§ Mr. Clapham
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many certified asbestos removal companies operate in Northern Ireland; and how many were visited by a factory inspector in the last year for which figures are available. 
§ Mr. Ingram
On 31 March 1999, 23 companies were licensed to undertake work with asbestos insulation or asbestos coating in Northern Ireland.
During the year 1 April 1998 to 31 March 1999, 12 of the 23 companies were visited by a Health and Safety Inspector and 23 site inspections were carried out.