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26 Nov 2007 : Column 46Wcontinued
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what proportion of research staff at the New Haw Laboratory were (a) on permanent contracts, (b) on temporary contracts and (c) employed via an employment agency in each of the last five years; what projection he has made of the equivalent proportions in 2008; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: The staff in the Research Division of the Veterinary Laboratories Agency (VLA) at New Haw as at 1 April each year are as follows:
Details of the temporary staff prior to 2007 are not available as VLA only took responsibility for liaising with temporary agencies with effect from 1 April 2007.
For 2008 we would not expect to see any material change to the figures that are shown for previous years.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent assessment he has made of the financial impact of the increased price of wheat on farmers; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: The increase in UK wheat prices reflects the rise in global wheat prices following two successive smaller world-harvests and increasing demand for cereals for food, feed and fuel purposes. The impact, in financial terms, will differ across the farming sectors, as explained in our recent report Implications of rising agricultural commodity prices. A copy of this report is available on the DEFRA website.
Projections of the aggregate measure of Total Income from Farming have been published on the DEFRA website and the first full set of farm income statistics, including a breakdown by farm type, will be published at the end of January.
Mr. Bone: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the UK's trade balance with other EU member states was in 2006-07; what the UK's trade balance with those countries in goods and services was in that year; and what proportion those figures represent of the UK's overall trade balance in each case. 
Kitty Ussher: The UK had a total trade deficit of £32 billion with the EU27 in 2006. This was made up of a trade in goods deficit of £32 billion and a trade in services deficit of just £6 million. The UK's total trade deficit with the rest of the world was £48 billion in 2006. This was made up of a trade in goods deficit of £78 billion and a trade in services surplus of about £29 billion.
Mr. Bone: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the UK's trade balance with other member states of the European Economic Community (EEC) was in the first 12 months after the UK joined the EEC as expressed in the value of the pound in 2007; what that balance was in (a) trade in goods and (b) trade in services; and what proportion these figures represented of the UK's trade balance in each case. 
Kitty Ussher: The UK had a total trade deficit of £2.2 billion (1974 prices) with the EEC in 1974 (the first year after joining in 1973). This is based on IMF data, which do not give a breakdown between goods and services, or allow for the figure to be expressed in the value of the pound in 2007. This is 33 per cent. of the total trade deficit the UK had with the entire world, which was £6.7 billion.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 15 November 2007, Official Report, column 396W, on Bank Melli, if he will place in the Library a copy of the Treasury Guidance to Financial Institutions on the Financial Action Task Force statement on Iran. 
Kitty Ussher: A Treasury advisory notice was issued on 12 October 2007 and is available on the Treasury website at:
Dr. Cable: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the revenue implications of taxing capital gains at the same marginal rates as income tax from April 2008. 
Jane Kennedy: The revenue yield from taxing all capital gains at the income tax rates announced for 2008-09, without applying taper relief or indexation allowance, would be of the order of £3.5 billion a year by comparison with the current (2007-08) regime. This is a broad estimate that assumes continuation of the tax-free annual exempt amount and takes into account the likely taxpayer response to the change.
Dr. Murrison: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what mechanisms exist to ensure that child benefit payments are made only to claimants with a legitimate claim; and if he will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy: The conditions of entitlement to child benefit are laid down by legislation. Associated statutory rules provide the basis for deciding who is to be treated as entitled where more than one person claims child benefit in respect of the same child for the same week. Inquiries are made of the claimants in such cases before any decision is made. Where there are inconsistencies in the evidence presented by either claimant, verification may be sought from third parties.
Dr. Murrison: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to review the effectiveness of the current system for allocation and payment of child benefit in circumstances where multiple claimants are unable to agree who should receive payment; and if he will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy: Child benefit is awarded to the person with the main responsibility for a child. Parents may choose which of them will receive the payments, and if no agreement is reached, HM Revenue and Customs is responsible for determining entitlement, based on the facts in individual cases. There is no provision for splitting child benefit and child tax credit, although in families with two or more children, parents can agree to each claim in respect of different children.
To meet the Governments child poverty target, it is necessary to focus financial support in a way that enables the parent with main caring responsibilities to provide for the childs needs. The Government will continue to listen to parents and representative groups regarding the best way to support families with children.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the proportion of recipients of child benefit in Eastbourne constituency who draw the benefit from post offices. 
Jane Kennedy: HM Revenue and Customs estimate that in August 2006 6 per cent. of child benefit claimants in Eastbourne constituency were paid using a Post Office card account.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what checks are carried out to confirm eligibility of claim for child benefit made by citizens of other EU member states residing in the UK and whose children are not in the UK. 
Jane Kennedy: A person making a claim for child benefit must provide documentary evidence of the child being claimed for, such as an original birth certificate, adoption certificate or passport.
All claims for child benefit are subject to a wide range of checks throughout the life of each claim. It would be inappropriate to disclose a complete list as to do so may provide assistance to those attempting to defraud the system.
Where claims are made on behalf of children living in another member state, HMRC do further checks to verify the information provided by the claimant, including verifying the composition of the family and to find out whether there are any other family benefits in payment in the other member state. HMRC and other member states have well established processes in place to ensure payments only go to those who are entitled.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the additional annual cost of paying child benefit from the 29th week of pregnancy from April 2009. 
Jane Kennedy: Child benefit can only be claimed after the birth of a child. There is no provision for child benefit to be claimed before a child is born.
The Government are introducing from April 2009 a separate payment to expectant mothers to help them during the important last weeks of pregnancy. Annual costs for the one-off payment, known as the Health in Pregnancy Grant, are estimated to be £145 million. In the first year they will be higher at approximately £175 million. These estimates have been updated to take account of Office for National Statistics 2006-based national population projections published on 23 October 2007.
Gordon Banks: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer which manufacturers software is used in his Department. 
Angela Eagle: The Treasurys core software systems include:
Northgate HR Ltd.
Alan Duncan: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many statutory instruments his Department laid before Parliament between 2 May 1997 and 27 June 2007. 
Angela Eagle: Our records show that 1,311 statutory instruments were made by the Treasury in the period concerned. How many of these instruments were laid before both Houses of Parliament or before the House of Commons could be determined only at disproportionate cost.
Sarah Teather: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many people in his Department were paid over £100,000 in each year since 1997. 
Angela Eagle: The reporting of individual earnings over the period requested can be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Salaries of senior staff are reported in the annual Treasury resource accounts, copies of which are in the Library or accessible via the Treasury public website.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the output per head of population in the (a) Scottish and (b) English economy was in each year since 1997. 
Andy Burnham: Data on gross value added by region and country are published by ONS. Data for years from 1997 can be found in table 12.1 of the ONS publication Regional Trends published in 2006 at:
Mr. Bone: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the (a) total value, (b) value of goods and (c) value of services of the UK's exports to other EU member states was in 2006-07; and what percentage of the UK's exports in that year these figures represent. 
Kitty Ussher: In 2006 the value of total UK exports to the EU27 was £20 billion. Of this £15 billion was exports of goods and £5 billion was exports of services. In 2006 the EU27 accounted for 55 per cent. of total exports, 63 per cent. of goods exports and 41 per cent. of services exports.
Mr. Bone: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the value was of the UK's exports to other European Economic Community (EEC) member states (a) in total, (b) in goods and (c) in services expressed by the value of the pound in 2007 in the first 12 months after the UK joined the EEC. 
Kitty Ussher: The value of UK exports to the EEC in 1974 was £5.5 billion (1974 prices). This is based on IMF data, which do not give a breakdown between goods and services, or allow for the figure to be expressed in the value of the pound in 2007. This is 33 per cent. of the total value of UK exports in 1974, which was £16.8 billion.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the number of jobs which were filled in the (a) Oxford and (b) Banbury travel to work area by EU migrant workers in each of the last three years. 
Angela Eagle: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician who has been asked to reply.
Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 26 November 2007:
As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your parliamentary question on jobs filled by EU migrant workers in the Oxford and Banbury travel-to-work areas. (167170).
The Office for National Statistics compiles statistics on employment for local areas from the annual Labour Force Survey (LFS) and the Annual Population Survey (APS) following International Labour Organisation definitions.
The National Statistics method for estimating the number of migrant workers employed in the UK is routinely based on the number of people at a given time who were born abroad, are of working age (16 to 64 for men, 16 to 59 for women) and in employment. This question has been answered on this basis. It means, for example, that some people who are UK nationals will be included in the total of "foreign born" and that people who are working but are above state pension age are not included.
The table attached shows the numbers of working-age people in employment who were born in EU countries other than the
UK and were resident in the Oxford and Banbury travel-to-work areas, for the 12 month period ending in December of each year from 2004 to 2006.
When interpreting these figures, it is important to bear in mind that the APS is not designed to cover everyone who is present in the UK. The survey may undercount the numbers of people who were born overseas. The reasons are set out in the table footnote.
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