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Mr. Burstow: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many individuals in each (a) age cohort and (b) London borough filed for bankruptcy in 2007; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Thomas: The Government have no plans to intervene in markets to reduce consumer borrowing. Restricting access to credit risks driving low income consumers to use illegal lenders. In other economies where controls exist the incidence of illegal lending is higher than in the UK.
The vast majority of consumers benefit from access to credit. Most manage their debts responsibly and are in control of their finances. However, for the minority who experience problems managing credit, the Government are providing support in form of measures to promote access to affordable credit and free debt advice.
In addition, the Consumer Credit Act 2006 has provided stronger protections for consumers. The OFT will now apply a more rigorous test of a firm's fitness to hold a consumer credit licence, including taking into account any evidence of irresponsible lending.
John Battle: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory -Reform when the Ministerial Group on over indebtedness last met; when the next meeting will be held; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Thomas: The Government take the issue of over-indebtedness extremely seriously. Ministerial discussions of credit and debt issues are taking place in many forums such as the National Economic Council and the cross-Government work on the housing market, including the mortgage rescue scheme.
The Ministerial Group on over-indebtedness agreed the Government's strategy on over-indebtedness in 2004. It provides direction and approval of the Government's annual report, Tackling Over-indebtedness, that has been issued since 2005. The group has found it effective to conduct its business by paper rather than physically meeting.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how much was spent on the upkeep of his Department's website in 2007-08; and how many people visited the site in that year. 
The Rhythmyx content management system (CMS). The CMS is used by staff across the Department and cost £1,029,474.83 in 2007-08.
Provision and maintenance of the site's search engine facility by a third-party supplier, Open Objects. In 2007-08 this cost £15,784.21
The Department for Business website (www.berr.gov.uk) received a total of 10,107,460 visits from 6,589,815 unique visitors in the period 1 April 2007 to 31 March 2008.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many page hits from how many visitors the departmental website received in the 2007-08 financial year. 
Mr. McFadden: In the 2007-08 financial year, www.berr.gov.uk received 34,781,332 page views from 6,589,815 unique visitors.
David Simpson: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many people aged over (a) 55 and (b) 60 years of age were recruited by his Department in 2007-08; and what percentage in each case this was of the number of new recruits. 
Number of entrants aged over 55 = 122;
Number of entrants aged over 60 = 15.
Number of new recruits aged over 55 = 4 per cent. (five);
Number of new recruits aged over 60 = 6.6 per cent. (1).
Mr. Heald: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many staff from his Department are to be redeployed to the Department of Energy and Climate Change. 
Mr. McFadden: The new Department (DECC) will consist of posts taken from the existing Departments for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) and from Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, (DEFRA). The detail is still being worked on, but approximately 500 posts will be redeployed from BERR.
Mr. Thomas: The Fireworks (Safety) Regulations 1997 prohibit the supply of fireworks to anyone under the age of 18. They also prohibit the supply of any fireworks which do not meet British standard 7114, certain banned fireworks and the supply of category 4 fireworks to non-professionals. The under-18s are prohibited from possessing fireworks in a public place by the Fireworks Regulations 2004.
The 2004 regulations also require that anyone who wishes to supply fireworks all year round must apply to their local licensing authority for a licence to do so and must pay the appropriate fee. Details of the number of licences issued or withdrawn for non-compliance are not held centrally.
Mr. Thomas: The Department estimates that around 1,000 people are injured by fireworks each year. This average is based on figures collected up to 2005 which we continue to use to inform our safety campaigns to target those most vulnerable to injury e.g. young children injured by sparklers.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many new businesses were started in each London borough in 2007; how many of them received Government funding during that year; and if he will make a statement. 
|VAT registrations in London and in each London borough, 2006|
|Number of new businesses|
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