§ Mr. Beith
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the differences between the Draft Firearms (Amendment) (No. 2) Act 1997504W Compensation Scheme laid before the House on 27 November 1997 and the ex gratia scheme under Schedule 1, Paragraph 10 of the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997. 
§ Mr. Michael
The Government have given assurances that those who chose to surrender their small-calibre pistols voluntarily under the present ex-gratia scheme would not be disadvantaged compared to claimants under a future statutory scheme, and so the two schemes are identical as regards the range and values of firearms and ancillary equipment covered. There are some minor textual changes to the claims handling procedures described in the new draft scheme to reflect practice in the Firearms Compensation Section, and three items have been added to the list of ancillary equipment qualifying for compensation at Annex B of the scheme: speedloaders, speedloader pouches and spare parts held by registered dealers. While these items were not included explicitly under the previous published scheme, compensation has been paid for them on an exceptional basis.