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23. Mr. Peter Atkinson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the change in levels of central Government staffing between 1997 and 2004. 
Mr. Boateng: Data concerning civil service numbers between 1997 and 2004 has been published in "Civil Service Statistics". Current information can be found on the Cabinet Office's website.
24. Gregory Barker: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many direct taxes have been introduced since 1997; and how many times existing direct taxes have been raised. 
Dawn Primarolo: All changes to taxation since 1997 are set out in the relevant Financial Statement and Budget Reports, which are available in the Library of the House.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will estimate the cost of providing tax relief to employees who receive financial support from their employers to buy childcare services; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 14 December 2004]: I refer the hon. Member to page 6 of the "Economic and Fiscal Strategy Report" and "Financial Statement and Budget Report 2004 1 " [HC 301].
Mr. McNamara: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he will reply to the letters dated 22 July and 18 November from the hon. Member for Hull, North concerning correspondence from the Vice Chancellor of the University of Hull about the VAT partial exemption method. 
Dawn Primarolo: My hon. Friend will receive a reply to his letters within the next week.
The letter will contain an explanation for the delay in providing a response.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what EU funding supports the Local Government International Bureau; whether such public funds were used for its advertising in the House Magazine on 15 November; what his policy is on this use of public funds for this purpose; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Raynsford: I have been asked to reply.
The Local Government International Bureau (LGIB)the European and international arm of the Local Government Associationreceives no funding from the European Union for its ordinary activities, including the placing of the advertisement in the House Magazine on 15 November. The overall aim of the LGIB is to promote high quality democratic local government and its interests within Europe and internationallyan aim which the Government supports.
Tom Cox: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the gross domestic product of the London borough of Wandsworth has been in each of the last three years. 
The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.
16 Dec 2004 : Column 1234W
Letter from Len Cook to Mr. Tom Cox, dated 16 December 2004:
As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question about GDP for the London Borough of Wandsworth in each of the last three years (205913).
The London Borough of Wandsworth is in the Inner London West (NUTS3 area), which is currently the lowest geographic level at which Gross Value Added 1 (GVA) is published. The latest published information is for 2001.
The estimates in the table below are based on the regional Gross Value Added 1 (GVA) estimates published in December 2003. These are available on the National Statistics website at: htlp://www.statistics.gov.uk/articles/nojournalGVA_NUTS3_Methods_and_Background.pdf
|Gross value added (GVA)(10) for Inner London West (NUTS3 area) at current basic prices 1995 to 2001|
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with regard to the Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise, how many claims to tax have been (a) reduced and (b) cancelled in the last tax year; and what the sums involved were. 
Dawn Primarolo: Neither the Inland Revenue nor HM Customs & Excise keep this information in this form. It could not be provided without incurring disproportionate cost.
John Robertson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the effect of the measures contained in the pre-Budget report on older pensioners. 
Mr. Timms: The Government recognises that older pensioners have been living on fixed incomes for longer and are therefore more likely to have a lower income than younger pensioners.
Older pensioners will benefit from the pension credit, which this year guarantees a minimum income of £105 a week, free television licences and a winter fuel payment of £300. My right hon. Friend the Chancellor announced in this year's Pre Budget Report that the pension credit will be uprated in line with earnings and that we will be paying a further £50 payment to households with someone over age 70 alongside the
16 Dec 2004 : Column 1235W
winter fuel payment in 200506 to help with council tax and other living expenses. As a result of all this Government's measures the poorest third of pensioners will be £36 a week better off.
Paul Farrelly To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what funds he is making available for regeneration projects in England. 
Mr. Boateng: This year, the Government has made available more than £1.5 billion for regeneration through programmes such as Neighbourhood Renewal, Housing Market Renewal and English Partnerships. In addition, a significant proportion of the £1.85 billion allocated to the Regional Development Agencies will be spent on regeneration as one of their core functions. Between 200506 and 200708, the Government intends on current plans to allocate more than £4.6 billion for regeneration, plus a proportion of the £6.7 billion allocated to RDAs, alongside £730 million through the European Regional Development Fund.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many people retired in each year group in the last year for which figures are available. 
Mr. Timms: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.
Letter from Colin Mowl to Mr. David Drew, dated 16 December 2004:
The National Statistician has been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question about retired people. I am replying in his absence. (204909)
The available information, shown in the attached table, is based on those people who described themselves as retired in the Labour Force Survey (LFS) and who a year earlier were in employment. The table relates to people interviewed in the LFS during the three months ending in May 2004. The figures are shown for age groups defined by age at the time of LFS interview. Information about exact age at retirement is not available.
The estimates for the Labour Force Survey are, as with any statistical sample survey, subject to sampling variability.
|16 and over||120||127||247|
|70 and over||12||6||18|
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