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Chris Ruane: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the registration rate is in each ward of each constituency in (a) England, (b) Northern Ireland and (c) Scotland, listed in descending order and grouped according to region. 
As National Statistician, 1 have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question concerning the registration rate in each ward of each constituency in (a) England, (b) Northern Ireland and (c) Scotland listed in descending order and grouped according to region.(41187)
I attach tables giving a comparison between the number of registered electors and the estimated population for wards in each parliamentary constituency in England and Northern Ireland. Data for Scotland are not currently available. Because of the length of the tables they have been provided in electronic format and will be placed in the House of Commons Library.
It should be borne in mind that the percentage of the resident population who are registered to vote does not provide a reliable estimate of the registration rate of the eligible population. This is mainly because there are definitional differences between usually resident" and eligibility to vote and therefore the estimated resident population aged 18 and over is not the same as the number of people eligible to vote. For example, the resident population includes all those who usually live in an area irrespective of nationality whereas the parliamentary electorate excludes foreign nationals (but Commonwealth and Irish citizens are included) and may include some overseas electors who do not currently live in the area. Further, there is inevitably some double counting of the registered electorate and this can occur for a number of reasons. People who have more than one address, including students, may register in more than one place. Electoral
Table 1 contains data for England. The closest available geography to current electoral wards, for which population estimates are available, is Census Area Statistics (CAS) wards. This geography was created for outputs from the 2001 Census and is based mainly on 2003 electoral wards. The electorate counts are on electoral ward boundaries and it has been necessary to convert these to the CAS ward geography.
The latest available population data available at ward level are for mid-2002, published in April 2005. The ward electorate counts are for December 2002 parliamentary electors, including attainers. The parliamentary electorate has been used rather than the local government electorate even though the latter is definition ally closer to the resident population because the local government electorate is not available at ward level. No adjustment has been made to reflect the difference between these two time points. There are a number of wards that are split by parliamentary constituency i.e. they fall within two or more parliamentary constituencies. These are shown by an asterisk * alongside their ward name, and appear under both constituencies. Electorate and population figures for the whole ward are shown. Some wards will therefore be double counted. It is not possible to split the data for these wards.
The population data are estimates and as such are subject to a margin of. confidence. This margin of confidence is proportionately larger for ward level estimates than for local authority level estimates. The GAS ward level population estimates have been published with the status of experimental statistics". Therefore, the estimates, and figures derived from them, should be treated with some care.
There are a relatively small number of wards (19) where the electorate counts are more than 10 per cent. greater than the population estimate. These cases are attributable to definitional differences between the estimates and electoral counts, the margin of confidence in the ward estimates, the accuracy of the electoral registers and limitations in the methodology used to convert electoral counts to the GAS ward geography.
Table 2 contains data for total electorate for electoral wards in Northern Ireland. The latest available population data available at ward level are from the 2001 Census, taken on 29 April 2001. The ward electorate counts are for 15 October 2001 and include all those registered to vote in any election. These counts do not exclude foreign nationals but do include electors. No adjustment has been made to reflect the difference between these two time points.
Mr. Evans: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many electors there are in each category in each Lancashire constituency according to the current electoral registers; and how many there were in 2005. 
Mr. Holloway: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what additional funding his Department has provided to the Parliamentary Ombudsman in relation to her investigation into the prudential regulation of Equitable Life. 
Mr. Des Browne:
The Treasury has provided £1.2 million to fund the Parliamentary Ombudsman's investigation into the prudential regulation of Equitable Life and a proportion of £150,000 to cover related legal costs.
19 Jan 2006 : Column 1492W
Mr. Hurd: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer further to the answer of 20 December 2005, Official Report, column 2797W, on the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, whether the bank has approached shareholders since Statutory Instrument 1991 No 757 was made to ask permission to increase payment to employees and retirees for the specific purpose of paying income tax; whether UK nationals are obligated to use pension payments made to them by the bank to buy a taxable investment; what the value has been of pension payments made to employees and retirees by the bank since its inception; and what the most recent valuation is of the assets held in both schemes. 
Dawn Primarolo: The European Bank of Reconstruction and Development provides for retirement by making lump sum payments to employees to be invested by them to provide retirement income. As stated in the answer of 20 December 2005, Official Report, column 2797W, a payment made by the bank from the bank's funds to enable an employee to purchase retirement income is, as an emolument of his employment, exempted from UK income tax by paragraph 14 of Statutory Instrument 1991 no 757.
The emolument paid to staff is determined in accordance with the rules of the bank's retirement plans. At the creation of the bank, its consulting actuaries advised that, based on a range of actuarial assumptions, the lump sum benefits under the plans would enable a married participant with 30 years service to purchase a single life annuity, with contingent spouse pension and indexation, equivalent to 70 per cent. of final EBRD gross base salary. This 70 per cent. figure was purely indicative and was not a commitment to provide a retirement income of such amount. Any income would depend upon the rate of return of the investment. However, this gross salary was initially calculated as the employees' net salary grossed up by the bank's own internal income tax. In 1992 a report by the bank's consulting actuaries found that this approach led to a level of benefits lower than in comparable organisations. Following this report the board of directors as representatives of the bank's shareholderson 15 December 1992 decided that the appropriate measure of gross salary for pension purposes would be one that took account of average UK tax rates. Since UK tax rates were, and are, higher than the bank's internal tax, the level of lump sum necessary to generate the same potential level of income, using the original actuarial assumptions, was greater.
As a result, both bank and employee contributions to the retirement plans which provide the lump sum payments were increased. The tax position of these lump sum payments remains as set out earlier in this answer. As stated in the answer of 20 December 2005, Official Report, column 2797W, retirement income arising from the investment of the payment is liable to income tax in the normal way.
The EBRD does not make pension payments, it provides a lump sum which is intended for individuals to make investments to provide income in retirement. The form of these investments is for individuals to determine.
19 Jan 2006 : Column 1493W
The bank has two plans which support the payment of lump sums at retirement: the Final Salary Plan and the Money Purchase Plan. The payments made since the inception of the plans to end March 2005the latest date for which audited figures are availableare £50,993,820 and £47,683, 290 respectively. As at 31 March 2005, the value of assets held by the bank in respect of the Money Purchase Plan is £77,628,896 and the value of the assets held by the bank in respect of the Final Salary Plan is £73,810,750.
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