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40. Mr. Boyes : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the average length of time trainees spend on employment training.


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Mr. Nicholls : Trainees spend an average of about six months on employment training.

Training and Enterprise Councils

26. Mr. Wallace : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many training and enterprise councils he anticipates giving approval to so that they will become fully operational on 2 April.

Mr. Eggar : A number of training and enterprise councils (TECs) will shortly be submitting their corporate and business plans for approval. The national training task force will consider these plans and will be making its recommendation to me.

Mr. Ian Bruce : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the latest number of training and enterprise council groups awarded development funding.

Mr. Eggar : I have been very encouraged by the excellent response from employers throughout the country since we issued the invitation to form training and enterprise councils. Applications for development funding from 55 groups of senior employers from around the country have been approved. The table lists the areas which have received development funding.

List of TECs awarded development funding 1. South East Essex

Hampshire

Heart of England (Oxfordshire)

Hertfordshire

Isle of Wight

Kent

Milton Keynes

Thames Valley

2. London

AZTEC (Kingston/Merton)

3. South West

Avon

Devon/Cornwall

Dorset

Gloucestershire

Somerset

4. West Midlands

Birmingham

Coventry/Warwickshire

Dudley

Sandwell

Staffordshire

Walsall

Wolverhampton

5. East Midlands and Eastern

Central and South Cambridgeshire

Greater Peterborough

Norfolk/Waveney

Northamptonshire

North Nottinghamshire

Suffolk

6. Yorkshire and Humberside

Barnsley/Doncaster

Calderdale/Kirklees

Leeds

North Yorkshire

Rotherham

Sheffield

Wakefield

7. North West

Bolton/Bury


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Cumbria

East Lancashire

Manchester

Oldham

Rochdale

South and East Cheshire

St. Helens

Stockport/High Peak

Wigan

8. Northern

County Durham

Northumberland

Teeside

Tyneside

Wearside

9. Wales

Gwent

Mid Glamorgan

North East Wales

North West Wales

South Glamorgan

West Wales

77. Mr. Anthony Coombs : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what will be the typical budget of a training and enterprise council.

Mr. Eggar : The budget for each training and enterprise council (TEC) will be negotiated locally and will vary according to the size of its area. Budgets will range from around £5 million to around £35 million per annum.

75. Mr. Hanley : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will report on the progress of the training and enterprise council network.

Mr. Eggar : I have been very encouraged by the excellent response from employers throughout the country since we issued the invitation to form training and enterprise councils.

We expect to have a complete network of training and enterprise councils throughout England and Wales by the end of the year.

71. Mr. Barry Field : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many training and enterprise councils have now been awarded development funding.

Mr. Eggar : I have been very encouraged by the excellent response from employers throughout the country since we issued the invitation to form training and enterprise councils. Applications for development funding from 55 groups of senior employers from around the country have been approved.

68. Mr. Colin Shepherd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what arrangements he is making to ensure that the training and enterprise councils are able to recognise a need in respect of the disabled which spreads beyond the immediate territory within which they will be operating.

Mr. Eggar : Training and enterprise councils (TECs) will set out their training proposals in their business plan. My Department will want to be satisfied that these proposals meet the training needs of all individuals in their local community, including people with disabilities, and encompass access to training outside the TEC's immediate locality where appropriate.

59. Dr. Twinn : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when he expects the first training and enterprise council to be operational.


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Mr. Eggar : I expect the first training and enterprise councils to be operational in the spring.

28. Mr. Moss : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the total sum of money for which training and enterprise councils will have executive responsibility.

Mr. Eggar : As TECs become operational they will assume responsibility for the vast majority of expenditure which is currently managed by the Training Agency. This amounts to around £2.5 billion in 1990-91.

Small Firms Service

27. Mr. David Evans : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many requests for advice and information have now been received by his Department's small firms service.

Mr. Eggar : In 1989 the small firms service in England handled 314, 625 inquiries and provided 50,013 counselling sessions.

Training

29. Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will estimate the numbers of employees receiving training in Britain.

Mr. Nicholls : A recent survey of employers estimated that 8.6 million employees received training through their employers in 1986-87. The survey excluded the armed forces, agriculture, and firms with fewer than 10 employees.

More recent figures from the labour force survey show that in the spring of 1988 2.8 million employees received job-related training in the four weeks prior to the survey.

30 Mr. Lofthouse : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total number and percentage of employees receiving training in the four-week period prior to the labour force survey in 1988.

Mr. Nicholls : A total of 2,773,000 employees of working age received job-related training in Great Britain in the four-week period prior to the labour force survey in 1988. This is 13.3 per cent. of all employees of working age.

34. Mr. Jacques Arnold : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on training provisions available to the unemployed.

Mr. Nicholls : The Government make training available for young people aged between 16 and 18 who are not in full-time education or employment through YTS. Employment Training (ET) is available primarily for adults aged over 18 and under 60 who have been continuously unemployed for at least 26 weeks. It is also open to certain special groups who do not need to satisfy the 26 weeks' unemployment criterion.

Currently there are 386,000 YTS trainees and 207,000 ET trainees.

32. Mr. McAvoy : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will estimate the amount of expenditure on employer-based training as a percentage of gross domestic product in Germany, Japan, the United States of America, and Sweden and the United Kingdom for the most recent date for which information is available.


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Mr. Nicholls : It is estimated that employers in Great Britain spent £18 billion in 1986-87 on training their work force. This is equivalent to 4.6 per cent. of gross domestic product.

Comparable figures are not available for the other countries listed.

Training Agents

31. Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will give the total number of training agents who have (a) had their contracts terminated and (b) gone into receivership between January and December 1989.

Mr. Nicholls : Between January and December 1989, three training agents had their contracts terminated by the Employment Department Training Agency and none has gone into receivership.

Disabled People

33. Mr. Ashley : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what steps he is taking to improve employment services for disabled people.

Mr. Eggar : This Department's general employment services are designed to help meet the needs of as many people with disabilities as possible. They are supplemented as necessary by a range of provision specifically for people with disabilities including sheltered employment for those with severe disabilities. These services are the subject of a review, the results of which will be made available as soon as possible.


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