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2 Apr 2003 : Column 745Wcontinued
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development when she will respond to the First Report from the International Development Select Committee Session 200203 on Afghanistan. 
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to her Answer of 7 March 2003, Official Report, column 1252W, on Afghanistan, whether electricity is available 24 hours a day in Kabul. 
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Clare Short: As winter ends and spring starts in Kabul, there is now a 24 hour supply of electricity again in Kabul. However, the demand for electricity is greater than the supply. And for many people, the distribution network is unreliable. Availability is intermittent. The Transitional Administration has set a target of eliminating power outages progressively over the next three years by increasing generating and importing capacity.
Clare Short: My Department has contributed £50,000 through the International Federation of the Red Cross. We continue to monitor the situation and are in close contact with the World Heath Organisation, Red Cross and Medecins Sans Frontieres.
Clare Short: Six countries in southern Africa (Zimbabwe, Zambia, Lesotho, Swaziland, Malawi and Mozambique) have been suffering food shortages since late 2001. Food aid and other assistance has been provided to over 14 million people, half of these in Zimbabwe. This international effort has avoided a major catastrophe.
Harvests are due across the region in April 2003. Early forecasts are for variable but generally improved crops. If these forecasts are accurate, then there should be a significant reduction in the scale of the crisis in the region. While further assistance will be needed in Mozambique, Lesotho and Swaziland, there should be little need for food aid in Malawi and Zambia.
However, there continues to be a major crisis in Zimbabwe, where over seven million people are likely to continue to need assistance during the next 12 months. This is largely the result of disastrous economic management in the country.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for Defence concerning humanitarian contingency plans for Iraq. 
My Department has been working closely with the Ministry of Defence to minimise the humanitarian impact of any conflict; both to limit the risks to the Iraqi population and the infrastructure on which they depend, and to ensure that UK forces meet their
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what expenditure has been incurred by her (a) Department, (b) agencies and (c) non-departmental bodies in 2002 on (i) opinion polling, (ii) focus groups and (iii) other forms of market research; and if she will list the surveys commissioned and the purpose of each. 
Clare Short: In 2002, my Department spent £43,395 on the commissioning of two studies of UK public attitudes. This is a long term exercise with regular surveys on an annual basis. The first, carried out by MORI, records attitudes amongst school children and cost £11,515. The other, undertaken by the ONS, monitored the UK adult population at a cost of £31,880. Both surveys monitor public attitudes towards and support for international development in the UK. The results of each public opinion poll are used to inform and monitor the impact of the public education work of the Department.
Clare Short: The cost of rail travel by UK based DFID staff for 2002 was £346,000. This figure is provisional and subject to final audit. DFID staff are required to use the most efficient and economical means of travel.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what action she is able to take to make orders for spot listing of historic buildings where the owners refuse access or are otherwise not co-operative. 
Dr. Howells: When some buildings are being considered for listing under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990, English Heritage can advise without requiring access to the property. In cases where a closer survey is necessary, English Heritage will try to work with the owners to arrange a visit. Should this not be possible, however, as a last resort the Secretary of State has the power, under Section 88 of the above Act, to authorise entry.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many applications for the spot listing of historic buildings were (a) granted and (b) refused in the last 12 months. 
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Dr. Howells: During the 12-month period to 31 December 2002, 297 applications for the spot listing of historic buildings were granted. During the same period, around 700 applications were refused as the buildings were deemed by the Secretary of State not to meet the criteria for listing as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990, and Planning Policy Guidance Note 15: Planning and the Historic Environment.
Mr. Whittingdale: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will list those organisations which responded to the consultation on Lottery distribution policy (a) in favour of merging the Community Fund and the New Opportunities Fund and (b) opposed to a merger. 
Tessa Jowell: The Review of Lottery Funding consultation paper asked whether there might be merit in merging some distributors. There was general support for streamlining the delivery of Lottery funding. Of the 425 responses received, 12 respondents raised the possibility of a merger between the Community Fund and the New Opportunities Fund. Six were broadly in favour, while six expressed reservations. The following table provides details.
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will list the museums based in Buckinghamshire which have received funding from the Designated Museums Challenge fund, indicating (a) the nature of the project, (b) the date of the award and (c) the amount of funding provided in each case. 
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