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Average Earnings and Pensions: Increases since 1980

Lord Jenkins of Putney asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Mackay of Ardbrecknish: Between the benefit upratings in November 1980 and April 1995, average earnings are estimated to have increased by 30.5 per cent. in real terms. During the same period the basic State Pension has risen by 1.1 per cent. in real terms for a person on their own insurance and by 0.8 per cent. for a woman claiming on her husband's insurance.

The Average Earnings Index (whole economy) as published by the Central Statistical Office has been used.

Meat and Live Animal Exports

Lord Hylton asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Lucas: The Meat and Livestock Commission continuously monitors our trade in meat and in live animal exports, and publishes regular estimates of trade levels. Ministers regularly refer to these figures in answers to parliamentary questions and correspondence and in speeches; they indicate that around 80 per cent. of our total meat exports in 1994 were "on the hook".

The Government issued a consultation on 23 October explaining the new EU agreement on the welfare of animals during transport and outlining our ideas for its implementation. The document was circulated widely and a press notice was issued announcing the start of the consultation process. I hope the document will provoke thorough and constructive debate of all the issues involved.

European Council, 26 October

Lord Gainford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Lucas: My right honourable friends the Secretary of State for Scotland and the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food represented the United Kingdom at the meeting of the Fisheries Council in Luxembourg on 26 October.

The Council agreed new measures to monitor and control fishing effort in Western Waters from 1 January 1996. The UK's objectives were to secure arrangements which will be effective in ensuring that fishing activities

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by all member states in Western Waters are managed satisfactorily and that fishing effort in these waters is not increased to the detriment of our industry. At the same time we were concerned to ensure that the arrangements should not impose an excessive burden on the fishing industry. The agreement unanimously approved by the Council of Ministers reflected our concerns and strikes the right balance between the objectives of control and avoidance of excessive regulation.

The Council also agreed by qualified majority, with Germany voting against, to continue the provision of Community financial assistance to member states for fisheries enforcement for a further five years when the current arrangements expire at the end of the year. The measures include special assistance for Ireland, as agreed at last December's Fisheries Council, in recognition of the exceptional demands and costs involved in undertaking enforcement in the waters of the Republic of Ireland. These waters include the majority of the Irish Box.

Ministers welcomed the Agreement on Straddling and High Migratory fish stocks achieved in New York in August. This agreement usefully lays down rules for the effective conservation and management of stocks and my right honourable friend the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food was gratified that the Council endorsed the importance of its early ratification when it opens for signature in December.

The Council discussed the continuing negotiations with Morocco to enable Community fishermen to return to Moroccan waters. Nearly 700 Spanish and Portuguese vessels which formerly fished off Morocco have been confined to port since May. The Council agreed unanimously that payments should be made to the fishermen concerned to offset their losses. This is an exceptional measure applying for a limited period. As it will be funded from within the existing budget, it does not involve new financial provision.

The Council also welcomed a Commission report on progress in implementing the multi-annual guidance programmes and in particular the reductions in fishing capacity that have been achieved. The Commission will now be carrying out wide consultations in preparation for the establishment of the next round of programmes to start in January 1997.

Reserve Forces: Doctors and Consultants

Lord Ironside asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many doctors and consultants are now serving with the Territorial Army and Army Reserves, the Royal Naval Reserve and RAF Reserve.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Earl Howe): The figures requested are as follows:

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Territorial Army 610
Royal Naval Reserve 63
Royal Auxiliary Air Force 15
Regular Army Reserve of Officers 339
Royal Fleet Reserve 197
RAF Reserve of Regular Officers 3

Armed Services: Medical Staff

Lord Ironside asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many medical staff, other than doctors and consultants are at present serving in the Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force.

Earl Howe: The figures requested are in the attached table.

Clinical Army Navy RAF
Officers Soldiers Officers Ratings Officers Airmen
Combat Medical Technicians 1,520
Electrical Physiological Technician 2 22
Enrolled Nurse General 42 79
Environmental Health Technicians 13 80 8 49
General Medical Technicians 59 261 29
Laboratory Technicians 7 83 27 70
Operating Theatre Technicians 1 108 47 54
Pharmacy Technicians 5 36 15 26
Physical Measurement Technicians 2 17
Physiotherapists 25 17
Radiographers 4 40 30 32
Registered Mental Health Nurses 12 34
Single Service Nursing Corps 364 578 90 170 158
Staff Nurses 198
Total 421 2,521 90 631 187 564

HELIOS II Programme

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they intend that the United Kingdom should take part in the HELIOS II programme, which is concerned with intelligence satellites.

Earl Howe: HELIOS II is a French initiative. The UK has received no offer to take part in this programme.

Anglo-American Mutual Defence Assistance Agreement

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What have been the amounts of the monies paid or owed by either party to the other under the Anglo-American Mutual Defence Agreement of 1950, including the "administration expenditures".

Earl Howe: Since the first accounts were opened in 1958/59 to record the receipts of sales of equipment supplied under the Anglo-American Mutual Defence Assistance Agreement of 1950, total receipts have been £7,746,105, and total payments £7,164,664. "Administrative expenditures" are estimated to be in the order of £860,700. Neither party owes any amounts to the other.

"No Day Named" Motions and Questions

Lord Jenkins of Putney asked the Leader of the House:

    Whether he will support a proposal to allow Lords to add their names to Motions and Questions tabled under the heading of No Day Named.

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The Lord Privy Seal (Viscount Cranborne): The Procedure Committee considered such a proposal at its meeting in January this year, and recommended against any change in existing procedures. I do not intend to put a further proposal to the Committee at the present time.

Stirling Corporation (Water etc.) Order Confirmation Act 1922

The Earl of Mar and Kellie asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Which provisions, if any, of the Stirling Corporation (Water etc.) Order Confirmation Act 1922, are still in force.

The Parliamentary-Under Secretary of State, Scottish Office (The Earl of Lindsay): Enquiries have shown that Sections 11 and 14 to 18 of the Act were repealed by the Stirling Burgh Order Confirmation Act 1939. It would appear that the remaining provisions of the Act are still in force.

Prisoners and Criminal Proceedings (Scotland) Act 1993: Releases

Lord McCluskey asked Her Majesty's Government:

    (1) on what date and by what authority Section 1 of the Prisoners and Criminal Proceedings (Scotland) Act 1993 [Release of short-term, long-term and life prisoners] was brought into force; (2) how many prisoners fell to be released on or about the first day of the operation of that section, being prisoners who

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    would not have been released then but for the coming into force of that section; (3)(i) how many short-term prisoners have since been released by virtue of the provisions of the section, after serving one-half of their sentences, (ii) how many long-term prisoners have been released after serving two-thirds of their sentences, (iii) how many long-term prisoners who served less than two-thirds of their sentences have been released by the Secretary of State in exercise of his statutory powers under Section 1(3).

The Earl of Lindsay: Section 1 of the Prisoners and Criminal Proceedings (Scotland) Act 1993 came into effect on 1 October 1993 by virtue of the Prisoners and Criminal Proceedings (Scotland) Act 1993 Commencement, Transitional Provisions and Savings Order 1993.

The transitional arrangements for early release provided for in the 1993 Act resulted in the release of approximately 600 short-term prisoners on 1 October 1993.

Information on liberations has only recently been recorded electronically by establishments. The total number of short-term prisoners released at half-sentence term since 1 October 1993 could, therefore, only be compiled at disproportionate cost, as it would involve a large scale manual exercise. There have been no long-term prisoners released under the provisions of the Act since 1 October 1993 having served two-thirds of their sentence. I shall write to the noble and learned Lord to provide him with information on the number of long-term prisoners released since 1 October 1993 who have served less than two-thirds of their sentence as soon as the information can be extracted.

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