HC Deb 01 December 1994 vol 250 c807W
Mr. Michael Brown

To ask the President of the Board of Trade what further amendments to the Electricity (Class Exemptions from the Requirement for a Licence) Order 1990 are presently proposed.

Mr. Charles Wardle

Under this order, a number of companies which generated or supplied electricity before the electricity industry was vested are exempt from the requirement for a licence to generate or supply electricity for a transitional period, which ends on 31 March 1995.

Following consultation with the electricity industry and others, I have now decided that these transitional exemptions should be extended until 31 March 1998. These exemptions would continue, as now, to be limited to the generating capacity or customer base supplied before vesting. This should not, however, be read as meaning that these companies will necessarily continue to be exempt after 1998. That will be considered in the period leading up to 1998, when the market in electricity supply will become fully competitive.

I will lay an order bringing this amendment into effect early next year. My officials are presently considering a number of other possible amendments to the order. I shall announce our decision on these in due course.

Mrs. Anne Campbell

To ask the President of the Board of Trade what plans he has for the future of electricity supply from foreign sources.

Mr. Charles Wardle

The position in relation to the French interconnector—the only present source of foreign electricity supplies—was set out in the White Paper "The Prospects for Coal" (Cm 2235). Proposals for further interconnectors are a commercial matter for the electricity companies, subject to their obtaining any necessary consents.

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