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7 Nov 2002 : Column 763Wcontinued
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment has taken place of (a) Stockholding 2000, (b) Export Strategy and (c) Benchmarking club training initiatives; what costs were associated with each project in each year since 199798; and if she will make a statement. 
Paul Farrelly: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussion her Department's officials have had in the last three years with (a) John Bredenkamp and (b) companies controlled by John Bredenkamp. 
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The Department's internal career development structure is governed by a diversity and equality policy which ensures that job opportunities are open to all staff regardless of their age. We are also working with the Employers Forum on Age to further develop initiatives and to share best practice with a range of public and private employers.
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list the schemes and initiatives sponsored by her Department and its agencies which are not the subject of national roll out, showing (a) the authorities or areas covered by the scheme and (b) the budget of the scheme in the last year for which information is available. 
Ms Hewitt: Many DTI sponsored services are delivered at a regional and local level through Regional Development Agencies, Business Links and other local and regional organisations. These bodies often undertake local publicity campaigns for Government-sponsored services. To provide a list of this activity could only be provided at disproportionate cost.
My Department does run pilot schemes in certain localities from time to time, for example the SBS is currently piloting the City Growth Strategy in four regions in England (London, East Midlands, South West and North West). The total budget for this pilot is #1.5 million.
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what public consultations have been commenced by her Department in each month since 10 September; and what the (a) start date, (b) closing date and (c) website address of each were. 
|Date Published||Date Closes|
|Consultation on Topics for Forsight Projects||100902||041202|
|Consultation on Competition Commission Monetary Penalties||180902||161202|
|Consultation on Competition Appeal Tribunal Draft||180902||161202|
|Possible Introduction Of ''Promote'' Licences To Encourage Exploration Activity On The UKCS||270902||291102|
|New award for 28 GHz licences. Broadband Fixed||151002||141102|
|Wireless Access (BFWA) at 28 GHz: proposals to amend new and existing licences and for the next stage of the award process Consultation on commencement dates for employment regulations||161002||300103|
|Equality and Diversity: The Way Ahead||231002||240103|
|Equality and Diversity: Making it Happen||231002||240103|
|Developing the National Performance Framework for Trading Standards services||301002||210103|
|Consultation on extending the Working Time Regulations to previously excluded sectors||311002||310103|
|Public Wireless NetworksExemption of User Stations||041102||210203|
All DTI Consultation documents are available on the Departmental Website at www.dti.gov.uk
7 Nov 2002 : Column 765W
Mr. Love: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many successful prosecutions for failure to pay the national minimum wage there have been in (a) the London Borough of Enfield, (b) Greater London and (c) the United Kingdom since its introduction; and if she will make a statement. 
The National Minimum Wage Act 1998 contains a number of provisions empowering enforcement officers to take civil action against non-paying employers and the Inland Revenue always use these in the first instance.
Since the minimum wage was introduced in April 1999 the Inland Revenue has issued around 450 enforcement notices requiring employers to start paying the minimum wage and make good any arrears, and identified over #11 million in arrears. A minority of disputed cases have been considered by employment tribunals. To date there have been no criminal prosecutions in relation to underpayment of the minimum wage.
John Healey: All duty rates are reviewed annually as part of the Budget process. In doing so, my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer takes into account a range of economic, social and environmental factors.
Ruth Kelly: The Government understand how important tax incentives are in encouraging retirement provision. The current pensions tax system is under review and we will consult on proposed changes later this year.
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Mr. Baron: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry regarding the impact of taxes and his deregulation policy on small businesses. 
Dawn Primarolo: The Chancellor meets regularly with my right hon. Friend, at which time he discusses a full range of relevant issues, including the Government's success at reducing the corporate tax burden on companies and introducing such reforms as a R&D tax credit and improvements to the capital gains tax regime.
Ruth Kelly: The withdrawal of payable tax credits on dividends was part of a package of reforms that included cuts in corporation tax and the abolition of advance corporation tax. These changes were designed to improve the climate for long-term investment in the UK. In the long run, this should benefit all investorsincluding pension funds and those saving for retirement.
Ruth Kelly: The Government support a prudent interpretation of the Stability Pact, which takes into account the impact of the economic cycle, sustainability and the important role of public investment. We continue to discuss this with our EU colleagues.
Ruth Kelly: The Government have consistently made clear that it supports a prudent interpretation of the Stability and Growth Pact that takes into account the economic cycle, sustainability and the important role of public investment.
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Dr. Ladyman: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the differences between his rules governing the level of public spending and those operated within the stability pact adopted within the Eurozone. 
Ruth Kelly: As set out in paragraph 2.65 of the Economic and Fiscal Strategy Report, the Budget 2002 projections are consistent with the Government's prudent interpretation of the Stability and Growth Pact which takes account of the economic cycle, sustainability and the important role of public investment (as specified in Article 104 of the EU Treaty).
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