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9 Dec 2002 : Column 89W—continued

Global Economic Slowdown

Mr. Howard: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to his statement of 27 November 2002, Official Report, column 318, on what evidence he based his statement that there is the worst global slowdown for almost 30 years; and what estimates he has made of world GDP growth in each year since 1972. [85540]

Ruth Kelly [holding answer 5 December 2002]: According to the International Monetary Fund's World Economic Outlook database, available on the IMF's website, World GDP growth fell from 4.7 per cent. in 2000 to 2.2 per cent. in 2001. This was the largest annual fall in World GDP growth since it fell from 6.9 per cent. to 2.8 per cent. in 1974.

Growth Rates

Mr.Howard: To ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer on what basis 2007–08 has been chosen as the year in

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which the trend growth rate is assumed to change as a result of demographic effects, for the purpose of his calculations in the Pre-Budget Report November 2002 (Cm 5664). [85547]

Ruth Kelly [holding answer 5 December2002]: As set out in paragraph B20 of the Pre-Budget Report November 2002 (Cm 5664), projections by the Government Actuary's Department imply a slowdown in the growth of the population of working age, beyond 2006–07 mainly as a result of women born in the years following the Second World War moving into retirement, as confirmed to the National Audit Office (HC 109 Session 2002–03). This reduces the estimated trend rate of output growth by a ¼ of a percentage point in 2007–08.

Higher Rate Taxpayers

Mr. Kirkwood: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many higher rate taxpayers there were in (a) the Scottish Borders, (b) Scotland and (c) the UK as a proportion of the total relevant population in each area in each of the last 10 years. [85701]

Dawn Primarolo: Available estimates for the number of higher rate taxpayers 1 as a percentage of the total population 2 for the respective geographical areas are given in the table.


Scottish bordersScotland(14)UK

(14) Government office region

Inward Migration

Mr. Soames: To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer what the net inward migration of non-EU nationals was in each of the last five available years. [85810]

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

Letter from Karren Dunnell to Mr. Nicholas Soames dated 9 December 2002:

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Interim revised total international estimates(15): citizenship 1997 to 2001. Net migration to the UK
Thousands (#)

YearAll citizenshipsBritishRest of EUNon-European Union(16)

(15) These estimates represent interim revised migration estimates. Further revisions to the series, in the light of more detailed Census data, will be made available in spring 2003. This table includes adjustment for asylum seekers, and for persons admitted as short-term visitors who are subsequently granted an extension of stay for other reasons—for example, as students or on the basis of marriage. Migration flows between the UK and Irish Republic are also included.

(16) Figures for all years show EU as it was constituted on 1 January 1995.

Money Laundering

Dr. Cable : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what guidance has been given on the implications of money laundering regulations to applicants for post office card accounts. [86214]

Ruth Kelly: The Joint Money Laundering Steering Group (JMLSG), which is an industry-led body, produces general guidance on the implementation of the Money Laundering Regulations. I have endorsed this guidance under section 330 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002. The guidance is flexible, recognising that people who cannot easily provide detailed evidence of identity should have access to financial services.

Pension schemes

Mr. Heald : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the EU Directive on occupational pension schemes and its impact on UK pension schemes. [85983]

Ruth Kelly: The proposal for the Directive on Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provision is entering the second reading in the European Parliament. The proposed Directive would apply to funded occupational pension schemes. It would not apply to state pension schemes and personal pensions. The proposal leaves member states free to determine the structure of their pensions systems.


Mr. Gardiner: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what fair trade criteria the Government apply when deciding upon what suppliers to use. [85419]

Mr. Boateng: There is no Government-wide approach to the procurement of fair trade products. Each Government Department is responsible for making its own decisions on such products, against the background of the Government's value for money policy, the EC procurement rules and the Department's objectives. However, as my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State

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for International Development has made clear, the Government are committed to supporting ethical trading wherever possible, and provide significant support to the Fairtrade Foundation's efforts in promoting the supply and marketing of fair trade products.

Productivity Growth

Mr. Howard: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to paragraph A34 of the pre-Budget report November 2002 (Cm 5664), on what basis he is raising his estimate for the trend rate of productivity growth as set out in Table A3. [85536]

Ruth Kelly [holding answer 5 December 2002]: As paragraph A34 of the pre-Budget report November 2002 (Cm 5664) sets out,

A full explanation of how this affects estimates of the trend rate of productivity growth is set out in paragraphs A36 to A42 and Table A3 of the pre-Budget report.

Mr. Howard: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether his revised estimates for the trend rate of productivity growth are dependent upon the potential increases in the underlying productivity growth rate, specified in paragraph A35 of the pre-Budget report November 2002 (Cm 5664), being realised. [85537]

Ruth Kelly [holding answer 5 December 2002]: No. In projecting productivity growth the Government do not score any potential gains from government policies whose impact is yet to materialise. Rather the approach is to estimate underlying productivity growth between past on-trend points for the economy and to use this as the trend rate for projecting forward.


Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what measures he plans to introduce to improve the savings ratio in the short-term. [85962]

Ruth Kelly: The Government's strategy for promoting saving is focused on:

The pre-Budget report included statements on the progress of the Government's saving policies.

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