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Competitiveness Council

Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will publish the report of the Competitiveness Council. [158532]

Mr. Byers: The terms of reference for the Competitiveness Council were to advise the Secretary of State. This it has done without producing a report.

Departmental Policies (Plymouth)

Mrs. Gilroy: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will set out, with statistical information relating as directly as possible to (a) Plymouth, Sutton constituency, (b) Plymouth, Devonport constituency and (c) South-West Devon constituency, the effects on the Plymouth unitary authority area of his Department's policies and actions since 2 May 1997. [158027]

Mr. Caborn: The Department has provided the following support for businesses in (a) Plymouth, Sutton constituency, (b) Plymouth, Devonport constituency and (c) the part of South-West Devon constituency in the Plymouth unitary authority area, since May 1997.

Regional Selective Assistance (RSA)

RSA is a capital investment grant linked to the creation or safeguarding of jobs in designated areas of need (the Assisted Areas). The following RSA grant offers have been made to businesses in the Plymouth unitary authority area:

(a) Seven offers totalling £2.01 million made to businesses in the Plymouth, Sutton constituency, to support projects with total capital expenditure of £19.8 million, and to create and safeguard a total of 1,211 jobs.

(b) Twenty offers totalling £10.16 million have been made to businesses in the Devonport constituency, to support projects with total capital expenditure of £83.2 million, and to create and safeguard a total of 3,183 jobs.

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 5W

(c) One RSA grant offer of £0.24 million has been made to a business in the Plymouth unitary authority area of South-West Devon constituency, to support a project with capital expenditure of £1.3 million, and to create 55 new jobs.

Enterprise Grants

The Enterprise Grants scheme is a simplified scheme that was introduced in April 2000 to help small firms undertake fixed capital investment projects. Two offers totalling £42,000 have been made to firms in the Plymouth, Devonport constituency.

Smart

Smart awards are designed to help small firms with the introduction of new products and processes. Seven Smart awards totalling £343,437 have been made to firms in the Plymouth, Devonport constituency.

Business Link

PROSPER Business Link has provided services to small businesses in the Truro and St. Austell constituency since 1997. These include general and specialised advice to help businesses grow, export development counselling, ICT advice, and a full range of specialist information. From April 2001 these services will be provided by the Small Business Service operating through a franchise awarded to a PROSPER led partnership. This new service will be more customer focused ensuring that services are driven by local need.

Ilisu Dam

Dr. Starkey: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when he expects to be able to publish the Environmental Impact Assessment report on the Ilisu hydro-electric project in Turkey. [158780]

Mr. Byers: We have not yet received a copy of the Environmental Impact Assessment Report. When we do, I intend to make the report public.

Property Market

Jane Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will assess the effect of the operation of the property market on small independent retailers; and if he will make a statement. [157242]

Ms Beverley Hughes: I have been asked to reply.

I am aware of my hon. Friend's concern about the position of small businesses competing for premises with larger, more established businesses. While direct intervention could create difficulties for the retail markets, we are concerned about the quality of information and advice that is available to occupiers of small business premises. We are currently working with the Small Business Service to ensure that better information is available.

The issue of advice for small businesses arose in the course of our review of the property industry's Code of Practice on Commercial Property Leases, along with more general issues about the degree of choice and flexibility in the commercial property market. Representatives of landlords, occupiers and the professional bodies undertook to address these concerns, but have failed to reach consensus on the key issues. We are disappointed

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 6W

at this lack of agreement, and my right hon. Friend the Minister for Housing and Planning is now considering future options.

Civil Aircraft Projects

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much Government aid has been granted by his Department, and its predecessor, in support of civil aircraft projects since 1971, excluding Airbus projects; and if he will set out the amounts (a) granted in respect of each project and (b) recovered by way of sales and licensing levies. [157377]

Mr. Alan Johnson [pursuant to reply, 6 April 2001, c. 306W]: Unfortunately two of the figures given in the original answer are incorrect. These should read:

£ million

(a)(b)
To Rolls-Royce for the Trent 600/900 in 2001250(1)--
To Rolls-Royce for the Trent aeroengine in 19972007.7

(1) Not yet due


NORTHERN IRELAND

Appointments (Age Limits)

Tony Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what age limit is placed on appointments to public bodies in his Department; if this limit is mentioned in advertisements for such posts; and what the basis for this limit is. [158127]

Dr. Reid: The Government are committed to equality of opportunity and to increasing the diversity of those appointed to public bodies. There are no such limits in this Department.

Police Ombudsman

Mr. McGrady: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what funding has been made available to the Police Ombudsman's Office for education and publicity purposes; and if he will make a statement. [157798]

Mr. Ingram: The Ombudsman's budget for this financial year currently stands at £4.7 million, to what, and how that budget is allocated is a matter for the Ombudsman to decide.

Plastic Baton Rounds

Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on what date he was informed of the Defence Scientific Advisory Council statement on the comparative injury potential of the L547 baton round with the L21A1 baton round issued on 21 August; and what steps he took to bring this to the attention of each of the bodies engaged in finding an alternative to the plastic baton round. [158052]

Mr. Ingram: The development of the new baton round (the L21A1) was the result of extensive research and included a report by the Defence Scientific Advisory Council on the comparative injury potential of the L547 baton round and the L21A1 baton round. Ministers became aware of the report shortly after it was completed

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 7W

and, confirming as it does the greater safety of the new round over the old one, it was a key factor in the decision to introduce the new round for operational use from 1 June.

Each of the organisations currently represented on the "Alternatives to Baton Rounds" project was either represented on the Baton Rounds Steering Group or were briefed at an early stage.

Police Officers

Mr. William Ross: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will indicate for each rank for each of the police sub-divisions of (a) Coleraine and (b) Limavady the number of officers in post on (i) 1 January 2000, (ii) 1 January 2001 and (iii) 1 April 2001. [157834]

Mr. Ingram: The table provides the information requested. It should be noted that manpower figures for 1 January 2000 are not readily available therefore the nearest possible date of 17 February has been used.

17 February 20002 January 20012 April 2001
Coleraine
C/SUPT----1
SUPT11--
C/INSP11--
INSP436
SGT201823
CON10097104
TOTAL126120134
FTR494544
PTR363636
Limavady
C/SUPT------
SUPT111
C/INSP11--
INSP444
SGT141514
CON495249
TOTAL697368
FTR373231
PTR887

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 8W

RUC

Mr. William Ross: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will indicate for each month since 1 January 1999 (a) the number of RUC officers in post at each rank, (b) the number who retired at each rank in each month and (c) his projection of (a) and (b) until the end of June. [157885]

Mr. Ingram: The tables show (a) the number of RUC officers in post at each rank for each month since 1 January 1999 and projected figures until the end of June 2001 and (b) the number of RUC officers who retired at each rank in each month since 1 January 1999 and projected figures until the end of June 2001.

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 7W

Table A: Actual strength breakdown by rank

CCDCCACCCh SuptSuptCh InspInspSergtConTotalR Con FTR Con PT
31 December 1998118391201694821,3996,2378,4562,9361,238
31 January 1999118391211684861,3926,3158,5312,8841,230
28 February 1999118391221684901,4016,2908,5202,8741,226
31 March 1999118391211684891,3986,2718,4962,8621,217
30 April 1999118391211674891,3986,2478,4712,8581,212
31 May 1999118391211674871,3976,2348,4552,8501,209
30 June 1999118401211674911,4076,2548,4902,8231,204
31 July 1999118401211684901,4086,2428,4792,8131,200
31 August 1999118391211684891,4056,2828,5142,7751,194
30 September 1999118391201714951,3986,2688,5012,7621,188
31 October 1999118391201694991,4066,2458,4882,7531,181
30 November 1999118391191684991,3956,2258,4552,7271,176
31 December 1999118401191674991,3966,2148,4452,7191,174
31 January 2000118391201684961,3956,1958,4232,7081,169
29 February 2000118391211724951,3946,1828,4132,6981,157
31 March 2000118391231704981,3906,1638,3932,6881,152
30 April 2000118391231714991,3966,1778,4152,6681,145
31 May 2000118391231704981,3946,1598,3932,6541,140
30 June 2000118391231694981,3976,1388,3742,6431,137
31 July 2000118391221684981,4006,1158,3522,6231,131
31 August 2000118391211684981,3976,1048,3372,6061,121
30 September 2000118401221684941,3946,0908,3182,5931,118
31 October 2000118401221684961,3896,0788,3032,5791,112
30 November 2000117401211684921,3786,0378,2452,5671,106
31 December 2000117401221694931,3826,0538,2682,5551,097
31 January 2001116331071624561,3345,9388,0382,5301,089
28 February 200111636931574421,2995,8787,9132,5141,083
31 March 200111433911504331,2785,8197,8102,4961,073
30 April 200111339721354121,2115,6327,5062,4611,071
30 May 200111338681304001,1875,5867,4142,4341,071
30 June 200111337671303971,1745,5537,3632,4271,071

Note:

Actual strength does not include police personnel on secondment.


Table B: Number of leavers in each rank by month

Year/dateAccCh SuptSuptCh InspInspSergtConS/T Aux/ConR Con FTR Con PTGrand total
1999
January------1--59152674
February--------127--10424
March --11--2317--121046
April----1--1512--4427
May----1--149--11430
June----1--1216126552
July----------29--10324
August--1--1--413--38764
September----------510--12633
October----------19--9827
November----11--310--27446
December----------512--9632
2000
January--1------312--11633
February----------37--9524
March----------318--151046
April----------314120947
May ------21614112137
June--------3411112536
July--1--1----18--20747
August----1----215--15740
September--------2311--15233
October------------9--12728
November1--1--2217--13743
December--------1210--151240
2001
January--71693558105--229261
February--5781928561164144
March26431019562205127
April1512112272178--352338
May--145152765--27--144
June--11131333--7--59

Note:

Leavers include all cessation reasons eg medical retirement, voluntary early retirement, resigned etc., however the figures for April, May and June 2001 are projections based on known severance figures and do not take account of normal and medical wastage not yet notified.


23 Apr 2001 : Column: 9W

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 9W

Mr. William Ross: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will publish a table in the Official Report to show how many (a) inquiries were made about joining the RUC and (b) applications were received for each intake to the RUC broken down by gender; and what was the (i) gender and (ii) religious breakdown of each intake in each of the last five years. [156585]

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 10W

Mr. Ingram: The tables show the breakdown of applications for recruitment to the Royal Ulster Constabulary from 1996 to the last recruitment campaign in December 1998 and the corresponding number of successful applicants. The total number of inquiries received for each campaign are not available.

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 9W

Applications/acceptances to RUC from 1996-98 by gender and community background--Regulars

CB1 CB2 CB3
YearMFTMFTMFTTotal
Applications
Comp E 19969835881,571236133369129261552,095
Comp F 19961,3127422,054261145406242272692,729
Comp G 19971,3688042,172253159412188252132,797
Comp H 19981,3328022,134270161431228322602,825
Comp I 19981,4148982,312470280750246512973,359
Acceptances
Comp E 19961032212510313505143
Comp F 19967519941311414014122
Comp G 199779179613215909120
Comp H 199880451259312707144
Comp I 199872381109918415133

Full-time reserves

CB1 CB2 CB3
YearMFTMFTMFTTotal
Applications
Comp C 1996 6544211,07515410125590111011,431
Comp D 19977534021,15510975184113221351,474
Comp E 19973762366126046106431255773
Comp F 19977094231,13211978197104241281,457
Acceptances
Comp C 19966663129141024718161
Comp D 19971952400032529
Comp E 19972542921330335
Comp F 199731195032530358

Notes:

CB1--Perceived Protestant

CB2--Perceived Roman Catholic

CB3--Others


23 Apr 2001 : Column: 11W

23 Apr 2001 : Column: 11W


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