Results 81–100 of 477 for speaker:Mr Nigel Beard

Written Answers — Trade and Industry: Electricity (19 Nov 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the average balance between supply and demand of electricity was at (a) peak and (b) off-peak times last winter; what she estimates the balance is likely to be in (i) five years time and (ii) 10 years time; and what her forecasts are of (A) demand and (B) the projected investment plans of the industry over those periods.

Oral Answers to Questions — Treasury: Child Trust Funds (13 Nov 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: Would my hon. Friend consider allowing parents who are eligible for the savings gateway to pay top-up amounts into the trust funds on the same terms?

Iraq (Judicial Inquiry) (22 Oct 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: We had no call for a judicial inquiry when troops went into Kosovo, Afghanistan or Sierra Leone. Why, then, is this inquiry needed for Iraq? The Franks inquiry has been quoted as a precedent, but why should a precedent from 20 years ago guide us? The circumstances of the Falklands war were very different from the invasion of Iraq. That war came out of the blue after substantial errors were...

Iraq (Judicial Inquiry) (22 Oct 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: With the Falklands, Ministers encouraged the threat by withdrawing ships and not sending any cruisers to sea to persuade the Argentines that we were serious. The case for an inquiry may be to establish the facts that led to the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq. Or it may be an investigation of the decisions based on the evidence available. Those two are quite different. I want to explore both...

Iraq (Judicial Inquiry) (22 Oct 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: I really do not have time. There could be no legitimacy in a judicial review attempting to overturn or question the decisions of a democratically elected Parliament and Government. The sovereignty of Parliament, derived by great sacrifice over centuries, is at issue in this resolution. That great champion of representative democracy, Edmund Burke, set out the principle 230 years ago when he...

Defence in the United Kingdom (11 Sep 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: Two years ago, the threat against which our defence forces had to safeguard the United Kingdom changed in an afternoon. The assumed impregnability of the United States, Britain and north-west Europe after the Berlin wall fell vanished instantaneously. The psychology of Governments, and people, too, changed that afternoon. They had believed that the effects of war on them and their countries...

Economic and Monetary Union (10 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: Will the right hon. and learned Gentleman give way?

Economic and Monetary Union (10 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: Can the right hon. and learned Gentleman explain why the United States, with a common interest policy, does not experience the vast swings of tax policy that he describes, yet is perfectly well managed economically?

Oral Answers to Questions — Treasury: Money Laundering (10 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: If he will make a statement on progress in identifying money laundering through financial services companies reporting suspicious accounts.

Oral Answers to Questions — Treasury: Money Laundering (10 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: I thank my right hon. Friend for that answer. Could he say what impact the threefold increase in suspicious activity reports from the financial services industry since 11 September 2001 has had on the number of prosecutions? Could he further say whether he believes that the strength of the National Criminal Intelligence Service is adequate for the purpose of investigating the current volume...

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: Will the hon. Gentleman give way?

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: It is important to recognise that the motion is not about what proportion of targets has been achieved. It is not about the generality of targets or the number of targets. The motion absolutely condemns targets as a concept. It talks about a regret "that the Government have used targets". It talks about them diverting "time and attention away from the task of improving public services". It is...

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: These things feed off each other. Some of the targets, particularly in transport, have not been met because the consequences of 18 years of neglect had not been fully appreciated. At the same time as that neglect of investment, the public finances were left in a dreadful mess, with a £29 billion deficit. By what means was that to be paid off? By a fuel tax that burdened pensioners in...

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: Indeed, Mr. Deputy Speaker. I am attempting to outline the broad structure of Government policy in which public service agreements and, therefore, targets fit. PSAs form a major part of the Government's programme of investment by ensuring that the investment achieves what people voted for and wanted. The other big rules in the strategy were the independence of the Bank of England and a target...

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: The reverse is true, and I think that my hon. Friend has misunderstood the nature of payments under the private finance initiative. Under the PFI, the public sector pays year by year as services are used. Consequently, the services gained in one year are paid for in that year. Whatever sins one might adduce to the PFI, burdening people in the future cannot be one.

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: I shall talk about what is amiss about the targets in a moment. I tell the hon. Gentleman that the questions of whether we have quantified the targets that have been adopted sufficiently well and whether that quantification has been adequately measured are the subject of a different debate. If we accept targets, we may consider the way in which they are properly implemented. If he is saying...

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: The last few lines state that the House "regrets that the Government has used targets as a substitute for real reform; and calls on the Government to embrace the principles of professional autonomy, decentralisation, diversity and choice". I am not against any of those things, but if we use them to replace targets, there is no means by which we can influence how money is invested.

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: I do not. The words speak for themselves. The motion says: "regrets that the Government has used targets". It is quite simple.

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: The hon. Gentleman is adept at making generalised condemnations. I shall give way again if he gives me two examples to support his argument.

Government Targets (7 Jul 2003)

Mr Nigel Beard: I shall not respond directly to the hon. Gentleman because I am about to address the application of targets and their value if they are not met. Plainly, they are not always met, but they are, nevertheless, of value to the administration of large investment projects.


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