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Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many veterinary surgeons who were (a) employed by the former Ministry for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, (b) employed by other Government Departments and agencies and (c) in the private sector were used by the Government in their campaign to eradicate the outbreak of foot and mouth disease in 2001. 
Margaret Beckett: The number of veterinary surgeons assisting with the eradication of foot and mouth disease was not static throughout the epidemic. The table identifies veterinary resources as at mid April 2001 during the peak period.
|(a) MAFF veterinarians||344|
|(b) Veterinary surgeons employed by other Government Departments and agencies; including foreign Governments||122|
|(c) Private sector veterinarians(1)||1,169|
(1) Relates to temporary veterinary inspectors
Local veterinary inspectors (LVIs) assisted in terms of licensing and some sero-surveillance work but remained working for their respective practices. These have not been included in the breakdown of figures.
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Mr. Sayeed: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when she expects to announce the budget allocation for the financial year 1 April 2002 to 31 March 2003 for organisations sponsored by her Department; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Morley: The Department operates a system of delegated budgeting. Budgets for 200203 were issued to policy commands during April, for them to allocate as appropriate. Organisations who are sponsored by the Department are part of the delegation process. They are notified of the level of sponsorship once this has been determined.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what the target time is for processing an application for an import licence for camelids from non-EU countries; and if she will make a statement; 
Margaret Beckett: If the application for an import licence is complete and correct and we have up-to-date import conditions in place that have been agreed with the exporting country, we can dispatch a licence within three days. It is, however, more common for us to have to negotiate new or amended import conditions with the veterinary authorities of the exporting country. This can be a slow process and can take several months. For this reason we do not have a target date for such applications.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her policy is towards the recruitment of veterinary surgeons to replace those retiring from the State Veterinary Service. 
Margaret Beckett: We currently have a temporary moratorium on the recruitment of veterinary staff to replace those retiring from the State Veterinary Service. This will be reviewed following further examination of the funding for consequential work arising from FMD, which is presently underway.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many veterinary surgeons are employed by the State Veterinary Service; how many such posts are vacant; and how many vets are due to retire from the SVS within the next 12 months. 
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Margaret Beckett [holding answer 1 July 2002]: As at 1 April 2002, the State Veterinary Service (SVS) had five regions comprising of 23 divisional offices. Veterinary staff employed in each region is indicated in the table:
|Region||Number of staff employed|
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many ungulates, broken down by species, were imported from non-EU countries into the United Kingdom in each of the past three years; and if she will make a statement. 
Margaret Beckett: The number of ungulates, broken down by species, imported from non-EU countries into Great Britain (but not including imports into Northern Ireland) for the period 19992001 is shown in the following table.
|Alpacas (and other Ruminants)||468||1,194||29|
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) when she was advised by the European Commission that in the absence of an approved third country list under Directive 92/65/EC ungulates covered by this directive cannot be legally imported into a Community country; 
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Margaret Beckett: The Commission gave a verbal summary of its views at a meeting of the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health on 10 April this year. We have not yet received formal notification of any changes to the existing arrangements. We have written to the Commission seeking clarification of their position and have alerted them to the impact a suspension of such imports would have on the UK, not only for the well established trade in alpacas but also for breeding programmes of certain endangered species across the Community. There have been a number of formal and informal discussions in Brussels with the Commission and other member states and the Commission intends to introduce harmonised rules for certain species covered by Directive 92/65/EC.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the average time taken over the last 12 months was to process an application for a bull to be licensed for artificial insemination. 
Margaret Beckett: The average time taken over the last 12 months to carry out pre-approval health testing of bulls and issue a licence for artificial insemination was 28 days from receipt of a complete and correct application.
Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many (a) red kites and (b) golden plovers there were in (i) Scotland, (ii) England and (iii) Wales in each year since 1972. 
|Number of pairs of red kites|
(2) Information available for Wales in 2000, for England in 1996, 1999 and 2000 and for Scotland in 2000 relates only to numbers of breeding pairs.
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