Baroness Hoey

Non-affiliated - Life peer

Northern Ireland Affairs Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
European Scrutiny Committee
30th Oct 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Northern Ireland Affairs Committee
6th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee
6th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
European Scrutiny Committee
15th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Northern Ireland Affairs Committee
9th Nov 2007 - 30th Mar 2015
Science and Technology Committee
1st Mar 2004 - 17th Jul 2005
Science and Technology Committee (Commons)
1st Mar 2004 - 17th Jul 2005
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of National Heritage) (Sport)
29th Jul 1999 - 7th Jun 2001
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
28th Jul 1998 - 29th Jul 1999
Social Security
27th Jun 1994 - 21st Mar 1997
Shadow Spokesperson (Women)
1st Jun 1992 - 1st Jun 1993


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Wednesday 28th April 2021
Abortion (Northern Ireland) Regulations 2021
voted Aye
One of 5 Independent Aye votes vs 15 Independent No votes
Tally: Ayes - 70 Noes - 409
Speeches
Thursday 16th September 2021
Brexit Opportunities

My Lords, I very much welcome this Statement from the Minister. It is one of the reasons millions of people …

Written Answers
Tuesday 14th September 2021
Olympic Games
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to support the changing of the British Olympic team name to …
Early Day Motions
Tuesday 23rd July 2019
NORTHERN IRELAND VICTIM DEFINITION
That this House objects that the definition of victim in the Victims and Survivors (Northern Ireland) Order 2006 and in …
Bills
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available
EDM signed
Tuesday 15th October 2019
Intimidation in public life
That this House recognises that intimidation experienced by those in public life poses a threat to the diversity, integrity, and …
Supported Legislation
Wednesday 25th October 2017
Live Animal Exports (Prohibition) Bill 2017-19
To prohibit the export of live farmed animals for slaughter or fattening; and for connected purposes.

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Baroness Hoey has voted in 94 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Baroness Hoey Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Lord Frost (Conservative)
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Attends Cabinet)
(14 debate interactions)
Lord Bethell (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
(10 debate interactions)
Viscount Younger of Leckie (Conservative)
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
(9 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Cabinet Office
(14 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(6 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Baroness Hoey's debates

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Baroness Hoey, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Baroness Hoey has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Baroness Hoey has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

Baroness Hoey has not introduced any legislation before Parliament


46 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are aware of any arrests in the Republic of Ireland for the sale of British sausages.

Northern Ireland is an integral part of the United Kingdom, and its consumers should be able to enjoy products they have bought from Great Britain. Our biosecurity standards remain as high as they always have done, and these goods remain entirely safe for NI consumers to enjoy. The Government has seen no evidence of chilled meats moved from Great Britain finding their way onto the EU market.

We welcome the fact that we have been able to agree an extension of the grace period on chilled meats moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. This means that Northern Ireland consumers will be able to continue to buy chilled meat products from Great Britain, and allows for further discussions to continue on a permanent solution without requiring the UK to dynamically align with EU rules.

Lord Frost
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Attends Cabinet)
23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are aware of any criminal operations to disguise the origin of sausages intended for sale in Northern Ireland in order to sell them in the Republic of Ireland.

Northern Ireland is an integral part of the United Kingdom, and its consumers should be able to enjoy products they have bought from Great Britain. Our biosecurity standards remain as high as they always have done, and these goods remain entirely safe for NI consumers to enjoy. The Government has seen no evidence of chilled meats moved from Great Britain finding their way onto the EU market.

We welcome the fact that we have been able to agree an extension of the grace period on chilled meats moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. This means that Northern Ireland consumers will be able to continue to buy chilled meat products from Great Britain, and allows for further discussions to continue on a permanent solution without requiring the UK to dynamically align with EU rules.

Lord Frost
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Attends Cabinet)
23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have received notification from the government of Ireland that sausages intended for sale in Northern Ireland are being sold in the Republic of Ireland.

Northern Ireland is an integral part of the United Kingdom, and its consumers should be able to enjoy products they have bought from Great Britain. Our biosecurity standards remain as high as they always have done, and these goods remain entirely safe for NI consumers to enjoy. The Government has seen no evidence of chilled meats moved from Great Britain finding their way onto the EU market.

We welcome the fact that we have been able to agree an extension of the grace period on chilled meats moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. This means that Northern Ireland consumers will be able to continue to buy chilled meat products from Great Britain, and allows for further discussions to continue on a permanent solution without requiring the UK to dynamically align with EU rules.

Lord Frost
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Attends Cabinet)
23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have made an assessment of the number of British sausages which have been smuggled from Northern Ireland into the Republic of Ireland since 1 January.

Northern Ireland is an integral part of the United Kingdom, and its consumers should be able to enjoy products they have bought from Great Britain. Our biosecurity standards remain as high as they always have done, and these goods remain entirely safe for NI consumers to enjoy. The Government has seen no evidence of chilled meats moved from Great Britain finding their way onto the EU market.

We welcome the fact that we have been able to agree an extension of the grace period on chilled meats moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. This means that Northern Ireland consumers will be able to continue to buy chilled meat products from Great Britain, and allows for further discussions to continue on a permanent solution without requiring the UK to dynamically align with EU rules.

Lord Frost
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Attends Cabinet)
23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what prevents the temporary provision allowing sausages to be moved from Great Britain to Northern Ireland under the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland from being made permanent.

Northern Ireland is an integral part of the United Kingdom, and its consumers should be able to enjoy products they have bought from Great Britain. Our biosecurity standards remain as high as they always have done, and these goods remain entirely safe for NI consumers to enjoy. The Government has seen no evidence of chilled meats moved from Great Britain finding their way onto the EU market.

We welcome the fact that we have been able to agree an extension of the grace period on chilled meats moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. This means that Northern Ireland consumers will be able to continue to buy chilled meat products from Great Britain, and allows for further discussions to continue on a permanent solution without requiring the UK to dynamically align with EU rules.

Lord Frost
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Attends Cabinet)
6th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they define (1) a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, and (2) a hard border between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

As set out on gov.uk, and in the Government's December Command Paper, our unfettered access policy will mean that Northern Ireland businesses can continue to move their goods from Northern Ireland to Great Britain, and place them on the whole UK market, without new barriers being put in place. That is given full effect through our phased approach. In the first phase, which has been operating since 1 January, goods moving directly from Northern Ireland directly to Great Britain will benefit from unfettered access. There will be no new checks or controls on those movements. And even where goods move indirectly via Ireland, there will be no tariffs on those movements. This will be followed up with a second phase over the course of 2021 which will focus the benefits of unfettered access specifically on genuine Northern Ireland businesses. Alongside that, the UK Internal Market Act 2020 ensures that those businesses will continue to place those goods on the GB market.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
6th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, how they define "unfettered market access for goods moving from Northern Ireland to other parts of the United Kingdom's internal market."

As set out on gov.uk, and in the Government's December Command Paper, our unfettered access policy will mean that Northern Ireland businesses can continue to move their goods from Northern Ireland to Great Britain, and place them on the whole UK market, without new barriers being put in place. That is given full effect through our phased approach. In the first phase, which has been operating since 1 January, goods moving directly from Northern Ireland directly to Great Britain will benefit from unfettered access. There will be no new checks or controls on those movements. And even where goods move indirectly via Ireland, there will be no tariffs on those movements. This will be followed up with a second phase over the course of 2021 which will focus the benefits of unfettered access specifically on genuine Northern Ireland businesses. Alongside that, the UK Internal Market Act 2020 ensures that those businesses will continue to place those goods on the GB market.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
16th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what percentage of civil servants are currently working from home.

The information on Civil Servants currently working from home is not held centrally.

Civil Servants are required to follow the local COVID measures wherever they are deployed throughout the UK. Where staff are able to work from home effectively they are doing so and Civil Servants working in essential services will continue to go into our COVID secure workplaces where necessary.

During September we collected data weekly; the number of employees working in the workplace in the London area for some or all of their working patterns were 27,724 individuals by the end of the month. Moving to a monthly collection period from October, workplace attendance increased to 33,151.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
16th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many civil servants worked from an office in London during September and October.

The information on Civil Servants currently working from home is not held centrally.

Civil Servants are required to follow the local COVID measures wherever they are deployed throughout the UK. Where staff are able to work from home effectively they are doing so and Civil Servants working in essential services will continue to go into our COVID secure workplaces where necessary.

During September we collected data weekly; the number of employees working in the workplace in the London area for some or all of their working patterns were 27,724 individuals by the end of the month. Moving to a monthly collection period from October, workplace attendance increased to 33,151.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
27th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the value of the services provided by the Post Office; and what plans they have to support its work in the future.

Previous analysis, commissioned by BEIS and undertaken by London Economics and YouGov[1], found that users of the Post Office placed a value of between £4.3bn and £9.7bn per annum on the network. The research is attached, but is also available here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/566224/beis-16-37-post-office-network-social-value.pdf.

More recently, new research by Public First has revealed how much of a vital role Post Offices play in high streets, providing a boost of more than £1 billion for surrounding retailers and businesses. The research is available here: https://postofficeimpact.co.uk/

The £227 million funding the Government has provided through the Spending Review extends the network subsidy at £50 million for a further year and provides Post Office with £177 million to invest in the future of the business.

[1] The Social Value of the Post Office Network, London Economics/YouGov, 2020

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
16th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) Government departments and bodies, and (2) private institutions, have stopped using the Post Office for payments over the past two years.

While the Government sets the strategic direction for the Post Office, the company has the commercial freedom to deliver this strategy as an independent business. Post Office Limited is therefore responsible for decisions on its commercial partnerships with Government Departments and private companies alike.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
6th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to support the changing of the British Olympic team name to Team UK instead of Team GB.

DCMS Ministers have had no discussions with the British Olympic Association (BOA), an independent organisation, ​about​ renaming the Olympic team from Team GB & NI to Team UK.

The BOA is the National Olympic Committee (NOC) for Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands and the UK Overseas Territories and is wholly responsible for our national representation at the Games and for any branding of the Olympic team representing Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what was the level of government funding to the BBC in each of the last five years for (1) the BBC World Service, (2) BBC Media Action, and (3) other funding streams; and what decisions have been made, if any, to provide the BBC with funding to replace EU payments that will or have ceased.

Since 2016, the FCDO has funded the World2020 Programme which has established 12 new language services and provided enhancements to existing services. The FCDO provided the following funding to the World Service: £34.2m for 2016-17; £85.6m for 2017-18; £85.8m for 2018-19 and 2019-20; and £87.2m for 2020-21.

BBC Media action sets out the levels of government funding within its annual review. They are reported to be £17.8m in 2016/17, £9.3m in 2017/18, £8m in 2018/19 and £10.3m in 2019/20. The 2020/21 report is due to be published.

As part of the UK's withdrawal from the EU, the UK will no longer be participating in the vast majority of EU programmes, and the Government has chosen to look at other ways of supporting the UK sectors.

The BBC sets out its full funding streams within its annual accounts.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much money in each of the past five years was raised by the BBC licensing fee; how such fees were collected; and what was the (1) total collection cost, and (2) average cost per fee of collection.

The BBC is responsible for the collection and administration of the television licence fee, not the government. The government is therefore not involved in TV Licensing operations.

TV licencing sets out the amounts collected within it’s annual review. The 2020/21 report is due to be published.

The total income raised by the TV licence fee is stated as being £3.78bn in 2016/17, £3.8bn in 2017/18, £3.6bn in 2018/19 and £3.5bn in 2019/20.

The total collection cost is stated as being £82.2m in 2016/17, £101m in 2017/18, £102.6m in 2018/19 and £119.5m in 2019/20.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport does not hold information on the average cost per fee of collection. This information may be held by the BBC.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
20th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of COVID-19 on junior football leagues; and in particular, the refusal of some local authorities to allow pitches to be used after the normal date for the season to end.

Government is committed to ensuring that all children and young people have the best opportunities to engage in sport and physical activity. Our Sporting Future strategy sets out how important it is for all children to have a good experience of sport and physical activity while they are young. We want all young people to be healthy and active.

Government has made a £10.1m investment to open school facilities outside the school day to be spent in the Summer term. This is being delivered by Sport England and county-level Active Partnerships. This includes helping schools to make partnerships with local sports providers.

Local authorities have devolved powers and therefore can decide how best to use their land and facilities depending on their assessment of the needs of their local communities.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
20th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the number of schools that have benefited from Football Foundation funding that have withdrawn community access from their facilities.

The Government does not collect detailed central information on individual schools opening facilities to the community. However, engagement and impact on the wider community is evaluated as part of the Football Foundation application and evaluation process.

We are encouraging more schools to open their facilities to the community and have provided £10.1 million this year to support their reopening as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
19th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what further steps they have taken since January to ascertain the impact of alternative enforcement schemes for the BBC licence fee.

The government is considering decriminalisation of TV licence evasion and other possible reforms to the licence fee system to increase fairness and proportionality within the broader context of the ongoing licence fee settlement.

The government may in future undertake a further, technical consultation on the possible alternative civil sanctions to set out in more detail how alternative schemes could work in practice.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
19th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the reduction in the numbers of children learning to swim due to the closure of swimming pools in the past year.

The Government does not collect data from schools on how many pupils are able to swim, but data from Sport England's annual Active Lives Children Survey provides the government with a national picture. Data for academic year 19/20 show that 77% of children in year 7 report they can swim 25m.

Swimming and water safety is an important part of the primary PE curriculum. The government is committed to ensuring that all children leave primary school with vital swimming and water safety skills. The PE and sport premium can be used by primary schools to support swimming and water safety, for example through 'top-up' lessons or additional teaching training. We provide schools with the flexibility to decide how to spend their premium in line with conditions of grant and do not collect data on proportion or amount of spend for any given activity.

In addition to the PE and sport premium, schools are able to access new virtual water safety lessons from Oak National Academy and the Department will be supporting the Royal Life Saving Society UK's Drowning Prevention Week in June 2021. The government has provided an additional £10.1m to improve use of school sport facilities, including swimming pools. New resources to support children with SEND learning to swim and knowing how to be safe in and around the water have been developed through the Inclusion 2020 grant, which is led by the Youth Sport Trust. These resources are available on Swim England's inclusion hub.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
16th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to introduce legislation to decriminalise non-payment of the TV licence fee.

The government believes that it is right to look again at whether the criminal sanction remains appropriate for TV licence fee evasion given ongoing concerns about whether the criminal sanction is unfair and disproportionate.

In February 2020, we launched a public consultation on decriminalising TV licence evasion.

The consultation closed in April after receiving over 150,000 responses. We will listen carefully to those that have responded before setting out our next steps.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
19th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much of the £320 million of PE and sport premium available for primary schools has been spent on children’s swimming.

The department does not collect data from schools on how many pupils are able to swim 25 metres, but data from Sport England’s annual Active Lives Children Survey provides the government with a national picture. Data for the 2019-20 academic year shows that 77% of children in year 7 report they can swim 25 metres.

The physical education (PE) and sport premium can be used by primary schools to support swimming and water safety, for example, through ‘top-up’ lessons or additional teaching training. The department provides schools with the flexibility to decide how to spend their premium in line with the conditions of the grant and do not collect data on the proportion or the amount of spend for any given activity.

In addition to the PE and sport premium, schools are able to access new virtual water safety lessons from Oak National Academy and the department will be supporting the Royal Life Saving Society UK’s Drowning Prevention Week in June 2021. The department has provided an additional £10.1 million to improve the use of school sport facilities, including swimming pools. New resources to support children with special educational needs and disabilities to swim and knowing how to be safe in and around the water have been developed through the department’s Inclusion 2020 grant, which is led by the Youth Sport Trust. These resources are available on Swim England’s inclusion hub.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
19th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many primary school children have not been able to swim the statutory 25 metres in the 2019/20 academic year and what is their projection for this figure in 2020/2021.

The department does not collect data from schools on how many pupils are able to swim 25 metres, but data from Sport England’s annual Active Lives Children Survey provides the government with a national picture. Data for the 2019-20 academic year shows that 77% of children in year 7 report they can swim 25 metres.

The physical education (PE) and sport premium can be used by primary schools to support swimming and water safety, for example, through ‘top-up’ lessons or additional teaching training. The department provides schools with the flexibility to decide how to spend their premium in line with the conditions of the grant and do not collect data on the proportion or the amount of spend for any given activity.

In addition to the PE and sport premium, schools are able to access new virtual water safety lessons from Oak National Academy and the department will be supporting the Royal Life Saving Society UK’s Drowning Prevention Week in June 2021. The department has provided an additional £10.1 million to improve the use of school sport facilities, including swimming pools. New resources to support children with special educational needs and disabilities to swim and knowing how to be safe in and around the water have been developed through the department’s Inclusion 2020 grant, which is led by the Youth Sport Trust. These resources are available on Swim England’s inclusion hub.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
19th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what help they are providing to primary schools to ensure that all children have the opportunity to learn to swim before moving on to secondary school.

The department does not collect data from schools on how many pupils are able to swim 25 metres, but data from Sport England’s annual Active Lives Children Survey provides the government with a national picture. Data for the 2019-20 academic year shows that 77% of children in year 7 report they can swim 25 metres.

The physical education (PE) and sport premium can be used by primary schools to support swimming and water safety, for example, through ‘top-up’ lessons or additional teaching training. The department provides schools with the flexibility to decide how to spend their premium in line with the conditions of the grant and do not collect data on the proportion or the amount of spend for any given activity.

In addition to the PE and sport premium, schools are able to access new virtual water safety lessons from Oak National Academy and the department will be supporting the Royal Life Saving Society UK’s Drowning Prevention Week in June 2021. The department has provided an additional £10.1 million to improve the use of school sport facilities, including swimming pools. New resources to support children with special educational needs and disabilities to swim and knowing how to be safe in and around the water have been developed through the department’s Inclusion 2020 grant, which is led by the Youth Sport Trust. These resources are available on Swim England’s inclusion hub.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether students studying in Northern Ireland will be eligible for the Turing Scheme.

Yes, the Turing scheme is UK-wide. Universities, colleges, and schools in Northern Ireland are eligible to bid for funding under the scheme, so that students in Northern Ireland can benefit from the opportunities of study and work placements abroad on the same basis as students elsewhere in the UK. The scheme is open for applications now.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
14th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what progress they have made towards ensuring the unfettered movement of pets within the UK.

The health and documentary requirements for pet travel to the EU are set out under the EU Pet Travel Regulations. Under the Northern Ireland Protocol, EU rules also apply to the non-commercial movements of pets into Northern Ireland from Great Britain.

We will continue to press the European Commission in relation to securing Part 1 listed status, recognising that achieving this would alleviate some of the new requirements for pet owners and assistance dogs users travelling to the EU and to Northern Ireland. We are clear that we meet all the animal health requirements for this, and we have one of the most rigorous pet checking regimes in Europe to protect our biosecurity.

The Government is engaging with the Northern Ireland Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) to explore means to streamline pet travel between Great Britain and Northern Ireland recognising the high standards of animal health that we share. The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster has also written to the European Vice-President seeking to ensure that an agreement can be made to address the barriers imposed on pet travel between Great Britain, Northern Ireland and Ireland.

Northern Ireland-based pets and assistance dogs returning to Northern Ireland from Great Britain can continue to use a Northern Ireland-issued EU Pet Passport to re-enter Northern Ireland and will not need an animal health certificate. Current guidance on pet travel to Northern Ireland is available on DAERA’s NIDirect website.

We are proactively engaging with relevant stakeholders on the impacts on pet and assistance dog movements from Great Britain to Northern Ireland and also the EU.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to remove the ban on the import of soil in potted plants from garden centres in Great Britain to garden centres in Northern Ireland, as required by the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland.

Now that the transition period has come to an end, GB is treated as a third country by the EU, which means that the movements of plants and plant products from GB to the EU and NI are subject to the EU's plant health import requirements, including the restrictions on soil and growing media. The new sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) requirements on goods moving from GB to NI were put in place by the UK Government as part of the UK's approach to the Northern Ireland Protocol, and will uphold the longstanding status of the island of Ireland as a single epidemiological unit.

It is permissible to move plants (potted or otherwise) with growing media attached to them from GB to the EU and NI, as long as that growing media meets the EU's import requirements. Defra has been working closely with trade associations to develop guidance on growing media and how traders can fulfil the EU's requirements. This guidance has been published on the Plant Health Portal.

Provided that plants and growing media meet the EU's import requirements, a phytosanitary certificate will be issued to facilitate movements from GB to NI.

The UK Government is engaged in discussion with the European Commission to seek a lifting of plant health prohibitions, including those on soil and growing media as a commodity. These discussions are ongoing.

28th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to allow pets to be moved from Great Britain to Northern Ireland without restrictions and in the same way that they can be moved from England to Scotland.

After the end of the transition period the UK became a third country in relation to the EU Pet Travel Scheme. The rules of this scheme govern non-commercial movements of pets from Great Britain to the EU and from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.

In February 2020 we submitted an application to allow the UK to become a Part 1 listed third country under the EU Pet Travel Scheme. This status would mean similar animal health and documentary requirements (compared to before the end of the transition period) for non-commercial pet movements from Great Britain to the EU. On 3 December 2020 the Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed of the EU voted in favour of giving the United Kingdom Part 2 listed status under the EU Pet Travel Scheme after the transition period. This listed status has been formally adopted by the EU.

We will continue to press the EU Commission in relation to securing Part 1 listed status, recognising that achieving this would alleviate some of the new requirements for pet owners and assistance dog users travelling to the EU and to Northern Ireland. We are clear that we meet all the animal health requirements for this and we have one of the most rigorous pet checking regimes in Europe to protect our biosecurity.

The Government is also working with the Northern Ireland Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) on a long-term solution which respects the rights of assistance dog users and pet owners to travel with the minimum of friction. Guidance on pet travel to Northern Ireland is available on the DAERA’s NIDirect website.

Commercial movements of live animals, including dogs, cats and ferrets, which are being moved from Great Britain to Northern Ireland for the transference of ownership or sale, are not subject to the EU Pet Travel Scheme but to the ‘Balai Directive’. This requires that traders or organisations moving pets in this way must pre-notify and use a specific export health certificate. We are listening to the concerns of stakeholders on this issue and welcome any evidence of disruption that might be caused by these new requirements.

There have been no changes to the rules governing non-commercial pet movements, or the commercial movement of dogs, cats or ferrets, from Northern Ireland into Great Britain.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that food products made in Great Britain, including (1) Fray Bentos steak and kidney pies, and (2) Birds Eye beefburgers, can be brought from Great Britain into Northern Ireland.

In December we successfully agreed with the EU a 6-month grace period in which chilled meat products could continue to be sent into Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK. We are currently seeking long-term solutions to continue this trade. We also note that the two specific examples given are not prohibited from being moved into Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK.

28th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that the 454 chilled items of food withdrawn from sale in Northern Ireland following the UK's departure from the EU can be sold again in stores in Northern Ireland.

In December we successfully agreed with the EU a 6-month grace period in which chilled meat products could continue to be sent into Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK. We are currently seeking long-term solutions to continue this trade. We also note that the two specific examples given are not prohibited from being moved into Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK.

16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether forthcoming legislation to require the sale of E10 petrol in 95 grade will apply to Northern Ireland.

We plan to legislate for the mandating of E10 petrol in Northern Ireland. In line with our obligations under the Northern Ireland Protocol we will notify the European Commission of our intention first.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
26th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what options are available to individuals in receipt of a state pension or benefits who do not wish to open a bank account after the Post Office Card Account service is discontinued.

The Department for Work and Pensions preferred method of payment for all benefits is into a bank, building society or credit union account. For customers who are unable to open or manage a mainstream account or choose not to open an account the Department will offer an alternative Payment Exception Service to allow continued access to cash payments across all locations (including suburban and rural locations).

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
26th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they sought to renew their current contract with the Post Office to provide accounts for the payment of state pensions and benefits at a lower price.

The contract with Post Office Limited is due to expire in November 2021 with an option to extend for a maximum of up to 3 years. The Department for Work and Pensions is working with Post Office Limited to agree exit timescales and arrangements. There is no option to replace Post Office Card Account once the current contract ends. The replacement service will be procured in line with public procurement regulations to ensure open and fair commercial competition.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
26th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what consultation they conducted with pensioner organisations regarding the decision not to renew their contract with the Post Office to provide accounts for the payment of state pensions and benefits.

The Department for Work and Pensions’ has communicated with external organisations including Pension Organisations to update on contract end arrangements and we will continue to use external communication routes to provide updates on the timings and customer communication arrangements surrounding closure of the Post Office card account.

The Departments preferred method of payment for all benefits and pensions is mainstream account, such as a bank, building society or credit union account. This provides individuals access to useful products and services that better meets their needs, for example, the ability to send and receive payments. We will continue to encourage customers to convert to mainstream accounts ahead of contract end.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
28th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to recognise Taiwan as an independent country.

The UK's longstanding position on Taiwan has not changed. The UK does not have diplomatic relations with Taiwan but we do have a strong, unofficial relationship, based on dynamic commercial, educational and cultural ties. The Taiwan issue is one to be settled peacefully by the people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, through constructive dialogue.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs last met the Ambassador of the State of Libya to the UK; and when the Foreign Secretary last discussed with the Ambassador the issue of compensation for victims of Irish Republican Army terrorism carried out using Semtex purchased from Libya.

Ministers and senior officials, including Her Majesty's Ambassador to Libya, continue to impress upon senior Libyan interlocutors the importance of engaging constructively with the UK victims of Qadhafi-sponsored IRA terrorism, in pursuit of justice. Libya is currently represented in the UK by a Charge d'Affaires.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
15th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what support they are providing to smaller Commonwealth nations to access COVID-19 (1) tests, and (2) vaccines.

The UK is committed to rapid, equitable access to safe and effective vaccines, treatments and tests globally as demonstrated by our strong support for the Access for COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, to which the UK has contributed up to £813 million of new funds. This includes up to £23 million committed to the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), to drive innovation in the development and delivery of tests to combat major diseases affecting the poorest populations. Our contribution also includes the UK's commitment of up to £500 million to the COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC) - the international initiative to support global equitable access to vaccines. On top of our existing contribution of £48 million re-programmed from existing Gavi programming, this makes the UK the COVAX AMC's largest bilateral donor. Our commitment will support access to COVID-19 vaccines for up to 92 developing countries, including in the Commonwealth, by contributing to the supply of 1 billion doses in 2021, and vaccinations for up to 500 million people (subject to vaccines successfully securing stringent regulatory approvals).

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the amount of tax that will be paid to the EU by consumers and businesses in Northern Ireland in the current fiscal year through (1) customs duties, (2) Value Added Tax, and (3) other instruments.

All customs duty and VAT paid on goods entering Northern Ireland remains UK revenue and is not passed on to the EU.

Consumers in Northern Ireland may be charged VAT in an EU country if they buy goods directly from a small business there. Similarly, consumers in the EU will pay VAT in Northern Ireland (which is due to HMRC) if they purchase from a small Northern Ireland business.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
2nd Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they have taken to ensure that airports in Northern Ireland are treated equivalently to airports in Great Britain in relation to duty-free tax rules for travellers to the EU from 1 January 2020.

While the EU will also be offering duty-free sales of excise goods for travel to Great Britain, passengers travelling from the EU, including Ireland, will have to pay excise duty on goods they bring into the UK, subject to certain personal allowances. This means passengers will need to go through customs processes and declare goods they are carrying in their luggage where duty is due.

By contrast, the Government has committed to Northern Ireland continuing to have unfettered access to the rest of the UK, including passengers from Northern Ireland being able to carry unlimited amounts of personal goods into Great Britain without having to declare them.

Offering duty-free sales without charging excise duty on entry to Great Britain would compromise the UK internal market by allowing unlimited duty-free goods to enter the UK, undercutting domestic retailers and eroding the tax base.

However, the alternative would be to charge tax and duty on these goods to put Northern Ireland in the same position as Ireland.

In practice, this would mean treating goods moving from Northern Ireland to Great Britain as though there were an international border for passengers. This goes against the Government’s clear policy that Northern Ireland is, and will remain, an integral part of the UK, including for excise purposes.

HMRC has published guidance providing further information relating to the VAT and excise treatment of goods under the Northern Ireland Protocol, which can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/accounting-for-vat-on-goods-moving-between-great-britain-and-northern-ireland-from-1-january-2021 and here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/moving-excise-goods-as-freight-under-the-northern-ireland-protocol-from-1-january-2021/moving-excise-goods-as-freight-under-the-northern-ireland-protocol-from-1-january-2021#excise-movements-from-great-britain-to-northern-ireland-via-the-eu.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
21st Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any consultation took place before the announcement that, in future, premium bond winners will not receive their cheques by post.

The decision by NS&I announced on September 17 to pay all Premium Bonds prizes direct to customers’ bank accounts was informed by customer research and changing customer behaviours. It will make managing Premium Bonds prize distribution quicker, more cost-effective and have a much lower environmental impact.

Since 2011, Premium Bonds holders have been able to have their prizes paid directly into a UK bank account in their name. Since March 2020, nearly half a million customers have switched from receiving paper warrants to having their prizes paid directly into their bank account or automatically reinvested. In the October 2020 prize draw, more than three quarters (76%) of the 3,921,323 prizes were paid directly into customers’ bank accounts or reinvested into more Premium Bonds.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
19th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many over 75 year-olds have been prosecuted for non-payment of the BBC licence fee since the free licence was abolished.

The Ministry of Justice holds data on prosecutions for TV licence evasion up to December 2020. Since the free TV licence was abolished in August 2020, there have been no prosecutions for defendants aged over 75 years.

Lord Wolfson of Tredegar
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to establish a common understanding of the provisions of the Belfast Agreement with the government of the United States.

The Prime Minister and Secretary of State for Northern Ireland are grateful for the deep interest in Northern Ireland shown by President Biden and the new United States Government. The steadfast US support for the Belfast (‘Good Friday’) Agreement and the gains of the peace process is undoubtedly one of the key reasons behind its enduring success.

The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland engages regularly with stakeholders from across the political spectrum in the United States on matters of importance to the Irish American diaspora, which includes a number of meetings over the past week. That is also the case for a number of colleagues across Cabinet and the British Embassy in Washington.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that citizens of Northern Ireland have the same rights as citizens of other nations in the United Kingdom.

The Government is firmly committed to ensuring the ongoing recognition and protection of rights for all people across the UK.

Guarantees of equality and rights, which recognise the unique circumstances of Northern Ireland, are a fundamental part of the Belfast Agreement.

The Government remains firmly committed to upholding the Belfast Agreement in all its parts, including the important rights it protects, the constitutional principles it upholds, and the institutions it established.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
25th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to establish a body similar to InterTradeIreland to promote (1) free trade, and (2) business links, between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland’s place in the UK customs territory is assured and unfettered access for Northern Ireland goods to the rest of the UK market has been protected. We have also protected tariff-free trade within the UK and Northern Ireland’s place in the UK VAT area.

The Government has put over £200m into the Trader Support Service, supporting businesses engaged in new processes under the Protocol. Further, the Movement Assistance Scheme provides assistance for traders moving agricultural products, meaning traders will not need to pay certification costs, and the UK Trader Scheme ensures there are no new tariffs for businesses and consumers on internal UK trade. This means that trade between Great Britain and Northern Ireland is as streamlined as possible.

The UK Board of Trade champions exports, inward investment and outward direct investment to deliver economic growth and prosperity across the whole of the United Kingdom. The UK Government committed to hosting the Board of Trade in Northern Ireland annually in the New Decade, New Approach agreement and it will be held in Northern Ireland later this year.

We have also underlined our ongoing support for peace and prosperity in Northern Ireland and we will provide £400m for a New Deal for Northern Ireland - supporting businesses and communities to prosper and thrive from the end of the transition period and beyond.


Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many times the Specialised Committee on Ireland and Northern Ireland Protocol has met since 1 January; and when the minutes of any such meetings will be published.

The Ireland/Northern Ireland Specialised Committee last met on 17 December 2020.

Under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, it is for the co-chairs of the Ireland/Northern Ireland Specialised Committee to decide to make a summary of the minutes public. Statements following the meetings of the Specialised Committee are published on gov.uk.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government who constitutes the full membership of the Specialised Committee on Ireland and Northern Ireland Protocol.

Officials from the UK and EU attend the Specialised Committee, as set out in Article 165 of the Withdrawal Agreement.

As the Government committed to in the New Decade, New Approach deal, the Northern Ireland Executive attends the Ireland/Northern Ireland Specialised Committee whenever the Irish Government forms part of the EU delegation.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)