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14 Nov 2007 : Column 254W—continued


Renewable Energy

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what recent estimate he has made of the share of the UK’s primary energy consumption generated from renewable sources using the European Commission’s method of calculation; and on what assumptions this estimate is based. [162873]


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Malcolm Wicks: According to statistics published by Eurostat in September 2007, gross inland consumption of energy in the United Kingdom in 2005 was 232,259 thousand tonnes of oil equivalent of which renewables accounted for 4,055 thousand tonnes of oil equivalent or 1.7 per cent. The corresponding percentage for 2004 was 1.5. The 2005 percentage for the 27 member states of the EU taken together was 6.7. The definitions used for these “primary fuel input” percentages are as follows.

Eurostat have also published (in October 2007) statistics that show the percentage of final energy consumption covered by renewable energy. For the UK in 2005 this was 1.3 per cent. up from 1.2 per cent. in 2004 and compares with 8.3 per cent. for the 27 member states of the EU taken together in 2005. The definitions used for these final consumption percentages are as follows.

Small Businesses: Copeland

Mr. Jamie Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many small businesses within the Copeland area have declared bankruptcy in each of the last five financial years. [163003]

Mr. McFadden: Table 1 shows the number of bankruptcies in Copeland for the last five calendar years derived from postcodes provided by bankrupt individuals (financial year information cannot be provided in the time available).

The "business bankruptcies" shown are all those cases where the bankrupt individual was classified as being self-employed/trading; it is not possible to further split these by size of business. Cases presented on the petition of the debtor (the business) are also shown separately from those presented on the petition of a creditor.

Classifying bankrupts into geographic areas is done using the postcode that the bankrupt individual provides. The use of this in assigning an individual to a district is thus as reliable as the postcode information provided.


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Table 1
Bankruptcies
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006

Copeland business bankruptcies

10

7

7

7

5

Of which:

Copeland business bankruptcies creditor petition

2

1

2

1

1

Copeland business bankruptcies debtor petition

8

6

5

6

4

All Copeland bankruptcies

33

29

28

30

38


Mr. Jamie Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many small businesses within Copeland have ceased trading within (a) 12 months and (b) three years of starting to trade in the last five years. [163026]

Mr. Timms: Data on the number of all small businesses that cease trading are not available.

However, data on the number of businesses of all sizes that cease trading one and three years after registering for VAT are available. Due to low absolute numbers of businesses de-registering for VAT for Copeland local authority, the data are combined with those for Barrow-in-Furness local authority to give a more robust estimate.

The following tables show the number of businesses that de-registered for VAT within one and three years of registration, for Copeland local authority and Barrow-in-Furness local authority combined, by year of registration for the latest five years worth of available data.

The number of VAT de-registrations within one of registration, and the one year de-registration rate by registration year, in Barrow-in-Furness and Copeland combined
Year of registration
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004

Number de-registering for VAT within one year

16

7

7

13

11

De-registration rate(1) within one year (percentage)

9

5

4

4

5

(1) Calculated as the proportion of those registering that de-register within the period.
Source:
BERR analysis of VAT and survival rate data

The number of VAT de-registrations within three years of registration, and the three year de-registration rate by registration year, in Barrow-in-Furness and Copeland combined
Year of registration
1998 1999 2000 2001 2002

Number de-registering for VAT within three years

76

58

44

32

34

De-registration rate(1) within three years (percentage)

36

29

25

22

19

(1) Calculated as the proportion of those registering that de-register within the period.
Source:
BERR analysis of VAT and survival rate data

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VAT registration and de-registration data for 2006 will be published on 14( )November 2007. Survival data will not be produced again until 2009.

Since the registration rate exceeded the de-registration rate throughout the period, the stock of VAT registered businesses in Copeland local authority rose by 9 per cent. between the start of 2001 and the start of 2006 and the stock for Copeland and Barrow-in-Furness combined rose by 7 per cent.

VAT registrations do not capture all business activity. Businesses are unlikely to be registered if they fall below the compulsory VAT threshold, which was £60,000 at the start of 2006. Similarly, businesses that de-register may not have closed. Only 1.9 million out of 4.5 million UK enterprises (41 per cent.) were registered for VAT at the start of 2006.

Defence

Afghanistan: Peacekeeping Operations

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what system is used to monitor the armed forces level of fuel reserves and fuel consumption in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan. [162571]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: In both Iraq and Afghanistan, bulk fuel storage tanks are dipped on a daily basis to measure the volumes of fuel held. This is reported upwards through routine reports and returns.

In Iraq, in order to take account of fuel expansion in hot weather, bulk fuel meters are used at fuel inlets and outlets as an additional measure to monitor fuel levels.

Armed Forces: Deployment

Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate his Department has made of the average number of days of service personnel's rest and recreation mid-way through an operational tour which has been lost due to circumstances outside the control of the individual concerned in the last 12 months; and if he will make a statement. [162261]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: This information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. However, operational circumstances such as medical evacuations do cause delays from time to time. Significant effort is made by the permanent joint head quarters and commanders in the theatres to ensure that delays experienced by personnel proceeding on their rest and recuperation are kept to a minimum.

Armed Forces: Shipping

Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how the effectiveness and efficiency of (a) Hunt Class and (b) River Class patrol vessels are measured; what the principal differences are between them; and if he will make a statement. [163374]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The River and Hunt Class vessels provide different capabilities. The River Class are Offshore Patrol Vessels that are leased by the
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Department, primarily to meet its remit to DEFRA for providing Fishery Protection in UK waters. The Hunt Class, however, are Mine Counter-measure Vessels that, prior to the introduction of the River Class, were used to meet the Department’s requirement to carry out Fishery Protection duties.

The principal differences between the two Classes are listed in the table as follows:

River Class Hunt Class

In Service Date

2003

1980-1989

Number in Class

3

11

Number in-service

3

11

Primary role

Offshore Patrol Vessel

Mine Countermeasure Vessel

Length

79.5m

60m

Beam

13.6m

10.5m

Draught

3.8m

2.2m

Tonnes

1,677

750

Complement

30 (plus boarding party)

45

Weapons systems

1 x 20mm gun

1 x 30mm gun Outfit DLK decoy systems

Mine Warfare systems

None

Remote controlled submersibles and mine clearance divers


Armoured Fighting Vehicles

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost is of uparmouring one US Force Protection Inc's Cougar vehicle to create the finished Mastiff vehicle. [162563]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The full integration cost of converting a Cougar vehicle into a Mastiff is £308,000 excluding VAT. This includes armour, electronic counter measures, communications system, weapons station, miscellaneous internal fitments and stowage, situational awareness system and design and developments costs. The cost of the armour element, which includes procurement of materials, machining and fitting, is £70,000, excluding VAT.

Charities: Liability

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how much Defence Estate (Thetford) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163022]

(2) how much Defence Estate (Warminster) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163023]

(3) how much Defence Estate (Telford) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163024]

(4) how much Defence Estate (Rosyth) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163025]


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(5) how many decisions to waive the liability charge on Defence Estate (Aldershot) have been made for charity events since 2006; and what events were involved; [163027]

(6) how much Defence Estate (Andover) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163028]

(7) how much Defence Estate (Sutton Coldfield) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163029]

(8) how much Defence Estate (Salisbury) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163030]

(9) how much Defence Estate (Osbaldwick, York) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005; [163031]

(10) how much Defence Estate (High Wycombe) has billed in liability charges for charity events held on his Department's property since April 2005. [163032]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: It is not possible to separately identify liability charges billed by each Defence Estates (DE) office from other charges for events without incurring disproportionate cost in each case.

DE Aldershot has made no decisions to waive liability charges for charity events since 2006.


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