HC Deb 11 February 1998 vol 306 cc254-5W
Mrs. Ewing

To ask the Chairman of the Accommodation and Works Committee what plans there are for the provision of simultaneous translation equipment in the House of Commons; what estimates he has made of the set-up costs; and if he will make a statement. [28559]

Sir Sydney Chapman

The House of Commons Chamber is already equipped with simultaneous translation facilities. Simultaneous translation equipment will be provided in the multi-purpose conference room in Portcullis House. An estimate of the set-up costs has not yet been made.

Mrs. Ewing

To ask the hon. Member for Roxburgh and Berwickshire, representing the House of Commons Commission what translation (i) facilities are available and (ii) staff are employed in the House of Commons on(a) a permanent basis and (b) an ad hoc basis; and what the forecast running costs are for 1997–98. [28558]

Mr. Kirkwood

There is no simultaneous translation service provided by the House and therefore no translation staff are employed by the House of Commons Commission. Arrangements for simultaneous translation facilities and interpreters in the gallery, to be hired on repayment, can be made on request to the Serjeant at Arms Office. The forecast running cost for 1997–98 is approximately £230.

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