunals6556222
Dismissal upheld by Liverpool Dock Labour Board and appeal tribunals6
Carried forward to following year6

Radiation Exposure

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on his policy towards acceptable levels of radiation exposure, following the most recent report of the National Radiological Protection Board.

I am awaiting the advice of the Health and Safety Commission. The commission has set up a working group on ionising radiations which met for the first time on 9 December 1987. The working group is considering the recent guidance from the National Radiological Protection Board as part of its remit and will advise the commission on an appropriate course of action. I am content to await any subsequent recommendations.Workers and the public are currently protected by the Ionising Radiations 1985, which require doses to be kept not only below specified dose limits but beyond that to be kept as low as reasonably practicable.

Agriculture, Fisheries And Food

Green Pound

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what was the average discrepancy between the value of the green pound and the real pound sterling for the years 1985, 1986 and 1987.

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will list the average percentage difference between the value of the pound sterling and the green rate for the £ sterling for each six month period since January 1979.

The information is not available in the form requested and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.Monetary compensatory amounts reflect the difference between sterling's market rate and green rates. The table shows the MCA percentages for beef and cereals during the first week in each six-month period since 1979 as well as the latest figures available:

Date (week commencing)MCA (percentage)
BeefCereals
1 January 1979-27·0-27·0
2 July 1979-6·0-17·6
7 January 1980-3·5-9·0
7 July 1980+1·7-1·0
5 January 1981+12·1+12·1
6 July 1981+12·3+12·3
4 January 1982+8·0+8·0
5 July 1982+9·6+9·6
3 January 1983+1·4+1·4
4 July 1983+5·2+5·2

Date (week commencing)

MCA (percentage)

Beef

Cereals

2 January 1984+7·6+7·6
2 July 1984+1·0+3·9
6 January 1985-1·9-1·9
1 July 1985+3·6+3·6
6 January 1986-3·5-3·5
7 July 1986-7·7-8·9
5 January 1987-18·4-26·3
1 July 1987-10·6-19·9
4 January 1988-8·4-17·5
15 February 1988-8·4-17·5

House Of Commons

Health And Safety

To ask the Lord President of the Council if he will introduce legislation to extend to the House of Commons the requirements of the health and safety Acts.

No. I have no such proposals. The authorities of the House seek to ensure that the provisions of these Acts are met wherever possible. It has been the practice of inspectors of the Health and Safety Executive to visit the House at the request of the House authorities.

Scotland

Drug Abusers

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many intravenous drug abusers he estimates there are in (a) Glasgow and (b) Edinburgh.

Because of the nature of the activity it is very difficult to make precise estimates of the numbers of intravenous drug misusers. The current estimate is as follows:

Estimate
West Scotland (mainly Glasgow)5,000–7,500
South East Scotland (mainly Edinburgh)2,000–3,000

Cervical Smear Tests

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many laboratories in Scotland are equipped to deal with cervical smear tests; and what are their locations.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 27 October 1987.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is the average period of time which each laboratory in Scotland takes to send the results of cervical smear tests back to patients.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many women were tested for cervical cancer in each year since 1975.

The information is as follows:

YearNumber of women tested
1975253,461
1976235,582
1977239,572
1978253,270
1979252,896
1980282,510
1981293,870
1982285,105
1983315,044
1984322,484
1985356,747
1986361,626
Figures for 1987 are not yet available.

Invasive Carcinoma

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many women are suffering from invasive carcinoma in (a) Scotland, (b) Strathclyde and (c) Glasgow.

This information is not available in precisely the form requested. In 1985 (the latest year for which complete cancer registration data are available) 14,264 females with malignant neoplasms were registered for the first time in Scotland. The comparable figure for the West of Scotland cancer registry, which includes Strathclyde, Dumfries and Galloway and Central regions, was 6,741.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland which socio-economic group is most affected by invasive carcinoma in Scotland.

The latest information relating to incidence of cancer by socio-economic grouping is given in the publication, "Atlas of Cancer in Scotland: Incidence and Epidemiological Perspective (ed. I Kemp et al), IARC Scentific Publication No. 72", a copy of which is available in the Library.

Outturn Expenditure

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is his latest estimate of outturn expenditure for his Department; and if he will express it as a proportion of expenditure originally allocated for the year.

The information is:

Estimated Outturn 1987–88 £ millionAs proportion of planned expenditure 1987–88
Total expenditure within the Secretary of State for Scotland's responsibility8,2121·032

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what are the latest figures for outturn spending for each of the departmental responsibilities listed in table 3·16 of the public expenditure White Paper.

The latest figures for outturn spending on each of the programmes within my responsibility are shown on page 13 of "Public Expenditure to 1990–91: A Commentary on the Scotland Programme", a copy of which has been supplied to the hon. Member and other hon. Members representing Scottish constituencies. Copies were also placed in the Library.

Leukaemia (Fife)

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will fund a study examining an potential link between leukaemia and radiation in the Fife area.

No. I see no merit in funding ad hoc studies before the Government have received the advice of the Committee on Medical Aspects of Radiation in the Environment on the further investigation of leukaemia in the vicinity of nuclear establishments.

Housing Corporation

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will give the capital allocation in cash and real terms to the Housing Corporation in Scotland, including the provisional estimates for 1988–89, for each year since 1974.

The information requested is as follows:

YearGross Allocation £ millionGross Allocation in real terms £ million
1974–7514·5016·408
1975–76110·6030·761
1976–77116·3041·791
1977–78127·1061·004
1978–79131·4063·852
1979–80148·6084·558
1980–81165·7096·414
1981–8285·00113·583
1982–83108·50135·197
1983–84109·60130·473
1984–85101·30115·442
1985–86104·20112·062
1986–87113·80118·636
1987–88123·202123·200
1988–89131·74126·068
1 Actual expenditure. In these years expenditure was controlled on basis of housing units to be provided rather than budget allocation.
2 2 Base Year.

Electoral Register

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he will list, for each Scottish constituency for each year since 1983 (a) the total number of people on the electoral register, (b) the number of young people on the register due to reach the age of 18 years during the currency of the register and the annual percentage increase or decrease for (a) and (b).

I refer the hon. Member to table 1·5 in the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys series EL Nos 10–13 for the years 1983–1986, respectively, and to table 2 in the monitor EL 87/1 for 1987, from which the annual percentage increase or decrease for (a) and (b) may be derived. Copies of these publications are in the Library. Similar information for 1988 is not yet available.

Coniferous Afforestation

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is the Government's policy with regard to coniferous afforestation in areas of outstanding national beauty.

The Government's policy is that applications for grant aid towards planting conifers in such areas should each be considered on their merits with any views expressed under the Forestry Commission's consultation arrangements being taken into account.

Forest Damage

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list in the Official Report the research studies currently being undertaken by the Forestry Commission into forest damage in the United Kingdom.

The commission's research division undertakes a wide range of studies on damage to forest, landscape and amenity trees throughout Great Britain. On the assumption that the hon. Member is interested in the possible effects of air pollution in particular, the following studies are in hand at present:

survey of the crown condition of Scots pine, Norway spruce, Sitka spruce, oak and beech
grid survey (in accordance with EEC Regulation 3528/86) of crown condition of species located at grid intersection points
study of extension growth of beech over several decades across Southern England
study of the occurrence of crown dieback of hedgerow ash in England in relation to adjacent agricultural land use study of reduced growth Sitka spruce in the South Wales Coalfield
survey jointly commissioned with the Nature Conservancy Council of beech crown condition and Scots pine growth in Southern England
studies of the growth and physiology of seedling and clonal stock of major tree species in large open-top chamber experiments at two sites in England and one in Scotland
study of responses of 6 biomonitors (4 trees, 2 herbaceous species) to ambient pollutants at 62 sites in Southern England

Student Grants

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland why students are not to be compensated for their loss of housing benefit.

I have been asked to reply.The new housing benefit scheme and the other social security changes which will come into operation in April 1988 will affect a large number of claimants including students. Transitional protection is being provided only for those on supplementary benefit consistent with the Government's approach to direct help to those most in need. Furthermore, many claimants will see some reduction in their housing benefit as a result of increased entitlement to other benefits.

Foreign And Commonwealth Affairs

Mozambique (Security Advisers)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has as to the number of Cuban, Soviet and East German security advisers stationed in Mozambique.

Precise information is not available. However, it is believed that there is still some East German involvement in security matters in Mozambique.

Irish Air Space

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what information he has as to proposals by the Irish Government to charge the British Government for military aircraft overflying Irish air space; and if he will make a statement.

Social Services

Mental Nurses (Northumberland)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services how many registered mental nurses are employed in Northumberland health authority; what was the number in 1979; and what has been the percentage change.

Such information as is available is shown in the table. Staff with the registered mental nurse qualification cannot be separately identified. The staff-in-post figures are for all state registered nurses employed in the mental illness area of work.Because of the 1982 NHS reorganisation, figures on a consistent basis are not centrally available for the years prior to 1982.

Nursing staff in mental illness area of work1Northumberland district health authority at 30 September
Whole-time equivalent2Percentage change3
198219861982–86
490520+6·2
Source: DHSS Annual Census of NHS Non-Medical Manpower.
1 Includes learners.
2 Figures are independently rounded to nearest whole time equivalent.
3 Percentage change calculated on unrounded figures.

Aids

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has regarding the proportion of hospital beds in New York city occupied by AIDS patients; and if he will make a statement regarding the implications for hospital bed use policy in the United Kingdom.

The Department is aware of reported studies in the American scientific press of the percentage of beds used in the treatment of AIDS in New York city. However because of the considerable difference between the numbers with AIDS or infected with HIV in the United Kingdom and the USA, and because of the wide differences in systems for delivering health care in the two countries, it is difficult to make direct comparisions between the current situation in New York and the future situation in the United Kingdom. The Department will continue to monitor developments in this new disease carefully, and to take any appropriate action which is indicated.

Child Benefit

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will indicate the loss of weekly income in 1988–89 for a two-child family as a result of the failure to maintain child benefit in line with the retail price index in the recent uprating and in the 1985 uprating; and if he will show for the same family, assuming they pay £30 rent and £13 rates per week, that both children are at primary school and that there is one folk-time wage earner on £100 gross wages, the effect on their weekly income of (a) the changes in housing benefit, (b) the switch from family income supplement to family credit and (c) the abolition of free schools meals.

I refer the hon. Member to my reply to the hon. Member for Barnsley, West and Penistone (Mr. McKay) on 17 December 1987 at column 707. The relevant figures for this question are as follows:

£ per week Gain (+)/Loss (-)
Child benefit—full uprating November 1984 to September 19870
Replacing Family Income Supplement (cash and kind) by Family Credit+5·95
Rent rebate changes-8·90
Rate rebate changes-4·19

Private Health Organisations

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services how many people have joined private health organisations over the past 22 years.

The table sets out the number of subscribers in the United Kingdom to private medical insurance and the number of people insured for each year from 1966 to 1986.

National insurance contributions allocations to NHS
YearClass 1Class 2Class 3Class 4
EmployerEmployee
1979–800·60·408·08·00·60
1980–810·60·408·08·00·60
1981–820·60·6511·511·50·85
1982–830·60·7511·511·50·95
1983–840·60·7511·511·50·95
1984–850·60·7511·511·50·95
1985–860·60·7511·511·50·95
1986–870·60·7511·511·50·95
1987–880·70·8515·515·51·15
1. The figures for Class 1 and 4 represent the percentage of NI reckonable earnings allocated to the NHS.2. The figures for Class 2 and 3 represents the percentage of contributions allocated to the NHS.
Total money raised from national insurance contributions allocated to NHS
£ million
1979–80881·5
1980–811,023·0
1981–821,337·3
1982–831,629·0
1983–841,706·0
1984–851,817·7

Private Medical Insurance United Kingdom

Year

Total subscribers (millions)

Total number of people insured (millions)

19660·731·57
19670·781·67
19680·831·77
19690·891·89
19700·931·98
19710·982·10
19721·022·18
19731·062·27
19741·092·33
19751·092·32
19761·062·25
19771·062·23
19781·122·37
19791·302·75
19801·643·60
19811·864·12
19821·924·23
19831·954·25
19842·284·37
19852·335·04
1986

12·45

5·25

1 latest available.

Note:—1966 to 1983 data are available only for the major private medical insurers. Data from 1984 covers private medical insurance from all sources.

Nhs (Finance)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what has been the national insurance contribution percentage apportioned to the National Health Service, the total money so apportioned each year, and the income per annum from chemists, dentists and opticians from National Health Service charges, from 1979 to the latest year the figures are available.

The information requested is as follows:

£ million
1985–862,024·0
1986–872,233·0
1987–882,726·0
All figures are net of refunds of national insurance contributions. Figures for 1984–85, 1985–86 and 1986–87 are provisional: the figure for 1987–88 is an estimate provided by the Government Actuary.

Nhs (Costs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the average cost of an operation performed within the National Heath Service; what is the cost of a day's stay in hospital; and what is the average cost of a kidney dialysis treatment.

The nearest available figure for the average cost of an operation is the average cost per inpatient case in acute hospitals in England. In 1985–86 (the latest year available) the figure was £718. This includes the cost of treatment and the cost of a stay in hospital. The cost of the hospital stay only cannot be quantified, but the average cost of a day's hospital treatment in 1985–86 was £101.The cost of kidney dialysis will depend on a number of factors. On the basis of a study carried out by the Department in 1981, approximate average costs for the first year's treatment (revalued to 1986–87 prices) were as follows: routine hospital dialysis £16,500; home dialysis £13,200; continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis £14,000. The costs for treatment in subsequent years are likely to be less than those in the first year. These revalued figures do not take account of the changes in methods of treatment and case mix since the completion of the study. They therefore provide only a broad indication of present costs.

Housing Benefit

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) what steps are taken by his Department to ensure that a recipient of housing benefit resides at the address for which benefit is claimed;(2) what steps are taken by his Department to ensure that the declarations regarding the rent payable by applicants for housing benefit are correct;(3) what communication takes place with landlords of tenants applying for or in receipt of housing benefit.

Although the Department has responsibility for the overall structure of the housing benefit scheme, local authorities have full statutory responsibility for its day-to-day administration. It is for authorities to ensure that as far as possible claims for housing benefit are proper and correct, although detailed guidance on fraud and abuse is issued to authorities by the Department. If there is any doubt about the accuracy of the details of a claim authorities should take action as necessary to satisfy themselves that the claim is correct. Information is not collected centrally on the methods of verification used by individual local authorities. Direct contact with a landlord is established where housing benefit is being paid directly to that landlord for example because the claimant is in arrears with his rent. In these cases the authority should notify the landlord of how much housing benefit will be payable, when payments will commence and how they will be made. When direct payments cease the authority should also advise the landlord of the date of and reason for cessation.

Retail Prices Index (Error)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services how many people he estimates are suffering under compensation for the loss of benefit incurred due to the retail prices index error and the fact that their benefits are embodied in only one order book; if he will reconsider his decision not to compensate fully all those people; and if he will make a statement.

Of those receiving special payments, it is estimated that about 175,000 are not fully compensated for the error in the retail prices index because they have two or more benefits combined in one order book. About 90 per cent. of those with combined order books are fully compensated or overcompensated. We do not propose to make any extensions to this aspect of the special payments exercise, which has combined as far as was possible fairness with speed of payment.

Office Of Population, Censuses And Surveys

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will take steps to restore public access to the library of the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys.

The services provided by the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys library are being reviewed and an announcement about future public access will be made in due course.

Doctors (Employment Details)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services on what basis he has come to the conclusion that the wish of some individuals not to have details of their employment made publicly available should be respected in the case of doctors carrying out abortions in the private sector.

It seems to me to be entirely reasonable not to publicise details of an individual's employment in this or any other field without that individual's consent. My hon. Friend is of course free to approach individual approved places direct to inquire about the doctors who operate at those places.

Medical Equipment (Maintenance)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services when he will reply to the letter from the hon. Member for St. Helens, South of 10 November 1987 about the report on the in-house maintenance of medical equipment which was completed almost a year ago, but never published.

Rating Reform

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish a table listing the approximate income levels at which people will become eligible for community charge rebates for each local authority in Scotland.

The community charge rebate scheme will be based as far as is practicable on the arrangements for rebating rates set out in the Housing Benefit (General) Regulations 1987. However it is not yet possible to provide the information required by the hon. Member since certain essential elements of the rebate scheme have yet to be finalised, and since neither the benefit rates on which calculations of rebate entitlement will be based nor the local authority community charge levels that will apply in April 1989 have yet been set.

I refer the hon. Member to my reply to the hon. Member for Copeland (Dr. Cunningham) on 16 December 1987 at column 584 in which illustrative rebate entitlements based on a number of specified assumptions are set out. The levels of personal community charge that are quoted are exclusive of liability for community water charges. These will not be within the scope of the rebate scheme, but help with water charges will be reflected in the income support rates and in the amounts which will be used to determine rebate entitlements.

Westminster Children's Hospital (Break-In)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has concerning the break-in at Westminster children's hospital paedriatic research laboratory on the night of 6 and 7 February and removal from the computer of the names and addresses of members of the Campaign for the Defence of Riverside Hospitals.

The paediatric research laboratory referred to in the question is not the responsibility of the Westminster children's hospital or of Riverside health authority, but of the Westminster and Charing Cross medical school. The hon. Member may wish to approach the dean of the medical school if he seeks information about the laboratory.

Deaf Persons (Telephone Exchange)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he is yet in a position to make a statement on the future of the Royal National Institute for the Dears telephone exchange for the deaf.

NHS Hospitals having radiotherapy equipment
Health Authority and HospitalNew patients attending the radiotherapy department
In patientsOut-patients
198419851986198419851986
Northern Regional Health Authority
East Cumbria, Cumberland Infirmary56151241131241295
Newcastle, Royal Victoria Infirmary8108512359367
Newcastle, Newcastle General Hospital8436536282,0322,0932,206
South Tees, South Cleveland Hospital1,0801,0261,1981,6971,8491,670
Yorkshire Regional Health Authority
Hull, Princess Royal Hospital370355307821910971
Leeds West, Cookridge Hospital2,0881,8201,7542,8773,3803,043
Trent Regional Health Authority
Leicestershire, The Leicester Royal Infirmary2713623775848981,083
North Lincolnshire, St. Georges Hospital646690663689775758
Nottingham, Nottingham General Hospital1,3317136061,7801,1491,433
Sheffield, Weston Park Hospital1,1841,1641,2261,5791,7751,824
Southern Derbyshire, Derbyshire Royal Infirmary245233223708693524
East Anglian Regional Health Authority
Cambridge, Addenbrookes Hospital6326565492,3242,2802,213
East Suffolk, Ipswich Hospital, Anglesea Road Wing205167169854829966
Norwich, Norfolk an Norwich Hospital3673174631,2461,2901,339
Peterborough, Peterborough District Hospital566479226253229
North West Thames Regional Health Authority
Hillingdon, Mount Vernon Hospital9038217432,8522,9712,877
Paddington and North Kensington, St. Marys Hospital13394102196189230
Riverside, Charing Cross Hospital4704014941,6091,5921,477
Riverside, Westminster Hospital4814114581,1961,1701,055
North East Thames Regional Health Authority
Barking, Havering and Brentwood, Old Church Hospital3214053891,3531,4911,708

I am pleased to announce the award of a grant of £28,500 for 1987–88 and £30,500 for 1988–89 to the Royal National Institute for the Deaf to assist with the running costs of its telephone exchange for the deaf (TED).This grant is being given in response to the RNID's request for assistance under the Government's concerned technology programme. Assistance has also been made available by the Department of Trade and Industry, the Manpower Services Commission and British Telecom.We recognise that a vital need of all deaf and heating impaired people is to be able to communicate with hearing people. TED is a worldwide leader in solving this problem for many deaf people. We have decided to make a contribution to its running costs for this limited period so that long-term arrangements for providing this service can be worked out.

Radiotherapy Services

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list those hospitals in each health region which provide radiotherapy services, showing how many patients were treated by each of those units; which units have been closed; and which new units have been opened, in each of the last three years.

[holding answer 11 January 1988]: The available information is given in the table for those hospitals which in 1983 reported having radiotherapy equipment. No such treatment centres are known to have opened or closed since that date. The numbers of patients are taken from the "NHS Hospital Activity Returns SH3 return part EDP6G".

Health Authority and Hospital

New patients attending the radiotherapy department

In patients

Out-patients

1984

1985

1986

1984

1985

1986

Bloomsbury, University College Hospital36532380805750180
Bloomsbury, Middlesex Hospital5364973551,3551,437985
City and Hackney, St. Bartholomews Hospital4905464149471,117861
Hampstead, Royal Free Hospital703847634646613608
Haringey, North Middlesx Hospital3092551821,3781,252899
North East Essex, Essex County Hospital3023983673,1762,8203,041
Southend, Southend General Hospital5004704051,6101,8291,859
Tower Hamlets, London Hospital Whitechapel3323673361,9191,9531,519

South East Thames Regional Health Authority

Brighton, Royal Sussex County Hospital10992741,7181,7161,988
Camberwell, King's College Hospital190177213837618‡509
Canterbury and Thanet, Kent and Canterbury Hospital2412162841,3801,7401,838
Lewisham and North Southwark, Guy's Hospital4354043311,3731,2621,080
Medway, St. Williams Hospital2192622581,006858901
Tunbridge Wells, Penbury Hospital4589104804750830
West Lambeth, St. Thomas Hospital3712873401,0791,4181,876

South West Thames Regional Health Authority

South West Surrey, St. Lukes Hospital6626066213,5423,7363,561

Wessex Regional Health Authority

Bath, Royal United Hospitals81114116244286247
East Dorset, Poole General Hospital2051681641,0541,1361,216
Portsmouth, St. Mary's General Hospital2432481911,1851,2601,275
South West Hants and Southampton, Royal South Hampshire Hospital5164785122,0081,6101,685

Oxford Regional Health Authority

Northampton, Northampton General Hospital523631376268202396
Oxfordshire, Churchill Hospital4244044301,0711,0591,144
West Berkshire, Royal Berkshire Hospitaln/an/an/an/an/an/a

South Western Regional Health Authority

Bristol and Weston, Radiotherapy Centre, Horsfield Road, Bristol9358989882,0121,9561,867
Cheltenham, Cheltenham General Hospital1,7821,7081,71410,84311,20110,579
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly, Royal Cornwall Hospital (Treliske)345355256263253
Exeter, Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, Wonford179152125626528602
Plymouth, Plymouth General, Freedom Fields303285276521548575

West Midlands Regional Health Authority

Central Birmingham, Queen Elizabeth Hospital1,1738178694,4925,2215,359
Coventry, Coventry and Warwickshire Hospital1432271991,2721,2741,270
North Staffordshire, North Staffordshire Royal Infirmary2393603241,4381,4911,925
Shropshire, Royal Shrewsbury Hospital165145146546520520
Wolverhampton, The Royal Hospital9994951,1501,3331,376

Mersey Regional Health Authority

Wirral, Clatterbridge Hospital2,6492,6802,4091,9152,3202,779

North Western Regional Health Authority

South Manchester, Christie Hospital and Holt Radium Institute3,5603,3813,3743,2263,3523,109

Special Health Authorities

Hammersmith and Queen Charlottes, Hammersmith Hospital1933754088201,3391,163
The Royal Marsden Hospitals, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fulham Road6897067011,1541,2181,225
The Royal Marsden Hospitals, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Sutton Surrey6596485332,2722,2752,603

n/a = information not available

Departmental Report (Breach Of Confidentiality)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has about the unauthorised use by a commercial manufacturer of information contained in a report of his Department's supplies divisions at the international meeting on thrombosis and haemostasis in Brussels in July 1987; and what action he proposed to deal with this breach of confidentiality.

[holding answer 8 February 1988]: Despite extensive inquiries I have been unable to identify the incident to which the hon. Member refers. If he cares to supply more details I will investigate further.

Student Nurses

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) what percentage of the annual cohort of 18-year-olds has been recruited as student nurses in each of the past 10 years; and if he is satisfied that sufficient recruits of suitable calibre will be recruited in future years, in the light of the fall in the birth rate and proposals in Project 2000;(2) if he will give the total number of student nurses employed in the National Health Service in each year since 1958, together with the annual rate of wastage caused as a result of nurses failing to complete their training; and if he will make a statement on measures taken to reduce this wastage.

Numbers entering basic nurse training and estimated population aged 18: 1978 to 1987—England
YearNumber entering basic nurse trainingEstimated population aged 18 (thousands)
TotalRegisteredEnrolledTotalMaleFemalePercentage of population entering training
197830,20018,99011,210712·5362·7349·84·2
197935,37022,60012,770741·5376·8364·74·8
198032,58020,50012,080759·7386·7373·04·3
198130,92019,63011,290773·3395·3378·04·0
198231,81020,20011,610796·0409·6386·44·0
198329,84018,95010,890802·8413·0389·83·7
198424,98017,6807,300778·3398·0380·33·2
198525,52319,2066,317768·1394·3373·83·3
198623,70518,6005,105743·8380·5363·33·2
198722,82518,4344,391n/an/an/a

Notes:

1. Figures relate to year ended 31 March. Figures prior to 1985 have been estimated as 95 per cent. of England and Wales total.

2. Office of Population Censuses and Surveys mid-year population estimates.

n/a= Not yet available.

The basic academic entry qualification for registered nurse training is five O-levels or better; the number of female school leavers available for employment with this level of academic attainment will, it is estimated, decline from 36,500 in 1987 to 29,800 in 1994. This is one of the factors to be taken into account in the Government's response to the Project 2000 proposals for the reform of nurse education. We hope to be in a position to make a statement on Project 2000 by Easter.

On wastage, there has been a reduction in the number of nurse learners discontinuing training as a proportion of the average number in training from nearly 9 per cent. in the year ended 31 March 1980 to 6.3 per cent. in the year ended 31 March 1987. The effect on wastage is another factor we will need to consider in our response to Project 2000.

Hiv Infection (Pregnant Women)

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will estimate the cost, in a full year, of screening all pregnant women for HIV infection.

[holding answer 9 Februarry 1988]: Using the latest estimated number of conceptions, the cost of providing a test to all pregnant women in England to screen for HIV infection would probably be about £4 million a year. Actual costs will depend on a number of factors including the additional costs for counselling and whether the blood taken was used for other tests.

[holding answer 8 February 1988]: I regret that information in the form requested is not available centrally. The table shows the numbers entering registered and enrolled nurse training in England for each of the last 10 years, expressed as a percentage of the population aged 18. About 40 per cent. of entrants to nurse training are aged 18, and 90 per cent. are female. All but a tiny minority of these will have entered training with the National Health Service.

Social Security Reform

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the simple scaling used to uprate supplementary benefit as outlined in paragraph 2(ii) on page one of the document "Impact of the Reformed Structure of Income Related Benefits".

[holding answer 17 February 1988]: Supplementary benefit rates were updated to April 1988 by the movement in the retail prices index, excluding housing costs, from September 1986 to September 1987. Payments for additional requirements were uprated by the rise in the general retail prices index over the same period.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the reason for the change in layout, structure and composition of the tables in the technical annex to the White Paper, entitled "The Reform of Social Security", as compared with the document entitled "Impact of the Reformed Structure of Income Related Benefits"; and what are the differences in the methodology used in each case.

[holding answer 17 February 1988]: There are no major changes in layout, structure and composition apart from the omission of tables 1 to 9. These tables are no longer relevant because a decision was taken that all ratepayers receiving income support or housing benefit should pay a minimum of 20 per cent. of their domestic rates bill. The tables are simply updated and revised versions of tables 10 to 17 published in the technical annex to the White Paper "Reform of Social Security" (Cmnd. 9691).