Mr. Lilley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the most recent estimate is of the cost of the Thameslink 2000 project. 
Mr. Spellar [holding answer 11 January 2002]: The scope and options for delivering the project, if powers are granted under the TWA Order, will influence the final cost. These matters are the subject of continuing discussions between Railtrack and the Strategic Rail Authority following the Procurement Review announced on 2 April. Although it is clear that project costs will be higher than previously estimated, until the outstanding matters have been resolved a meaningful estimate cannot be given.
14 January 2002 c15W