§ Mr. Tony Banks
To ask the President of the Board of Trade what support he is providing for microsystem research in the United Kingdom in the current year. 
§ Mr. Ian Taylor
[holding answer 3 December 1996]Research support for microsystems in the current year is provided from several sources.
The Government contribute to the EU framework programme for information technologies, Esprit, which has so far committed 13.5 million ecu on microsystems projects, in half of which UK companies and academia are participating.
The Engineering and Physical Science Research Council's programmes for nanotechnology have a projected spend of £1.2 million in 1996–97 for academic research, supported by industry. Projects have also been funded under EPSRC' s mechanical engineering programmes, which have a projected spend of £9.1 million in 1996–97.
The Department's nanotechnology programme has a projected spend of £2.5 million in 1996–97 for industrial support.
§ Mr. Taylor
[holding answer 3 December 1996]Microsystems are specifically included in the European Union's current fourth framework programme for information technology. I have made no assessment of the support provided by individual member states.