§ Mr. Simon Hughes
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many oil-carrying vessels are not registered in a state which is a signatory to the international convention on civil liability for oil pollution damage, navigate the English channel each year.
§ Mr. McLoughlin
There are no mandatory requirements for oil tankers to report their passage through the English Channel to United Kingdom authorities; the information requested is not therefore available. However, if a laden tanker not registered in a state signatory to the civil liability convention spills oil and causes damage to the United Kingdom or United Kingdom interests, compensation for pollution, including clean-up costs, can be obtained under the convention on the establishment of an international fund for compensation for oil pollution damage 1971 and the 1976 protocol thereto, to which the United Kingdom is a signatory. This compensation fund is financed by the major oil importers in member states.