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1991 - PMQT Written Answers 15th November 1991

Below is the text of the written answers relating to Prime Minister's Question Time from 15th November 1991.


PRIME MINISTER:

Draft EC Treaties

Mr. Benn : To ask the Prime Minister under what legal authority he would sign any treaties agreed at Maastricht; and what force such treaties would then have in British law.

The Prime Minister : Signature of any treaty agreed at Maastricht would be an Executive act and as such would have no force in the United Kingdom law. Ratification of any treaty is a prerogative act, exercised by the Government on behalf of the Crown. Before the United Kingdom could ratify any treaty signed at Maastricht, its provisions would need to be incorporated into United Kingdom law by amending the European Communities Act 1972.


European Central Bank

Mr. Spearing : To ask the Prime Minister what assessment he has made of the potential benefits and penalties that would arise from the full operation of a European central bank as currently proposed in the Dutch draft treaty for economic and monetary union.

The Prime Minister : That judgment can be made only if and when the adoption of a single currency becomes a realistic prospect. Under the treaty now under negotiation the earliest date envisaged for the introduction of a single currency is some years away. It will be for the Government and Parliament to assess at that stage the potential benefits and penalties of a European central bank.


Special Advisers

Mr. Allen : To ask the Prime Minister on how many occasions he has declined to appoint a special adviser nominated for appointment.

The Prime Minister : The appointment of special advisers is a matter for the relevant Minister in consultation with me. It would not be appropriate to give the information requested.


Political Advisers

Mr. Allen : To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to his answers of 5 November, Official Report, column 42 and 11 November, Official Report, column 353, listing current political advisers, if he will list the names of the advisers alongside the Ministers and Department which they serve.

The Prime Minister : The special advisers (political) who are currently serving are :

Name                                    |Department                             |Minister                                                                       

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Mr. K. Adams                            |Agriculture, Fisheries and Food        |Minister

Mr. H. Harris-Hughes                    |Cabinet Office (including No. 10)

Mr. J. Hill                             |Cabinet Office (including No. 10)                                                                                      

Mrs. S. Hogg                            |Cabinet Office (including No. 10)

Mr. A. Rosling                          |Cabinet Office (including No. 10)

Mr. N. True                             |Cabinet Office (including No. 10)                                                                                      

Miss B. Wallis (part-time)              |Cabinet Office (including No. 10)

Ms. S. Hole                             |Cabinet Office (Chief Whip's Office)   |Chief Whip

Mr. P. Moman                            |Cabinet Office (Privy Council Office)  |Minister of State, Privy Council Office

Mr. J. R. M. Gardner                    |Defence                                |Secretary of State

Mrs. T. Keswick                         |Education and Science                  |Secretary of State

Mr. D. Ruffley                          |Education and Science                  |Secretary of State

Mr. T. Collins                          |Employment                             |Secretary of State

Mr. G. Black                            |Energy                                 |Secretary of State                                                             

Mr. A. Kemp (part-time)                 |Environment                            |Secretary of State

Lady Strathnaver                        |Environment                            |Secretary of State

Ms. A. Broom                            |Environment                            |Jointly to the Ministers for Local

                                                                                |   Government and the Inner Cities;                                            

                                                                                |   Environment and Countryside;                                                

                                                                                |   and Housing and Planning                                                    

Mr. E. Bickham                          |Foreign and Commonwealth               |Secretary of State

Mr. M. Fraser                           |Foreign and Commonwealth               |Minister of State for Foreign and                                                                                 |   Commonwealth Affairs                                                        

Ms. L. Campey                           |Health                                 |Secretary of State                                                             

Mrs. K. Ramsay (part-time)              |Health                                 |Secretary of State

Mr. R. Marsh                            |Health                                 |Secretary of State                                                             

Mr. T. Kerpel                           |Home Office                            |Secretary of State

Mr. C. M. Grantham                      |Home Office                            |Jointly to two Ministers of State

                                                                                |   (the Right Hon. John Patten and                                             

                                                                                |   the Right Hon. Mrs Rumbold)                                                 

Mrs. E. Laing                           |Privy Council Office                   |Lord President of the Council

Ms. S. McEwen                           |Privy Council Office                   |Lord Privy Seal

Mr. A. Young                            |Scottish Office                        |Secretary of State

Mr. I. Stewart                          |Social Security                        |Secretary of State                                                             

Mr. Anisfield                           |Trade and Industry                     |Secretary of State

Mr. J. Mayhew                           |Trade and Industry                     |Secretary of State

Mr. P. Miller                           |Transport                              |Secretary of State                                                             

Dr. W. Robinson                         |Treasury                               |Chancellor of the Exchequer

Mr. A. Ross-Goobey                      |Treasury                               |Chief Secretary

Mr. W. Lightfoot                        |Treasury                               |Financial Secretary


South Africa

Mr. Richard Page : To ask the Prime Minister what steps the Government are taking to help prepare black South Africans for a role in public administration under a post-apartheid constitution.

The Prime Minister : Our growing aid programme for black South Africans emphasises education and training as the key to enabling black people to play their rightful role in a post-apartheid South Africa. In this context, my right hon. Friend the Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and Minister for Overseas Development has announced the Government's plans to help to train those who may become officials within the new political system. This help is open to black South Africans of all parties and to those without political affiliation. We have invited nominees from various political groups, including the African National Congress, the Inkatha Freedom party, the Pan-Africanist Congress and AZAPO, as well as from non-political bodies. A course for potential senior officials will start in January at the Civil Service college. My right hon. Friend is preparing plans for further help in this area.


Environmental Policy

Mr. Simon Hughes : To ask the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on the priority Her Majesty's Government attache to environmental policy against the Government's other policies.

The Prime Minister [holding answer 14 November 1991] : The Government aim to integrate environmental concern into all policies, as explained in detail in the White Paper, "This Common Inheritance" (Cm 1200) and "This Common Inheritance : The First Year Report". (Cm 1655)