§ Dr. Palmer
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the potential liability arising from the current Gibraltar pension arrangements, should these be found to be incompatible with EC law. 
§ Peter Hain
I have been asked to reply.
I refer my hon. Friend to the statement I made in the House on 16 April 2000, Official Report, column 453. I wrote to both the chair of the Public Accounts Committee and the Chief Minister of Gibraltar on 8 March to inform them that the contingent liability, in the event of a successful challenge in the European Court of Justice against Gibraltar's financial arrangements for those of pensionable age, was now estimated at £77 million. I also reminded the Chief Minister of Gibraltar that this liability would fall to the Government of Gibraltar as HMG have repeatedly warned them. I have today placed copies of both letters in the Library.