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Mines Rescue Service: Finance

Volume 493: debated on Monday 8 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the answer of 14 July 2008, Official Report, column 72W, on the Mines Rescue Service: finance, what recent consideration the Coal Forum has given to the proposal for the Government to serve as guarantor of the financial bonds the European Commission requires from the Mines Rescue Service Limited for it to participate in the research programme of the Research Fund for Coal and Steel; and if he will make a statement. (277361)

[holding answer 1 June 2009]: Although the Coal Forum has in the past discussed various aspects of mines rescue provision and its financing, the issue of financial bonds in relation to European Commission research projects has not been specifically raised with it. I have, however, asked my officials to establish with Mines Rescue Services Ltd. the extent to which the bonding requirements in question continue to pose operational difficulties for the company and, if so, to advise me what steps might be taken to mitigate them.