Paul Flynn – 2014 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Paul Flynn on 2014-07-15.

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what assistance the UK has given to the developments of the SESAME (Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East) project; and what collaborative scientific research projects the UK supports between Israel, Iran and the Palestinian Authority.

Greg Clark

The UK became an observer member of the SESAME Interim Council in 2001. Professor Samar Hasnain of Liverpool University has represented the UK Government at the SESAME Council, following his appointment in 2004. The Government has provided funding since 2008/9 to Professor Samar Hasnain to support his role as the UK’s representative on the SESAME council as follows:

– 2008/9 – 2013/14: £15k per annum

– Additional funding of £22k per annum was recently approved following a review of the project for the financial years 2014/15 – 2015/16

Professor Samar Hasnain in his role as an observer undertakes various activities on behalf of the Government for the progress of SESAME including:

– Representing the Government at the Interim Council meetings

– Producing an annual report on SESAME and its benefits to the UK; and

– Spreading awareness of the existence and desirability of SESAME to existing and potential SESAME member countries.

He is also an active member of the Science Advisory Committee which meets twice a year.

This Department does not currently fund any other collaborative scientific research projects between Israel, Iran and the Palestinian Authority.