Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2017-19 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

Show
by:
Find by:
Close

UIN

Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
Showing -19-0 out of 436
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100
Expand all answers
Print selected
Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: Food
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World's report which found that global hunger has increased for the fourth year, what steps the Government is taking to (a) tackle global hunger and (b) achieve the Sustainable Development Goal Two.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report shows that without significantly increased efforts the world will fall far short of achieving the target of eradicating hunger by 2030. The UK is playing its part to ending hunger and undernutrition through its substantial portfolio of humanitarian support and longer-term responses to tackling chronic hunger and supporting food security by transforming agriculture. We are aware that the international community needs to do more. We are discussing opportunities for scaled-up and improved global interventions, including the German-initiated proposal for a SDG2 moment in 2020, and are supporting the Government of Japan in its preparations for the 2020 Nutrition for Growth Summit.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 September 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Armenia: Gold
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the statement made by the former Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Armenia, as reported in the press release of Geotim Company, published 26 June 2013, that Amulsar is the biggest British investment in Armenia, what level of contribution from the public purse has been invested directly or indirectly in Amulsar; and whether his Department has made an assessment of the merits to UK interests of that investment.
A
Answered by: Christopher Pincher
Answered on: 05 September 2019

No direct investment from the British public purse has been made in the Amulsar mine project in Armenia, owned and operated by Lydian International Ltd. Both the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) have invested in Lydian in the past. As a member of those two international financial institutions, the United Kingdom’s overall financial contribution is channelled to their investments in countries where they operate. The United Kingdom’s membership and support for international financial institutions helps advance sustainable and inclusive growth in developing economies.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 September 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Lydian International
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will publish the (a) dates, (b) attendees and (c) items discussed at meetings between representatives of Government and Lydian International between January and July 2019.
A
Answered by: Christopher Pincher
Answered on: 05 September 2019

The British Embassy meets regularly with businesses active in the Armenian market including Lydian International. British Embassies play an important role in helping to develop business for British companies around the world.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Private Rented Housing: Tenancy Deposit Schemes
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether the Government plans to include deposits of lodgers in deposit insurance schemes.
A
Answered by: Esther McVey
Answered on: 05 September 2019

The requirement to hold a deposit in a recognised tenancy deposit scheme is restricted to landlords who let on assured shorthold tenancies. Most lodgers do not hold assured shorthold tenancies, but should they do so, their deposits would be covered by a recognised tenancy deposit scheme. The Government has no plans to extend the scope of tenancy deposit schemes.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 23 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Arms Trade: Saudi Arabia
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, with reference to the 20 June 2019 Court of Appeal judgment on arms sales to Saudi Arabia, how many (a) standard individual export licences, (b) open individual and (c) open general export licences his Department is reviewing.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 03 September 2019

Further to the judgment of 20 June 2019, the Government is carefully considering the implications of the judgment for licensing, including extant licences. The Government is considering the design of the process for licensing to ensure compliance with the judgment, as well as determining which extant licences are in scope. While this is taking place, the Government will not grant any new licences for export to Saudi Arabia or its coalition partners for items that might be used in Yemen.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 July 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Iran: Tankers
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the location of the Grace One oil tanker was when it was seized; and what the specific EU sanction is that it was seized under and impounded.
A
Answered by: Christopher Pincher
Answered on: 31 July 2019

The Grace One was in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters at a point two miles off the Eastside of Gibraltar when it was seized. The action taken by the Government of Gibraltar was entirely lawful in line with both EU and Gibraltarian law. Action was taken as the oil was believed to be travelling to an entity that is subject to EU sanctions under EU regulation 36/2012.

Article 14(2) of Council Regulation (EU) No 36/2012 provides that no funds or economic resources shall be made available, directly or indirectly, to or for the benefit of persons designated under the EU Syria sanctions regime. The definition of ˜economic resources" at Article 1(f) of the Regulation encompasses assets of every kind, including oil. The Government of Gibraltar had reasonable grounds to suspect that the Grace One intended to supply oil to Baniyas Refinery Company in Syria, which has been designated by the EU since 23 July 2014.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Arms Trade: Saudi Arabia
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what the reason is for the difference in the number of extant arms export licences for Saudi Arabia for possible use in Yemen under review as a result of the court of appeal's Judgment of 20 June 2019 set out in (a) DEP2019-0710 that referenced 95 OIELS, (b) DEP2019-0711 that referenced 71 SIELS and 65 OIELS and (c) the 27 June 2019 witness statement to the Court of Appeal by Edward Bell that referenced 45 arms export licences.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 31 July 2019

DEP2019-0710, provided in response to UIN 267765, gave information on all extant Open Individual Export Licences (OIELs) for Saudi Arabia, including those for dual-use items as well as for military goods; whereas DEP2019-0711, provided in response to UIN 268564, gave information on all extant export licences for military-rated goods (but not dual-use items) for Saudi Arabia, including Standard Individual Export Licences (SIELs) as well as OIELs.

The witness statement referred to pending applications, not extant licences.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 19 July 2019
Department for Transport
Govia Thameslink Railway
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many times Thameslink Service trains ran without a second member of staff and stopped at unstaffed or part-time staffed stations in 2018.
A
Answered by: Grant Shapps
Answered on: 29 July 2019

The Department does not hold this information. Govia Thameslink Railway, the operator of Thameslink services, has procedures in place for instances where a service operating without a second member of staff on board calls at an unstaffed station. For passengers who require assistance, there are a range of measures in place depending on the type of assistance that is required and the specific station. These measures are set out in Thameslink’s Disabled Persons Protection Policy (DPPP) which is available through this link: https://www.thameslinkrailway.com/travel-information/travel-help/assisted-travel/disabled-persons-protection-policy.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 19 July 2019
Department for Transport
Southern
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effect of (a) driver controlled operation and (b) stations which are unstaffed or staffed part-time on accessibility for disabled people who wish to travel without pre-booking on Southern Railways.
A
Answered by: Grant Shapps
Answered on: 29 July 2019

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) and the Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB) have both confirmed that the driver operating the doors is a safe method of working. It is vital that train operators have policies in place so that passengers with disabilities are able to travel with confidence. ORR is the organisation which is responsible for the approval and monitoring of operators’ Disabled People’s Protection Policies (DPPP). Following the introduction of driver-controlled operation on Southern, ORR carried out a period of enhanced monitoring to ensure that policies were in place on Southern so that disabled passengers, regardless of whether they had pre-booked assistance or chose to travel spontaneously, and regardless of whether they were travelling to a staffed or unstaffed station, were able to complete their journey. ORR concluded that GTR had provided assurance that it has the systems and processes in place for this purpose. ORR continues to monitor operators’ compliance with their DPPP, and the Department supports it in doing so.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 19 July 2019
Department for Transport
Southern: Industrial Disputes
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 13 March 2019 to Question 230103 on Southern Railways, what proportion of the trains cancelled due to there being no conductor was due to (a) official and (b) alleged unofficial industrial action.
A
Answered by: Grant Shapps
Answered on: 29 July 2019

The Department does not hold information on the reasons why a conductor was not available to operate those services.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 19 July 2019
Department for Transport
Southern
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what information his Department holds on driver controlled operation on Southern Rail services.
A
Answered by: Grant Shapps
Answered on: 29 July 2019

The operation of services is a matter for the operator and they are generally best placed to respond to queries regarding practices like driver-controlled operation.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 19 July 2019
Department for Transport
Southern: British Transport Police
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many British Transport Police officers worked on the Southern Rail network in each of the last eight years.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 24 July 2019

The British Transport Police does not allocate officers exclusively to specific parts of the network. Train Operating Companies each contribute a share of the overall costs of policing the railway network through a Police Service Agreement (PSA) with BTP. The PSA does not specify or allocate officers to a particular PSA holder or area and it is the responsibility of the Chief Constable of BTP to determine the level of policing across the rail network as a whole.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 16 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Open Individual Export Licences: Saudi Arabia
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, with reference to paper (a) DEP2019-0710 and (b) DEP2019-0711 that were placed in the Library, what the expiry dates were for each of the extant Open Individual Export Licences under review.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 22 July 2019

The information requested will be placed in the libraries of the House, with an expiry date for each of the licences. This deposit will replace a) DEP2019-0710 (UIN 267765) and b) DEP2019-0711 (UIN 268564).

The spreadsheets include details of (a) all extant Open Individual Export Licences for Saudi Arabia, including licences for dual-use items, and (b) all extant export licences for military-rated goods to Saudi Arabia.

The Government is carefully considering the implications of the recent Court of Appeal judgment for decision making, including extant licences. While this is taking place, the Government will not grant any new licences for export to Saudi Arabia or its coalition partners of items that might be used in Yemen.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 11 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Public Health: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding will be provided to local authorities for public health in 2020-2021 if the Government’s spending review is postponed.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 18 July 2019

2020/21 allocations to local authorities will be confirmed in due course.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 11 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Sexually Transmitted Infections
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will increase funding for sexual health services to tackle the increases in cases of syphilis and gonorrhoea in England.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 18 July 2019

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Exeter (Rt. Hon Ben Bradshaw MP) on 8 May 2019 to Question 261463.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 11 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
HIV Infection: Drugs
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to find a long-term and sustainable funding package to ensure PrEP is available to all who require it.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 18 July 2019

The 36 month pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) Impact Trial is scheduled to continue until autumn 2020. Work is now starting to consider future commissioning for PrEP after the trial has ended, which includes consideration of funding options.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 12 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Surveillance: Human Rights
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps he is taking to comply with the recommendation of the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression to impose an immediate moratorium on the export, sale, transfer, use or servicing of privately developed surveillance tools until a human rights-compliant safeguards regime is in place.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria provide a thorough risk assessment framework for considering licence applications, and take into account the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in the country of final destination.

Licensing decisions are based on the most up-to-date information and analysis available at the time, including reports from NGOs and our overseas network.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 12 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Surveillance: Philippines
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, whether the UK exported surveillance equipment to the Philippines in 2019.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Government publishes Official Statistics (on a quarterly and annual basis) about export licences granted, refused and revoked on GOV.UK. These reports contain detailed information by destination, including the overall value, type (e.g. Military, Other) and a summary of the items covered by these licences. These can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/strategic-export-controls-licensing-data.

The data currently provides details of licences up to 31 March 2019. Information about the period 1 April to 30 June will be published in October 2019 and data covering the period 1 July 2019 to 30 September 2019 will be published in January 2020.

All export licences are issued in strict accordance with the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 11 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Arms Trade: Saudi Arabia
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if he will place in the Library a copy of the witness statement of the Head of the Export Control Joint Unit dated 27 June 2019 in his Department's application to appeal the Court of Appeal judgment of 20 June 2019.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 16 July 2019

We do not propose to place documents related to these court proceedings in the Library. There are specific rules of court procedure concerning access to documents on the court file in line with principles of open justice which provide a mechanism for public access.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Arms Trade: Saudi Arabia
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, pursuant to the Answer of 27 June 2019 to Question 268564, if he will publish the (a) number, (b) type and (c) item code for (i) all extant licences for military goods to each of Saudi Arabia's coalition partners and (ii) any such licences under review as a result of the Court of Appeal Judgment of 20 June 2019; and what the timetable is for the completion of those reviews.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 11 July 2019

Details of military rated licences that were extant as at 5 July 2019 and were granted prior to 31 December 2018 have been deposited in the libraries of the House.

The spreadsheet deposited includes the value of each licence at the time it was granted, but we cannot provide an estimate of total values for licences that are still valid, as some of these will have been partially used. Some Standard Individual Export Licence (SIEL) value data includes data relating to a number of non-military rated items or items that do not require an export licence, which were included on the respective licence application.

Information about licences granted from 1 January 2019 onwards have not, as yet, been published as official statistics on GOV.UK and therefore cannot be disclosed. The data currently published on GOV.UK covers licences where a decision was made prior to 1 January 2019, with details of each licence correct as at 15 March 2019.

Information from the period 1 January 2019 to 31 March 2019 will be published on 16 July 2019 and data covering the period 1 April 2019 to 30 June 2019 will be published in October 2019.

The Government is carefully considering the implications of the Court of Appeal Judgment for decision making. As part of this work we will be determining whether licences would need to be reconsidered. At this stage it is uncertain how long this work will take.

Expand all answers
Print selected
Showing -19-0 out of 436
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100