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18 Mar 2003 : Column 678W—continued

Mortgages

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what percentage of mortgages were re-mortgages of the same property, and if he will estimate the size of mortgage equity withdrawal, in each year since 1997. [103424]

Ruth Kelly: The Council for mortgage lenders reported that 51 per cent. of mortgages were re-mortgages in January 2003. Bank of England publish figures for mortgage equity withdrawal in terms of both the level and as a percentage of disposable income on their website at: www.bankofengland.co.uk/mew.xls.

National Insurance

Mr. Webb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the number of (a) working age adults and (b) adults in work whose National Insurance contributions were (i) incomplete and (ii) incorrectly recorded in each of the last 10 years. [102607]

Dawn Primarolo: We estimate there are around 43 million NI accounts relating to people of working age. Information about the number of adults in work whose NI contributions were incomplete or incorrectly recorded in each of the last 10 years is not held.

Mr. Webb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what assessment he has made of the accuracy of records of National Insurance contributions; and if he will make a statement; [102609]

Dawn Primarolo: The accuracy of National Insurance records depends primarily on information that has been received and processed from employers, Pensions Providers, other Government Departments and individual contributors. The Inland Revenue has a number of systems and operational processes in place to continually validate and review the accuracy of each National Insurance record. The Government's plans to encourage more employers to submit payroll data

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electronically should also help to improve the accuracy of National Insurance records. In addition to the routine validation checks, the Inland Revenue visit employers to check the accuracy of their records, guard against fraud and to provide support to help them get things right.

Mr. Webb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what documents were signed by married women remaining on the married women's stamp in 1977 to 1979; how many such documents were issued; and if he will place a copy of the documents in the Library. [103709]

Dawn Primarolo: Married women who wanted to continue to pay the Married Women's Reduced rate of National Insurance did not have to sign any documents. However, women who wanted to pay the full rate of National Insurance contributions had to complete the declaration (Form CF9) in the back of leaflet N1. A copy of this leaflet is held in the House Library.

National Savings and Investments

Mr. Martyn Jones: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many successful traces have been concluded by National Savings and Investments on dormant savings and investments in each month since November 2001; [102935]

Ruth Kelly: National Savings and Investments' new Tracing Service was launched in November 2001. Information is available on a monthly basis from February 2002, with the results for the first three months (November 2001 to January 2002) only available on a consolidated basis. To date, about 35 per cent. of all requests have resulted in successful traces. The number and value of successful traces are as follows:

Successful traces of dormant savings and investments

NumberValue (£)
November 2001 to January 2002876904,303
February 2002475441,684
March 2002504745,443
April 200289303,042
May 20026521,132,539
June 2002189483,025
July 2002409264,485
August 2002323105,322
September 2002253168,943
October 2002151163,007
November 200224474,235
December 2002307189,401
January 2003412291,578
February 2003560408,031
Total5,4445,675,038

Net Investment Statistics

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to his answer of 6 March 2003, Official Report, column 1222W, on public sector net investment statistics, if he will make it his policy to publish net investment statistics by Department monthly; and if he will make a statement. [102889]

Ruth Kelly: No.

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Personal Income

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the (a) gross and (b) taxable income of individuals in (i) England, (ii) Wales, (iii) Scotland and (iv) Northern Ireland in the latest year for which data is available; and if he will make a statement. [102876]

Dawn Primarolo: Estimates of (a) gross and (b) taxable income of taxpayers in (i) England, (ii) Wales, (iii) Scotland and (iv) Northern Ireland in 2000–01 are set out in the following table.

£ million

Government regionGross incomeTaxable income
England513,300380,700
Wales21,90015,000
Scotland45,40032,300
Northern Ireland11,5008,100

Estimates are based on Survey of Personal Incomes in 2000–01.


Public Spending

Mr. Howard Flight: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what recent assessment he has made of his Department's rules on public spending; and what plans he has to revise these guidelines. [102689]

Mr. Boateng: The 1998 Economic and Fiscal Strategy Report set out the Government's new framework for the planning and controlling of public expenditure. This framework was implemented with the plans set out in the 1998 Comprehensive Spending Review. Further modernisation of the regime has taken place through the implementation in two stages of resource accounting and budgeting in the 2000 and 2002 Spending Reviews.

Self-assessment

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what target the Inland Revenue has set for the number of individual taxpayers filing self-assessment tax returns by 2005; and if he will make a statement. [102877]

Dawn Primarolo: The Revenue do not have targets for the number of individual taxpayers who are required to file SA returns. The target for the percentage of 2001–02 returns issued by 31 October 2002 and filed by the January 2003 filing date was 90.5 per cent. This target was reached.

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the (a) filing and (b) other costs of the self-assessment tax system in each year since 1998; and if he will make a statement. [102878]

Dawn Primarolo: The costs of collecting income tax and other taxes are set out each year in the Inland Revenue Annual Reports, copies of which are in the House of Commons Library. The costs of administering and collecting income tax cover a variety of integrated tax regimes and systems of which Self Assessment is one. Some significant costs are shared across these regimes

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and cannot be meaningfully apportioned to particular regimes or systems. No figures are available for the total costs of Self Assessment in isolation.

Student Debts

Mr. Hendry: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to exempt parents from the tax implications of paying off the higher education debts of their children. [103681]

Dawn Primarolo: There are no such plans.

Tax Credits

Mr. Prisk: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimates his Department has made of the costs of the promotional campaign for the new tax credits, broken down by (a) design, print and production of promotional materials, (b) television and radio advertisements, (c) press advertising, (d) online design related website costs and (e) the provision of faxback facilities. [102416]

Dawn Primarolo: The spend on the promotional campaign for the new tax credit is currently estimated as follows:

£000

(a) design, print and production of promotional materials95
(b) media costs for:
television advertisements 8,016
radio advertisements876
(c) press advertising2,224
(d) online advertising400
(e) the provision of faxback facilities15

Note:

All estimated costs include VAT


Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to extend the child care tax credit to grandparents caring for their grandchildren. [102799]

Dawn Primarolo: There are no plans to make the childcare element of Working Tax Credit available in respect of grandparents caring for their grandchildren under informal arrangements or while acting as a home childcarer. But if grandparents are registered childcare providers, and provide childcare for their grandchildren outside the children's home, then the cost of their services will count as eligible childcare for the purposes of claiming the childcare element of the Working Tax Credit, which will be introduced from April.

Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the component costs were of each tax credit which contributes to the 2003–04 tax credit lines of (a) table B12 of page 197, (b) table B17 of page 205 and (c) table B9 of page 193 of the November 2002 Pre-Budget Report (Cm 5664); and if he will make a statement. [99394]

Dawn Primarolo: The following table shows a breakdown of the tax credit lines of the 2002 Pre-Budget Report Tables B12 and B9 for 2003–04.

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£ billion

Table B12, Row 3Table B12, Row 33(6)Table B9
Children's Tax Credit and negative tax element of new tax credits(7)-4.3N/a-2.2
Reduced liability corporation tax, tax credits-0.50.50.1
Other(8)-0.10.10.0
Total-4.90.6-2.1

(6) These figures are the change between Budget 2002 and PBR 2002

(7) New tax credits consist of the Child Tax Credit and the Working Tax Credit, which will be introduced from April 2003. They will replace the Working Families' Tax Credit (WFTC), the Disabled Person's Tax Credit (DPTC), the Children's Tax Credit and the New Deal Employment credit for the over 50s and income related elements of support for children in Income Support and Jobseeker's Allowance.

(8) Consists of the negative tax elements of LAPRAS (life assurance premium relief), WFTC and DPTC.

Between Budget 2002 and the 2002 Pre-Budget Report, the estimated split of total tax credits between that scored as tax and that scored as public expenditure was revised, with the negative tax element now about £2 billion a year higher from 2003–04 onwards. This accounts for almost all of the change seen in Table B9. These revisions are balanced by changes in the public expenditure element of tax credits, and have no overall impact on the current balance or net borrowing. In 2003–04, the tax credit line in Table B17 (£11.7 billion) mainly consists of the public expenditure elements of the new tax credits (£7.6 billion) and child allowances in Income Support and Jobseekers' Allowance (£3.7 billion). The remaining £0.4 billion consists of the tax credits accruals adjustments, charities transitional relief, stakeholder pensions and the public expenditure elements of WFTC, DPTC and LAPRAS.



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