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corporation tax, (d) PAYE and (e) national insurance contributions in each year since 1979.

Sir George Young: Excluding staff employed on central administration, the table sets out the total numbers of Inland Revenue staff engaged on the collection of tax within the Department's accounts offices, local network, and enforcement offices for each year since 1978 79 and how many were working in the areas of (a) capital gains tax, (b) schedule D tax, (c) corporation tax and (d) PAYE. Under (d) the figures include staff used in collecting PAYE from employers and a relatively small number of schedule E tax assessments. As resource usage of national insurance contribution work is incidental to mainstream tax collection it is not separately recorded.


Year              |Total            |Capital gains tax|Schedule D tax   |Corporation tax  |PAYE                               

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1978-79           |11,041           |135              |5,873            |560              |4,473                              

1979-80           |10,648           |148              |5,701            |584              |4,215                              

1980-81           |10,222           |143              |5,529            |597              |3,953                              

1981-82           |10,124           |126              |5,747            |409              |3,842                              

1982-83           |10,221           |116              |5,673            |390              |4,042                              

1983-84           |10,171           |113              |5,570            |394              |4,094                              

1984-85           |9,339            |92               |4,674            |557              |4,016                              

1985-86           |8,443            |92               |4,596            |559              |3,196                              

1986-87           |7,989            |85               |4,472            |530              |2,902                              

1987-88           |7,795            |105              |4,250            |538              |2,902                              

1988-89           |7,866            |121              |4,243            |571              |2,931                              

1989-90           |7,879            |92               |4,243            |570              |2,974                              

1990-91           |7,846            |79               |4,410            |549              |2,808                              

1991-92           |8,187            |70               |4,376            |532              |3,209                              

1992-93           |8,410            |69               |4,730            |492              |3,119                              

1993-94           |8,173            |68               |4,695            |465              |2,945                              

Capital

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the current interest rate differential between publicly provided capital for the national health service education and British Rail and capital raised through his private finance initiative.

Sir George Young: For appraisal purposes, the pre-tax cost of capital for central Government activities is normally taken as 6 per cent. in real terms, or its nominal equivalent. For nationalised industries, financial objectives are specified in terms of a required rate of return of 8 per cent. in real terms. The cost of capital raised for projects under the private finance initiative will depend on the creditworthiness of the body concerned and the types of financing which best fit the project.

Cross-border Shopping

Mr. Simon Coombs: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his estimate of the annual loss of tax revenue from cross-border shopping; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: The latest annual estimates were included in HM Customs and Excise's submission to the Treasury and Civil Service Select Committee and published in the Committee's report on 23 November 1994, 1994 95 Session, 1st report, HC35.

Fraud

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to his answer of 27 February, Official Report , column 401 , in what form the data on fraud are collected.

Sir George Young: The current reporting arrangements are set out in chapter 37 of "Government Accounting". The chapter includes the form to be used by Departments in reporting fraud.

Living Standards

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his estimate of the change in the standard of living of manual workers in manufacturing relative to white-collar workers in the private sector since 1979.

Mr. Aitken: Figures based on data from the new earnings survey show that between 1979 and 1994 average gross real earnings of manual workers in manufacturing rose by 20 per cent., compared to 57 per cent. for non-manual workers in the private sector as a whole.

Gross Domestic Product

Mr. Alan W. Williams: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the percentage change in Britain's gross domestic product since the first quarter of 1990.

Mr. Nelson: The growth in real GDP--gross domestic product at constant factor cost--between the first quarter of 1990 and the fourth quarter of 1994 was 4.2 per cent.

Price Stability

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the relative priority attached by Her Majesty's Government to price stability and to maximising living standards.


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Mr. Aitken: The objective of the Government's economic policy is to promote sustainable growth and increasing prosperity. Permanently low inflation, combined with sound public finances and structural policies to improve the long-term performance of the economy, is the best way to achieve this objective.

National Power and PowerGen

Mr. Matthew Banks: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the outcome of the Government's sale of substantially all of its shareholdings in National Power Plc and PowerGen plc.

Sir George Young: I am pleased to report that the Government's United Kingdom public offer and international offers of National Power and PowerGen shares were successfully completed this morning, when dealings in interim rights started on the London Stock Exchange.

As a result of bids received in the international offers, the prices of the third instalments for all investors in the UK public offer and the international offers were set at 136p per National Power interim right and 142p per PowerGen interim right.

Accordingly, the price for National Power interim rights purchased in the UK public offer was 476p per share, comprising 170p paid on successful application, 170p to be paid by 6 February 1996 and 136p to be paid by 17 September 1996.

The price for PowerGen interim rights purchased in the United Kingdom public offer was 512p per share, comprising 185p paid on successful application, 185p to be paid by 6 February 1996 and 142p to be paid by 17 September 1996.

The price for interim rights purchased in the international offer of National Power shares was 486p per share, comprising 180p paid on successful application, 170p to be paid by 6 February 1996 and 136p to be paid by 17 September 1996.

The price for interim rights purchased in the international offer of PowerGen shares was 522p per share, comprising 195p paid on successful application, 185p to be paid by 6 February 1996 and 142p to be paid by 17 September 1996.

The Government offered for sale up to 371.8 million National Power shares and 238.3 million PowerGen shares in the UK public offer and the international offers.

Some 1.1 million applications were received in the UK public offer for a total of some 367 million National Power and some 245 million PowerGen shares. This represented two times the share initially expected to be sold in the UK public offer. In response to this demand, the Government increased the total number of shares allotted to the UK public offer to 229 million National Power and 153 million PowerGen shares. At this level, the number of shares applied for in the UK public offer represented some 1.6 times the share available. Over 98 per cent. of applicants in the UK public offer received an allocation of shares. Half of all applicants had their applications met in full.

Almost 248,000 qualifying National Power and PowerGen shareholders and more than 2,600 eligible National Power and PowerGen employees made applications in the UK public offer. All such applicants


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received an allocation of National Power or PowerGen shares, as appropriate.

Excluding the retail tender, 108.5 million National Power shares and 56.1 million PowerGen shares were allocated to bidders in the international offers. This number does not include any shares that Kleinwort Benson Ltd. and Barclays de Zoete Wedd Securities Ltd. may have over-allotted in connection with the international offers. The extent of any such over- allotment will not be disclosed until later. As already announced, Kleinwort Benson Ltd. and Barclays de Zoete Wedd Securities Ltd. may also effect stabilisation transactions. Individual investors bidding in the UK retail tender bid for some 24 million shares in National Power and 28 million shares in PowerGen. Of these numbers, some 10 million shares and some 12 million shares, respectively, were in respect of PEP applications. In addition to the shares sold in the UK public offer and the International Offers, Kleinwort Benson Ltd. and Barclays de Zoete Wedd Securities Ltd. as global co-ordinators for the sale, hold an option to acquire from Her Majesty's Treasury up to a further 37.2 million National Power and 23.8 million PowerGen shares for the purpose of meeting any over-allotment made by them in connection with the relevant International Offer. This option must be exercised by 5 April 1995.

Pursuant to an agreement with HM Treasury, National Power plc purchased 98 million shares in conjunction with the offers, at a price consistent with the international offer price. Total gross proceeds from this purchase amount to some £453 million and will be received in this financial year.

Similarly, pursuant to an agreement to HM Treasury, PowerGen plc has purchased 60 million shares in conjunction with the offers, at a price consistent with the international offer price. Total gross proceeds amount to some £292 million and will be received in this financial year.

Total gross proceeds from the UK public offer, the international offers and share repurchases amount to some £3,642 million, of which some £1,782 million is expected to be received in this financial year.

Total gross proceeds may be further increased by a maximum of £305 million to the extent that, if at all, the global co-ordinator, Kleinwort Benson Ltd and Barclays de Zoete Wedd Securities Ltd. exercises its option to acquire further shares.

The costs to the Government of the National Power and PowerGen shares offers, and of the share repurchase arrangements, are estimated to be as follows:


UK Offers                                        |£ million          

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Marketing                                        |15.2               

Share Shop Commissions                           |18.7               

Prospectus production and distribution           |0.6                

Receiving Banks                                  |3.1                

Advisers' fees and expenses                      |7.9                

                                                                     

Total (UK Offers)                                |45.6               

                                                                     

International Offers commissions and other costs |15.1               

                                                                     

Total (UK and Overseas Offers)                   |60.7               

Those costs represent about 1.7 per cent. of the estimated total proceeds due from the sale of shares--excluding any shares that the global co- ordinator have an option to purchase. The costs exclude stamp duty and VAT on services provided to the Government, which are not net costs to the Exchequer. There will be some further expenditure in 1995-96 onwards in respect of instalment collection and the issue of bonus shares.

Following the offers, the purchase of shares by National Power and PowerGen and assuming the exercise in full of the option over National Power and PowerGen shares granted by Her Majesty's Treasury to Kleinwort Benson Ltd. and Barlcays de Zoete Wedd Securities Ltd., Her Majesty's Treasury expects to hold not more than 1 per cent. of the issued share capital of either company. These amounts comprise principally shares that may be needed to meet share bonus entitlements under the UK public offer.

Muriel Nissel

Mr. Dafis: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will arrange for a copy to be placed in the Library of Muriel Nissel's article written for the latest issue of Social Trends but not published.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 16 February 1995]: The article Mrs. Nissel submitted to the CSO was not included in the latest edition of Social Trends . However, I understand that it will be published in a forthcoming edition of the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society . Copies of the journal are available in the House of Commons Library.

Barings Bank

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his estimate of the cost to public funds for the Bank of England of the Bank's offer to provide liquidity for the rescue of Barings; and if he will instruct the Bank to make no further offers of this nature.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 2 March 1995]: As my right hon. and learned Friend told the House on Monday 27 February, the Bank of England stands ready to provide liquidity to the banking system to ensure that it continues to function normally. There was no rescue of Barings and the Governor did not recommend that public funds should be used for this purpose.

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made as to by what method and to what extent the asset management arm of Barings is ring fenced to protect it from any disadvantageous situations arising in its other divisions; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 2 March 1995]: Barings is now in the hands of the administrators. The regulatory requirements applying to fund management should protect the fund management arm from losses elsewhere in the group, but any investors' cash balances held on deposit at Barings Bank will be frozen. Current discussions between the administrators and the ING Group raise the prospect that a favourable settlement may be obtained.

Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the position of local authorities who had money on short-term deposit with Barings bank; and if he will make a statement.


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Mr. Nelson [holding reply 2 March 1995]: The administrators are currently engaged in identifying the options for realising maximum benefits for creditors of Barings. Current discussions between the administrators and the ING Group raise the prospect that a favourable settlement may be obtained, but until the administration order is lifted, deposits remain frozen.

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make it his policy that no public money will be used directly or indirectly in any attempt to rescue Barings and that the Bank of England should not put any of its own money at risk in such a rescue attempt.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 2 March 1995]: As my right hon. and learned Friend, the Chancellor told the House on Monday 27 February, the Governor did not recommend, and in any event he would not have agreed, that public funds should be used to rescue Barings.

Derivatives Markets

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what proposals he has for regulation of derivative markets to ensure that the bank exposure is geared to a fixed ratio to the capital of the bank concerned.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 2 March 1995]: We have no current proposals for further regulation of derivatives. The Bank of England already sets a variety of capital requirements for credit institutions depending on the nature of business in which they are engaged. The capital adequacy directive, which comes into force at the end of this year, provides for EU-wide rules on the capital which must be held against market risks, including those involved in derivatives markets.

As my right hon. and learned Friend told the House on Monday 27 February, he has asked the Board of Banking Supervision to investigate fully and urgently all aspects of the Barings episode and to report back to him. Any lessons to be drawn must await a thorough analysis.

Banks (Regulation)

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will give the Bank of England power to inspect the operations and control structures, and audit the accounts of, all overseas operations of subsidiaries of British banks.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 2 March 1995]: The Banking Act 1987 already gives the Bank of England extensive powers to supervise the worldwide operations of UK authorised institutions. These powers do not, however, apply directly to non-banking subsidiaries. Their supervision requires co-operation with other relevant regulators. As my right hon. and learned Friend, the Chancellor told the House on Monday 27 February, he has asked the Board of Banking Supervision to investigate fully and urgently all aspects of the Barings episode and to report back to him. Any lessons to be drawn must await a thorough analysis.

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what proposals he has for setting up an independent regulator with its own inspectors and audit teams to regulate banking.

Mr. Nelson [holding answer 2 March 1995]: The Bank of England already discharges these responsibilities.


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PRIME MINISTER

Northern Region

Mr. Devlin: To ask the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on the Government's achievements in the northern region since 1979.

The Prime Minister: The Government have had many achievements in the northern region since 1979 as our policies have created a favourable economic climate for growth. During this period the region has undergone the biggest transformation since the 19th century with the emergence of a new and diverse industrial base. Pharmaceutical, food processing, clothing, light engineering, electronics and car manufacture have replaced traditional industries. In the area covered by the Government office for the north-east this change has come about through a range of measures:

the attraction of £3 billion overseas investment since 1985, the most notable successes of which were Nissan and Samsung and a further £1.3 billion private sector investment into the areas covered by the Tyne and Wear and Teesside Development Corporations since 1987, creating and safeguarding over 30,000 jobs;

over 5,500 hectares of derelict land reclaimed, including over 700 by the Urban Development Corporations in Tyne and Wear and on Teesside;

in partnership with other organisations, the region's Training and Enterprise Councils have successfully developed innovative solutions to the training and enterprise needs of their areas including the establishment of a business Innovation Centre in Sunderland and a management training and higher education facility in Northumberland. TEC's in the region have also piloted a number of new initiatives: Open Learning Credits, Youth Credits, Adult Credits, the Out of School Childcare Grant, Workstart and Skillchoice.;

assisting over 26,000 unemployed people to start their own businesses since 1987 through the Businesses Start Up Scheme run by Training and Enterprise Councils;

820,000 people placed in jobs by the Employment Service since 1986;

unemployment has fallen by 16,100 or nearly 10 per cent. since the national peak in December 1992;

a substantial number of homes built and improved;

over 4,000 jobs created, 5,000 jobs preserved and 550 new businesses assisted by the South Tyneside and Stockton and Thornaby Task Force; and,

an increase in the numbers of young people staying in full-time education after reaching school leaving age. 12.4 per cent of those leaving schools in the region in 1992 93 intended to pursue a Degree course.

The region also piloted the development of job clubs, now a successful national programme and expects to become the first to have contracted out careers services and to have facilitated a comprehensive network of Business Links.

Internet

Mr. Allen: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list the Internet E- mail numbers of all Government Ministers.

The Prime Minister: It is a matter for individual Ministers to decide whether to make public their Internet electronic mail addresses. The two Ministers with responsibility for use of the Internet are the Parliamentary Secretary, Office of Public Service and Science and the Under -Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whose E-mail addresses are publicly available.


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Government Policy

Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Prime Minister what role the Cabinet plays in the formulation of (a) economic policy, (b) monetary policy and (c) policy on a single European currency.

The Prime Minister: The Cabinet is the ultimate arbitrator of all aspects of Government policy.

Social Development Summit

Ms Corston: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his Answer of 27 February, Official Report, column 412, if the Minister for Overseas Development, in representing him at the Heads of State world summit for social development in Copenhagen, is responsible for negotiating those aspects of the draft declaration and action programme covering national action within the United Kingdom to reduce inequality and poverty and promote full employment and social integration.

The Prime Minister: My right hon. and noble Friend the Minister for Overseas Development will represent me at the high level segment of the summit on 11-12 March. My right hon. and noble Friend will make a statement setting out the United Kingdom perspective on the issues covered by the summit.

Ms Corston: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his answer of 27 February, Official Report, column 412, if he will publish briefs which have been prepared by his Government for discussion at the world summit for social development about social development and anti-poverty measures taken and proposed to be taken in the United Kingdom.

The Prime Minister: There are no plans to do so. It is not usual to publish briefing provided by officials to Ministers. The speeches of my right hon. and noble Friend the Minister of State for Overseas Development will be published, and copies will be placed in the Library.

Lockerbie

Dr. Godman: To ask the Prime Minister what proposals he has which would allow Her Majesty's Government and the Government of the United States of America to resolve the Lockerbie affair other than by way of instituting criminal proceeding in Scotland or the United States of America; and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister: The Lockerbie bombing was a crime committed against a United States aircraft over Scotland. It has been investigated from Scotland with the co-operation of the United States authorities. The trial of those accused of this terrible crime must take place in Scotland or the United States. This has been confirmed by the UN Security Council.

Dr. Godman: To ask the Prime Minister if he will discuss with President Clinton the role in Beirut in 1988 of Ron Carviene, Bill Leyene and Dan O'Connor, under the command of Matthew Gannon and Charles McKee.

The Prime Minister: I have no plans to do so.

Dr. Godman: To ask the Prime Minister what discussions he had when he last met President Clinton on the subject of the setting up of an international court to try those persons alleged to have perpetrated the murders of the passengers and crew members of Pan Am flight 103 and residents of Lockerbie in December 1988; and if he will make a statement.


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The Prime Minister: None.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will place in the Library a copy of the memorandum for No. 10 Downing street in 1989 adducing the reasons why Her Majesty's Government would not allow the public inquiry into the Lockerbie crime; and at what level the decision on the public inquiry was taken.

The Prime Minister: It is not usual practice to place internal Government correspondence in the Library. I have nothing further to add to the reply I gave the hon. Member for Linlithgow on 10 January, Official Report, column 20.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to his letter of 30 August 1994 to the hon. Member for Linlithgow what examination has taken place of the Toshiba and Helsinki warnings in relation to Lockerbie since the fatal accident inquiry.

The Prime Minister: The fatal accident inquiry, which took place 22 months after the disaster, examined both warnings in some detail. In his determination, the Sheriff Principal concluded that the so-called Toshiba warning was not relevant to the circumstances of the deaths and that the so -called Helsinki warning lacked credibility. It has therefore not been considered necessary to conduct further examinations into these.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister what representations Her Majesty's Government have had from the German Government about their interrogation of Edwin Bolliers's Statsi control and the sale of timing devices to the Statsi.

The Prime Minister: None.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will discuss the implications with President Clinton of the FBI briefing paper regarding Iranian links and baggage being unloaded on Air Malta 180 destination Frankfurt airport.

The Prime Minister: I have no plans to do so.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister (1) if British authorities have interviewed Marwin Khreesat, a bomb maker, briefly detained and then released in Neuss, Germany;

(2) if he will put the transcript of the interview with Mr. Ghandanfar and Mr. Dalkamouni in the Library.

The Prime Minister: As the hon. Gentleman well knows, it would be wrong to reveal details of the evidence in a criminal case while proceedings are pending.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will ask Chancellor Kohl the reasons why in October 1988 the Verfassungschu tz released certain Palestinians and their bomb-making equipment.

The Prime Minister: The release of detainees from German prisons is a matter entirely for the German authorities.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will discuss with Chancellor Kohl the prima facie evidence that a German-based terrorist organisation used its knowledge of a covert United States drugs operation to switch an unaccompanied bag containing drugs with an identical bag containing a bomb which destroyed Pan Am Flight 103.

The Prime Minister: The allegation has been examined. No evidence has been found to support it.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister what representations he has received from Lockerbie victims' families regarding information conveyed to them by


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members of the United States commission about the extent of the information available to United States and United Kingdom Governments and the probability of its publication; what elements of the United States commission's findings support the families' version; and if he will place in the Library the United Kingdom responses to these findings.

The Prime Minister: I have recently received a letter from the family of a Lockerbie victim which referred to the United States President's commission on aviation security and terrorism. A copy of the commission's report, dated May 1990 will be placed in the Library.

Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Prime Minister what assessment Her Majesty's Government has made of the role of Khaled Jaafar, a Lebanese victim of the Lockerbie bombing.


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