HC Deb 04 March 1997 vol 291 cc533-5W
Mr. Tony Banks

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer with which airlines and travel companies he has recently had discussions about the enforcement of CITES regulations; and what has been the response in each case. [17837]

Mr. Oppenheim

[holding answer 27 February 1997]: I have written to a number of airlines and travel companies, as I explained on 13 February in my answer to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Ealing, North (Mr. Greenway), Official Report, column 448, seeking their participation in an initiative aimed at producing a video for in-flight display aimed at enhancing the CITES profile and environmentally responsible tourism.

The airlines I contacted were Aer Lingus, Aeroflot, Air Canada, Air France, Air India, Air UK Ltd., Alitilia Airlines, American Airlines, Bangladesh Airlines, British Airways, British Midland Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd., Continental Airlines, Cyprus Airways, Egyptair, El Al Airlines, Finnair, Ghana Airways, Iberia Airlines, Kenya Airways, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Lufthansa Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Middle East Airlines, Monarch Airlines, Olympic Airways, Pakistan International Airlines, Qantas Airways, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Sabena Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Swissair, United Airlines and Virgin Atlantic.

Airtours, Leisure International Airways, Iberia, Kenya Airways, and Singapore Airlines have already agreed to show the video as part of their in-flight entertainment. British Airways has asked for a meeting to discuss the technical detail. Lufthansa and United Airways have referred the matter to their head offices. Air France, Air UK, and KLM all indicated that they have no in-flight entertainment on their UK services. Other airlines, including Virgin Atlantic, have yet to respond but replies have been solicited through follow-up letters.

The following tour operators and travel agents were contacted: Airtours plc, Althams Travel Services Ltd., American Express Europe Ltd., Avro plc, Bakers Dolphin, Britannic Travel Ltd., British Airways Holidays Ltd., British Airways Travel Shops Ltd., Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Co-operative Wholesale Society Ltd., Cosmosair plc, Cresta Holidays Ltd., Crystal Holidays Ltd., Dawson and Sanderson Ltd., First Choice Holidays and Flights Ltd., Going Places Leisure Travel Ltd., Gold Medal Travel Group plc, Hogg Robinson (Travel) Ltd., Hotel Plan Ltd., Inspirations East Ltd., Kuoni Travel Ltd., Lunn Poly Ltd., Midlands Co-operative Society Ltd., MTG (UK) Ltd. (AT Mays and The Travel Agents), Portman Travel Ltd., STA Travel Ltd., Sunset Holidays plc, Sunworld Ltd., Thomas Cook Group Ltd., Thomson Tour Operations Ltd., Trailfinders Ltd., The Travel Company Ltd., Travel 2 Ltd., Unijet Travel Ltd., United Norwest Co-operatives Ltd., Virgin Holidays Ltd. and Woodcock Travel Ltd.

Airtours plc, Co-operative Wholesale Society Ltd., Hogg Robinson, Midlands Co-operative Society Ltd. (Co-op Travel), Trailfinders Ltd., Unijet Travel Ltd., United Norwest Co-operatives Ltd. (Co-op Travel) are lending support by agreeing to distribute associated literature. Bakers Dolphin explained that it covers the issue in its existing leaflets.

Britannic Travel Ltd., Carlson Wagonlit Travel, AT Mays and The Travel Agents, and Virgin Holidays Ltd. replied that for a variety of practical reasons they were unable to participate. As with the airlines, other correspondents have yet to reply but we are optimistic of receiving further positive responses in the near future.

I will be announcing further details in due course.