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David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with representatives of the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform on the European Union's targets for renewable energy usage; and if he will make a statement. 
Gillian Merron: The EU's climate change and energy package is an example of EU global leadership on climate change. Agreement on the package, later this year, will underline that the EU is on a fast track to a low carbon economy. A key part of this is the target the EU has set itself of deriving 20 per cent. of its energy needs from renewables.
The climate and energy package, including the renewables element, has been the subject of several recent discussions in the NSID-EU Cabinet Committee, which my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary chairs, and at which the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) is represented. BERR's recent consultation on the UK's renewable energy strategy sets out plans for driving up the use of renewable energy in the UK, to enable us to meet our share of the EU target. It will help shape the UK's renewable energy strategy, which will be published next spring, once the UK's share of the target is agreed.
The lead for the EU's 2020 package was previously shared between BERR and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Following recent structural changes, that lead now falls to the Department for Energy and Climate Change.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he plans to make to the Russian Government on their refusal to allow the EU ceasefire monitors into South Ossetia and Abkhazia; and if he will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and I, along with senior officials, are in regular contact on this issue with our partners in the EU, UN and Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). The Government continue to press the Russian Government, through these organisations, to allow the OSCE monitors and the EU monitoring mission access to South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
The head of the OSCE mission visited Moscow on 22 October and met with the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister to discuss access to the disputed territories. France currently holds the EU presidency and on 22 October the French Foreign Minister, Bernard Kouchner, called on the Russians to grant European observers in Georgia access to the disputed areas.
Bill Rammell: The Government supported United Nations Security Council Resolutions (UNSCR) 1816 and 1838 calling on parties to address the growing problem of piracy off the coast of Somalia. We have been working with our EU and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) partners to implement these resolutions.
In September, the EU set up a team to co-ordinate naval escorts protecting World Food Programme deliveries to Mogadishu. The EU is now planning a larger counter-piracy operation to which the UK will provide the operation commander and operation headquarters. EU partners agree that any operation must be co-ordinated with NATO and Combined Task Force 150, themselves active to deter piracy off the Horn of Africa. The UK contributes to both.
Through the Department for International Development, the UK has allocated £25 million to support efforts to tackle instability in Somalia, which creates the conditions allowing piratical activity to flourish.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Government of Uzbekistan on establishing an independent inquiry into the events in Andijan in May 2005; and if he will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: The UK has proposed on numerous occasions, both bilaterally and with EU partners, to the Government of Uzbekistan that they establish an independent inquiry into the events in Andijan in May 2005. Most recently, Foreign and Commonwealth Office officials raised this issue with the Uzbek Government during a visit to Tashkent in May 2008.
The EU has held two rounds of EU-Uzbekistan experts' meetings on the Andijan events, where the Uzbek side has maintained that these events were a foreign-led conspiracy to exploit religious extremists and terrorism in order to effect a coloured revolution. The Uzbek authorities have consistently rejected calls for an independent, international enquiry.
Caroline Flint: The third EU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue is due to take place in mid-2009. The second EU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue took place on 5 June 2008 under the Slovenian presidency.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Government of Uzbekistan on the detention of journalists Salijon Abdurahmanov and Yusuf Juma; and if he will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: Officials from our embassy in Tashkent have met Salijon Abdurahmanov and Yusuf Juma on a number of occasions. We are deeply concerned by their arrests and are following their situation closely. Both cases were raised at the EU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue on 5 June 2008.
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what estimate he has made of the number of refugees who left Uzbekistan for neighbouring countries following events in Andijan in May 2005; and if he will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: UK estimates of the number of refugees who left Uzbekistan for neighbouring countries following events in Andijan in May 2005 are based on figures released by the international agencies.
The UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) was closely involved in supporting efforts by Kyrgyzstan to give shelter to some 500 refugees from Andijan in May 2005. Of the 450 refugees who initially registered with UNHCR, 439 were transferred to Romania at the end of July and on to third countries. There may be many more Uzbek refugees in Kyrgyzstan who have not registered with UNHCR or other international organisations.
Mr. Tyrie: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission what assessment the Commission has made of the accuracy of the Electoral Register. 
Sir Peter Viggers:
The Electoral Commission informs me that its 2005 report, Understanding Electoral Registration, found that the best estimate for non-
registration among the eligible household population in England and Wales at 15 October 2000 was between 8 per cent. and 9 per cent. The report is available in the House of Commons Library and on the Commission's website.
In addition, the Commission published in October 2007 the findings of a report by GfK NOP into registration in London: The completeness and accuracy of the Electoral Registers in Greater Londona pilot study, which is available on its website.
Norman Baker: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission how many cases involving (a) regulated donees and (b) possible breaches of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 the Electoral Commission has (i) investigated, (ii) considered referring to the police and (iii) referred to the police in (A) 2008 and (B) in each of the last eight years; what offences were involved in each case; and how many investigators were employed on this work in 2008. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that it has investigated five cases involving regulated donees and possible breaches of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (PPERA). Two cases arose in 2007 and the remaining three arose in 2008.
I am informed that all these cases involved the late reporting of donations to the Commission. The late reporting of donations by regulated donees is a criminal offence, so the Commission always considers whether such a matter should be referred to the police. The Commission decided to refer one of the cases arising in 2008 to the police.
The Commission further informs me that during 2008 this work was conducted by the Commission's Enforcement Team (Casework) which consists of a team manager, an investigator and two caseworkers. This team also deals with enforcement issues relating to all other categories of regulated entities under PPERA, and the administration of Policy Development Grants.
Mr. Tyrie: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Beckenham of 6 October 2008, Official Report, column 84W, on the Representation of the People Act 1983, what consideration the Commission has given to issuing its guidance in the form of codes of practice under paragraph 14 of schedule 4A of the 1983 Act. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that it believes that issuing guidance in the form of codes of practice would not provide a regulated entity with any additional assistance or certainty, beyond that provided by the Commission's current guidance.
The Commission also informs me that the procedure for producing codes of practice requires that the Secretary of State approves the draft and may amend the draft before it is laid before Parliament. The Commission is concerned that this requirement would reduce its ability to update the guidance on a timely basis.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Minister for the Olympics what consultancy contracts have been issued in relation to the 2012 Olympics in each year since 2004; and what the (a) value of contract, (b) purpose of contract and (c) contractor was in each case. 
Tessa Jowell: The following tables show information on consultancy contracts issued by the Government Olympic Executive (GOE), the now disbanded Olympic Programme Support Unit (OPSU) and the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), in relation to the 2012 Olympics in each financial year since 2004.
These costs reflect the process of preparing the bid, establishing and building up the requisite high level commercial and financial capacity in these organisations, while ensuring that key delivery milestones are, and continue to be, achieved across the programme. For example, this expert advice has helped us to:
Undertake detailed work to deliver the funding package for the Games just 21 months from bid win, well ahead of any other Games;
Begin construction on the Olympic Stadium over 2 months ahead of schedule.
|Contracts issued 2004-05 to 2008-09|
|Supplier||Task||Value (£) including VAT|
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