§ Mr. Nicholls
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment he has made of the cost of the Waste Packaging Regulations to(a) consumers and (b) business. 
§ Ms Hewitt
Assessments of the costs of these Regulations have been made at every stage of their development. In August 2000, the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions published a consultation paper on the recovery and recycling targets in the Regulations. This paper included a draft Regulatory Impact Assessment which estimated that the cost to the UK for 2001 would be in the region of £150 million. It is for businesses to decide what proportion of these costs will be passed on to consumers.