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Census 2001

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what measures he has taken to ensure that the volunteers who helped distribute the Census 2001 forms have been adequately remunerated. [1738]

Ruth Kelly: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician. I have asked him to reply.

Letter from John Pullinger to Miss Anne McIntosh, dated July 2001:

5 Jul 2001 : Column: 311W


Mr. Redwood: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the impact of the euro exchange rate has been on UK competitiveness since the launch of the euro. [2206]

Ruth Kelly [holding answer 3 July 2001]: UK exports of goods to the European Union are now over 15 per cent. higher than at the time of the euro's introduction. The UK also has a modest current account surplus with the rest of the EU.

Surveillance and Security Services

Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what his estimate is of total UK expenditure on domestic and foreign surveillance and security services for each year since 1985, expressed in real terms using 2000–01 prices; what public service agreements exist to ensure value for money for such expenditure; and if he will make a statement. [1371]

Mr. Andrew Smith: The level of expenditure by the three intelligence agencies, GCHQ, the Security Service and the Secret Intelligence Service, was first disclosed in 1994. As a consequence of the decision taken at the time not to disclose information for the years prior to 1992–93, I do not have that information. The available information is as follows:

£ million

YearCash2000–01 constant prices

(29) (Resource)

Each of the three agencies has a Public Service Agreement, the contents of which are available to the Intelligence and Security Committee.

Telecom/Computer Sectors

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the rate of growth of telecoms and computer sectors was in the five years to December 2000; and what his forecast is for the next two years. [1643]

Ruth Kelly: Output of computers and computing equipment grew at an average rate of 14 per cent. a year in the five years to December 2000 while manufacture of transmission and telecommunications equipment grew at an average of 26 per cent. a year. The Treasury does not produce output forecasts for specific industries. Forecasts for manufacturing as a whole can be found on page 174, table B6 of the Financial Statement and Budget Report 2001 (HC 279).

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Industrial Provident Societies

Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many new industrial provident societies have been registered in each of the last five years; and in what areas. [2338]

Ruth Kelly: The table provides details of all industrial and provident societies; including credit unions, which have been registered each year since 1996.

Registered in:
Calendar years/entitiesEngland and WalesScotlandTotal
Credit unions35136
Credit unions391251
Credit unions40747
Credit unions43750
Credit unions34539
Credit unions10010
Credit unions20132233

(30) To date


Registry of Friendly Societies—2001

Local Regeneration Projects

Llew Smith: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what policies he has to encourage banks to become partners in local regeneration projects. [1776]

Ruth Kelly: The Government, through their National Strategy for Neighbourhood Renewal, have brought together many different organisations in response to the problems of deprived neighbourhoods. As part of this strategy, banks are involved in the New Deal for Communities pathfinder projects as well as other initiatives to reduce financial exclusion.

European Central Bank

Llew Smith: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the scope available to Ministers to intervene in the decisions of the European central bank in circumstances where they deem that the ECB Board has taken a decision which has a negative impact on EU member state economies. [1762]

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Ruth Kelly: According to Article 108 of the treaty, when exercising the powers and carrying out the tasks and duties conferred upon them by the treaty and the statute of the European system of central banks, neither the European central bank, nor any member of its decision- making body, shall seek or take instructions from community institutions and bodies, from any Government of a member state or from any other body.

Office for National Statistics

Mr. Kidney: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to introduce legislation to reform the Office for National Statistics. [18]

Ruth Kelly: The launch of National Statistics in June 2000 marked the largest overhaul of official statistics in the United Kingdom for over 30 years, putting in place new arrangements to deliver statistics that command the trust and confidence of the public.

The Office for National Statistics, led by the National Statistician, is central to the Government's drive to improve the nation's statistical service. All of its public access databases and publications are within the ambit of the new arrangements, as set out in the "Framework for National Statistics".

Within the new arrangements, the Statistics Commission—independent of both Ministers and the producers of National Statistics—monitors and advises on the quality and integrity of National Statistics. The Framework Document also tasked the Statistics Commission to review the need for statistics legislation after two years (from 2000) and report back to Ministers, and keep the legislative framework under review thereafter.

Pension Rights (Part-time Workers)

Mr. Willetts: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment the Government have made of the impact of the House of Lords ruling on the pension rights of part-time workers on public sector pension schemes. [2268]

Mr. Andrew Smith: Following the House of Lords ruling in February 2001, many part-timers, who made timely claims in the Employment Tribunals, may be eligible for back-dated access to public service pension schemes, once their cases have completed the legal process. In addition, there are many part-timers still in employment covered by public service schemes who may be eligible for back-dated access to their scheme.


Duchy of Lancaster

Mr. Alan Williams: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what has been the disbursement from the surplus of the Duchy of Lancaster to Her Majesty the Queen in each of the last 25 years. [2075]

Mr. Leslie: My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, has provided the following information.

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Payments made by the Duchy to the Privy Purse over the past 25 years are as follows:


(31) Change of accounting period

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