In addition to these targets the service is required to meet centrally promulgated targets relating to replying to correspondence from honourable Members, making payments to suppliers. The service will also look to maintain Charter Mark and Investors in People accreditation following reassessments during 2008-09.

Other TargetsTarget 2008-09Target 2007-08

Reply to correspondence from Members of Parliament within 10 days



Process payments to suppliers in 30 days



Land Registry: Key Performance Indicators and Targets

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): My honourable friend the Minister of State (Michael Wills) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

The following list sets out the key performance indicators and targets that have been set for Her Majesty's Land Registry for 2008-09.

Customer Service


percentage of official copy and search applications processed within two working days:  98 per cent; and percentage of all registrations processed within 18 working days:  80 per cent.


percentage of registrations processed free of any error:  98.5 per cent
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Overall Satisfaction: percentage of customers who rate the overall service provided by Land Registry as excellent, very good or good:  Better than 95 per cent


percentage return on average capital employed:  3.5 per cent Efficiency1 Cost per unit in cash terms1  (real terms)2 :  £30.32 (£20.07) Strategic Development Area Targets Customer Service:establish a customer contact centre to support portal and e-conveyancing users. Land Registration :through voluntary registration, add a further 325,000 hectares of land to the total areas of registered freehold land in England and Wales.Electronic Service Delivery:introduce a prototype e-charge registration service (Land Registry’s first e-deed—electronic charges in standard form (eCSF)).Other Business Development:achieve a contribution earned from commercial services sales, after taking account of direct costs and product development costs, of 8 per cent of income.

Copies of the Land Registry’s business plan will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses. Copies will also be available on the internet at

Northern Rock

Lord Davies of Oldham: My right honourable friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer (Alistair Darling) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

On 18 March I informed the House (Official Report, cols. 53-4WS) that the Government had formally notified to the European Commission proposals to continue to provide state aid to Northern Rock to support a restructuring of the company during the period of temporary public ownership. In addition, the Board of Northern Rock plc set out in general its plans for the future direction of the business during the period of temporary public ownership. The Government's objectives in relation to Northern Rock remain the protection of taxpayers and consumers, and the maintenance of financial stability.

The Board of Northern Rock plc has today published its annual report and accounts for 2007. These show that the Bank of England loan facilities to Northern Rock plc as at 31 December 2007 stood at £26.9 billion. Since then some £2.5 billion has been repaid and the gross loan stands at around £24 billion.
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These accounts also demonstrate that Northern Rock remains solvent and meets its regulatory requirements.

The Board of Northern Rock has also published a more detailed business plan, which I have approved, based around four objectives:

contracting to a smaller, sustainable business through a reduction of the asset base from £107 billion in 2007 to £49 billion in 2011, while maintaining on average around £5 billion a year of new mortgage origination over this period and continuing to treat customers fairly;repaying of the Bank of England loan by the end of 2010 and enabling the Government to release its guarantee arrangements gradually by 2011, subject to the Financial Services Authority being satisfied of the capital position of Northern Rock at that time. In the mean time, the existing government guarantee arrangements remain in place. Depositors' money continues to be safe and secure. Retail deposits are projected to increase to £20 billion by 2011 providing closer to half the company's funding needs - but in total will remain below 2007 levels;restructuring the organisation and its operations so that these are aligned to the business objectives; andstrengthening risk management in key business areas.

This business plan meets the Government's objectives. As set out in the Budget, the Government will, during 2008-09, replace the Bank of England's loan to Northern Rock with direct Treasury funding. The Bank of England and the Treasury are agreeing with Northern Rock the terms of this financing. This will include a back-up liquidity facility, to meet the Financial Services Authority's requirements, that may remain in place beyond 2010 until sufficient alternative liquidity arrangements are in place. Northern Rock will maintain, but contract over time, its Granite securitisation vehicle.

Furthermore Northern Rock has published as part of its business plan a competitive framework, which is subject to European Commission approval, setting out its commitment not to take unfair advantage of government support during the state aid period. It will commit to a series of steps, in particular Northern Rock will restrict itself from positions of market leadership on any product category for 2008.

I have also agreed with Northern Rock a shareholder agreement that sets out the framework within which HM Treasury will operate its shareholder relationship with Northern Rock. This sets out our intention to run Northern Rock on an arm’s length, commercial basis, while approving strategy and holding the board to account for performance against the business plan.

I have placed copies of the accounts, business plan and shareholder framework agreement in the Libraries of both Houses.

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Parliamentary Constituencies (Northern Ireland) Order 2008

Lord Rooker: My honourable friend the Minister of State for Northern Ireland (Paul Goggins) has made the following Ministerial Statement.

The Parliamentary Constituencies Act 1986, as amended by the Boundary Commissions Act 1992, requires that the Parliamentary Boundary Commission for Northern Ireland undertakes periodic reviews of constituencies in Northern Ireland. The commission is required to submit a report to the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland not less than eight or more than 12 years from its last report. The report was submitted to the Secretary of State on 14 September 2007. The previous report was submitted in October 1995.

I am pleased to announce that the fifth periodic report on parliamentary constituencies has been laid before Parliament today with a copy of the Draft Parliamentary Constituencies (Northern Ireland) Order 2008 to give effect to the recommendations of the report without modification. The recommendations of the commission are that 18 constituencies should be retained for Northern Ireland with revisions made to the boundaries of the 12 constituencies of Belfast East, Belfast North, Belfast South, Belfast West, East Antrim, East Londonderry, Foyle, Lagan Valley, North Antrim, South Antrim, South Down and Strangford.

Copies are available in the Library.

Public Information

Lord Davies of Oldham: My honourable friend the Parliamentary Secretary at the Cabinet Office (Tom Watson) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

On 25 June 2007, the Government published their response to The Power of Information Review (Cm7157). The review was an independent study by Tom Steinberg, director of mySociety and Ed Mayo, chief executive of the National Consumer Council to,

The Government welcomed the findings of the review, agreeing to the majority of the reviewers’ recommendations and outlined how they would be taken forward.

I am pleased to announce the publication of the Government’s interim report into these recommendations.

This report takes stock of progress made by Government in the past six months and highlights the concrete actions departments are taking to implement the review.

Copies of this report have been placed in the Libraries of the House.

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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): My honourable friend the Minister for Local Government (John Healey) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

My honourable friend the Minister of State for Employment Relations and Postal Affairs (Pat McFadden) and I are today publishing a consultation paper: Prosperous Places: Taking Forward the Review of Sub National Economic Development and Regeneration.

We are consulting on three main issues—the implementation of new regional strategies; the creation
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of a duty on local authorities to carry out an economic assessment of their area; and options for a legal framework to encourage local authorities to collaborate on economic development.

This develops the plans set out in the review of sub-national economic development and regeneration that I announced to the House on 17 July 2007.

The consultation papers are available in the Libraries of both Houses and can also be accessed online at

The consultation will run until 17 June 2008. My honourable friend the Minister of State for Employment Relations and Postal Affairs and I, and regional Ministers, will hold wide-ranging discussions over the next few months as part of this consultation.