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At least one person was employed for a full year in each of the financial years.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether people employed (a) through employment agencies and (b) on a consultancy basis are included in the calculations for the full-time equivalent staff mentioned in his Departments annual report. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: It is DTI policy that people employed (a) through employment agencies and (b) on a consultancy basis are included in the totals for the full-time equivalent staff reported in the Departments annual report.
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, whether people employed (a) through employment agencies and (b) on a consultancy basis are included in the calculations for the full-time equivalent staff mentioned in the Departments annual report.
All staff engaged in the activities of the Patent Office, including those employed through agencies or any other contractors under our direction, are included in the calculations for the full-time equivalent staff mentioned in our annual accounts.
The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry has asked me to reply on behalf of the National Weights and Measures Laboratory (NWML) to your question regarding how many staff have been employed through employment agencies in (a) his Department and (b) each of its agencies in each of the last five years for which information is available; and what the (i) average and (ii) longest time was for which these temporary workers were employed in each year.
People employed (a) through employment agencies and (b) on a consultancy basis are not included by The National Weights
and Measures Laboratory (NWML) in the calculations for the full-time equivalent staff mentioned in the Departments annual report.
The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry has asked me to reply on behalf of Companies House to your question regarding whether people employed (a) through employment agencies and (b) on a consultancy basis are included in the calculations for the full-time equivalent staff mentioned in his Departments annual report.
Where Companies House has engaged:
(a) Individuals via an employment agencythese are included in all headcount and full-time equivalent figures; and
(b) Individuals on a consultancy basisthen as we are procuring a specific and often specialised service we do not include this provision on our headcount or full-time equivalent figures.
When using an employment agency Companies House uses a preferred list of employment agencies covering all business functions. The list has been compiled following negotiations of service provision within function and commission costs.
The Secretary of State for Trade and Industry has asked me to reply to you directly on behalf of The Insolvency Service in respect of your question (137/2006), asking whether people employed (a) through employment agencies and (b) on a consultancy basis are included in the calculations for the full-time equivalent staff mentioned in his Departments annual report.
In its Annual Report, The Insolvency Service publishes figures based on permanent and casual staff and since 2004-05 we have also published separate figures for non-permanent staff, which includes loanees, Short Term Appointees, and agency staff. The Services Annual Report does not include in its full time equivalent calculation figures for the number of consultants engaged from time to time.
Willie Rennie: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions he has had with (a) energy suppliers and (b) the Energy Retail Association on the extension of the remit of the Energy Supply Ombudsman to deal with billing cases from small business consumers; and if he will make a statement. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Energy Supply Ombudsman was established by domestic gas and electricity suppliers to deal with complaints that existing complaints procedures had failed to resolve. It would be for the Energy Retail Association and gas and electricity suppliers to determine whether they wished to extend the coverage of the scheme to the business sector.
Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will take steps to encourage the European Commission to bring forward proposals to extend the present authorisation of supplementary indications alongside metric units beyond 2009. 
[holding answer 5 December 2006]: Directive 80/181/EEC currently permits the use of supplementary indications until 31 December 2006. Article 6a of the directive requires a further examination of the implementation of the directive,
and in particular the matter of supplementary indications. We understand that the European Commission is currently carrying out this examination and expects to publish a consultation paper shortly.
According to the Scottish House Condition Survey around 328,000 households were living in fuel poverty in Scotland in 2003-04, which represents 14.5 per cent. of Scottish households. Scottish fuel poverty statistics are not available for North-East Fife for 2003-04. The 2002 Scottish House Condition Survey contains the most recent information broken down by local authority area, and shows that in 2002 there were an estimated 17,000 fuel-poor households in the area of Fife.
Mr. McCartney: Directive 80/181/EEC currently permits the use of supplementary indications until 31 December 2006. Article 6a of the directive requires a further examination of the implementation of the directive, and in particular the matter of supplementary indications. We understand that the European Commission is currently carrying out this examination and expects to publish a consultation paper shortly.
Jim Fitzpatrick [holding answer 11 December 2006]: The Department received representations seeking the repeal of the Pedlars Acts from the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Markets Industry in February 2006. Officials from the Department met the Group to discuss the matter. I understand that similar representations were made to ministerial colleagues in the Department for Communities and Local Government.
Mr. Leech: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions he has had with energy suppliers on their obligations to supply (a) gas and (b) electricity to small business consumers when requested to do so by the consumer. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem) is responsible for regulating gas and electricity supply, including supply to the business sector. Under their licences, suppliers are obliged to offer terms and conditions to domestic customers on request. This obligation does not extend to the business market.
Mr. Leech: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps his Department has taken to promote agreed standards for providing brokerage services to small business consumers in the energy market. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Department has supported the establishment of the Utilities Intermediaries Association, a trade association for intermediaries in the business energy sector, which, among other things, seeks to set and enforce standards of conduct for intermediaries.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the status is of each second-round offshore windfarm project application; what steps have been put in place to ensure that these applications will be dealt with expeditiously; and if he will make a statement. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Department is considering consent applications for seven of the round 2 offshore wind farm projects: London Array, Greater Gabbard, Thanet, Gwynt y Mor, Walney, West of Duddon Sands and Sheringham Shoal.
The Department works closely with other Government Departments, statutory consultees and others with an interest in the projects to ensure the decision-making process is managed as efficiently and expeditiously as possible. It is in no-ones interest to delay decision-making on projects where there is no justification for doing so. However, it is important to ensure that consent decisions are robust and are taken on the basis of a thorough consideration of all the issues raised during consultation.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Leader of the House pursuant to the Answer from the Parliamentary Secretary in the Cabinet Office to the hon. Member for Blackpool, South (Mr. Marsden) of 4 December 2006, Official Report, columns 189-90W, on the retirement age, what the Privy Councils policy is for the setting of retirement ages for staff below the senior civil service under the Civil Service (Management Functions) Act 1992. 
Mr. Straw: The Privy Council Office has a compulsory retirement age of 65 for all grades. Staff have the right to request retention beyond 65, for a maximum of one year at a time. The decision to retain staff beyond 65 is taken on business need.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Leader of the House what plans he has to alter the (a) salaries of, (b) number of support staff available to and (c) office space provided for his special advisers in the next 12 months. 
Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development in what ways his Department will work with (a) other donor agencies and (b) international finance institutions to meet the two targets agreed at the recent Microcredit Campaign Summit in Halifax, Nova Scotia relating to (i) extending credit for self-employment and other financial services to the worlds poorest families and (ii) ensuring such families cross the $1 a day threshold by 2015. 
Hilary Benn: DFID agrees that access to financial services for poor people will help to lift them out of poverty and to meet the millennium development goal of halving the proportion of people whose income is less than $1 a day.
The role of the financial sector in poverty reduction and growth is now well documented: financial sectors that reach more poor people have been shown not only to stimulate economic growth, but also to share the benefits of that growth more equitably and reduce poverty.
The UKs 2006 White Paper on International Development commits DFID to tackling barriers to access to markets and financial services, and supporting access to finance initiatives in partnership with banks and regulators.
DFID is sympathetic to the goals of the Microcredit Summit Campaign and is extending its efforts to the wider agenda of expanding access to financial services for poor people. It is estimated that 2 billion people in developing countries do not have a bank account or access to formal financial services.
DFID will continue to work with other donors and international financial institutions (IFIs) at policy, technical, and operational levels all of which contribute to increasing the number of poor people benefiting from financial services, including credit.
With respect to ensuring that the poorest families cross the threshold of $1 a day, an integrated approach is needed to achieve this target, including providing resources for education, health and other services. DFID and international financial institutions will continue to spend significant resources on education, health and other programmes of direct relevance, to improving the lives of poor families, in addition to microfinance, .
For example, DFID is contributing £16.2 million to a programme with BRAC, a leading microfinance bank in Bangladesh, called Challenging the Frontiers of Poverty Reduction. It provides a number of services, in addition to microcredit, for more than 100,000 poor people.
Sir Peter Soulsby: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission, what proportion of light bulbs used on the House of Commons estate were manufactured in the United Kingdom. 
Nick Harvey: It is difficult to give a precise answer, as purchases are made by contractors and by the Parliamentary Works Services Directorate. However, it is estimated that approximately 45 per cent. of tubes and lamps across the parliamentary estate are manufactured in the United Kingdom.
We seek best value for money in terms of unit price, life expectancy, energy usage, performance, etc. While we purchase exclusively from United Kingdom wholesalers, in some cases their supplies come from outside the UK.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will list the art exhibitions, including performance art, sponsored by public bodies for which her Department is responsible over the last 12 months for which figures are available; and what the cost was in each case. 
Mr. Lammy: We support a wide range of art exhibitions via various organisations including Arts Council England, the Renaissance in the Regions programme administered by the Museums, Libraries and Archive Council and our sponsored museums. The information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
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