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The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Chalker of Wallasey): Since 7 June 1989 the United Kingdom has enforced an embargo on the sale to China of "weapons, and equipment which could be used for internal repression". The EU introduced a ban on arms sales to China on 26 June 1989 but the scope of that ban has, in the absence of agreement on a common interpretation, been left for national interpretation. In the interests of clarity we have decided that henceforward the embargo will include:
(2) What professional advice the Secretary of State for Defence has taken on the matter e.g. from English Heritage or from the group chaired by Dame Jennifer Jenkins which recently reviewed Greenwich Park for the Department of National Heritage;
(3) Whether they accept the Jenkins' Review statement that "the choice of users and terms of occupation for the Royal Naval College, the hospital and nurses home . . . are crucial in terms of the buildings themselves and their integral setting with the park", and if some of these buildings are being
(4) Whether any comprehensive cost benefit analysis (not excluding the problem of the nuclear reactor) has been conducted, and if so whether it showed that the taxpayer, and not only the defence budget, would benefit from the transfer of the present uses to Camberley, given the national and international importance of this group of Grade 1 buildings, the maintenance of which in full and sympathetic use is a public requirement; and
(5) Whether they will now, as proposed in the Jenkins review as its first recommendation, "put forward Greenwichthe riverside complex, observatory and parkas a suitable candidate for world heritage status".
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Henley): I refer the noble Lord to my Answer of 30 March (H.L. Debates, col. WA 54) about our decision that the Joint Service Command and Staff College would be at Camberley, in which, inter alia, I addressed the future of the Royal Naval College Greenwich. This decision was taken on the basis of an investment appraisal which demonstrated the benefits to defence and to the taxpayer of establishing the Joint Service Staff College at Camberley.
In our work to determine a suitable occupant for the Royal Naval College, we sought professional advice from Building Design Partnership, a firm with experience in the field of listed buildings. We will continue to work closely with English Heritage, and we will keep the imaginative proposals made by Dame Jennifer Jenkins' Royal Parks Review Group very much in mind in coming to a conclusion.
Greenwich Hospital, the Crown Charity which owns the site, has sought expressions of interest for the Dreadnought Seamen's Hospital, which has lain empty for some nine years, and the Devonport Nurses Home, which has been only partly occupied in recent years. The expressions of interest received are being considered in the context of the future of the whole site.
With regard to World Heritage status for the site, as my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for National Heritage made clear in his speech on 21 March, Greenwich has previously been considered as a possible candidate for World Heritage status, but its candidacy will be reassessed in the light of recent events.
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