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3 Jun 2003 : Column 189W—continued


Mr. Willis: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many employees have been seconded from Capita to Her Majesty's Treasury since 1997; for how long they worked in the Department; and what positions they held. [115626]

John Healey: No employees have been seconded from Capita to HM Treasury since 1997.

Corporation Tax

Mr. Howard: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the methodology used to calculate Treasury corporation tax forecasts. [R] [115305]

John Healey: Corporation tax is forecast using a microsimulation model on a sample of company tax assessments. The main tax determinants, such as trading profits, of the sample cases are projected forwards based on economic assumptions; annual tax liabilities and losses are assessed; and the results scaled up to give forecasts of total corporation tax liability. Estimates of receipts and repayments in each financial year are then compiled. Any changes in liabilities arising from Budget and other changes are allowed for. A separate model is used to produce forecasts of corporation tax on North Sea oil and gas.

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Mr. Salmond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he intends to reply to the letter dated 11 April from the hon. Member for Banff and Buchan regarding his constituent Mr. A. Geddes of Rosehearty. [116478]

John Healey: I did so on 19 May.

Employer-supported Child Care

Vera Baird: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many employees he estimates will benefit from the proposal to extend tax and national insurance contributions exemption to all forms of employer-supported child care and will pay (a) less than £50 a week and (b) £50 per week or more in respect of such child care; [116001]

Dawn Primarolo: The take up and cost of the proposed new tax and national insurance exemptions for employer-supported child care will depend on the qualification rules adopted which will be informed by the responses to the consultation exercise that closed on 31 May 2003.

Information on the occupations and industry sectors where employers assist with child care and the average size of these employers is not available. The cost of the reform will depend on the final shape of the proposals, and the cost of the current exemption for work place nurseries is not accurately known as this information is not required from employers in order to minimise the administrative burden on them.

Energy Conservation

Gregory Barker: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the UK is preparing to link the European Commission's forthcoming proposals to modify the rules on taxation of energy products and the agreement on community-wide emissions trading as part of its approach towards achieving carbon savings and energy conservation. [116337]

John Healey: The minimum rates of duty in the Energy Products Directive will not affect the UK's rates of climate change levy and hydrocarbon oils duties and the UK's right to exempt domestic and charity non-business use of energy from the climate change levy will be preserved.

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The Government will consider further the relationship between tax and tradable permit schemes as it prepares proposals for allocating emissions targets to installations covered by the EU trading scheme. The Government will aim to ensure that environmental costs can be internalised as efficiently as possible, irrespective of whether the instruments are international or domestic, seeking to ensure a smooth transition to the new arrangements with minimum compliance costs for business. The potential impacts of combined measures on business competitiveness and fuel poverty will also be taken into account. The Government envisages that the EU trading scheme will play an important role in delivering the emissions reduction ambition set out in the Energy White Paper. Having gained valuable experience from the operation of the UK scheme, UK industry and the City of London will be well placed to take advantage of a wider emissions trading market.

Enterprise Zones

Mr. Martlew: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to designate new enterprise zones; and if he will make a statement. [116173]

John Healey: Since the introduction of the Enterprise Zone scheme, a wide range of alternative schemes has been developed to promote regeneration and growth. These provide for better targeting of resources and can be implemented more rapidly than the Enterprise Zone scheme which, in part as a result of EC state aid requirements, can take up to three years to designate. The Government believe that the best way forward is not to use subsidy based approaches that will displace businesses from elsewhere, but to target attention at the issues which constrain economic development and enterprise within our most disadvantaged communities.

The Government are currently undertaking research to draw lessons from the Enterprise Zone programme, which will help pinpoint the elements of the programme that produced most benefit and will help inform future policy development.

The Government have introduced a number of policies to support enterprise in disadvantaged areas. The 2002 pre-Budget report designated 2,000 Enterprise Areas, covering the most deprived areas in the UK, in which measures to boost enterprise, such as the exemption from stamp duty for non-residential property transactions and the community investment tax relief, are being concentrated. Budget 2003 announced additional steps to support enterprise in these areas, including the accreditation of the first 11 community development finance institutions to offer community investment tax relief to investors.

The Inland Revenue website contains a postcode search tool for the Enterprise Areas at www.inlandrevenue. search.htm.

Epilepsy Deaths

Mr. Battle: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many sudden unexpected deaths from epilepsy there were in (a) Leeds West, (b) City of Leeds and (c) West Yorkshire in each of the last five years for which figures are available. [116183]

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

Letter from John Pullinger to Mr. John Battle dated 3 June 2003:

Number of deaths with an underlying cause of epilepsy(20) and among those where "sudden unexpected death in epilepsy"(21) was mentioned on the death certificate, West Yorkshire Metropolitan County and Leeds Metropolitan District,(22) 1997 to 2001(23)
Number of deaths

West Yorkshire Leeds
AllSudden unexpectedAllSudden unexpected

(20) Cause of death selected using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision (ICD-9) code 345 for the years 1997 to 2000, and, for the year 2001, the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10) codes G40 and G4L. The introduction of ICD-10 for coding cause of death in 2001 means that data for epilepsy in this year are not comparable with data for earlier years. The introduction of ICD-10 has led to an apparent increase of 1 per cent. for males and 23 per cent. for females in the number of deaths coded to epilepsy. While the effect of the change to ICD-10 may have led to an overall increase in the number of deaths with an underlying cause of epilepsy in 2001, it is not possible to determine the effect on "sudden unexpected deaths in epilepsy".

(21) Deaths where "sudden unexpected death in epilepsy" or similar wording (e.g. "sudden unexplained death in epilepsy") was written on the death certificate.

(22) Figures relate to deaths of usual residents of these areas.

(23) Figures are for deaths which occurred in these years.

(24) Fewer than 5 deaths.

- Zero deaths

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