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20 Oct 2010 : Column 754Wcontinued
Lindsay Roy: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will assess the value for money of undertaking a further procurement exercise for the e-Borders programme. 
Damian Green [holding answer 19 October 2010]: Since the e-Borders contract was terminated on 22 July 2010 due to significant and persistent breaches of contract by Raytheon Systems Ltd., it has been necessary to develop a strategy to procure services to replace those under the original e-Borders contract. This will include rigorous assessment of value for money.
David Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations she has received on the application process for tourist visas to the UK for those living in China. 
Damian Green: UK Border Agency officials are in regular contact with corporate partners in the tourist industry regarding the processing of UK tourist visa applications in various countries, including China. The Agency remains committed to providing a visa service that not only assists UK plc by encouraging genuine visitors, students and business people to come to the UK, but also prevents those who seek to abuse our immigration laws or pose a criminal or security risk from reaching the country.
The Agency aims to process 90% of general (tourist) visit visas within 15 working days and is currently meeting this target in China. For example, 92% of general visit visa applications lodged at the Beijing visa application centre and concluded in September this year were resolved within 15 working days, with 60% being resolved within 10 days.
Mr Clappison: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 7 July 2010, Official Report, column 287W, on foreign workers, how many work permit intracompany transfers have been granted to each of the three companies referred to in the answer in each year since the inception of the intracompany transfer scheme. 
Damian Green: The requested information is set out in the following table.
|Work p ermit intra company transfers approvals 1999-2008|
|By top three largest employer user of work permits|
1. Figures are rounded to nearest 5.
2. The figures quoted are not provided under National Statistics protocols and have been derived from local management information and are therefore provisional and subject to change.
1. The figures do not equate to the number of individual nationals who were granted permits because they include those applications approved to extend or amend an existing permit or where the individual has moved to another job with a different employer. Not all those who were granted a permit took up the job and some may have been refused entry clearance or further leave to remain.
2. Information is only available up until 2008 as the scheme closed at the end of 2008.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been (a) arrested, (b) charged, (c) prosecuted and (d) convicted in relation to offences of trafficking for sexual exploitation under sections 57 to 60 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. 
Damian Green: As of 30 June 2010 in relation to offences of trafficking for sexual exploitation there have been:
294 people charged and prosecuted for trafficking and or other related offences; and
233 convictions comprising 139 for human trafficking and 94 for other offences including rape, brothel management and money laundering.
As at the end of June 2010 there were 61 cases that were at various stages of the criminal justice system.
The figures have been supplied by the UK Human Trafficking Centre.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been (a) arrested, (b) charged, (c) prosecuted and (d) convicted in relation to offences related to slavery, servitude or forced or compulsory labour under section 71 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009. 
Damian Green: The information requested is not available.
The arrests collection held by the Home Office covers arrests for recorded crime (notifiable offences) only, broken down at a main offence group level, covering categories such as violence against the person and robbery. From these centrally reported categories it is not possible to separately identify individual offences.
Section 71 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009 was implemented on 6 April 2010. The most recently available data on court proceedings (held by the Ministry of Justice) are 2008.
Court data for 2010 will be available in 2011.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been (a) arrested, (b) charged, (c) prosecuted and (d) convicted in respect of offences of trafficking under section 31 of the UK Border Act 2007 committed (i) in and (ii) outside the UK. 
Section 31 of the Borders Act 2007 does not create a separate offence of trafficking but amends the offences contained within existing legislation which criminalises human trafficking.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been (a) arrested, (b) charged, (c) prosecuted and (d) convicted in respect of offences of trafficking for labour and other exploitation under section 4 of the Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants) Act 2004 committed (i) in and (ii) outside the UK. 
Damian Green: As of 30 June 2010 in relation to offences of trafficking for labour exploitation there have been:
86 people charged and prosecuted for trafficking and or other related offences; and
26 convictions comprising 10 for human trafficking and 16 for other offences.
At the end of June there were 50 cases at various stages of the criminal justice system.
The figures have been supplied by the UK Human Trafficking Centre.
These figures relate to offences within the United Kingdom. There has been one conviction of trafficking for forced labour where the victim was trafficked out of the UK. This offence was dealt with under the legislation of the receiving country.
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many applications for indefinite leave to remain from applicants originally from (a) Afghanistan, (b) Pakistan, (c) Iraq, (d) Somalia, (e) Zimbabwe, (f) Turkey and (g) India have been (i) received and (ii) approved in each quarter since May 2005; and if she will make a statement. 
Damian Green: All the data requested have been placed in the Library of the House of Commons.
We have interpreted my hon. Friend's question to mean the number of applications for indefinite leave to remain in each quarter and of those, how many were approved.
This is internal management information and is subject to change. This information has not been quality assured under National Statistics protocols.
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 12 October 2010, Official Report, column 303W, on immigration: Bulgaria, if she will assess the likely effect on levels of immigration of the extension by the government of Bulgaria of passport entitlement to citizens of Ukraine and Belarus. 
Damian Green: The UK Border Agency will continue to monitor closely any significant changes in the numbers of Bulgarians coming to the UK. During 2011 there will be an assessment of the available evidence of levels and impacts of migration to the UK by citizens of Romania and Bulgaria, to inform a decision on whether transitional controls on their access to work should be extended for a further two years on the grounds that to do otherwise would risk a serious disturbance to the labour market.
Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what requirement there is for British passport holders to have their passports checked and scanned on (a) leaving and (b) entering the UK; and if she will make a statement. 
Damian Green [holding answer 18 October 2010]: The UK Border Agency policy is that all passengers passing through UK immigration control have their travel documents checked and scanned on entry, and departure controls are undertaken on a risk-assessed intelligence-led basis.
This is underpinned by legislation-under Paragraph 2 (1) of Schedule 2 to the Immigration Act 1971, an immigration officer may examine any persons who have arrived in the United Kingdom for the purpose of determining whether they are a British citizen and, if they are not, whether they may enter the United Kingdom without leave and, if they may not, whether they should be granted or refused leave to enter.
Paragraph 3(1) of Schedule 2 permits an immigration officer to carry out a similar examination on persons seeking to embark from the United Kingdom for the purpose of establishing identity, and whether a person has entered lawfully, or has complied with conditions of any grant of leave, or whether their return to the United Kingdom is prohibited or restricted.
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many foreign prisoners held on the prison estate have completed their sentences but have yet to be deported to their home countries; and if she will make a statement. 
Damian Green: The UK Border Agency and the National Offender Management Service work closely to ensure that foreign national prisoners (FNPs) are removed from the UK at the earliest opportunity.
In 2009, for an average month, approximately 550 foreign national prisoners were detained in prison beyond the end of their custodial sentence while deportation was pursued.
Mr Bain: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many work cards were issued under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers' Scheme in each of the last five years. 
Damian Green: The following table shows both the quota for each of the last five years and the number of work cards issued to workers.
For the current year, all 21,250 cards have been allocated to operators according to a pre-agreed share. Not all cards have been issued to workers at the time of writing.
|Quota||Cards issued to workers|
|(1) Cards issued to end September 2010.|
The number of work cards issued is not representative of the number of individuals working in the UK under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme. Not all cards allocated are used, and some cards are issued as replacements for lost or spoiled cards.
This information has been provided from local management information and is not a National Statistic.
Toby Perkins: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, on the sale of pesticides by UK companies to cotton farmers in India. 
Mr O'Brien: The Secretary of State for International Development has not had any discussions with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, on the sale of pesticides by UK companies to cotton farmers in India.
Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many (a) women and (b) men from each age group are in receipt of carer's allowance. 
Maria Miller: The requested information is shown in the following table:
|People in receipt of carer's allowance in Great Britain and abroad -by age group: February 2010|
|Age of claimant||Male||Female|
|"*" Denotes nil or negligible.|
1. Figures are rounded to the nearest 10.
2. These figures are published at:
3. Totals show the number of people in receipt of an allowance and excludes people with entitlement where the payment has been suspended, for example if they are in hospital.
DWP Information Directorate Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study 100% data
Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how many claimants in Kilmarnock and Loudoun constituency have received funeral payments in each of the last five years; 
(2) what estimate he made of the monetary value of funeral payments made to claimants in Kilmarnock and Loudoun constituency in each of the last five years. 
Steve Webb: The information requested is not available. The number of funeral payment awards and their monetary value are available by Government Office Region or Jobcentre Plus Social Fund budget area only, not by constituency. Because of boundary changes to the areas used to administer funeral payments, comparable data over the last five years are not available at Jobcentre Plus Social Fund budget area level for Scotland. The following table gives information for the Government Office Region of Scotland.
|Funeral payments in Scotland|
|Number of awards||Expenditure (£ million)|
The number of awards has been rounded to the nearest 100 and expenditure to the nearest £0.1 million.
Department for Work and Pensions Social Fund Policy, Budget and Management Information System
Mr Spencer: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will bring forward proposals to ensure that people in receipt of income support who are entering full-time education continue to receive benefits up to the date their course begins. 
Maria Miller: People in receipt of income support are able to receive benefit up to the date at which they start attending or undertaking their course of study. After this date financial support is the responsibility of the education system. Students who find themselves in financial hardship, for example if their student loan is delayed, can apply to their university or college for financial assistance from the discretionary Access to Learning Fund.
Ann McKechin: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether an equality impact assessment will be made in respect of proposed changes to the Independent Living Fund. 
Maria Miller: The long-term future of the Independent Living Fund is being considered as part of the forthcoming spending review and no decisions have yet been made. However, I can confirm that should changes be made to the operation of the Independent Living Fund, equality impact assessments will be carried out, as appropriate.
Julian Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of outreach services offered by Jobcentre Plus. 
Chris Grayling: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the chief executive of Jobcentre Plus, Darra Singh. I have asked him to provide the hon. Member with the information requested.
Letter from Darra Singh, dated October 2010:
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question asking what recent assessment has been made of the effectiveness of the outreach services offered by Jobcentre Plus. This is something that falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus.
Jobcentre Plus currently provides a variety of outreach services at around 1500 locations right across the country. We recognise the potential of these services to meet the needs of customers and communities and to reach the most disadvantaged and vulnerable in society. These outreach services complement our core services delivered through other channels.
Outreach schemes take a number of different forms. Among them are: outreach in local authority and community centres, providing ease of access to advice and support; prison outreach, which provides specific support to prisoners as part of their preparation for release; and outreach at school gates, children's centres and colleges. Much of this outreach work is by its nature local. However, national initiatives are evaluated centrally. For example, in 2008 the Work-Focused Services in Children's Centres pilot was set up, under which Jobcentre Plus Advisers are co-located full-time in children's centres and provide enhanced packages of support. An evaluation is testing the effect of this model on parents' preparation for (and movement into) work, as well as multi-agency working. Interim findings show that parents welcome accessing work-focused services in the children's centre, particularly in comparison to the local Jobcentre Plus office. This work is ongoing and the final evaluation report will be available in September 2011.
In Autumn 2009 Jobcentre Plus put in place community outreach teams in three locations to work with the individuals and households that faced the most disadvantages. Working closely with social housing providers and other partner organisations, Jobcentre Plus advisers are engaging with jobless residents, helping them access the support they need to address multiple disadvantages. They are helping people who had previously considered themselves to be outside the labour market. In August 2010 the initiative was extended to a further 13 social housing estates across England, Wales and Scotland.
We intend to produce a comprehensive evaluation of the project that focuses not only on job outcomes and engagements but also covers the specific barriers to employment that have been overcome, social benefits, the localism approach and the value of partnership working. This evaluation is ongoing; the timescale for publishing the report will be dependent on decisions made about the project following the Spending Review.
For the future, I see outreach as an important way of delivering our services. We will continue to work with partners at a local level to establish new and innovative ways of sharing premises, facilitate the provision of more cohesive local services, promote our services to a wider customer base and potentially reduce overall Government estate costs.
I hope this information is helpful.
Gregg McClymont: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps his Department is taking to encourage saving among low-income households. 
Steve Webb: DWP is developing the capacity of community sector financial service providers such as credit unions so that people on low incomes, traditionally not well served by mainstream financial institutions, have access to savings products, affordable credit and basic banking. By August 2010 the DWP Growth Fund had served over 300,000 people, of whom around 65% had been helped to open a bank or savings account. DWP Financial Inclusion Champions are also working with local authorities, social landlords and the community sector to encourage people to access these financial services.
The Government are also committed to introducing a new duty on employers to automatically enrol eligible jobholders into workplace pension schemes to address pension undersaving. Evidence suggests that around seven million people are currently not saving enough to deliver the income they are likely to want or expect in retirement and a high proportion of those are low to moderate earners.
Justin Tomlinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what recent assessment he has made of the appropriateness of the medical criteria for eligibility for the Motability scheme. 
Maria Miller: Eligibility for the Motability scheme is dependent on a person being entitled to the higher rate mobility component of disability living allowance or the War Pensioners' Mobility Supplement. Entitlement is not determined by medical criteria but by the extent to which a person's disability gives rise to mobility difficulties. This is consistent with Motability's objective of helping severely disabled people with personal mobility needs. The Government announced in the June Emergency Budget that it would reform disability living allowance and will continue to work closely with disabled people, voluntary organisations and medical experts to develop a new independent and objective assessment of need.
Mr Bain: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the annual savings in expenditure achieved by distributing national insurance numbers by letter in each of the next five years, as submitted through the Spending Challenge website as part of the process for the Comprehensive Spending Review. 
Mr Gauke: I have been asked to reply.
From 2011, HMRC will issue national insurance numbers to people by letter rather than providing a plastic card, saving the Government up to £1 million a year in upfront costs. From October 2010, where a replacement card is requested, a letter will be sent instead of a plastic card, saving £50,000 in 2010-11.
Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people in each Parliamentary constituency in North Wales received (a) pension credit, (b) winter fuel allowance and (c) disability living allowance in each of the last five years. 
Steve Webb: The information is in the tables.
|Pension credit caseload time series, number of beneficiaries, North Wales|
|Parliamentary constituency May 2010||February 2010||Parliamentary constituency May 2005||February 2009||February 2008||February 2007||February 2006|
| Notes: 1. Caseload figures are rounded to the nearest 10. 2. Household recipients are those people who claim pension credit either for themselves or on behalf of themselves and a partner. Beneficiaries are the number of claimants in addition to the number of partners for whom they are claiming. 3. Constituencies used for February 2010 are for the Westminster Parliament of May 2010. Prior to this, the Constituencies used are for May 2005. Source: DWP Information Directorate: Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study 100% data.|
|Winter fuel payment caseload time series, North Wales|
| Notes: 1. Figures are rounded to the nearest 10. 2. Parliamentary constituency boundaries are as for the Westminster Parliament of May 2005. 3. DWP are currently working on producing 2009-10 figures for the May 2010 parliamentary constituencies. Source: DWP Information Directorate 100% data.|
|Disability living allowance caseload time series, number of claimants, North Wales|
|Parliamentary constituency May 2010||February 2010||Parliamentary constituency May 2005||February 2009||February 2008||February 2007||February 2006|
| Notes: 1. Caseload figures are rounded to the nearest 10. 2. Figures show the number of people in receipt of an allowance, and exclude people with entitlement where the payment has been suspended, for example if they are in hospital. 3. Constituencies used for February 2010 are for the Westminster Parliament of May 2010. Prior to this, the constituencies used are for May 2005. Source: DWP Information Directorate: Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study 100% data.|
Mr Charles Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions for what reasons his Department refers to individuals claiming employment and support allowance and other incapacity benefits as customers; and if he will make a statement. 
Maria Miller: The Department uses the term 'customer' to reinforce the importance of its relationship with the individuals claiming all types of benefits including, employment and support allowance and other incapacity benefits.
The Department for Work and Pensions' work to develop and implement a 21st century welfare system is rooted in a professional, customer-focused relationship, and it is important that the language we use reflects this.
Research with customers, including those claiming incapacity benefits, indicates that customer-focused language is important-as reflected in the Department's Customer Charter.
Chris Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what recent assessment his Department has made of the ease with which people with disabilities can complete application forms for disability benefits. 
Maria Miller: As part of our consultation arrangements, Pension Disability and Carers Service (PDCS) co-ordinates the PDCS Advisory Forum, membership of which comprises of 22 organisations that collectively represent a broad range of our customers. PDCS routinely consults with the Advisory Forum on how all our claim forms can be improved, which includes Disability Living Allowance (DLA), Attendance Allowance (AA) and Carers Allowance (CA) forms. A new child DLA claim form has been developed in partnership with voluntary organisations including the National Autistic Society, National Deaf Children's Society, Citizens Advice and the Family Fund. This is currently being tested but early feedback from customer and children's organisations has been positive. Additionally, to take account of a new legislative provision where the Higher Rate Mobility Component can be claimed from April 2011 by certain severely visually impaired customers, PDCS are developing a new DLA Adult claim form in partnership with Royal National Institute for the Blind, Action for Blind People, Citizens Advice and representatives from local authorities. It is expected that the new DLA Adult form will be available from February 2011.
In addition, questions about the ease with which disabled customers can complete application forms for Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance have been included in the Customer Satisfaction Monitor (a customer survey of 6,000 PDCS customers) that has been commissioned by the Pension Disability and Carers Service. The results from the first year of this survey are currently being assessed ahead of external publication in early 2011.
The Chancellor announced in the Emergency Budget that the Government will introduce a new, objective assessment for DLA from 2013-14. We will consider, as part of these reforms, how we can reduce the burden of long claim forms for applicants.
Robert Halfon: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many persons suspected of offences related to benefit fraud were (a) arrested, (b) prosecuted and (c) convicted in each of the last 24 months. 
Chris Grayling: Information on the total number of people suspected of offences relating to benefit fraud that were arrested in each of the last 24 months is not available.
Information is available on the number of people prosecuted and convicted following arrest in each of the last two financial years, as follows:
|Number prosecuted following arrest||Number convicted|
Priti Patel: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people waiting trial for offences relating to benefit fraud have absconded in each of the last five years. 
Chris Grayling: Information on the number of people waiting trial for offences relating to benefit fraud that have absconded in each of the last five years is not available.
The Department seeks an arrest warrant in all circumstances in which a defendant fails to attend a hearing or trial without an explanation acceptable to the court.
On 14 October 2010, the Department held 550 warrant cases.
Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what financial support a patient with a poor diagnosis of haematological cancer receives from his Department. 
Maria Miller: There are a range of benefits available from the Department to help support people with life limiting conditions and for disabled people, including disability living allowance (DLA) or attendance allowance (AA), employment and support allowance (ESA) as well as housing benefit. An award of DLA can also give rise to a disability premium on out of work benefits such as income support and job seekers allowance.
A person who has a diagnosis of cancer and has care and/or mobility needs arising from their disability can claim DLA/AA under the normal rules. There are also special rules which apply to people who are terminally ill and not expected to live for longer than six months. Individuals with such diagnosis are automatically awarded the highest rate of the care component of disability living allowance, even if, at the time of the claim, they have no pre-existing care needs arising from their condition. Similar fast track arrangements exist with employment and support allowance.
Nicky Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he made of the number of new (a) incapacity benefit and (b) employment and support allowance claimants in the latest year for which figures are available who are blind or have partial sight loss as a result of illness. 
Maria Miller: The information requested is not available in the format requested.
However, we do have information regarding the number of employment and support allowance customers who made a claim on the grounds of diseases of the eye and adnexa. From October 2008 to November 2009, 3,500 customers made a claim for employment and support allowance on this basis.
This information is available in Annex C of the publication 'Employment and Support Allowance: Work capability Assessment by Health Condition and Functional Impairment: official statistics'. This can be found at:
Between November 2008 and November 2009, 300 customers made a claim for incapacity benefit on the grounds of diseases of the eye and adnexa.
Mr Burley: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people participated in the travel to interview scheme in each of the last five months; and what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of that scheme. 
Chris Grayling: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the chief executive of Jobcentre Plus, Darra Singh. I have asked him to provide my hon. Friend with the information requested.
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your questions asking how many people participated in the Travel to Interview Scheme in each of the last five months; and what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of that scheme. This is something that falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus.
The Travel to Interview Scheme helps customers compete for appropriate jobs outside their local travel to work area by providing help with travel costs for attending interviews. In deciding the appropriateness of an award, advisers will take into account a number of factors, which include making sure that the customer is aware of and is applying for jobs locally, the customer's ability to pay their own travel expenses, and how realistic and achievable the job in question is.
Turning to your specific question about the number of people participating in the scheme in each of the last five months, we do not routinely gather this information and to do so would be disproportionately expensive.
In terms of effectiveness, advisers and customers tell us the scheme is helpful and popular, but it is difficult to assess the success in terms of job outcomes. This is because the scheme aims to help people compete for appropriate jobs by enabling their attendance at interviews that would otherwise be out of reach. Once at interview the jobseeker is, of course, in competition with other applicants.
Grahame M. Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the monetary value was of winter fuel payments to former UK residents living abroad in the most recent year for which information is available; and if he will make a statement. 
Steve Webb: In 2009-10 we made 70,880 winter fuel payments to people living in the European economic area and Switzerland at a cost of around £15 million. This represents less than 1% of the total winter fuel payments made in that year.
DWP Information Directorate 100% data.
Mr Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people received winter fuel allowance in (a) Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council and (b) Warley constituency in the latest period for which figures are available. 
Steve Webb: The information is available in the documents winter fuel payment recipients 2009-10 by local authority and gender (All) and winter fuel payment recipients 2009-10 by parliamentary constituencies and gender (All). These are available in the Commons Library and on the internet at:
Mike Freer: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what his most recent estimate is of the monetary value of each vacant (a) building and (b) parcel of land leased by his Department in each region. 
John Penrose: The Department currently pays a rental value of £850,447 +VAT per annum for vacant space, at 2-4 Cockspur Street, that became available on 29 March 2010.
The Department does not lease any parcels of land.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what timetable he has set for the sale of the Horserace Totalisator Board. 
John Penrose: My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer confirmed in the Budget on 22 June that the Government will, over the next 12 months, resolve the future of the Tote in a way that secures value for the taxpayer while recognising the support the Tote currently provides the racing industry.
A variety of possible approaches are being discussed with different stakeholders, and the Government will continue to talk to all parties with an interest in the Tote during that process. We will announce which structure has been agreed as soon as possible.
Michael Dugher: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what meetings (a) he and (b) Ministers in his Department have had with executives of (i) News International Limited and (ii) News Corporation since their appointment. 
Mr Vaizey: Since being appointed, the Secretary of State formally met James Murdoch of News International Limited on 28 June, and I formally met Rebekah Brooks of News Corporation on 12 July.
Robert Flello: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport (1) how many UK ceramic manufacturers have been awarded contracts by his Department to produce ceramic ware for the London 2012 Olympic Games; 
(2) whether contractual requirements have been placed on UK ceramic manufacturers awarded contracts by his Department for the London 2012 Olympic Games to ensure that they manufacture ware in the UK rather than import ware for decoration and repackaging in the UK. 
Hugh Robertson [holding answer 18 October 2010]: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has not directly awarded any contracts to UK ceramic manufacturers for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
As a non-departmental public body (NDPB) of DCMS, the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) is responsible for delivering the permanent venues and infrastructure for the Games, and contracts to ceramic manufacturers have been awarded to achieve this. The numbers and contractual requirements of these contracts are not currently held by the ODA as they have been awarded further down the supply chain by the tier one contractors and not by the ODA.
The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) is responsible for the official London 2012 merchandising and licensing programme, which helps to raise LOCOG's £2 billion privately-financed budget to stage the Games. Earlier this year, LOCOG appointed Waterford Crystal, Wedgewood and Royal Doulton as its ceramic and crystal licensee, to produce London 2012 commemorative and souvenir merchandise. Beyond this, LOCOG has no major requirement for ceramics procurement.
Jim Dowd: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport when he expects to make a decision on the recommendation of English Heritage to list parts of the structure of Sydenham School; and what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Education on the effect of this decision on the implementation of the Building Schools for the Future project at that school. 
The evidence in relation to Sydenham School is being assessed and I expect to make a decision within the next six weeks. However, the process may take longer if additional scrutiny reveals issues that
require further investigation. I have had no discussions with the Secretary of State for Education on the effect of a listing decision. The list is a register which recognises the special interest of buildings. In choosing buildings for addition to the list I cannot consider any factors other than their architectural or historic interest.
Pete Wishart: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what the monetary value was of (a) public opinion research and (b) public relations contracts awarded by his Department in each of the last five years in each (A) nation and (B) region of the UK. 
Mr Davey: The total spent on publicity via the Central Office of Information (COI) and directly with public relations agencies in the last five financial years is:
|Total amount (£)|
The total spent on public surveys procured through the Central Office of Information (COI) is:
Public relations contracts were awarded for national campaigns in England and Wales and cannot be broken down by region or city. Detailed information regarding the coverage of public opinion surveys is not readily available as the coverage of most of these surveys was not specific to any region.
Andrew Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many cases were brought by the European Commission in respect of financial corrections and alleged irregularities in the disbursement of funds from the European Regional Development Fund for 2000 to 2006; how many such cases are still open; and how many such cases related to disputes over regulations on publicity for funding. 
Mr Prisk: In the 2000-06 programme perspective, three cases have been brought against UK authorities by the European Commission in respect of alleged irregular expenditure in ERDF programmes. None of these cases involved a dispute over the publicity regulations. One case is still open and under discussion between the UK authorities concerned and the European Commission.
Mr Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many general further education colleges will be affected by the decision to reclassify them as a part of central Government. 
Mr Hayes: There are 251 further education colleges, incorporated under the Further and Higher Education Act 1992, which are affected by the Office of National Statistics' decision to classify them as central Government for the purpose of the national accounts.
Grahame M. Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what estimate he has made of the number of student places in universities in (a) England and (b) the North East in academic years (i) 2009-10, (ii) 2010-11 and (iii) 2011-12. 
Mr Willetts: Information on the number of enrolments in higher education institutions (HEIs) in England is collected by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). Final figures on enrolments in England and the North East in 2009/10 will not be available until January 2011. Information for 2008/09 is given in the following table:
|UK and EU domiciled enrolments in HEIs in England and the North East 2008/09|
Figures are rounded to the nearest five.
In 2008-09 the Government funded 1,160,000 full-time equivalent places and an additional 10,000 additional student numbers in 2009-10. The coalition Government are funding 1,190,000 full-time equivalent places in 2010-11, including the 10,000 places announced as part of the University Modernisation Fund. No funding decisions have been made for 2011-12; these will take place following the Spending Review. Planned funded student numbers are not available at a regional level.
Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of bibliometric measures in analysing the research performance of universities. 
Mr Willetts: While it is acknowledged to be imperfect, bibliometric evidence is an important indicator of universities' research performance, and is well correlated, albeit imperfectly, with the quality of the research assessed. Underpinning the usefulness of bibliometric data are its characteristics of being readily available and quantifiable, which allows for timely and objective measurement and facilitates comparisons of national and international research performance.
BIS undertakes a regular assessment of the Performance of the UK Research Base based upon Bibliometrics. The most recent of which, "The International Comparative Performance of the UK Research Base", was published in 2009:
Highlights from this assessment revealed that the UK maintains a remarkably strong research base, remaining the most productive country in the G8 as measured by citations per pound spent and second only to the USA in its share of highly cited papers.
According to this report, bibliometrics have an important role in indexing research performance-despite suffering from some limitations, and while:
'the defects of bibliometric evidence are familiar' ...
'bibliometrics are likely to be of increasing importance'
Chi Onwurah: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what representations he has received from trade unions on the transfer to local enterprise partnerships of employees from regional development agencies. 
Mr Prisk: I have received a letter, dated 15 September, from the Public and Commercial Services Union regarding regional co-ordination of strategy for economic regeneration and the matter of future employment opportunities and redundancy arrangements for RDA staff.
Mrs Glindon: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what assessment his Department has made of the contribution to (a) the economy and (b) university research of funding for medical research from charitable sources since 2005. 
Mr Willetts: The Government welcome the valuable contribution from charities to medical research in the UK. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has not carried out any specific analysis of the contribution of funding for medical research from charitable sources to the economy or university research since 2005. However, the Medical Research Council was a sponsor of the document "Medical Research: What's it worth?" which was published by RAND Europe in November 2008
This analysed the economic impact of both public and charitable funding. It demonstrated that every pound invested in cardiovascular research over the period of the study resulted in a benefit to GDP of 39 pence per year in perpetuity.
Tony Baldry: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills pursuant to the statement of 14 October 2010, Official Report, columns 505-06, on public bodies reform, whether (a) the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board and (b) the Construction Industry Training Board will retain its statutory power to raise training levies on the engineering industry following transfer to the private sector. 
Mr Hayes: The coalition Government are committed to review public bodies, with the aim of increasing accountability for actions carried out on behalf of the state. For the Industry Training Boards (ITBs) we are reviewing the scope for a statutory levy to be operated by a private sector organisation. It is right that Government look at the options for increasing the flexibilities and freedoms under which employers can invest in training. If we cannot find a way of moving ITBs to the private sector, without compromising their ability to raise a statutory levy, then we can still explore ways to further encourage efficiency and flexibility.
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills when he expects his Department's review of new regulations to be concluded; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr Prisk: In the Budget the Government announced plans for reducing the regulatory burdens on business, including the introduction of a one-in-one-out system for new regulations and a fundamental review of all regulation inherited from the previous Government scheduled for introduction over the coming year. These regulations will not be implemented until they have been reviewed and re-agreed by the Reducing Regulation Cabinet Committee.
This review is on-going and an announcement will be made once it has been completed.
Mike Crockart: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what percentage of graduates are making repayments on their student loans to the Student Loans Company (a) one, (b) five and (c) 10 years after completing university. 
Mr Willetts: As student loans mature, increasing numbers of borrowers fully repay. For example by April 2010 39% of the 2000 cohort and 16% of the 2004 cohort had fully repaid. The table shows the proportion of those who remain liable to repay who made repayments during the relevant tax year. Borrowers with fluctuating earnings may make repayments in some years and not others, so for example some of those not repaying in the fifth year after leaving higher education may have made repayments in previous years.
Borrowers are not required to make repayments when they are earning less than £15,000 per year. Repayments are collected through the tax system, so generally borrowers cannot default.
|Percentage of student loan borrowers making repayments( 1)|
|Repayment cohort( 2)||Percentage repaying in first tax year after leaving higher education||Percentage repaying in fifth tax year after leaving higher education|
|(1) The table covers borrowers who received loans as English domiciled students studying in the UK or as EU students studying in England. It shows borrowers making repayments in the relevant tax year as a percentage of borrowers with an outstanding balance at the start of that tax year. It covers repayments known by SLC at 30 April 2010.|
(2) Borrowers are placed in a repayment cohort according to when they first became liable to repay, which is in the April after they graduated or otherwise left their course.
Student Loans Company
Income contingent loans were introduced in 1998 and the first repayments were made in 2000. As 2000 is the first repayment cohort, consistent separate data for
those who left higher education after 10 years are not yet available. Figures relate to student loan borrowers regardless of whether they are graduates or not.
The first two repayment cohorts are atypical as they only comprise borrowers on short courses and those who left university before completing their courses. The first repayment cohort containing graduates from three year courses is the 2002 cohort.
From April 2005 the earnings threshold at which borrowers are required to make repayments was raised from £10,000 to £15,000. This explains the lower percentage repaying in the first year from the 2005 cohort onwards.
Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department plans to take to ensure that people with rheumatoid arthritis are given a personalised care plan; and who will be responsible for developing that plan with the patient. 
Paul Burstow: Personalised care planning aims to put people at the centre of decisions about their care and should be offered to all people with long-term conditions including those living with rheumatoid arthritis. Care plans should be developed collaboratively with the individual and the health and social care professionals with whom they have regular contact. In most cases there will be a lead professional who will initiate the process, for example a general practitioner, a practice nurse, a specialist nurse, a social care worker or an allied health professional. Other professionals involved in the person's care should also be aware that they have a care plan and input as necessary.
Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what recent assessment he has made of regional variations in the usage of treatments approved by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence for rheumatoid arthritis; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what assessment he has made of the implementation of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence Clinical Guideline 79 for rheumatoid arthritis in England. 
Paul Burstow: The Department has not made any specific assessment of either regional variations in the availability of treatments for rheumatoid arthritis approved by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) or of the implementation of clinical guideline 79 issued by NICE for rheumatoid arthritis.
It is the responsibility of national health service bodies to implement NICE guidance and NICE publishes a number of implementation tools alongside its guidance to help facilitate this.
Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether his Department plans to screen blood already stored in blood banks for the xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus. 
Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether his Department plans to remove from storage blood donated by persons diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis. 
Anne Milton: There are no plans to screen blood already stored in blood banks for the xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) or to remove from storage blood donated by persons diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis.
A recent study in the United States (of America) reported that XMRV has been detected in a number of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)/myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) sufferers. CFS/ME sufferers can currently give blood when they are well. These data have not been replicated in Europe. An expert subgroup of National Expert Panel for New and Emerging Infections (NEPNEI) met in May 2010, to consider all available evidence about XMRV and conduct a risk assessment. The subgroup concluded that XMRV can infect humans but there is currently no evidence that it causes human disease and that on the evidence before the group, no public health action is required at this time. Since the subgroup meeting in May there has been no new scientific evidence that would change the conclusions of the subgroup. In July 2010, the Advisory Committee on the Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs (SaBTO), similarly did not recommend further measures at present. Both groups will continue to monitor the situation.
However, from 1 November 2010, CFS/ME sufferers will no longer be able to donate blood. The UK Blood Services recognised that exclusion from donation by people with ME/CFS needed to be brought in line with that from other relapsing conditions for the protection of the donor, and not because of potential infection risks.
Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the implications for (a) organ donation and (b) people with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) who are undergoing surgery of the ban on people with ME from donating blood. 
Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the evidential basis was for his Department's decision to cease to accept blood donations from persons diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis; and if he will make a statement. 
Anne Milton: The change to the United Kingdom Blood Services donor selection guidelines (which comes into force on 1 November 2010) to permanently exclude from blood donation, anyone who reports that they have had chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)/myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), is being made purely on the grounds of donor safety, as CFS/ME is a relapsing condition. It brings practice for CFS/ME into line with other relapsing conditions or neurological conditions of unknown origin, to avoid the potential for blood donation to adversely affect the donor.
The change was not made because of a perceived risk to recipients of blood from CFS/ME patients and therefore does not affect the safety of organ donations and CFS/ME patients undergoing surgery.
The Advisory Committee on the Safety of Blood, Tissues and Organs on the basis of current evidence does not recommend further measures at present but wishes to continue to monitor the situation.
Hazel Blears: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent assessment he has made of progress in achieving his Department's commitment to reduce the prescribing of anti-psychotic drugs to people diagnosed with dementia by two thirds in two years. 
Paul Burstow: Professor Alistair Burns, the National Clinical Director for Dementia, is leading the work to reduce the use of anti-psychotics in all settings. As a priority, the NHS Information Centre is undertaking an audit for the Department on the prescribing of anti-psychotics for people with dementia. The aim remains to achieve overall a two-thirds reduction in the level of prescription over a period of two years from establishing a baseline position. There is emerging evidence from the audit that there has been a reduction in use of these drugs since last year. These data are being validated.
Stephen Gilbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he plans to take to implement the proposals on the engagement of consultants in dental public health and dental practice advisers in the development of new arrangements for NHS dentistry as referred to in his Department's White Paper on 'Equity and excellence: liberating the NHS'. 
Mr Simon Burns: The White Paper 'Equity and Excellence: Liberating the NHS' refers to creation of a NHS Commissioning Board and a new public health service, to integrate and streamline existing health improvement. The NHS Commissioning Board will take on responsibility for commissioning national health service primary dental services, while the primary care trusts' responsibilities for local health improvement will transfer to local authorities. Local authorities will employ the director of public health jointly appointed with the public health service. To discharge their functions and responsibilities, both the public health service in local authorities and dental service commissioners will need appropriate advice and input from dental public health consultants, dental practice advisers and their teams, working with local clinicians.
Ian Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the monetary value is of contracts his Department has awarded to each (a) management consultancy and (b) IT company since 7 May 2010. 
Mr Simon Burns: The information is contained in the following tables:
|Monetary value of contracts awarded by the Department to management consultancy companies from 7 May 2010 to 22 September 2010|
|Company||Value of contracts (£)|
|Monetary value of contracts awarded by the Department to information technology companies from 7 May 2010 to 22 September 2010|
|Company||Value of contracts (£)|
Mr Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what grants his Department has made to (a) Brook, (b) the fpa and former Family Planning Association, (c) Marie Stopes International, (d) the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, (e) Education for Choice and (f) the Terrence Higgins Trust in each of the last three years; how much grant funding is planned for each body in the next two years; what the (i) monetary value and (ii) purpose of each such grant is; and if he will make a statement. 
Anne Milton: The Department does not provide grant funding to Marie Stopes International, or the British Pregnancy Advisory Service. The amount of grant funding and purpose of each grant for the other organisations requested is shown in the following table:
|Department of Health Section 64/Third Sector Investment Programme (TSIP) 2009-12|
|Name of organisation||Purpose of grant||2008-09||2009-10||2010-11||2011-12( 1)||2012-13( 1)|
Third Sector Investment Programme Development of Regional Capacity Project
Third Sector Investment Programme Sustainable Futures Project
Third Sector Investment Programme Sustainable Futures Project
Third Sector Investment Programme National HIV Long Term Conditions Project
Third Sector Investment Programme promoting and supporting a continuum of care around pregnancy pathways for young people, project
|(1) All awards from April 2011 are subject to the outcome of the spending review.|
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