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Mr. MacNeil: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequerwhat his policy is on UK publicly-funded companies moving services offshore to avoid tax or national insurance payments; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: It is Government policy that Departments and non-departmental public bodies should not seek to minimise tax liabilities through transactions or activities for which there is no genuine justification in economic terms, and should apply restrictions on the use of offshore jurisdictions by successful bidders to procurement contracts, where such restrictions are justified in terms of the objectives of the project and consistent with international obligations and stated objectives on tax transparency and openness. This is made clear in the Dear Accounting Officer" letter sent by HM Treasury to Departments on 22 May 2003 (DAO Gen/03). Public corporations follow the same rules for managing tax liabilities as private companies.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) which circumstances would (a) qualify private finance initiative to be considered for and (b) exclude it from being considered for public borrowing requirements; 
John Healey: The Government follow rules based upon internationally agreed standards of commercial accounting practice, policed by the independent accounting watchdog, the FRAB (Financial Reporting Advisory Board), when accounting for PFI transactions.
All PFI deals are subject to audit by the NAO or another UK audit body. Where they judge that assets in PFI deals should be on a public authority's balance sheet the value of those assets is scored as public sector net borrowing.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 26 May 2005, Official Report, column 201W, on stamp duty, what the forecast revenues from stamp duty on (a) residential properties and (b) commercial properties are in (i) 200405 and (ii) 200506. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: Estimated and projected revenues for total stamp taxes in 200405 and 200506 are published in Table C8 of the Budget 2005 report. The Stamp Duty Land Tax component of these figures is estimated at £6.3 billion in 200405 and £6.7 billion in 200506.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the average stamp duty paid for a residential property purchase in (a) each Government Office region, (b) Wales, (c) Scotland and (d) Northern Ireland has been in each year since 1997. 
|Yorkshire and the Humber||370||370||510||490||570||950||1,300|
|East of England||750||940||1,090||1,480||1,970||2,260||2,990|
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the total amount raised in stamp duty on (a) residential property and (b) commercial property in (i) each Government Office region, (ii) Wales, (iii) Scotland and (iv) Northern Ireland has been in each year since 1997. 
|England and Wales||615||995||1,255||1,405||1,285||1,350||960|
|Yorkshire and the Humber||35||50||75||85||75||85||80|
|East of England||55||80||110||115||155||135||90|
|Scotland and Northern Ireland||50||80||105||135||160||135||230|
Dawn Primarolo: There have been no changes to criminal sanctions policy for tax credit offences caused by the creation of HM Revenue and Customs. The same policy operates as used by the former Inland Revenue.
Mr. Winnick: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 6 June 2005, Official Report, column 293W, on Inland Revenue, for what reasons information on the number of complaints on tax credit received is not collected; if he will take steps to ensure the number of complaints is (a) recorded and (b) published; and if he will make a statement. 
[holding answer 9 June 2005]: My hon. Friend's original question asked how many complaints have been made (a) directly and (b) through hon. Members in the last 12 months on how the Inland Revenue office in Preston deals with tax
15 Jun 2005 : Column 399W
credit queries. The Department does not keep records of the number of complaints made specifically about the way the Tax Credit Office deal with queries, so it was not possible to provide a figure.
For the numbers of complaints for 200304, I refer my hon. Friend to the Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General published with the Annual Report and Accounts of the Inland Revenue for the year 200304. For 200304, the Inland Revenue counted the number of complaints rather than the number of people who complained. For 200405, to be consistent with the rest of the Department, the Tax Credits Office counted the number of people who made written complaints.
Mr. Winnick: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will ask the Comptroller and Auditor General to carry out a review of the tax credit office in Preston and to make recommendations for improvement. 
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 14 June 2005]: The Comptroller and Auditor General and the National Audit Office have their own programme of work. They will report on the separate 200405 accounts of the Inland Revenue and HM Customs and Excise in the autumn. The report on the Inland Revenue will include consideration of tax credits.
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