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Whether nearly one-third of young people in training schools in Northern Ireland in recent years have suffered from a physical or learning disability; and what plans they have for improving early diagnosis and appropriate treatment.
Lord Dubs: Before the commencement of the Children (NI) Order children were sent to the training schools for reason of care, protection and control, non-attendance at school, or for offending. Since 4 November 1996, training schools deal solely with offenders. While each child is assessed on entry, information about the proportion who have a physical or learning disability is not available.
What moves are being made to get the beef export ban lifted.
The Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Lord Donoughue): The Government have decided to adopt a twin-track approach of pursuing a revised Export Certified Herds Scheme, and developing a new proposal for a date-based export scheme. We have put our ideas to the
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Commission about both schemes, and will press both with equal vigour.
The Export Certified Herds Scheme is being revised taking account of criticisms made earlier by the EU Scientific Veterinary Committee. Eligibility for the scheme would be more restricted than initially proposed, but it would still be open in principle to producers in all parts of the United Kingdom.
Details of the date-based scheme will be announced when exploratory talks with the Commission have progressed and the Government are ready to put forward a formal proposal.
When the results of the studies of the impact of fishing nets on cetaceans, and in particular the study in the Celtic Sea, will be available.
Lord Donoughue: I believe that the noble Lord is referring to a paper by the Sea Mammal Research Unit (SMRU) which is expected to be published in the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) Journal of Marine Science later this year. I have asked SMRU to place a copy of the paper in the Library of the House as soon as it is available.
How the licence condition that 50 per cent. of the fish catch under that licence should be landed in the United Kingdom is currently enforced.
Lord Donoughue: In every six-month period, UK fishing vessels licensed to fish for quota species must land 50 per cent. of the catch of such species into the UK, or failing that, visit a UK port at least four times, unless otherwise authorised by the Fisheries Department. This provision is monitored by reference to catch data obtained from the landing declarations which all vessels over 10 metres in overall length have to submit on the completion of their fishing trips.
What proportion of United Kingdom quota in each fish species is currently accounted for by "quota hoppers"; and
What proportion of United Kingdom quota in each fish species is currently landed in the United Kingdom.
Lord Donoughue: The table below sets out details of the main quota species caught by the UK fleet in 1996, together with the estimated proportion of the recorded landings made into the UK and the estimated proportion
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of recorded landings made by UK vessels which are wholly or partly owned by overseas interests. The catches relate to those fish stocks which are subject to quota and which are principally taken in ICES Areas IV, VI and VII.
|Main quota species||Total catch by UK fleet in 1996 (tonnes liveweight)||Estimated percentage of total catch landed into UK||Estimated percentage of total catch landed by UK vessels wholly or partly owned by overseas interests, into the UK and elsewhere(1)|
Whether, in the absence of agreement on new derogations, the basis for the common fisheries policy after 2002 would be Council Regulation (EEC) No. 101/76; and, if so, whether Spain, Portugal, Greece and Italy acting together would form a sufficient blocking minority to prevent any such derogation being agreed to; and
Whether, under Council Regulation (EEC) No. 101/76, after 2002 that part of the United Kingdom quota currently fished by "quota hoppers" will be regarded as quota attaching to the communities from which those quota hoppers come, and that any move to negate this by preserving the principle of relative stability would require a new derogation.
Lord Donoughue: In the absence of agreement on new measures, the basis for the common fisheries policy after 2002 will be Council Regulation (EEC) No. 3760/92, including its provisions on relative stability.
With reference to the proposition that "Because we have agreed a way forward with the Commission we are in a much better position to avoid legal challenge
With reference to the letter from the President of the European Commission to the Prime Minister of 17 June 1997, when they expect the Commission to come forward with proposals for "developing greater involvement in the decision making process at the level of the local fishing interests most affected", and what steps the Commission has already taken in this direction.
Lord Donoughue: I expect this to be a continuing process, building on existing contacts with local fishing interests. As part of the process, the Commission has recently held pilot regional committees on North Sea flatfish and, on 23-24 June, on management of North East Atlantic pelagic fisheries.
Whether they expect that further reductions will be made in the UK fishing fleet under the Multi-Annual
Lord Donoughue: Although the European Commission has still to take final decisions on the reduction targets for individual Member States' Multi-Annual Guidance Programmes in the light of the rates agreed by the Council in April, it is clear that there will have to be further reductions in UK fishing effort in order to comply. Discussions are continuing with the industry on our implementation plans and the position will vary as between different fleet segments. But within segments all vessels will be subject to the same requirements.
What plans they have to review salmon and freshwater fisheries legislation.
Lord Donoughue: My right honourable friends the Secretary of State for Wales and the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food will shortly be establishing a small, independent group to review all aspects of existing policies and legislation on salmon and freshwater fisheries in England and Wales. This will be a comprehensive review, intended to produce ideas for the future management and conservation of salmon and freshwater fish. The Government will be announcing the members of the review group in the autumn.
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