|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
23 Jul 2002 : Column 953W
|Regional development agency||Number of town planners|
|Advantage West Midlands||12|
|East of England Development Agency||3|
|East Midlands Development Agency||5|
|North West Development Agency||3|
|South East of England Development Agency||5|
|South West of England Development Agency||5|
Mr. David Stewart: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on the timescale for the development of the universal bank; and whether it will be fully operational by 2003. 
Mr. Timms [holding answer 18 July 2002]: Detailed work is being carried out on implementing universal banking services for delivery in advance of the migration of benefit payment to automated credit transfer from April 2003.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many claims by (a) ex-miners and (b) widows of families of ex-miners suffering from vibration white finger, chronic bronchitis and emphysema have been processed; and how many still await to be processed, broken down by nation and region of the UK. 
Mr. Wilson [holding answer 16 July 2002]: The figures are as follows. They are constantly changing due to the fact that claims continue to be received at the rate of 800 per week for vibration white finger (VWF) and respiratory disease respectively. Claims received very recently are therefore included in the total of "outstanding claims".
|VWF outstanding claims|
|VWF full and final settlements (including denied/withdrawn)|
In addition there are over 10,000 VWF general damages offers with solicitors for consideration.
23 Jul 2002 : Column 954W
|COPD outstanding claims|
|COPD full and final settlements (including denied/withdrawn) as at 14 July 2002|
Alan Johnson [holding answer 22 July 2002]: Cases are dealt with on an individual basis by the judiciary of the Employment Tribunals and it is not possible to state how long a case will wait before being heard. In 200102, 69 per cent. of single Employment Tribunal cases reached a first hearing within 26 weeks of receipt.
23 Jul 2002 : Column 955W
Radiocommunications Agency does not use any 0870 telephone numbers for enquiries from the public to the Agency.
We do, however, have an 0845 local-call rate telephone number, advertised as the number to call for members of the public wanting to report radio or TV interference, which connects to our main telephone enquiry point.
I am Chief Executive of The Insolvency Service and have been asked by the Secretary of State to reply to your question (2001/5280) on our policy on using 0870 telephone numbers.
The Insolvency Service is an Executive Agency of the DTI and operates from 33 nationwide locations. Each office has a local telephone number, rather than a central 0870 number, which together with an extensive catalogue of information booklets comprises our primary information-giving service.
Additionally The Service operates a central enquiry line from London with calls charged at the national rate.
You tabled a Parliamentary Question on 1 July 2002 to the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry concerning the policy on using 0870 numbers for enquires by the public to the department and its agencies. I have been asked to reply in respect of the Employment Tribunals Service (ETS) which is an executive agency of the DTI.
The ETS does not use any 0870 numbers and has no policy on their usage.
Our public enquiry line and its companion minicom line are operated on 0845 numbers. Calls to these two lines are charged at the local rate regardless of where in the United Kingdom from the call originates.
The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry has asked me to reply on behalf of the National Weights and Measures Laboratory (NWML) to your question regarding the policy on using 0870 telephone numbers for enquiries by the public to the Department and its Agencies.
The national Weights and Measures Laboratory (NWML) does not employ any 0870 numbers.
I am responding on behalf of Companies House Executive Agency to your Parliamentary Question on the Department of Trade and Industry's policy on the use of 0870 telephone numbers for public enquiries.
Companies House uses an 0870 telephone number for our national public enquiry call centre. The decision to employ this type of number is consistent with the guidance set down by the Office of e-Envoy, which states that the choice of a national rate, local rate, freefone or premium rate number should be determined by individual business requirements. As a Trading fund the Agency has to cover the cost of providing services and to avoid cross subsidy. These factors led to the decision to use an 0870 number.
23 Jul 2002 : Column 956W
The Patent Office does not use 0870 telephone numbers. It provides 0845 numbers to be used for enquiries by the general public, who are charged local call rates for their telephone calls. This policy, determined by the business requirements of the Patent Office, conforms with the e-Envoy-s Guidelines for UK Government Call Centres.
To ask the SoS what her policy is on using 0870 telephone numbers for enquiries by the public to the Department and its Agencies.
In response to the above Parliamentary Question, please note that:
The Small Business Service's Small Firms Finance team contracts with EC Logistics who distribute Late Payment Guidance and other publications for the SBS via an "0870" number; and
The SBS' Business Services directorate uses an "0870" number for the following purposes:
The "CONNECT" hotline
a) for Business Advisors
to enable direct contact for Business Advisors to the CONNECT team for booking equipment/technician for shows;
for ordering CD-ROMS, technical advice, requests for presentation and clip finding service; and
for general advice and requests for literature.
b) for small business customers
for advice on how they can access the CONNECT series via their local Business Link
The Benchmark Index hotline
a) for Business Advisors
to enable direct contact with the Benchmark Index team for technical queries;
for advice on questionnaires;
for advice on the make up of data sets; and
requests for literature and other general support.
And b) for our small business customers
sign-posting them to their nearest Business Link operator for access to the Benchmark Index and general help and information.
The Small Business Service uses these 0870 numbers in accordance with DTI central guidelines.
I hope this is helpful.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|