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Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what plans he has to develop the Forward Commitment Procurement Model for wider use in public sector procurement. 
Mr. Simon: In November, DIUS launched the Innovation for Sustainability Competition to identify and develop Forward Commitment Procurement (FCP) projects in the public sector. The programme is designed to have a multiplier effect by creating a portfolio of FCP projects which can be used as exemplars and a broad base of public sector leaders and professionals who understand and can promote FCP approaches to sustainability and innovation.
We are working with BERR and OGC to take forward the recommendations of the recent report by Anne GloverAccelerating the SME Economic Engine, including wider use of outcome-based specifications across the public sector, for example through use of FCP.
Mrs. Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what steps he is taking to ensure that when young offenders have previously been subject to a statement of special educational needs that the details of the statement are made available to the education department at the young offenders institution. 
The Offender Learning Journey sets out our core expectations for the delivery of education and training for children and young people in YOIs. It requires that the education provider working in custody must work in partnership with other establishments, such as the young persons previous school, to obtain relevant educational information including any statement of special educational needs and any psychologists report on previous learning difficulties. The Offender Learning Journey also requires all young people should be diagnostically assessed within 10 working days of entry to custody and should be screened for specific learning difficulties.
The Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Bill which was introduced into Parliament on 4 February includes a clause which places a new duty on local education authorities in England and Wales with youth accommodation in their area to secure suitable education for those children and young people detained in custody. In carrying out this duty, local authorities will need to have regard to young peoples special educational needs or learning difficulties. This duty is subject to the successful passage of the Bill through Parliament.
Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many people defaulted on student loan repayments in each of the last five years; and what action was taken in relation to such people. 
|Student loan borrowers in arrears status at the end of each financial year( 1) , England|
|(1) Figures rounded to nearest 100. Consistent information is not available for earlier years.|
(3) Mortgage-style loan borrowers with accounts in more than one status may be counted more than once. Figures exclude mortgage-style borrowers deferring repayments due to income below the repayment threshold with arrears on their accounts. In March 2008, there were 6,500 borrowers in deferment with arrears.
Student Loans Company.
Student loans taken out since 1 September 1998 have income-contingent repayment where borrowers repay at a rate of 9 per cent. of earnings above £15,000, usually collected by employers alongside income tax and national insurance contributions. It is not normally possible to default on these repayments, except where a borrower moves abroad and repayments are made direct to the Student Loans Company. In these cases, the company traces the borrowers and enforces the debt.
Borrowers with the older mortgage-style loans repay instalments to the Student Loans Company whenever their annual income exceeds the repayment threshold, currently £25,936, usually through direct debits. The
company takes a number of steps to trace borrowers who are not repaying and to bring their accounts into order, andas a last resortwill take cases to court. Exceptions are made for some vulnerable borrowers.
Mr. Evennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many businesses in (a) the London Borough of Bexley, (b) London and (c) England have signed the Skills Pledge. 
Mr. Simon: The Skills Pledge is a voluntary, public commitment by employers to support their employees to develop their basic skills, including literacy and numeracy, and work towards relevant, valuable qualifications to at least level 2 (equivalent to five good GCSEs).
Since the launch of the Skills Pledge in June 2007 we have made excellent progress. The latest published figures up until November 2008, show that 12 organisations in the London borough of Bexley; 2,008 organisations in the London LSC region and 10,295 organisations in England have made the Skills Pledge. Please note that these figures include both public and private organisations.
Angela Eagle: The Department has been monitoring its performance against the requirement to pay all invoices within 10 days. For the period between November 2008 and January 2009, 90 per cent. of invoices were paid within 10 days. All staff involved in the processing of invoices are receiving training and regular reports on directorates performances are made to the Treasury Board and the Finance Committee.
Beginning in 1996-97, the Government has decided to introduce a new framework to financing... The Government will aim to sell sufficient gilts of any maturity, Treasury bills and National Savings products to finance the CGBR (plus maturing debt and any net increase in the official foreign exchange reserves). All debt such issuance will take place within a set maturity structure, to be determined and published each year.... The Government has no current plans to make significantly greater use than at present of short-term debt issuance...."
The Government intends to continue to finance the central government net cash requirement (CGNCR) using the framework that was established in the 1995 Debt Management Review. The Government aims to finance its net cash requirement plus maturing debt and any financing required for additional net foreign currency reserves through the issuance of debt. All such debt issuance will take place within a set maturity structure...
Mr. Ian Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will assess the merits of providing financial assistance to small and medium-sized businesses to meet their costs in respect of making redundancies during the recession. 
Ian Pearson: The Government recognise the need of supporting small and medium-sized business during the recession. In the pre-Budget report on 24 November 2008, my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced a package of Government support for small and medium-sized businesses to help them through the current economic difficulties. Since then, the Government have been working alongside the banks, business organisations and financial organisations to ensure that we speedily transform this announcement into real help for business.
On 14 January 2009, as part of the Governments Real Help for Business, the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform announced that businesses can now access the full range of support. In particular, the Enterprise Finance Guarantee is designed to help good businesses, who are currently not able to access the finance they need, to secure loans of between £1,000 and £1 million through the Government guarantee. This scheme will enable banks to open additional lines of credit worth £1.3 billion, available to businesses with turnover up to £25 million. It is available from a range of high street banks.
Steve Webb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the cost to the Exchequer of increasing child benefit for the first child by (a) £1, (b) £1.50, (c) £2, (d) £2.50, (e) £3, (f) £3.50 and (g) £4 per week above indexation in 2010-11 in each of the next five years; and if he will make a statement. 
|Estimated cost to the Department|
|Increasing child benefit for the first child by:||2010-11||2011-12||2012-13||2013-14||2014-15|
Steve Webb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the cost to the Exchequer of increasing the child element of child tax credit by (a) £10, (b) £20, (c) £30, (d) £40, (e) £50 and (f) £60 per year above indexation in 2010-11 in each of the next five years; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Timms: Estimates of the cost of increasing the child element of child tax credit by (a) £10, (b) £20, (c) £30, (d) £40, (e) £50 and (f) £60 per year above indexation in 2010-11 in each of the next five years are provided in the following table.
|Estimated cost of increasing the child element of child tax credit per year|
|Increase in child element in 2010-11||2010-11||2011-12||2012-13||2013-14|
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