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15 Oct 2002 : Column 678W—continued

Energy Review

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what responses have been received on the PIU Energy Review and when the expected White Paper will be published. [71407]

Mr. Wilson: The Government has launched a consultation on energy policy, which includes consideration of the findings of the PIU Energy Review, with a view to publishing a White Paper around the turn of the year. We are posting replies to the consultation on the DTI's web site.

Nuclear Industry

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, pursuant to the answer of 23 July, ref 70369, what definition she gives to the materials that are to be transported from Japan to Sellafield. [73700]

Mr. Wilson: The material is unused Mixed Oxide Fuel.

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Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, pursuant to the reply dated 23 July, ref 70369, what future use she plans for the material being transported from Japan to Sellafield. [73702]

Mr. Wilson: This is a matter for BNFL. I understand there are a number of options under consideration for re-use of the fuel.

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many shipments of nuclear materials from which she believes reusable materials may be recovered are expected to be made by sea to Sellafield within the next two years. [73507]

Mr. Wilson: The timing, numbers and nature of deliveries under reprocessing contracts are a commercial matter between BNFL and its customers.

Mr. Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many shipments of nuclear waste have entered the UK for processing and disposal since 1997; where each shipment originated from; and how much money was received for the taking in of each shipment. [74595]

Mr. Wilson: Details of the timing of deliveries to the UK of spent nuclear fuel from overseas in fulfilment of reprocessing contracts is an operational matter for the organisations concerned. The detailed contractual arrangements, including contract prices, are a commercial matter between the contracting parties.

In respect of BNFL's contracts for THORP, it can be noted that details of the customer countries, the total amounts of spent fuel to be reprocessed and the overall value of the contracts was included in BNFL's July 1993 publication ''the Economic and Commercial Justification for THORP'', a copy of which is in the Libraries of the House. Since 1976 all BNFL's reprocessing contracts with overseas customers have included options for returning to the country of origin waste arising from reprocessing the fuel. It is the Government's policy that these options should be exercised.

UKAEA no longer undertakes fuel reprocessing. There has been one delivery of irradiated fuel to Dounreay since 1997—a small quantity of fuel from Georgia received in April 1998 on behalf of the UK Government.

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, pursuant to the answer of 23 July 2002, ref. 70369, what materials, and in what quantity, can be recovered and re-used from the material to be transported from Japan to Sellafield. [73701]

Mr. Wilson: I understand from BNFL that the fuel returned to the UK from Japan contains 3439 kilograms of uranium and 255 kilograms of plutonium and that all of the uranium and plutonium can be re-used.

Mr. Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on the role of nuclear power in energy production over the next 50 years. [74362]

Ms Hewitt: The Government is currently carrying out a review of future energy policy with a view to issuing a White Paper in the New Year. The review includes consideration of the role of nuclear power generation.

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Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations her Department has received regarding market pressures constraining nuclear generator revenue. [71515]

Mr. Wilson: The Department has received several representations from a number of players, including nuclear generators, regarding the market pressures on nuclear generator revenue.

Renewable Energy Generation

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans she has to increase hydroelectric storage facilities to meet the increase in renewable energy generation. [74355]

Mr. Wilson: The UK is relatively well endowed with hydroelectric storage, with plants at Dinorwig, Ffestiniog, Ben Cruachan and Foyers, and there are no plans to increase capacity. However, storage does have a role to play in facilitating the integration of renewable generation, and the Government is supporting the development of the Regenesys fuel cell based storage technology. Regenesys is a modular, flexible, storage technology and has considerable potential to support the integration of renewable energy.

Social Landlords

Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will exempt registered Social Landlords who are housing associations registered and regulated by the Housing Corporation under the Housing Act 1996 from proposals to extend administration provisions to industrial and provident societies. [73984]

Miss Melanie Johnson: Following detailed discussions with a range of interested parties, the Government tabled amendments to the Enterprise Bill at the Committee stage in the House of Lords to ensure that the Bill's provisions providing for the extension of administration to industrial and provident societies do not apply to registered social landlords under the Housing Act 1996, nor the Housing (Scotland) Act 2001.

e-Government

David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what involvement her Department had in evaluating the completed trials of publicly-accessed IT systems in Leicestershire post offices for their potential to help roll out e-Government; and if she will make a statement. [71410]

Mr. Timms: The Department chaired the Core Evaluation Team of Government departments and other stakeholders which evaluated the Leicestershire and Rutland pilot of post offices as Government General Practitioners (Your Guide). The evaluation report was published on 23 July (I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given to my hon. Friend, the Member for Preston (Mr. Hendrick) on 23 July, Official Report column 947W.

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Beryllium

Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what factors underlay the decision to license the export of beryllium to (a) India and (b) Iran in 2001. [74697]

Nigel Griffiths: All relevant export licence applications are rigorously assessed on a case-by-case basis against the consolidated EU and national arms export licensing criteria and other previously announced Government policies. The consolidated criteria include a specific reference to the UK's international obligations and commitments that work to prevent the proliferation of both conventional weapons and weapons of mass destruction.

The Government's export licensing policy for Iran was set out in the reply given by my hon. Friend the Member for Manchester, Central, to my hon. Friend the Member for Rugby and Kenilworth on 28 January 1998, Official Report, columns 273–274W.

Since the publication of the 2001 Annual Report on Strategic Export Controls it has come to light that the entry for Beryllium, licensed for export to India, was incorrectly reported. In any case, the application was refused.

Mr. Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list the occasions on which a licence has been granted by the Government for the export of Beryllium since 2 May 1997, stating for each licence (a) the country to which export was granted and (b) the quantity of the export. [74389]

Ms Hewitt: The export of beryllium is controlled under entries ML8 of Part III, Schedule 1 of the Export of Goods (Control) Order 1994, and 1C111, 1C230 and 6C004 of Annex 1 to Council Regulations (EC) No. 1334/2000.

Details of all export licences issued are published by destination in the Government's Annual Reports on Strategic Export Controls. Copies of the 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001 Annual Reports are available from the Libraries of the House. Since the publication of the 2001 Annual Report it has come to light that the entry for beryllium, licensed for export to India, was incorrectly reported. The application was refused.

Between 1 January 2002 and 17 September 2002 no Standard Individual Export Licence or Open Individual Export Licence was issued for the proposed export of beryllium.

Information on the quantity of beryllium licensed for export is being withheld from disclosure under Part II, Exemptions 13 and 14 of the Open Government Code of Practice on Access to Government Information.

Fuel Stocks

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many days' supply are available in the UK of (a) petrol, (b) diesel and (c) aviation fuel. [74437]

Mr. Wilson: At the end of July 2002, the UK had stocks equivalent to (a) 83 days' supply of petrol, (b) 51 days' supply of DERV (diesel engine road vehicle fuel), and (c) 46 days' supply of ATF (aviation turbine fuel).

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Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what estimate the Government have made of the levels of stocks of refined petroleum products required to meet (a) private consumer and industrial demand and (b) Government use in an orderly manner in the event of a crude price spike consequent upon a conflict in Iraq; and if she will make a statement. [74439]

Mr. Wilson: At 31 July 2002 the UK had stocks equivalent to 82½ days consumption of petroleum products, which is above the stock level of 67½ days worth of consumption of oil products that the UK is obliged to hold at any one time in accordance with EU legislation.

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions have taken place in the last three months with (a) the European Commission and (b) the IEA about a common approach to oil stocks and supply in the event of a conflict in Iraq; and if she will make a statement. [74438]

Mr. Wilson: The IEA Governing Board meets regularly to discuss oil stocks and oil emergency contingency plans.

The European Commission presented its recent draft proposals regarding energy security, including oil stock requirements at the Energy Council on 4 October where I represented the UK Government.


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