Anne Main

Conservative - Former Member for St Albans

Anne Main is not a member of any APPGs
5 Former APPG memberships
Bangladesh, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Plastic Waste, Rohingya, Sustainable Clothing and Textiles
Panel of Chairs
22nd Jun 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Panel of Chairs
23rd Jun 2010 - 3rd May 2017
Energy and Climate Change Committee
19th Jan 2009 - 6th May 2010
Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee
27th Jun 2006 - 6th May 2010
Draft Marine Bill (Joint Committee)
8th May 2008 - 22nd Jul 2008
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister: Housing, Planning, Local Government and the Regions Committee
12th Jul 2005 - 27th Jun 2006


Division Voting information

Anne Main has voted in 2290 divisions, and 87 times against the majority of their Party.

9 Jul 2019 - Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 65 Conservative No votes vs 105 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 383 Noes - 73
9 Apr 2019 - Section 1 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2019 - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 97 Conservative No votes vs 131 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 420 Noes - 110
3 Apr 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 5) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 110 Conservative Aye votes vs 190 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 123 Noes - 488
3 Apr 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 5) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 95 Conservative Aye votes vs 203 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 105 Noes - 509
12 Mar 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal) Act - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 75 Conservative No votes vs 235 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 242 Noes - 391
15 Jan 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal) Act - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 118 Conservative No votes vs 196 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 202 Noes - 432
5 Jul 2016 - Wales Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 6 Conservative No votes vs 268 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 285 Noes - 7
8 Dec 2015 - Serious and Organised Crime: Prüm Convention - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Conservative Aye votes vs 264 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 26 Noes - 503
7 Sep 2015 - European Union Referendum Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 37 Conservative No votes vs 276 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 285 Noes - 312
16 Jun 2015 - European Union Referendum Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 25 Conservative Aye votes vs 285 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 97 Noes - 288
15 Jun 2015 - Scotland Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 8 Conservative Aye votes vs 293 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 68 Noes - 298
11 Mar 2015 - Ark Pension Schemes - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 103 Conservative No votes vs 122 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 367 Noes - 113
18 Nov 2014 - Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 18 Conservative Aye votes vs 235 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 284 Noes - 269
10 Nov 2014 - Criminal Law - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 26 Conservative Aye votes vs 229 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 229 Noes - 272
10 Nov 2014 - Criminal Law - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 36 Conservative No votes vs 223 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 464 Noes - 38
27 Oct 2014 - Recall of MPs Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 110 Conservative Aye votes vs 135 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 166 Noes - 340
14 Oct 2014 - Carers Bedroom Entitlement (Social Housing Sector) - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 7 Conservative Aye votes vs 8 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 204 Noes - 8
15 Jul 2014 - Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 4 Conservative No votes vs 246 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 498 Noes - 31
12 May 2014 - Criminal Justice and Courts Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 6 Conservative Aye votes vs 229 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 6 Noes - 469
5 Mar 2014 - Judgments - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 83 Conservative No votes vs 123 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 360 Noes - 104
5 Mar 2014 - Registration of Births, deaths and marriages etc - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 81 Conservative No votes vs 124 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 363 Noes - 100
5 Mar 2014 - Registration of births, deaths and marriages etc - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 83 Conservative No votes vs 123 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 366 Noes - 103
5 Mar 2014 - Marriage - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 81 Conservative No votes vs 126 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 367 Noes - 100
5 Mar 2014 - Marriage - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 84 Conservative No votes vs 123 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 365 Noes - 103
5 Mar 2014 - Marriage - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 79 Conservative No votes vs 126 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 368 Noes - 98
27 Jan 2014 - European Union (Approvals) Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative Aye votes vs 202 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 37 Noes - 243
27 Jan 2014 - European Union (Approvals) Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative Aye votes vs 199 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 36 Noes - 240
27 Jan 2014 - European Union (Approvals) Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 25 Conservative No votes vs 202 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 246 Noes - 28
22 Jan 2014 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 5 Conservative No votes vs 264 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 311 Noes - 258
22 Jan 2014 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 7 Conservative No votes vs 271 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 310 Noes - 278
22 Jan 2014 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 8 Conservative No votes vs 270 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 0 Noes - 0
20 Nov 2013 - Defence Reform Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 9 Conservative Aye votes vs 255 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 252 Noes - 306
9 Oct 2013 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 7 Conservative Aye votes vs 259 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 261 Noes - 298
9 Oct 2013 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Conservative Aye votes vs 266 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 261 Noes - 312
9 Oct 2013 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 4 Conservative No votes vs 262 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 304 Noes - 260
10 Sep 2013 - Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 11 Conservative No votes vs 246 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 291 Noes - 260
12 Jun 2013 - Work Capability Assessments - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 1 Conservative No votes vs 226 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 272 Noes - 209
20 May 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 48 Conservative No votes vs 139 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 391 Noes - 57
20 May 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 56 Conservative Aye votes vs 136 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 70 Noes - 375
16 Apr 2013 - Growth and Infrastructure Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 17 Conservative No votes vs 247 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 286 Noes - 259
5 Feb 2013 - Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 34 Conservative No votes vs 224 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 499 Noes - 55
6 Nov 2012 - Banking Union and Economic and Monetary Union - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 21 Conservative Aye votes vs 221 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 33 Noes - 273
31 Oct 2012 - Multiannual Financial Framework - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 51 Conservative Aye votes vs 235 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 307 Noes - 294
10 Jul 2012 - House of Lords Reform Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 89 Conservative No votes vs 192 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 462 Noes - 124
19 Apr 2012 - Finance (No. 4) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Conservative Aye votes vs 243 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 240 Noes - 283
18 Apr 2012 - Finance (No. 4) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Conservative Aye votes vs 261 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 260 Noes - 295
18 Apr 2012 - Finance (No. 4) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 17 Conservative Aye votes vs 250 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 262 Noes - 287
18 Apr 2012 - Finance (No. 4) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 14 Conservative Aye votes vs 252 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 258 Noes - 293
23 Feb 2012 - Sittings of the House (20 and 23 March) - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 8 Conservative Aye votes vs 220 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 79 Noes - 240
22 Feb 2012 - Annual Statements of Healthcare Costs - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 16 Conservative No votes vs 78 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 81 Noes - 176
25 Jan 2012 - London Local Authorities Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 8 Conservative No votes vs 158 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 276 Noes - 10
1 Nov 2011 - Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 4 Conservative No votes vs 255 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 311 Noes - 235
24 Oct 2011 - National Referendum on the European Union - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 81 Conservative Aye votes vs 209 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 111 Noes - 483
13 Oct 2011 - Procedure Committee Reports - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 43 Conservative Aye votes vs 124 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 63 Noes - 206
11 Oct 2011 - Delegated legislation - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 15 Conservative No votes vs 217 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 271 Noes - 22
10 Oct 2011 - Protection of Freedoms Bill (Programme) (No. 3) - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 40 Conservative Aye votes vs 198 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 62 Noes - 243
10 Oct 2011 - Protection of Freedoms Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 5 Conservative Aye votes vs 241 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 232 Noes - 291
8 Sep 2011 - Fixed-term Parliaments Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Conservative No votes vs 209 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 253 Noes - 190
7 Sep 2011 - Health and Social Care (Re-committed) Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 94 Conservative Aye votes vs 115 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 118 Noes - 368
11 Jul 2011 - European Union Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 14 Conservative No votes vs 229 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 485 Noes - 22
11 Jul 2011 - Business without Debate - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 32 Conservative No votes vs 224 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 274 Noes - 246
23 May 2011 - Sentencing - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 6 Conservative Aye votes vs 255 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 221 Noes - 303
4 May 2011 - Rights of Adoptive Parents - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 12 Conservative No votes vs 215 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 249 Noes - 139
23 Mar 2011 - Section 6 of the european union (amendment) act 2008 - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 15 Conservative No votes vs 247 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 310 Noes - 29
16 Feb 2011 - Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 18 Conservative No votes vs 246 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 310 Noes - 231
15 Feb 2011 - Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 20 Conservative No votes vs 253 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 317 Noes - 247
9 Feb 2011 - Domestic Heating Oil - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 19 Conservative No votes vs 234 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 297 Noes - 45
9 Feb 2011 - Domestic Heating Oil - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 11 Conservative No votes vs 241 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 295 Noes - 223
1 Feb 2011 - European Union Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 18 Conservative Aye votes vs 249 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 26 Noes - 295
26 Jan 2011 - European Union Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 14 Conservative Aye votes vs 254 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 26 Noes - 313
25 Jan 2011 - European Union Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 13 Conservative Aye votes vs 260 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 31 Noes - 324
24 Jan 2011 - European Union Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 16 Conservative Aye votes vs 257 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 239 Noes - 310
15 Dec 2010 - Loans to Ireland Bill (Allocation of Time) - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 12 Conservative No votes vs 246 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 293 Noes - 22
15 Dec 2010 - Loans to Ireland Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 25 Conservative Aye votes vs 246 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 243 Noes - 301
1 Dec 2010 - Fixed-term Parliaments Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 8 Conservative Aye votes vs 240 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 231 Noes - 295
25 Oct 2010 - Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Conservative Aye votes vs 245 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 241 Noes - 293
13 Oct 2010 - Draft EU Budget 2011 - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 35 Conservative Aye votes vs 204 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 42 Noes - 252
21 Jul 2010 - Use of the chamber (united kingdom youth parliament) - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 16 Conservative No votes vs 242 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 499 Noes - 21
15 Jun 2010 - Backbench Business Committee - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 75 Conservative Aye votes vs 188 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 171 Noes - 263
30 Apr 2009 - Members’ Allowances - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 21 Conservative No votes vs 55 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 355 Noes - 39
30 Apr 2009 - Members’ Allowances - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Conservative Aye votes vs 55 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 96 Noes - 285
30 Apr 2009 - Members’ Allowances - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 25 Conservative No votes vs 55 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 280 Noes - 100
1 Apr 2009 - Nick Cousins - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 20 Conservative No votes vs 79 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 362 Noes - 21
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 80 Conservative Aye votes vs 96 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 196 Noes - 375
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 55 Conservative Aye votes vs 121 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 337 Noes - 224
1 Nov 2006 - Legislative Process - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 33 Conservative Aye votes vs 115 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 223 Noes - 172
1 Nov 2006 - Legislative Process - View Vote Context
Anne Main voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 55 Conservative No votes vs 69 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 365 Noes - 62
View All Anne Main Division Votes

All Debates

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
John Bercow (Speaker)
(65 debate interactions)
Theresa May (Conservative)
(48 debate interactions)
David Cameron (Conservative)
(45 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Cabinet Office
(162 debate contributions)
HM Treasury
(159 debate contributions)
Department for Education
(79 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Anne Main's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Anne Main

23rd October 2019
Anne Main signed this EDM on Thursday 31st October 2019

Persecution of Christians

Tabled by: Jeremy Hunt (Conservative - South West Surrey)
That this House notes the 2019 report of Aid to the Church in Need entitled Persecuted and Forgotten? which shows that the Christian population of Iraq has declined by 90 per cent within a generation from 1.5 million before 2003 to less than 150,000 today; recognises that any Daesh resurgence …
43 signatures
(Most recent: 5 Nov 2019)
Signatures by party:
Conservative: 14
Labour: 13
Scottish National Party: 9
Democratic Unionist Party: 2
Liberal Democrat: 2
Independent: 2
Green Party: 1
16th October 2019
Anne Main signed this EDM on Monday 28th October 2019

Trees and climate change

Tabled by: Caroline Lucas (Green Party - Brighton, Pavilion)
That this House welcomes the recommendation in the Committee on Climate Change report on Net Zero for a significant increase in tree planting rates in the UK, as one part of delivering the UK target of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in addition to rapid, deep and sustained emissions …
47 signatures
(Most recent: 4 Nov 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 23
Conservative: 10
Scottish National Party: 5
Liberal Democrat: 4
Democratic Unionist Party: 2
Independent: 2
Green Party: 1
View All Anne Main's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Anne Main, 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.


1 Urgent Question tabled by Anne Main

Wednesday 4th May 2016

Anne Main has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

2 Bills introduced by Anne Main


A Bill to make provision about the standards of fire resistance, and relevant labelling requirements, in relation to children's fancy dress and play costumes; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 1st December 2015

A Bill to require the labelling of farm produce sold in the UK to include country of origin and whether produced in accordance with designated animal welfare standards; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 19th April 2016
(Read Debate)

437 Written Questions

(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
10 Other Department Questions
20th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme.

The EU has an effective carbon market in the form of the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS). Since 2005 the EU ETS has been the world’s largest emissions trading system, limiting greenhouse gas emissions in the power and heavy industrial sectors. The Government recognises that while the EU ETS works well in terms of process, an oversupply of allowances in the system means it is not delivering the degree of low carbon investment it should. This is why we strongly support structural changes to strengthen the EU ETS and are actively pressing for reforms in discussion with EU counterparts and other stakeholders.

19th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how much EU funding the UK has received to tackle climate change in each of the last 10 years.

DECC does not hold this information centrally and to collate it would incur disproportionate costs.

19th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment she has made of the effect of the European Court of Justice's ruling on VAT on energy-saving materials of 4 June 2015, on achievement of the UK's annual carbon emissions target.

We have made no such estimate of the effect of the ECJ ruling on VAT, since there has been no decision to amend VAT since the ECJ ruling. The reduced rate on 11 different types of energy saving materials remains in place and remains unchanged.

The Government is still considering the responses to the consultation on VAT on energy saving materials and will issue a response to that consultation in due course.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office on 11 May 2016 to Question UIN 36288.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how much her Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given to her by my rt. hon. Friend the Minister of State for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General today to Question 36288:

http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2016-05-03/36288/.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how much funding his Department has allocated to publicly-funded training courses through the Skills Funding Agency in each of the last six years; and what proportion of participants in such courses were nationals of (a) the UK, (b) other EU and EEA countries and (c) other countries in each such year.

Information on Skills Funding Agency spending on the adult skills budget and other programmes is outlined in their Annual Report and Accounts which can be found at the following links:

2014-15: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-2014-to-2015

2013-14: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-2013-to-2014

2012-13: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-for-2012-to-2013

2011-12: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-for-2011-to-2012

2010-11: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-for-2010-to-2011

2009-10 (Learning and Skills Council): https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-learning-and-skills-councils-annual-report-2009-to-2010

The Department collects self-reported data on the ethnicity of further education learners, but not nationality. Learners will be eligible for Skills Funding Agency funding if they are a citizen of a country within the European Economic Area (EEA) and have been resident in the EEA for at least three years prior to the start of learning and are ordinarily resident in England. Training providers are responsible for ensuring that individuals are eligible before claiming funding for them.

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, how many of the EU's free trade arrangements include provisions relating to services.

The EU liberalises trade in both goods and services through WTO negotiations and bilateral and regional trade agreements. The EU’s Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) give the UK preferential access to 53 markets outside the EU. 27 of these markets are covered by agreements with provisions on services. These deals are valuable for the UK services sector. For example, UK services exports to South Korea grew by two-thirds (to £1.5bn) between 2011, when the EU FTA was provisionally applied, and 2013. The service sectors covered, and the degree to which they are liberalised, varies between agreements. Agreements which include services provisions are also under negotiation with partners including the United States of America and Japan. However, even the most recent EU FTA to be agreed, with Canada, offers less guaranteed access than the EU Single Market.

Together with 22 other economies, the EU is also party to negotiations for a plurilateral Trade in Services Agreement to liberalise trade in services further. At the WTO, the EU offers preferential access to its services markets for the world’s poorest countries. Further information on EU trade agreements and ongoing negotiations is available on the European Commission’s DG Trade website.

11th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what estimate he has made of the annual cost to UK businesses of implementing EU harmonised legislation.

The Government produces Impact Assessments that set out the impacts to business of legislation. These are published on the LEGISLATION.GOV.UK website.

The UK has one of the lightest regulatory regimes in the OECD. The Netherlands, also in the EU, has the lightest. The European Commission has already reformed its approach to regulation, reducing the number of new initiatives proposed in its annual work programmes by over 80 per cent since 2014.

As part of the UK’s settlement with the EU, the European Commission is now committed to reviewing the burden of regulation each year, looking in particular at cutting red tape for small businesses. For the first time ever, specific targets to reduce costs for businesses will be introduced in the most burdensome areas.

7th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, if he will publish any contingency plans his Department has made on trade agreements in the event of a UK exit from the EU.

At the February European Council, the Government negotiated a new settlement, giving the United Kingdom a special status in a reformed European Union. The Government's position, as set out by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister to the House on 22 February, is that the UK will be stronger, safer and better off remaining in a reformed EU.

7th Feb 2019
To ask the Attorney General, if he will place in the Library his advice on the legal implications of any changes made to the Withdrawal Agreement text between the UK and the EU ahead of the forthcoming vote on that Agreement.

The Government understands the legitimate desire of Parliament to understand the legal implications of the Withdrawal Agreement and will look at what assistance it can provide the House. The Government has already published a collection of material to support public and parliamentary assessment of the deal. In addition, on 14 January, I agreed to the Government publishing a letter from me to the Prime Minister about the exchange of letters between the Prime Minister and the Presidents of the European Council and Commission.

10th Feb 2016
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment he has made of the implications of the judgment of the European Court of Justice in the case of Costa v ENEL in July 1964 for the Government's policy on the relative relationship between EU and UK law.

By longstanding convention, the fact that the Law Officers have advised, or have not advised, and the content of their advice is not disclosed outside government.

22nd Mar 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate his Department has made of the potential costs to the public purse of holding elections for the European Parliament this year, in the event that the UK remains in the EU after 22 May 2019.

The Government has made it clear that the UK intends to leave the EU with a deal and not take part in the European Parliamentary Elections (EPE) in May.

The Cabinet Office has published a detailed report on the cost of the last European Parliamentary election which cost £108.7M. The publication and the accompanying data can be found at the following link (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/costs-of-the-2014-european-parliamentary-elections).

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
3rd May 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

The Cabinet Office, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have incurred nil expenditure on infraction proceedings before the European Court of Justice.

Figures held centrally by the Cabinet Office are set out below, which show costs incurred by other government departments in engaging counsel as a result of infraction proceedings issued against the UK before the Court.

2010/2011

2011/2012

2012/2013

2013/2014

2014/2015

2015/2016

2016/2017 (year to date)

BIS

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

CO

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DCLG

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DCMS

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DECC

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DEFRA

Nil

£1,740.00

Nil

Nil

Nil

£8,791.61

£966.66

DfE

£780.00

3,630.00

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DfT

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DFID

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

DH

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

NIl

NIl

DWP

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

FCO

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

HMT (HMRC)

£687.50

£3,797.50

£16,610.67

£24,004.95

£6,749.99

£9,834.99

Nil

HO

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

MoD

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

MoJ

Nil

Nil

£2,520.00

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

NIO

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

SO

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

WO

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

Nil

*The above represents all data held. We do not hold financial records on these matters before FY 2010/2011.

The UK has never been fined by the European Court of Justice as a result of infraction proceedings.

Costs for departments include costs incurred by non-departmental public bodies and agencies for which they are the lead department. While some departments will have incurred ad hoc costs in the pre-litigation stage of infraction proceedings, and costs associated with the attendance of government officials at infraction hearings, the cost of identifying that data would be disproportionate.

Departments do not quantify the cost of time spent by government officials throughout the infractions process.

13th Apr 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many meetings have taken place between officials of his Department and the European Commission Directorate-General for Communication in each of the last 12 months.

There have been no meetings between Cabinet Office officials and the European Commission Directorate-General for Communication in the last 12 months.

12th Apr 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the tendering process was for the Government's EU referendum leaflet; and what the cost of that leaflet was under each cost heading.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave on 14th April to the Hon. Member for Harwich and North Essex on 14th April.

All external suppliers used were on existing Government procurement agreements, which have been awarded in compliance with the relevant procurement Regulations.

The Government will comply fully with the statutory restrictions in place from 27th May.

12th Apr 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether there is a specific budget for advertising the Government's position on the EU referendum; and whether he plans to advertise that position in the media, on billboards and in newspapers before 23 June 2016.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave on 14th April to the Hon. Member for Harwich and North Essex on 14th April.

All external suppliers used were on existing Government procurement agreements, which have been awarded in compliance with the relevant procurement Regulations.

The Government will comply fully with the statutory restrictions in place from 27th May.

10th Mar 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many nationals of other EU member states have given birth in the UK in each of the last 10 years.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

10th Mar 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many nationals of other EU member states who were (a) originally born outside of the EU and (b) originally born outside of the EU and became a citizen of that EU member state entered the UK in each of the last five years.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

10th Mar 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people from other EU member states have (a) entered the UK in each year since 2006 and (b) are living in the UK; and under what heading those people are classified in the provisions of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

23rd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much has been spent from the public purse on research and development in the field of biodegradable and compostable plastics in each of the last 15 years.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy sets the overall budgets of the independent Research Councils and Innovate UK, which then allocate funds for individual grants and research organisations in line with the Haldane Principle.

The Research Councils and Innovate UK have spent the following amounts on research and development in the field of biodegradable and compostable plastics in each of the last 15 years. Data older than 10 years may be less reliable. Further information on research and development projects can be found on the RCUK Gateway to Research, see: http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk.

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

Innovate UK

Total

2016/17

£210,000

£4,644,293

£104,344

£4,958,637

2015/16

£276,000

£3,663,120

£0

£3,939,120

2014/15

£262,000

£3,352,169

£5,000

£3,619,169

2013/14

£219,000

£2,744,545

£792,827

£3,756,372

2012/13

£110,000

£1,444,270

£0

£1,554,270

2011/12

£0

£1,508,745

£248,045

£1,756,790

2010/11

£233,000

£1,481,377

£0

£1,714,377

2009/10

£394,000

£1,848,298

£0

£2,242,298

2008/9

£514,000

£2,390,929

£0

£2,904,929

2007/8

£463,000

£1,445,324

£0

£1,908,324

2006/7

£114,000

£1,011,496

£0

£1,125,496

2005/6

£34,000

£717,932

£0

£715,932

2004/5

£8,000

£476,455

£0

£484,455

2003/4

£67,000

£227,859

£0

£294,859

2002/3

£90,000

£259,863

£0

£349,863

Total

£2,994,000

£27,216,675

£1,150,216

£31,360,891

In the last 15 years, DEFRA has spent approximately £277,000 on a number of research projects in the field of biodegradable and compostable plastics.

30th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations he has made to the (a) Secretary of State for Justice and (b) Home Secretary on the level of retail crime during 2016.

I regularly meet with Ministerial colleagues to discuss a wide range of issues affecting the retail sector. The Department also works closely with the Home Office’s National Retail Crime Steering Group.

27th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the effect on Swansea of a pathfinder tidal lagoon.

The Hendry Review published its report on tidal lagoons in January. The issues considered by the report are complex, both in relation to the proposed Swansea Bay project and to a potentially wider lagoon programme. Government will require a period of time to assess those issues and determine what is in the best interest of the UK energy consumer and taxpayer in the long term, and will publish its response to the Hendry Review in due course.

27th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential role of tidal lagoons in the cultivating world leading sectors pillar of his Department's industrial strategy.

Government is considering the recommendations from the Hendry Review and the issues which arise from a broader programme. Government will require a period of time to assess those issues and determine what is in the best interest of the UK energy consumer and taxpayer in the long term. The Government will publish its response to the Hendry Review in due course.

27th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his Department's policy is on ensuring pathfinder tidal lagoons include a no regrets policy.

The Hendry Review published its report in January. Government is considering its recommendations and the issues which would arise from a broader lagoon programme, and will publish its response to the Hendry Review in due course.

30th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many private organisations have been found in breach of General Data Protection Regulations by the Information Commissioner's Office since May 2018.

The Government takes the protection of personal data and the right to privacy extremely seriously.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is the independent regulator for data protection in the UK and is responsible for regulating compliance with data protection legislation. The Information Commissioner has the power to serve fines on a data controller as a result of a data breach. Details of enforcement action, including fines, are published on the ICO website at www.ico.org.uk/action-weve-taken

30th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will publish (a) a list of the public bodies and agencies who have been found in breach of the General Data Protection Regulations since they came into force in May 2018 and (b) details of any fines that may have been imposed by the Information Commissioner's Office as a result of any breaches.

The Government takes the protection of personal data and the right to privacy extremely seriously.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is the independent regulator for data protection in the UK and is responsible for regulating compliance with data protection legislation. The Information Commissioner has the power to serve fines on a data controller as a result of a data breach. Details of enforcement action, including fines, are published on the ICO website at www.ico.org.uk/action-weve-taken

27th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will make an assessment of the implications for his Department's policies of the recommendations in the Responsible Gambling Strategy Board’s report on children, young people and gambling: a case for action; and if he will make a statement.

The Responsible Gambling Strategy Board are expert advisers to the Gambling Commission on safer gambling and gambling-related harm. Government welcomes the RGSB’s report on children and young people and the Commission’s response. Protecting children and other vulnerable people from harm was a key objective of our Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Review, which was published in May. Our Review, which was informed by advice from the RGSB and Commission, set out measures to increase existing protections around gaming machines, online gambling and gambling advertising. The Committees of Advertising Practice will publish further guidance on protecting children and young people later this year and additional research has been commissioned on the impact of marketing and advertising on them.

27th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether his Department plans to bring forward legislation to ensure that gambling websites introduce stronger third-party age verification checks for users.

The Gambling Commission has strong powers requiring licensees to have policies and procedures designed to prevent underage gambling.

Under existing requirements, operators have a period of 72 hours to carry out age-verification. However, as set out in the Government response to the Consultation on proposed changes to Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Measures on 17th May, the Gambling Commission intends to bring forward proposals to remove the current 72 hour window for age-verification checks. This would mean that age-verification must be completed before a customer is able to deposit funds and gamble.

The Commission has also considered the availability of free-to-play gambling-style games and plans to strengthen the rules by requiring licensed gambling operators to complete age-verification checks before consumers are able to access free-to-play games.

Together with the Minister for Digital and Creative Industries, I will chair a roundtable bringing together the technology and gambling sectors to look at enhancing protections online. The Commission will consult on tightening age verification requirements and is continuing to work with the video games industry to raise awareness of the risks of third parties using its products to provide illegal gambling facilities. We are considering the issue of 16 and 17 year olds playing National Lottery products as part of the design phase of the Fourth Licence.

5th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of establishing a 9pm watershed for all gambling advertising.

We considered advertising as part of our Review of Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility. The response was published on 17 May. Protecting vulnerable people was central to the review, and we recognised that having the right advertising protections in place was an important part of this.

As set out in the consultation document, children’s exposure to gambling adverts on TV has been declining year on year since 2013. The Gambling Commission’s Young People Survey in 2017 found that there was little evidence of a direct influence on gambling activity, with only 1% of young people in the survey saying advertising prompted them to start gambling or increase the amount they gamble. However, our response recognises that there are gaps in the evidence available, and outlined measures to fill these, including significant research commissioned by GambleAware into the impact of gambling advertising on children, young people and those vulnerable to harm.

There are already strong controls in place around gambling advertising, which must not be targeted at children. The response set out a package of initiatives to strengthen protections further. These include forthcoming guidance from the Committees of Advertising Practice (CAP) on protecting children and young people. We do not propose to bring forward legislative proposals, but we will keep these issues under review.

5th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether his Department has plans to bring forward legislative proposals to ban the advertising of betting on pitch-side electronic advertising boards during televised sporting events.

We considered advertising as part of our Review of Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility. The response was published on 17 May. Protecting vulnerable people was central to the review, and we recognised that having the right advertising protections in place was an important part of this.

As set out in the consultation document, children’s exposure to gambling adverts on TV has been declining year on year since 2013. The Gambling Commission’s Young People Survey in 2017 found that there was little evidence of a direct influence on gambling activity, with only 1% of young people in the survey saying advertising prompted them to start gambling or increase the amount they gamble. However, our response recognises that there are gaps in the evidence available, and outlined measures to fill these, including significant research commissioned by GambleAware into the impact of gambling advertising on children, young people and those vulnerable to harm.

There are already strong controls in place around gambling advertising, which must not be targeted at children. The response set out a package of initiatives to strengthen protections further. These include forthcoming guidance from the Committees of Advertising Practice (CAP) on protecting children and young people. We do not propose to bring forward legislative proposals, but we will keep these issues under review.

4th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the effect of a £2 maximum stake on B2 gaming machines on the number of (a) betting shop jobs that would potentially be lost and (b) betting shops that would potentially close.

The consultation on proposals for changes to gaming machines and social responsibility measures closed on 23 January and the responses are being considered. The Government’s response will be published in due course with a revised final impact assessment.

4th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the potential switch from fixed odds betting terminals to online gambling if a £2 maximum stake is introduced.

The consultation on proposals for changes to gaming machines and social responsibility measures closed on 23 January and the responses are being considered. The Government’s response will be published in due course with a revised final impact assessment.

20th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment she has made of the effect of gaming machines on levels of gambling addiction.

We are currently undertaking a review of gaming machines and social responsibility measures, which I announced in October 2016. The public consultation closed in December 2016, and we are currently reviewing the findings, which we will publish in October.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what representations she has received on the potential number of betting shop jobs that would be lost in the event that stakes on gaming machines in betting shops are capped at (a) £50, (b) £30, (c) £10 and (d) £2.

We are currently undertaking a review of gaming machines and social responsibility measures, which includes a close look at stakes on gaming machines in betting shops. I will publish the findings in October. DCMS will publish a full impact assessment of any changes to stakes it will consider as part of the findings.

We also received representations from a number of organisations during the review, which provided evidence about the potential impact that a stake reduction on gaming machines in betting shops would have on closures.

Representations received as part of the call of evidence will be published alongside the review findings.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the potential cost to the public purse of capping stakes on gaming machines in betting shops at (a) £50, (b) £30, (c) £10 and (d) £2.

We are currently undertaking a review of gaming machines and social responsibility measures, which includes a close look at stakes on gaming machines in betting shops. I will publish the findings in October. DCMS will publish a full impact assessment of any changes to stakes it will consider as part of the findings.

We also received representations from a number of organisations during the review, which provided evidence about the potential impact that a stake reduction on gaming machines in betting shops would have on closures.

Representations received as part of the call of evidence will be published alongside the review findings.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer the my hon. Friend to the answer given by my Rt Hon. Friend, the Minister for the Cabinet Office today to UIN 36288.

22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against his Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found here: http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en

28th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when 100 per cent of residents in St Albans will have access to superfast broadband; and when ultrafast broadband will be rolled out in St Albans.

Based on current delivery plans, it is estimated that 98% of premises in the St Albans constituency will have access to superfast broadband by the end of June 2018. Additional funding sources, including Herts & Bucks share of the £129 million of early gainshare funding that BT will return in response to the high levels of take-up being achieved, could allow coverage to be extended further in St Albans and the rest of the area covered by the Herts & Bucks broadband project.

Virgin Media already provides services over 100Mbps in many urban areas, including extensive network coverage in St Albans.

25th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to increase the level of funding for special education needs pupils in schools.

Our ambitions for children and young people with complex special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are exactly the same as for every other child and young person. As part of this, we are pleased to announce that we will be providing an additional £700 million, 10% in high needs funding next year alone, which will help local authorities to ensure that they can continue to offer the right support for children and young people with the most complex SEND.

Kemi Badenoch
Minister for Equalities
25th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to increase access to lifelong learning.

Our adult skills system seeks to improve productivity, employment levels and social inclusion. It supports people who are starting out in their careers, those who want to upskill and those who want or need to change careers.

Adult skills and lifelong learning provision includes:

  • Apprenticeships: Our reforms to apprenticeships are benefiting people of all ages and backgrounds, including adults developing their skills. We have given employers the flexibility to offer apprenticeships to both new recruits and existing staff, supporting the creation of quality workplace training opportunities and life-long learning.

  • Adult Education Budget (AEB) funded provision: The AEB fully funds or co-fund skills provision for eligible adults aged 19 and above from pre-entry to level 3 (including traineeships) to help them gain the skills they need for work, an apprenticeship or further learning. It also enables flexible tailored programmes of learning to be made available which do not need to include a qualification.

  • From 1 August 2019, approximately half of the AEB has been devolved to 6 Mayoral Combined Authorities (MCAs) and the Mayor of London acting through the Greater London Authority (GLA). From this date the MCAs and GLA can use the devolved AEB to shape education and skills provision in a way that best fits the needs of their residents and local economy. The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) will be responsible for funding AEB learners resident in non-devolved areas.

  • Part-time higher education (HE) provision: Flexible and part-time HE has a key role in terms of widening choice and participation in HE for adults.

  • The National Retraining Scheme: The National Retraining Scheme is a new programme which is currently being developed as part of the government’s answer to the transforming world of work. The National Retraining Scheme will help prepare adults for the future changes to the economy, including those brought about by automation, and help them retrain into better jobs.

  • Advanced Learner Loans support clear routes into work, progression within work and progression to higher education, by providing fees support for level 3 to level 6 qualifications. Access to multiple Advanced Learner Loans enables adults to progress or re-skill.

  • European Social Fund (ESF) funded provision: The ESF is an EU programme that delivers £3 billion (over 7 years) of employment/training provision to support those furthest from learning and the labour market. DfE and ESFA are one of several Co-Financing Organisations that procure provision on behalf of Local Enterprise Partnerships and deliver on average £150 million of skills provision per annum. Provision is a mixture of regulated and unregulated employment and skills courses with a strong focus on additional and ‘wraparound’ support (for example, employability skills, confidence building, mentoring to overcome personal barriers to learning and/or employment).

Kemi Badenoch
Minister for Equalities
27th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department plans to introduce requirements for schools to teach pupils in secondary school about the dangers of gambling online.

The Government wants all schools to deliver a high-quality education that ensures all young people are equipped with the knowledge they need to prepare them for adult life, including the risks associated with harmful behaviour and addiction.

Schools are required to teach a balanced and broad curriculum that promotes the spiritual, moral, social, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils, and prepares pupils for the opportunities, experiences and responsibilities of later life. The Department is aware that some schools choose to teach about gambling and addiction in an age-appropriate way, as part of their wider school curriculum or through Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE).

The non-statutory PSHE programme of study, published by the PSHE Association, includes teaching about gambling (including online) and its psychological and financial impact. There are also organisations that work with schools and children to raise awareness of the risks around gambling, including the Young Gamblers Education Trust.

14th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 8 March 2017 to Question 65926, on overseas students: loans, for what reason there was an increase in the outstanding balance from 2014-15 to 2015-16; and for what reasons the 18 per cent increase in the outstanding balance sits alongside an 11 per cent increase in the amount lent.

The total amount loaned out as English student loans in the financial year 2015-16 increased by 11% compared to the financial year 2014-15 due to increasing numbers of students receiving support and a higher proportion of those students being entitled to more financial support as they are on post-2012 tuition fee loan arrangements.

The main reason the outstanding balance of English student loans was 18% higher at the end of the financial year 2015-16 was that more was loaned out (and therefore added to the outstanding balance) than was repaid in the financial year 2015-16.

A more complete breakdown of the English student loan book can be found in table 1 of the Student Loans Company (SLC) Statistical First Release (SFR) Student Loans in England.

http://www.slc.co.uk/official-statistics/student-loans-debt-and-repayment/england.aspx

14th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 8 March 2017 to Question 65926, on overseas students: loans, if she will take steps to reduce the number of borrowers who have not repaid their loans.

The Department is taking action to reduce the number of borrowers due to repay who are not repaying their loans.

If borrowers based overseas fail to remain in contact with the SLC, the SLC will set up a fixed repayment schedule and will place those borrowers in arrears. Borrowers with post-2012 loans who have not remained in contact with the SLC are charged the maximum interest rate of RPI+3% until they get back in touch. Further action, including legal action, can then be taken to secure recovery. The SLC established a dedicated Repayments Evasion Unit in 2016 to detect borrowers overseas who fail to comply with their statutory obligations to repay their loans.

The Department published a Joint Repayment Strategy in February 2016, which sets out how action will be taken to trace borrowers and act to recover loans where avoidance or evasion is identified. This publication can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/student-loan-repayment-strategy.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 8 March 2017 to Question 65926, on overseas students: loans, what proportion of the 2.8 per cent of borrowers resident overseas are (a) British, (b) EU and (c) non-EU nationals; and what the total value of the amount lent to borrowers resident overseas is.

Statistics covering English student loans are published annually by the Student Loans Company (SLC) in the Statistical First Release (SFR) ‘Student Loans in England’.

http://www.slc.co.uk/official-statistics/full-catalogue-of-official-statistics/student-loans-debt-and-repayment.aspx

The latest statistics show that there were around 113,600 English student loan borrowers, liable to repay, who were known to be overseas at the beginning of the financial year 2016-17. Of these around 25,300 (22%) were EU domiciled borrowers (those resident in the EU prior to studying).

Data provided by SLC shows that the overall outstanding loan balance of these borrowers resident overseas was around £1.6 billion, of which around £220 million (14%) was held by EU domiciled borrowers.

Information has been provided on the basis of the borrower’s prior residence as equivalent information on the basis of the borrower’s nationality would only be available at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 8 March 2017 to Question 65926, on overseas students: loans, for what reasons the amount lent in 2015-16 was greater than that lent in 2014-15; and if she will make a statement.

The increased spend in tuition fee loans to both English and EU domiciled students in the financial year 2015-16 is due to increasing numbers of students receiving support and a higher proportion of those students being on post-2012 tuition fee loan arrangements.

Statistics covering English student support paid to English and EU domiciled borrowers in each academic year are published annually by the Student Loans Company (SLC) in the Statistical First Release (SFR) ‘Student Support for Higher Education in England’.

http://www.slc.co.uk/official-statistics/financial-support-awarded/england-higher-education.aspx

1st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps the Government takes to reclaim student loans from graduates from non-UK EU countries who fail to repay those loans.

The Student Loans Company (SLC) has arrangements in place to collect repayments from borrowers who move away from the UK. SLC establishes a 12 month repayment schedule based on the borrower’s income and provides information on the methods of repayment available.

SLC sets up fixed repayment schedules for borrowers who do not remain in contact and will place those borrowers in arrears. Further action, including legal action, can then be taken to secure recovery.

The Department published a Joint Repayment Strategy in February 2016, which sets out how action will be taken to trace borrowers and act to recover loans where avoidance or evasion is identified. This publication can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/student-loan-repayment-strategy.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment her Department has made of the implications for its policies of the Higher Education Policy Institute report, Higher Education in New Zealand: What might the UK learn, published in July 2016.

The Department for Education welcomes any lessons learned and insights on approaches adopted by other countries.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the total amount owed by non-UK EU graduates in English student loans has been in each of the last 10 years.

Statistics covering English student loans are published annually by the Student Loans Company (SLC) in the Statistical First Release (SFR) ‘Student Loans in England’.

http://www.slc.co.uk/official-statistics/full-catalogue-of-official-statistics/student-loans-debt-and-repayment.aspx

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to paragraph 46 of the Success as a knowledge economy White Paper published in May 2016, what plans she has to introduce an alternative model of student finance including Sharia-compliant student loans.

The Government has introduced the primary legislation required to allow alternative student finance, consistent with the principles of Islamic finance, to be offered alongside grants and loans. The Higher Education and Research Bill is currently before Parliament.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that non-UK EU nationals who graduate from UK universities having taken out student loans repay their debts within the agreed timeframe.

The Student Loans Company (SLC) has arrangements in place to collect repayments from borrowers who move away from the UK. SLC establishes a 12 month repayment schedule based on the borrower’s income and provides information on the methods of repayment available.

SLC sets up fixed repayment schedules for borrowers who do not remain in contact and will place those borrowers in arrears. Further action, including legal action, can then be taken to secure recovery.

The Department published a Joint Repayment Strategy in February 2016, which sets out how action will be taken to trace borrowers and act to recover loans where avoidance or evasion is identified. This publication can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/student-loan-repayment-strategy.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether she plans to implement the Teaching Excellence Framework proposed in the White Paper entitled Success as a knowledge economy published in May 2016

The Government set out a proposed implementation timetable for the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) in Success as a knowledge economy.

The implementation of the TEF has been in line with the timing set out and 299 institutions, including all English members of the Russell Group, have opted in to the current round of assessments. However, as the White Paper noted, we are implementing the TEF using a staged approach. Following further consultation with the sector about implementing subject level TEF, the Minister for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation announced that we will be extending the pilot phase of subject level TEF by an additional year. Two full years of piloting is in line with the best practice demonstrated in the development of the Research Excellence Framework and recognises the additional complexity involved in developing a subject level assessment. This will mean that the first full year of subject level TEF assessments will take place in 2020.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much her Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer the Hon Member to the answer given by my Rt Hon Friend, the Minister for the Cabinet Office, in PQ 36288 on 11 May 2016.

22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against her Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found here.

http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en

13th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, on which occasions since her appointment she has met (a) staff from the European Commission Directorate-General (ECDG) for Communication and (b) communication officers from ECDG for Education and Culture.

The Secretary of State has not met any staff from the European Commission Directorate General for Communication or communication officers from the Directorate General for Education and Culture since her appointment.

9th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate she has made of the number of additional places needed in (a) primary and (b) secondary education in England as a result of immigration from (i) EU and (ii) non-EU member states in each of the next five years; and what estimate she has made of the cost of providing such places.

Supporting local authorities in their responsibility to ensure sufficient school places remains one of this Government’s top priorities. The basic need capital funding we allocate to local authorities to create new school places is based on their own data on school capacity and future pupil forecasts. Any increase in need for places should be reflected in the local authority’s final basic need allocation.

The Government has committed to investing £7 billion in new school places up to 2021, which, when added to our investment in the free schools programme, will help to create 600,000 new places.

9th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for how many pupils the pupil premium has been paid in each year since its introduction; and how many pupils from which countries are eligible for the pupil premium.

Since 2011-12, schools in England have received the Pupil Premium which targets funding at pupils from the most deprived backgrounds to help them achieve their full potential. In 2011-12, the premium was allocated for each pupil known to be eligible for Free School Meals, looked after children and children of parents in the armed services. In 2012-13 coverage was expanded to include pupils known to have been eligible for Free School Meals at any point in the last six years. The per pupil amounts for each type of pupil are shown in following table in cash terms:

Pupil Premium per pupil (£)

2011-2012

2012-2013

2013-2014

2014-2015

2015-2016

Free School Meal Pupil Primary

£488

£623

£953

£1323

£1320

Free School Meal Pupil Secondary

£488

£623

£900

£935

£935

Service Children

£200

£250

£300

£300

£300

Looked After Children

£488

£623

£900

£1900*

£1900*

*Also includes children adopted from care

Eligible pupils attending state funded schools in England attract the premium. Information on the country of origin of these pupils is not held centrally. Details of the eligibility of pupils and how allocations are made to schools for the current financial year can be found in the conditions of grant at this link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-2015-to-2016-allocations/pupil-premium-2015-to-2016-conditions-of-grant

Details of the numbers of pupils receiving the premium in each financial year since 2011-12 can be found at the links below:

2011-12: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130123124929/http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/adminandfinance/financialmanagement/schoolsrevenuefunding/settlement2012pupilpremium/a0075963/pupil-premium-2011-12

2012-13: http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130123124929/http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/adminandfinance/financialmanagement/schoolsrevenuefunding/settlement2013pupilpremium/a00200465/schools-funding-settlement-2012-13

2013-14: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-2013-to-2014-final-allocation-tables

2014-15: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-2014-to-2015-final-allocations

2015-16: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-2015-to-2016-allocations

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when she was first made aware that the site initially secured for Harperbury Free School was too small for that school; and what steps she took in response to that information.

Approval to build the school on the site is subject to the views of the Local Planning Authority. They first raised concerns, alongside a range of other concerns arising from its location in the Green Belt, to my officials in March 2015.

Discussions between officials at both Departments did identify that two adjacent properties could be purchased to provide additional car parking. However, the nature of the sale of the remainder of the former hospital site to a residential developer meant that further land could not be released for the school. Even if additional land were made available, there remain substantial risks associated with developing this Green Belt site.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether she has had discussions with the Secretary of State for Health on making more land available at the proposed site for Harperbury Free School to enable the planning application for that site to proceed with a site large enough to meet local planning officers' requirements.

Approval to build the school on the site is subject to the views of the Local Planning Authority. They first raised concerns, alongside a range of other concerns arising from its location in the Green Belt, to my officials in March 2015.

Discussions between officials at both Departments did identify that two adjacent properties could be purchased to provide additional car parking. However, the nature of the sale of the remainder of the former hospital site to a residential developer meant that further land could not be released for the school. Even if additional land were made available, there remain substantial risks associated with developing this Green Belt site.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, by what process her Department ensured the site secured for the proposed Harperbury Free School (a) was large enough and (b) met other requirements to be suitable for a secondary school with the capacity for up to 840 students and 70 staff.

Approval to build the school on the site is subject to the views of the Local Planning Authority. They first raised concerns, alongside a range of other concerns arising from its location in the Green Belt, to my officials in March 2015.

Discussions between officials at both Departments did identify that two adjacent properties could be purchased to provide additional car parking. However, the nature of the sale of the remainder of the former hospital site to a residential developer meant that further land could not be released for the school. Even if additional land were made available, there remain substantial risks associated with developing this Green Belt site.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department's agreement with the Department of Health to secure the Harperbury Free School site included a provision that the Department of Health would meet the costs of relocating Harperbury Bowls Club elsewhere on the Harperbury site.

The negotiation for land for the site of Harperbury Free School was part of a wider land sale for new homes which was being negotiated by the Department of Health. Heads of Terms for the sale were agreed in September 2014 and subsequently revised in October 2015.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department engaged in a contract with the Department of Health to transfer land within the Harperbury site for the proposed Harperbury Free School.

The negotiation for land for the site of Harperbury Free School was part of a wider land sale for new homes which was being negotiated by the Department of Health. Heads of Terms for the sale were agreed in September 2014 and subsequently revised in October 2015.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the reasons were for the time taken for her Department and the Department of Health to reach an agreement on the site for Harperbury Free School.

The negotiation for land for the site of Harperbury Free School was part of a wider land sale for new homes which was being negotiated by the Department of Health. Heads of Terms for the sale were agreed in September 2014 and subsequently revised in October 2015.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the performance of the Education Funding Agency on the case of Harperbury Free School; and what the cost to the public purse of that school has been to date.

I have every confidence in the performance of the Education Funding Agency on this project.

The combined capital and revenue cost of the project to date is £1,919,000.

8th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the letter from her Department to the Harperbury Free School governors of 17 November 2015, if she will make an assessment of the implications for housing and other planned developments in the catchment area of the proposed Harperbury Free School of the risk referred to in that letter that no suitable site can ever be found for that school.

Assessing the implications for housing and other developments is a matter for the Council rather than the Department.

In order for planning permission to be granted for a site in the Green Belt, as is the case for the trust’s preferred site, the Local Planning Authority would have to accept that there is a strong need for a school in the locality of the identified site, which they do not.

9th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to ensure that people under the age of 16 are paid for employment; and what assessment she has made of the adequacy of legal protection of children under the age of 16 who are employed.

There are legal safeguards for children of compulsory school age who are employed. These safeguards include the nature of the work that they may be asked to do, the maximum hours they may work, and the safety of their working environment. Local authorities and the Health and Safety Executive are responsible for ensuring compliance with the relevant legislation.


Minimum wage legislation does not apply to children under 16.

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many unauthorised school absences there have been in (a) St Albans constituency, (b) Hertfordshire, (c) the East of England and (d) the UK since 2010; and what steps he is taking to reduce such absences.

The Department for Education publishes statistics on England only. Information on unauthorised pupil absence in St Albans constituency has been provided in the following table. Pupil absence rates at regional and local authority level are available in the local authority tables in the absence statistical first release for each year[1].

We know from evidence that pupils who have regular attendance at school are four times more likely to achieve five or more A*-C grades at GCSE including English and maths than those pupils who are persistently absent[2]. This is why the Department for Education reduced the threshold at which pupils are classified as being persistently absent, from 20 to 15 per cent of school missed. This measure enables schools to identify earlier those pupils with troubling attendance patterns, and to do something about them.

In 2012, we increased the level of the school attendance penalty fines of £50 and £100 to £60 and £120 respectively; and in 2013 reduced the overall timescales for paying fines from 42 to 28 days. Our reforms are working. In 2012/13 persistent absence was 300,895 pupils – a fall of almost a third from 2010. 130,000 fewer pupils are now persistent absentees.

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STATE-FUNDED PRIMARY, STATE-FUNDED SECONDARY AND SPECIAL SCHOOLS (1)(2)(3)(4):
UNAUTHORISED ABSENCE RATES (5)
Academic years 2009/10 - 2012/13
St Albans parliamentary constituency
Unauthorised absence rate (5)
2009/10 0.7
2010/11 0.6
2011/12 0.6
2012/13 0.6
Source: School Census
(1) Includes middle schools as deemed.
(2) Includes primary academies, including free schools.
(3) Includes city technology colleges and all secondary academies, including free schools, university technical colleges and studio schools.
(4) Includes maintained special schools, non-maintained special schools and special academies. Excludes general hospital schools, independent special schools and independent schools approved for SEN pupils.
(5) The number of sessions missed due to unauthorised absence expressed as a percentage of the total number of possible sessions.

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[1]https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-pupil-absence

[2]https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/183445/DFE-RR171.pdf

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
25th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to ensure water companies responsibly manage their water abstraction activities from chalk streams.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
25th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent steps her Department has taken to reduce the number of recyclable cups and bottles sent to landfill.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
2nd Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent representations the Government has made to the Government of Japan against its decision to resume commercial whaling.

We are very disappointed with Japan’s decision to withdraw from the International Whaling Commission and restart commercial whaling. The Prime Minister raised concerns with Prime Minister Abe during his visit to the UK in January. The Secretary of State has written to his Japanese counterpart on this matter. We will continue to work with the Japanese Government to engage with them and raise our concerns at every level, and we urge them to rethink their decision.

1st Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to (a) increase the amount of plastic that is recycled, and (b) improve the UK’s recycling infrastructure.

The Government’s Resources and Waste Strategy for England, published in December last year, sets out how we will reduce plastic pollution and preserve material resources by minimising waste, increasing recycling rates, promoting resource efficiency and moving towards a more circular economy. We have consulted on reforms to household and business recycling collections which are intended to improve the quantity and quality of materials collected for recycling, including plastic, and on proposals to make producers pay the full net cost for dealing with the packaging they put on the market at end-of-life, and on the potential introduction of a deposit return scheme. Her Majesty’s Treasury have also consulted on a world-leading tax on plastic packaging which does not contain at least 30% recycled material. These reforms should help reduce waste and increase the amount of packaging recycled.

Defra also supports the UK Plastics Pact, a unique collaboration launched by Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) that will create a circular economy for plastics. WRAP estimates these members are responsible for over 80% of the plastic packaging on products sold through UK supermarkets, and approximately 50% of the total plastic packaging placed on the UK market.

The Government is also acting to help ensure the right infrastructure is in place to deliver high quality secondary materials for recycling. It is investing around £3 billion of grant funding in waste infrastructure projects. These grants support infrastructure including material recovery, mechanical biological treatment and anaerobic digestion facilities, as well as implementation and expanding kerbside recycling services. It also recently announced £4.7 million of grant funding for recycling infrastructure projects that will help to recycle difficult plastic packaging and textile materials. Further grant opportunities around recycling will follow in due course.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
19th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department has taken to ensure an alignment of the (a) design and (b) implementation of deposit return schemes in England and Scotland.

The Government has confirmed that it will introduce a deposit return scheme (DRS) for drinks containers in England, subject to consultation. The specific model, scope and scale of any scheme is being considered as part of this consultation, which is also being undertaken with the Welsh government and the Northern Ireland administration.

As waste and recycling policy is a devolved matter, the devolved administrations can decide policy separately. The Government is therefore unable to specify how a DRS in Scotland should be implemented, nor at this point are we considering specifically a pilot scheme. However, ministers and officials have met to discuss progress and recognise the benefits of a coherent system across the UK. DRS in England could form part of a coherent system across the UK and we will continue to work closely with the devolved administrations on this policy area.

The role of a Deposit Management Organisation in managing the operation of a DRS, including being responsible for the maintenance of Reverse Vending Machines, is currently being considered as part of our consultation. We will consider alternative approaches as part of our analysis of the consultation responses.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
19th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what alternatives to the proposed deposit management organisation for maintaining reverse vending machines his Department considered for inclusion in the proposals for a UK-wide deposit return scheme.

The Government has confirmed that it will introduce a deposit return scheme (DRS) for drinks containers in England, subject to consultation. The specific model, scope and scale of any scheme is being considered as part of this consultation, which is also being undertaken with the Welsh government and the Northern Ireland administration.

As waste and recycling policy is a devolved matter, the devolved administrations can decide policy separately. The Government is therefore unable to specify how a DRS in Scotland should be implemented, nor at this point are we considering specifically a pilot scheme. However, ministers and officials have met to discuss progress and recognise the benefits of a coherent system across the UK. DRS in England could form part of a coherent system across the UK and we will continue to work closely with the devolved administrations on this policy area.

The role of a Deposit Management Organisation in managing the operation of a DRS, including being responsible for the maintenance of Reverse Vending Machines, is currently being considered as part of our consultation. We will consider alternative approaches as part of our analysis of the consultation responses.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
18th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if the Government will create a new regulator to address (a) horse welfare and (b) deaths of race horses.

The British Horserace Authority (BHA) are responsible for the welfare of racehorses at racetracks. The BHA work in collaboration with the RSPCA and World Horse Welfare to make racetracks as safe as possible. The number of racehorse fatalities at racetracks has been falling steadily since 2012, which is welcome. However, whilst I do not see a need for a new regulator, I consider that improvements can be made to further reduce the number of racehorse fatalities each year. I will explore this issue further when I meet BHA to discuss racehorse safety.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how much revenue to the public purse there has been associated with packaging recovery notes in each year since 2010; how much of that money has been invested into improving recycling facilities; and what control measures are in place to ensure that funds are spent appropriately.

Revenue from the sale of Packaging Waste Recovery Notes (PRNs) and Packaging Waste Export Recovery Notes (PERNs) does not go to the public purse.

Reprocessors and exporters who are accredited to issue PRNs and PERNs are required to report the revenue received to the Environment Agency.

The Environment Agency publishes this data on how this income has been spent for capacity building within the system against specific categories.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the producer responsibility regime in reducing the amount of plastic waste; and if he will take steps to increase the contribution producers make towards the cost of collecting and recycling plastic waste.

We are exploring changes to the packaging producer responsibility scheme, including mechanisms to incentivise better design and encourage the use of recycled material, as well as the funding of collection within the system.


Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to set a target for recycling disposable coffee cups.

Current packaging policies and regulations have resulted in recycling of packaging rising from around 46% in 2005 to 64% in 2016, with recycling of paper packaging at 82% in 2016 data.

We do not currently have plans to set a specific target for the recycling of disposable coffee cups. Under the Packaging Waste Regulations major coffee retailers already have a legal and financial obligation to recover and recycle a proportion of the packaging they place on the market, including disposable coffee cups.

The industry is also taking further, voluntary action aimed at significantly increasing paper cup recycling rates by 2020.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has a target for the reduction of single use plastics.

This Government is a world leader in tackling plastic waste, not only banning microbeads, but also taking 9 billion plastic bags out of circulation with our 5p carrier bag charge.

On 11 January we published our 25 Year Environment Plan that stated our ambition to eliminate all avoidable plastic waste by 2042 and, in particular, the waste from single-use plastics. The steps we will be taking to do this include exploring the introduction of plastic-free aisles by retailers; exploring how we can develop our producer responsibility schemes to give producers more incentives to design more resource efficient products; and extending the carrier bag charge to small retailers.

In the 25 Year Environment Plan the Government also announced a plan to remove all consumer single use plastics from the central government estate offices. Defra Group are carrying out a full analysis of single use plastic through our supply chain and setting a requirement that new catering services exclude all consumer single use plastics. We work closely with other government departments and their agencies through the Greening Government Commitments to reduce their impacts on the environment.

In autumn 2017 an independent working group set up under the Litter Strategy for England held a call for evidence on measures to reduce littering of drinks containers and promote recycling. This included seeking evidence on the costs, benefits and impacts of deposit return schemes. Ministers are now considering the working group’s report.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information his Departments holds on the volume of plastic waste from the recycling facilities in Hertfordshire that has been sent to (a) landfill, (b) incineration, (c) energy recovery and (d) exported abroad.

Defra does not hold specific data on the volume of plastic waste from recycling facilities in Hertfordshire that was landfilled, incinerated, sent to energy recovery or exported. This is because data is not structured specifically around material streams or facilities and regions in this way.

Under separate Producer Responsibility Obligations for packaging, where plastic packaging accounts for around 60% of total plastics arising’s in 2014, there are no accredited plastic reprocessors or accredited plastic exporters situated in Hertfordshire.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
30th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent estimate his Department has made of the average amount of household waste that is recyclable.

We do not have recent estimates on the average amount of household waste that could be recycled. Data on waste arisings are not structured around the material composition of waste streams so we cannot provide detailed information on the amount of waste in the residual waste stream that could be recycled.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
30th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure that plastic waste exported from the UK is being used in an environmentally-friendly way.

Businesses involved in the shipment of wastes are required to take all necessary steps to ensure that the waste they ship is managed in an environmentally sound manner throughout its shipment and during its recycling.

The UK environmental regulators take an intelligence led approach to checking compliance with these obligations focussing on specific problematic wastes. Enforcement activity occurs in transit, at roadsides and at ports. However, the regulators continue to focus significant effort on identifying, stopping and intervening at source prior to illegal exports taking place.

The regulators also provide easily understood guidance for those responsible for exporting waste which allows anyone involved in the export of waste to determine which wastes can be legitimately exported to which countries and the procedures they must follow to do things legally.

Last year the Environment Agency issued 130 stop notices, prohibiting the export of unsuitable waste. It also stopped 4,565 tonnes of waste destined for illegal export at ports and intervened further upstream to prevent a further 15,113 tonnes of waste from reaching our ports. This work ensures we’re not exporting our problem wastes for unsuitable treatment or disposal.

We cannot ultimately dictate how UK waste is managed once it leaves the UK. There is a system of international rules on shipments which must be followed. The authorities in countries that receive UK waste also need to be clear about the types of waste they will accept and the waste import procedures they require exporters to adhere to.

Tackling waste is a top priority for the government. The Clean Growth Strategy, published on 12 October 2017, set out our ambition for zero avoidable waste by 2050 and announced we are exploring changes to the producer responsibility scheme. We must reduce the amount of waste we produce overall and increase the amount we recycle in the UK. We will set out further steps when we publish a new Resources and Waste Strategy later this year.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
23rd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has made an assessment of the environmental effect of cigarette waste; and if he will make a statement.

Smoking related litter is considered to be litter and the Government has made no particular assessment of its environmental effect.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
23rd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to monitor compliance with regulations at exposed wood-recycling plants.

Businesses managing waste wood, including wood recycling plants, must have an environmental permit issued by the Environment Agency (EA). Smaller and lower risk wood recyclers are exempt from a permit, but must register a T6 waste exemption with the EA.

The EA monitors compliance at the 47 permitted facilities that recycle or handle large quantities of waste wood. All of these sites submit data and information to the EA annually, which is used to help assess their performance. In 2017 the EA made 62 inspections and 10 in-depth audits of these facilities, based on site-specific risk and performance.

There are currently 24,419 registered T6 waste exemptions. Due to their low risk status these sites are not routinely monitored. The EA carried out 127 inspections of these facilities in 2017, after their performance raised concerns.

A current government consultation is seeking views on changes to the T6 waste exemption as there is evidence that it can be abused.


Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
22nd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment the Government has made of the contribution of waste water treatment plants to tackling the problem of micro plastics.

The Environment Agency is currently working with the water industry and leading academics in the field to investigate the quantities, sources and types of micro-plastics entering the environment via sewage and sewage sludge. This work is being carried out as part of the water industry investment planning process and will inform future consideration of measures to reduce micro-plastics at source and the potential for plastic capture technology at water company waste water treatment plants.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
22nd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information his Department holds on how much has been raised by retailers since the introduction of the 5p charge for single use carrier bags; and what information his Department holds on the schemes proceeds from that charge have gone to.

Since the charge was introduced in England, retailers have donated proceeds of approximately £95 million towards a variety of good causes covering the arts, education, environment, health, heritage and sports as well as local causes chosen by customers or staff.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
22nd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent assessment his Department has made of the effect of the use of plastic straws on the environment.

We have made no specific assessment of the use of plastic straws on the environment, but are strongly supporting a number of the voluntary initiatives that are being led by the retail and hospitality sector.

Further to the Prime Minister’s call to eliminate avoidable plastic waste by 2042 and the Chancellor’s budget announcement in November 2017, officials from both Defra and HM Treasury are working closely on a call for evidence to be published shortly. This will seek views on how the tax system or charges could reduce the amount of single use plastics waste including plastic straws.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
22nd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent estimate he has made of the capacity of the UK’s waste recycling system.

The latest figures available for England in 2016 show that there were 2,782 recycling treatment facilities permitted managing 72.4 million tonnes of waste. There were also 2,420 metal recovery facilities managing 13.8 million tonnes of waste.

The Government has signalled clear ambitions for resources efficiency in the Clean Growth Strategy, Industrial Strategy and 25 Year Environment Plan, which set out an ambition for zero avoidable waste by 2050. We are committed to supporting comprehensive and frequent waste and recycling collections which protect local amenity and ensure that products are recycled as much as possible. The Government is developing a new strategy on resources and waste to be published later this year.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
4th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect of washing synthetic clothing on to our oceans and marine life as set out in the 2017 report by the Ellen Macarthur Foundation on a new textiles economy: redesigning fashion's future.

This report is consistent with growing evidence that microplastics reach the marine environment and come from many sources. We welcome the report as an important contribution to the debate on the issue.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has plans to bring forward legislative proposals to ban the transport of live cattle overseas when the UK leaves the EU.

Once we leave the European Union, and in line with our manifesto commitment, we can take early steps to control the export of live farm animals for slaughter. We are currently considering options.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the Government's policy is on preventing incidences of rivers drying up as a result of unsustainable water abstraction.

Since 2008 the Environment Agency has made changes to over 270 abstraction licences to prevent over 27 billion litres of water per year being removed from the environment. This is enough water to supply half a million people, with water for one year.

The government is updating its plan for managing abstraction and will publish in due course.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
21st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the implications for her policies on protecting endangered species in the UK are of the State of Nature 2016 report, published by the RSPB on 14 September 2016; and whether she is taking steps to protect such species.

The Government noted the State of Nature report and considered it a useful contribution to the evidence base for assessing species status. As well as indicating the need for ongoing action, the report highlights cases where our policies, often delivered in partnership with landowners, farmers and conservation groups, are benefitting species, for example by improving the quality of our rivers and streams or creating wildlife habitat on farmland through our agri-environment schemes.

Species protection is a key element of Biodiversity 2020, our biodiversity strategy for England. Actions we are taking include protection, improvement and creation of habitats, for example support for farmers under agri-environment schemes such as Countryside Stewardship, where we are making progress in turning round the fortunes of birds such as the cirl bunting and stone curlew.

Natural England funds a targeted recovery programme for some of our most endangered species and is working with partners to increase the investment in species restoration.

We are committed to the goal of being the first generation to leave the natural environment of England in a better state than that in which we found it, building on our long history of wildlife and environmental protection.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
20th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment her Department has made of the implications for her Department's policies of the EU REACH process identification of four synthetic chemicals, DEHIP, DIBP, DBP and BBP, as endocrine-disrupting chemicals for human health; and if she will make a statement.

The European Commission has now recognised the four substances as endocrine-disrupting chemicals for human health. This scientific assessment was supported by the UK and is in line with our policy approach towards chemicals management.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
20th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent progress the UK is making towards Aichi 2020 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Progress towards achieving the Aichi biodiversity targets is set out in the UK’s 5th National Report to the Convention on Biological Diversity and in the 2015 report on the UK’s biodiversity indicators, published by the Joint Nature Conservation Committee. The next report on the UK’s biodiversity indicators is scheduled to be published in July this year. The UK’s 6th National Report to the Convention on Biological Diversity is due to be published at the end of 2018. These reports will provide an updated assessment of the UK’s contribution towards the Aichi targets.

Biodiversity policy is a devolved responsibility in the UK. England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have each developed or are developing their own biodiversity or environment strategies.

The UK is embedding Agenda 2030’s Sustainable Development Goals across Government work and will publish a report in due course setting out its approach.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
17th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what representations the Government has made to the European Commission on the status of phthalates; and what steps her Department plans to take to recognise DEHP, DIBP, DBP and BBP phthalates as endocrine-disrupting chemicals for human health.

The European Commission has now recognised the four substances as endocrine-disrupting chemicals for human health. This scientific assessment was supported by the UK and is in line with our policy approach towards chemicals management.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what potential effect the UK leaving the EU will have on the UK's future participation in the International Whaling Commission.

The UK is committed to continuing to participate fully in the work of the International Whaling Commission following our exit from the EU. We will maximise the opportunities afforded us from exiting the EU while maintaining the close and important relationships we have with EU Member States party to the Convention. We will ensure that the UK remains a strong and influential voice and continues to be at the forefront of championing efforts to improve conservation and welfare outcomes for cetaceans globally.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the main outcomes and decisions from the 66th annual International Whaling Commission meeting; and whether the UK has successfully implemented the required actions from that meeting.

I have assessed the main outcomes and decisions of the 66th annual International Whaling Commission (IWC) and consider that the meeting was a success for the UK. We secured a number of important UK priorities and officials are now working hard in collaboration with other IWC Parties to ensure that the actions arising from the meeting are implemented during the intercessional period in a coordinated and effective way.
George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
20th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment her Department has made of which exclusive and mixed international environmental agreements in which the EU currently participates the Government plans to seek to be party to or otherwise maintain the provisions of after the UK leaves the EU; and which of those agreements (a) the Government will have to renegotiate and (b) will remain in force as the UK is a signatory in its own right.

The UK is a Party to 35 Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) in its own right. These are mixed agreements and we are bound by the obligations they contain; this will not change on exit from the EU.

We are committed to continuing to play an active role internationally and will continue to be bound by the obligations under these MEAs after leaving the EU.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
24th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the (a) ten types of item most commonly discarded as litter and (b) ten areas in which littering and fly-tipping are most prevalent in England.

Assessments of the composition of litter vary, depending on the methodology used to sample sites and to categorise the litter found there. The Local Environmental Quality Survey of England (LEQSE) was carried out by Keep Britain Tidy on behalf of Defra from 2001-2015. It provided information on the overall cleanliness of the country by looking at indicators of local environmental quality including littering, graffiti and fly-posting. This survey assesses the prevalence of types of litter but does not count the number of items of each type that were found.

The 2014/15 survey found that the top ten types of litter found on the highest percentage of sites were:

  1. Smokers’ materials
  2. Confectionery packs
  3. Non-alcoholic drinks-related
  4. Fast-food related
  5. Snack packs (packaging associated with pre-prepared snack food)
  6. Other packaging
  7. Alcoholic drinks-related
  8. Paper tissues
  9. Vehicle parts
  10. Discarded food/drink

We have made no specific assessment of the areas in which littering is most prevalent. The 2013/14 LEQSE report includes some assessment of regional variations in local environmental quality, although the differences found between regions were not statistically significant. The LEQSE reports for 2013/14 and 2014/15 can be found online at: http://www.keepbritaintidy.org/leqse/1611

Data on fly-tipping for England is published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/fly-tipping-in-england.

This includes information on the cost to local authorities of clearing fly-tipped waste and of taking enforcement action against fly-tipping. The 2015/16 fly tipping data for England is expected to be published in March. The actual publication date will be confirmed shortly and will be available via the ONS website: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the Government's progress on preventing fly-tipping; and when the fly-tipping in England 2015 to 2016 statistics will be published.

We are committed to tackling fly-tipping and, as set out in the Government’s manifesto, have given local councils the power to issue fixed penalty notices for small-scale fly-tipping. These new enforcement tools have been available to councils since May 2016, providing them with an alternative to prosecutions and assisting them in taking a proportionate enforcement response.

This builds on other Government action to tackle fly-tipping, which has included: working with the Sentencing Council on its guideline for sentencing for environmental offences; making it easier for vehicles suspected of being involved in waste crime to be stopped, searched and seized; and continuing our work with the Defra chaired National Fly-Tipping Prevention Group to promote and disseminate good practice in the prevention, reporting, investigation and clearance of fly-tipped waste.

The 2015/16 fly tipping data for England, including the number and type of incidents of illegally deposited waste, the cost of dealing with them and the actions taken, is expected to be published in March. The actual publication date will be confirmed shortly and will be available via the Office for National Statistics website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent assessment she has made of the (a) environmental effect and (b) cost to the public purse of littering and fly tipping on (i) beaches, (ii) marine life, (iii) farms and (iv) urban areas.

We have made no specific assessment of the environmental effects of litter and fly-tipping, nor of the costs of clearing litter and fly-tipped waste in these areas. Data on local government spending, including on street cleansing (which includes tackling litter and fly-tipping) can be found at:

www.gov.uk/government/collections/local-authority-revenue-expenditure-and-financing .

The cost of litter clearance is not recorded separately: the figures reported for spending on street cleansing also include spending on clearing fly-tipped waste, and on activities which would be required even if all litter was disposed of appropriately (such as sweeping up fallen leaves, or emptying public bins). We estimate the annual cost to local government of clearing litter in England runs to hundreds of millions of pounds.

The UK Marine Strategy Part One, published in 2012, presented an initial assessment of the state of UK seas. An updated assessment of the state of our seas is currently being prepared. Defra conducts monitoring of litter on beaches, in the water column and on the seafloor. We consider that the best way to address both the environmental and economic impact is to prevent litter entering the marine environment in the first place. The UK Marine Strategy Part Three, published in 2015, sets out a comprehensive set of actions we are taking to address litter in the marine environment.

Data on fly-tipping for England is published at:

www.gov.uk/government/statistics/fly-tipping-in-england.

This includes information on the cost to local authorities of clearing fly-tipped waste and of taking enforcement actions against fly-tipping.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
23rd Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate she has made of the total cost of clearing litter in (a) St Albans, (b) Hertfordshire, (c) the east of England and (d) England since 2010.

We have made no specific assessment of the costs of clearing litter in these areas. Data on local government spending, including on street cleansing, which includes tackling litter, can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/local-authority-revenue-expenditure-and-financing.

The cost of litter clearance is not recorded separately; the figures reported for spending on street cleansing also include spending on clearing fly-tipped waste and on activities which would be required even if all litter was disposed of appropriately, such as sweeping up fallen leaves or emptying public bins.

We estimate the annual cost to local government of clearing litter in England runs to hundreds of millions of pounds.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
24th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of glyphosate usage in farming and crop production; and what her policy is on the European Commission's proposals to re-approve that use for the next 15 years.

Glyphosate is an important element of effective and economic weed control in crop production. It is also of value in other sectors, such as the maintenance of roads and railways.

The Government recognises the importance of effective pesticides and believes that they should be authorised where the scientific evidence shows they do not pose unacceptable risks to human health or the environment.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) concluded that glyphosate met these standards and UK experts agree. The Government therefore considers that glyphosate should be approved.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
19th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps she is taking to meet the EU's nitrogen dioxide emissions target.

The UK currently meets the EU legal requirements for almost all pollutants, but we know there is still more to do and that the UK faces significant challenges in meeting EU requirements for nitrogen dioxide.

The national air quality plan, published in December last year, sets out a comprehensive approach for meeting the air quality challenges by implementing a new programme of Clean Air Zones. The plan combines targeted local and national measures, forming part of a wider approach that exploits new and clean technologies, such as electric and ultra-low emission vehicles.

The Government has committed over £2 billion since 2011 to increase the uptake of ultra-low emission vehicles, support green transport initiatives and support local authorities to take action.

19th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions she has had with the European Commission on infraction proceedings relating to the UK breaching EU nitrogen dioxide limits.

The Government is committed to improving the UK’s air quality, reducing health impacts, and fulfilling our environmental responsibilities.

In December last year the Government published the national air quality plan which sets out a comprehensive approach for meeting these goals by implementing a new programme of Clean Air Zones.

The Government is keeping the European Commission informed of the significant action that the UK is taking to address air pollution.

9th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many applications to cull badgers are under consideration by her Department; and to which areas those applications relate.

Natural England has received 29 applications or expressions of interest for a badger control licence in areas where the disease is rife, primarily in South West England.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how much her Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by the Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, the Rt. Hon Matthew Hancock, on 11 May 2016, to PQ UIN 36288.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against her Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found here: http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
28th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 20 January 2016 to Question 22708, on neonicotinoids: EU action, when she expects the EU Commission to report back its findings; and if she will make a statement.

The European Food Safety Authority has undertaken to complete its assessment for the European Commission by 31 January 2017. The Commission will then consider whether this assessment requires any change to the current restrictions on the use of neonicotinoids. It has not committed to a timescale for this.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
28th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the effects of the use of pyrethroids on crops and invertebrates.

Pyrethroids are a group of chemicals used to control insect pests in crops. As with all pesticides, pyrethroids are subject to strict regulation and the use of a pyrethroid is only authorised if it will not harm people, will not give rise to unacceptable risks to the environment and is effective against the target pest.

Decisions are made on the basis of assessments of scientific data. This is a two-tier process. The pyrethroid itself is assessed by the European Food Safety Authority. Products containing approved pyrethroids are assessed by the Chemicals Regulation Directorate of the Health and Safety Executive. There are currently several pyrethroids approved at EU level. A number of products containing one or more of these chemicals are authorised in the UK following a satisfactory risk assessment.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
15th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the EU ban on neonicotinoids has been renewed; and if she will make a statement.

EU restrictions prohibiting the use of three neonicotinoids on some crops have been in place since 1 December 2013. Other uses of these neonicotinoids remain approved. The restrictions have been implemented in full in the UK and will remain in place unless and until the European Commission decides to change them. The Commission has mandated the European Food Safety Authority to carry out a scientific review of the effects of neonicotinoids on pollinators. The UK will participate in that process.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of (a) the efficacy of the third badger pilot cull in Somerset and (b) the humaneness of the badger pilot culls to date.

The UK Chief Veterinary Officer has advised that (a) the outcome of this year’s culls indicates that industry-led culling can deliver the level of effectiveness required to be confident of achieving disease control benefits; and (b) that the humaneness of controlled shooting is comparable with the range of outcomes reported when other culling activities, currently accepted by society, have been assessed, such as deer shooting.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will publish an analysis of the outcomes and costs of the third badger cull.

The Government has published a summary of badger control monitoring during 2015 on the GOV.UK website. The Government will publish its costs once they have been finalised.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she plans to extend badger culls into new areas.

As outlined in a Written Ministerial Statement on 17 December, the Government wants to see badger control over a wider number of areas this year. This is in line with the UK Chief Veterinary Officer’s advice and our comprehensive strategy to eradicate bovine TB in England.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
9th Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the trends in numbers of cabbage stem flea beetle in the UK since December 2013.

Defra has not undertaken any assessment of the trends in numbers of cabbage stem flea beetle in the UK. However, we are aware that the AHDB and others have recently carried out work to look at levels of infestation and at the consequences for growers.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate she has made of the change in the UK's bee population since December 2013.

Recording from volunteer societies provides a rich source of data and complex modelling can be used to produce trends. In 2014, using this approach, Defra published a pilot indicator of changes in the bee population in the UK between 1980 and 2010. Between 1980 and 2010, the indicator fell to 62 percent of its 1980 value. It is not yet possible to provide a trend since 2013; further development of the indicator should allow for assessment in future years.

The Government continues to work to strengthen monitoring of insect pollinators. In early 2014, Defra commissioned a two-year research study to design and test a robust and affordable national monitoring framework that can be applied across the UK. This study is due to be completed later this year. It has made significant progress with engaging key audiences involved in insect and wider biodiversity monitoring and is currently testing pilot methods at sites across the UK.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate she has made of the amount of oilseed rape produced since December 2013.

The oilseed rape harvest in 2014 saw an increase in UK production of 16% to nearly 2.5 million tonnes following favourable weather conditions during the 2013/14 growing season. This higher production reflects an increase in yield of oilseed rape by 23%. The area sown to oilseed rape in 2014 was 675 thousand hectares, which was nearly 6% lower than that sown in 2013. Full details can be found in the Farming Statistics release which was published on 18 December 2014 on the Defra website.

A recent survey carried out by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) Cereals and Oilseeds team indicates that the area sown to oilseed rape in Great Britain in 2015 has fallen to 627 thousand hectares. Provisional production estimates for the 2015 harvest will be published by Defra in October.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
10th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the efficacy of the national pollinator strategy in protecting the bee population; and whether it is her policy that the ban on harmful pesticides will remain.

The National Pollinator Strategy is a 10 year plan which sets out a framework for collective action to protect pollinators on farmland, towns, cities and the countryside, and to enhance the response to pests and disease risk. The Strategy also seeks to raise awareness of what pollinators need to thrive through a call to action message. (www.wildlifetrusts.org/Bees-needs).

As set out in the Strategy, our work over the next five years to develop the evidence base will allow us to identify pollinator trends with greater certainty, so that we can assess progress with our outcomes and identify where further action should be taken. An important component of the strategy is the creation of high quality habitats for pollinators. The strategy builds upon Biodiversity 2020, under which we have placed 67,000 hectares under management for creation of new priority habitat, bringing benefits including to pollinators by providing them with food, shelter and nest sites.

Neonicotinoids are a group of chemicals used as active substances in pesticides. Decisions on the approval of pesticide active substances are made at EU level. Since December 2013, three of the five currently approved neonicotinoids are not permitted for use on a wide range of crops considered “attractive to bees”. A number of other uses remain permitted under the EU approval. The UK has implemented the restrictions in full. These restrictions remain in place until and unless the European Commission decides to change them.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress has been made on the Waste to Bioeconomy roadmap; and whether her Department plans to provide any assistance to local authorities in relation to anaerobic digestion.

Defra has a joint Government championship role with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills in developing a Bioeconomy Roadmap, considering the opportunities of growing the bio economy sector with an initial focus on waste as a feedstock. Good progress is being made. Both Departments continue to work closely together, coordinating development of this agenda across Whitehall, industry and stakeholders. We aim to publish the roadmap in March this year.

The Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), with funding from Defra, has supported local authority trials of separate weekly food waste collection for either in-vessel composting or anaerobic digestion and is updating its guidance on collecting food waste to be published in late spring this year. WRAP also provides advice and support more widely to small businesses and operators interested in using anaerobic digestion to process biowaste.

26th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the effect of changes to the best practice guidelines for shooting badgers made between 2013 and August 2014 on public safety.

The Independent Expert Panel concluded that they were confident that controlled shooting can be carried out safely, even in the context of protester activity. The police are also satisfied that this year’s culls can be carried out safely. As with the first year of the culls, Best Practice Guidance for the controlled shooting of badgers is in place and compliance with this will be monitored by Natural England.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
10th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which statutory authority has responsibility for ensuring public safety during the badger culls in Gloucestershire and Somerset.

All those involved in carrying out this year’s culls have a responsibility for ensuring that the operation is carried out safely. Safety requirements for contractors are set out in the Best Practice Guidance at

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/347541/badger-cull-controlled-shooting-guidance-2014.pdf and compliance will be monitored by Natural England. Local police forces are fully involved in the planning and coordination of culling operations to ensure public safety is not compromised.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
10th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the time period for the badger cull in Gloucestershire and Somerset will be extended if the minimum number of badgers is not killed.

Any decision on whether or not to extend either cull beyond six weeks would be taken by Natural England as the licensing authority.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
10th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps she has taken to ensure that the second year of the cull will achieve the aims of Government policy on bovine TB.

Ahead of the second year of culling, we have made a number of improvements, including improved training and equipment for all contractors as well as updated best practice guidance to ensure that the second year of the culls is as effective as possible.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
10th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate she has made of the number of badgers in Somerset and Gloucester for the second year of the culls; and when those estimates were made.

Estimating wildlife populations is uncertain but the latest estimates have been set using the best available evidence, including information gathered on the ground by experts and signed off by Defra’s Chief Scientist. A minimum of 316 culled badgers in Somerset and 615 in Gloucestershire has been set for this year’s culls. Further information is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/347536/badger-cull-setting-min-max-numbers-2014.pdf.

These estimates were published on 26 August 2014.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate she has made of the cost to the public purse of dealing with animals involved in fly-tipping.

We have made no such estimate.

17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the UK's obligations are in respect of badger culling under the Bern Convention.

The Bern Convention requires appropriate and necessary legislative measures to be taken to ensure the protection of badgers, the regulation of their exploitation, e.g. by imposing close seasons, and the prohibition of certain means of capture and killing. Exceptions can be made for a number of purposes including the protection of livestock, provided the exception is not detrimental to the survival of the population concerned and there is no other satisfactory solution.

We have considered the provisions of the Bern Convention and our policy complies with the requirements.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate she has made of the amount spent by her Department on tackling fly-grazing.


No such estimate has been made. Defra encourages local authorities to use a coordinated approach with the police, landowners, farmers and animal welfare charities to identify owners of fly-grazing horses and to use the available legislation to tackle the issue.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the reasons for the UK missing the biodiversity targets in 2010; and what assessment she has made of the likelihood of the 2020 biodiversity target being met.

The UK’s Fourth National report to the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) was submitted in 2009 and can be viewed on the CBD website http://www.cbd.int/reports/nr4/default.shtml. Although no country met the Biodiversity 2010 target in full, it drove significant delivery to address the threats to biodiversity. It did this through protected sites, more sustainable use of farmland, forestry and fisheries, controls on air pollution and improved water quality. However, the report also said that threats from invasive species had increased in marine and terrestrial ecosystems and that climate change impacts on biodiversity were being observed.

Biodiversity implementation is a devolved matter and for England the Government published Biodiversity 2020: A strategy for England’s wildlife and ecosystem services in 2011. This sets out the strategic direction for biodiversity policy for the next decade on land and at sea. It builds on the successful work that went before, but also seeks to deliver a real step change by responding to Sir John Lawton’s landmark Making Space for Nature report, and the Convention on Biological Diversity’s international Aichi targets, setting ambitious outcomes to be achieved by 2020.

Natural England and the Terrestrial Biodiversity Group are undertaking a delivery review of the Strategy’s outcomes and the initial findings indicate that they are achievable if additional effort is demonstrated right across the biodiversity partnership. As Biodiversity 2020 makes clear, Government will play an important role but cannot deliver the strategy alone. Our conservation charities, supported by millions of members of the public and volunteers, already make a vital contribution in protecting biodiversity. Equally, farmers, landowners and local authorities have a central role to play as the stewards of England’s countryside. The Government will continue to work with these partners to ensure their efforts combine with those of public sector organisations to achieve the Biodiversity 2020 outcomes.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether future badger culls will be independently monitored.

Monitoring will continue to be carried out on both effectiveness and humaneness during the second year of the badger culls. As during the pilot culls last year, trained staff from Animal Health Veterinary Laboratory Agency and Natural England will be carrying out the monitoring. The monitoring will be focused on addressing the issues identified in the Independent Expert Panel’s report on last year’s pilot culls. Both field observations of controlled shooting and post-mortem examinations will continue to be carried out. The results of the monitoring will be made publicly available.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she will assess more than six species of wildlife as potential carriers of bovine TB and in relation to tackling that disease.

Mycobacterium bovis (the bovine TB bacterium) has a wide range of hosts and can infect (and cause TB) in virtually all mammalian species, including farmed animals other than cattle, companion animals and wildlife. While M. bovis has been found in a number of different British wild mammals, evidence from previous wildlife surveys, risk assessments and modelling studies indicates that the badger remains the principal and possibly the only significant wildlife maintenance host of the bacterium in the West of England and parts of Wales. Consequently, Defra is not currently planning to test further wildlife species for TB (apart from the statutory notifications of deer carcases with suspect TB lesions), although we will keep under review the potential role of other wildlife, especially deer, in the epidemiology of this disease.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure that plastic waste exported from the UK is being used in an environmentally-friendly way.

Businesses involved in the shipment of wastes are required to take all necessary steps to ensure that the waste they ship is managed in an environmentally sound manner throughout its shipment and during its recycling.

The UK environmental regulators take an intelligence led approach to checking compliance with these obligations focussing on specific problematic wastes. Enforcement activity occurs in transit, at roadsides and at ports. However, the regulators continue to focus significant effort on identifying, stopping and intervening at source prior to illegal exports taking place.

The regulators also provide easily understood guidance for those responsible for exporting waste which allows anyone involved in the export of waste to determine which wastes can be legitimately exported to which countries and the procedures they must follow to do things legally.

Last year the Environment Agency issued 130 stop notices, prohibiting the export of unsuitable waste. It also stopped 4,565 tonnes of waste destined for illegal export at ports and intervened further upstream to prevent a further 15,113 tonnes of waste from reaching our ports. This work ensures we’re not exporting our problem wastes for unsuitable treatment or disposal.

We cannot ultimately dictate how UK waste is managed once it leaves the UK. There is a system of international rules on shipments which must be followed. The authorities in countries that receive UK waste also need to be clear about the types of waste they will accept and the waste import procedures they require exporters to adhere to.

Tackling waste is a top priority for the government. The Clean Growth Strategy, published on 12 October 2017, set out our ambition for zero avoidable waste by 2050 and announced we are exploring changes to the producer responsibility scheme. We must reduce the amount of waste we produce overall and increase the amount we recycle in the UK. We will set out further steps when we publish a new Resources and Waste Strategy later this year.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will assess the potential benefits of more stringent equine passport controls; and if he will bring forward legislative proposals to reverse the burden of proof and increase data-gathering on horse ownership in relation to fly-grazing.

The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Natural Environment and Science has met a number of interested bodies to discuss what action can be taken to address fly grazing in England. There is a range of legislation that can be used depending on the individual circumstances of each case. Most of the problems associated with fly grazing are linked to difficulties in tracing owners of unidentified horses. In such cases we would encourage a joined-up approach by enforcers and interested parties at a local level to help tackle the problem. It is already an offence under the Horse Passport Regulations for horses not to be identified. These regulations are enforced by local authorities. Fly grazing in Wales is a matter for the Welsh Government.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of current legislation against fly-grazing.

The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Natural Environment and Science has met a number of interested bodies to discuss what action can be taken to address fly grazing in England. There is a range of legislation that can be used depending on the individual circumstances of each case. Most of the problems associated with fly grazing are linked to difficulties in tracing owners of unidentified horses. In such cases we would encourage a joined-up approach by enforcers and interested parties at a local level to help tackle the problem. It is already an offence under the Horse Passport Regulations for horses not to be identified. These regulations are enforced by local authorities. Fly grazing in Wales is a matter for the Welsh Government.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the contribution of 26 November 2013 of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Official Report, columns 56-9WH, what recent assessment he has made of the prevalence of fly-grazing in Wales.

The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Natural Environment and Science has met a number of interested bodies to discuss what action can be taken to address fly grazing in England. There is a range of legislation that can be used depending on the individual circumstances of each case. Most of the problems associated with fly grazing are linked to difficulties in tracing owners of unidentified horses. In such cases we would encourage a joined-up approach by enforcers and interested parties at a local level to help tackle the problem. It is already an offence under the Horse Passport Regulations for horses not to be identified. These regulations are enforced by local authorities. Fly grazing in Wales is a matter for the Welsh Government.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of changes in levels of fly-grazing in England following changes to relevant legislation in Wales.

The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Natural Environment and Science has met a number of interested bodies to discuss what action can be taken to address fly grazing in England. There is a range of legislation that can be used depending on the individual circumstances of each case. Most of the problems associated with fly grazing are linked to difficulties in tracing owners of unidentified horses. In such cases we would encourage a joined-up approach by enforcers and interested parties at a local level to help tackle the problem. It is already an offence under the Horse Passport Regulations for horses not to be identified. These regulations are enforced by local authorities. Fly grazing in Wales is a matter for the Welsh Government.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
1st Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps he is taking to support (a) the removal of plastic waste and (b) increase plastic recycling internationally.

The Department for International Development is supporting developing countries address problems around marine litter and has committed £39 million over the last year to tackle the problem of plastic pollution. We are supporting governments to consider what practical steps they can take to reduce the pollution of our oceans, such as restricting the use of plastic bags. We are starting to work with businesses and NGOs in Africa and Asia to trial new approaches to increase plastic recycling rates, thereby helping the environment while creating new jobs. This includes our work in Bangladesh where we will work with industry to increase the quality and volume of local plastic recycled and the percentage of locally recycled plastic used, particularly in garment manufacturing.

Through UK Aid Match, we are supporting the Tearfund plastics appeal (up to £3m) to set up recycling hubs across Pakistan. We are also investing in research to find ways in which manufacturing processes can help reduce plastic pollution.

In addition, the UK provides considerable funding to multilateral organisations who are working with countries to tackle this problem, including some major investments in waste management services.

1st Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what projects his Department supports in Bangladesh that remove plastic waste from (a) rivers and (b) the sea.

The Department for International Development is committed to helping developing countries tackle the problem of marine plastic pollution. We developed the Tackling Waste and Plastic Pollution programme as part of wider UK Government efforts to address this. The programme provides up to £13 million, plus technical assistance and practical support to a number of Commonwealth countries to improve waste management, and to reduce marine plastic pollution. Bangladesh is one of the beneficiary countries. A pilot project is now being developed in Dhaka to understand what works to reduce and manage plastic waste in low income city contexts, including reducing the impact on rivers and oceans.

7th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether her Department funds aid programmes that support female garment factory workers in Bangladesh.

The UK supports garment factory workers, more than 70% of whom are female, by improving building safety and working conditions, empowering workers, and urging buyers to take responsibility for their supply chains.

DFID provided £7.4m (2013-2017) to the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to improve factory conditions post Rana Plaza collapse. The subsequent ‘Better Jobs in Bangladesh’ programme provides £6.6m (2017-2023) for sustainable inspection and remediation. The UK is also providing £22.43m (2014-2021) to enhance the provision of skills training in the RMG and Construction sectors. This is helping female workers enter higher paid jobs in the sector.

28th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, pursuant to the Answer of 21 November 2018 to Question 190838, how much UK funding will be used to fund local observation of the upcoming general election in Bangladesh.

The UK is providing £542,703 through the Department for International Development (DFID) to a coalition of 23 Bangladeshi civil society organisations (Election Working Group) to observe the upcoming general election in Bangladesh. The grant is managed by The Asia Foundation and observers are all drawn from organisations with considerable experience in observing elections in Bangladesh. Combined with complementary support from USAID and the Swiss Development Cooperation, we will cover all constituencies and will deploy both short and long term observers.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much funding the Government has allocated to promote (a) freedom of expression, (b) rights to peaceful protest and (c) democratic engagement in Bangladesh in each of the last five years.

DFID Bangladesh has allocated GBP 8.38 million on democratic engagement over the last five years (2014-2018) through phases 1 and 2 of the Strengthening Political Participation Programme. The annual expenditure is as follows:

Year

Amount in GBP

2014 (SPP I)

16,456.33

2015 (SPP I)

2,132,855.88

2016 (SPP I)

1,062,532.94

2017 (SPP II)

1,817,969.83

2018 (SPP II)

3,357,854.96

Total

8,387,669.94

FCO Funding to the organisation Article 19 Bangladesh has supported freedom of expression. This included: £64,284 2014-15 to support freedom of expression; £10,000 in 2016 to support freedom of expression for sexual minorities; and £199,964 to support protection of freedom of expression for journalists and social media commentators 2016 – 2018.

We do not currently fund any programmes specifically addressing the right to Freedom of Assembly or peaceful protest.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what recent assessment she has made of the value for money of the provision of development assistance to Bangladesh for freedom of expression and political engagement.

The Strengthening Political Participation phase 2 (SPP2) programme works to track, mitigate and prevent violence in politics and elections. The social and economic costs to families and communities are very high - before and after the 2014 elections, almost 900 people were killed and over 38,000 were injured across Bangladesh. Whilst the SPP2 programme cannot guarantee an end to violence in politics, it makes an important contribution to this aim.

The SPP2 programme is subject to annual review which includes an annual Value for Money (VfM) assessment. The first and most recent annual review of SPP2 was conducted in April 2018 and is published online via DFID’s web portal for Bangladesh. Overall the VfM propositions made in the business case remain on track.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the progress of the strengthening political participation phase two aid project in Bangladesh.

The last annual review of the Strengthening Political Participation phase 2 (SPP2) Programme was carried out in April 2018. In the first year the project scored an ‘A’ and all programme components were under implementation. The annual review is published on DFID’s web portal and contains recommendations on how to maximise the impact of the programme in an election year. The next review is due by April 2019.

Diplomatic engagement also supports SPP2 goals and activities pushing for inclusive and peaceful elections in Bangladesh and increased tolerance for open debate and dialogue. DFID is still confident that the SPP2 Programme provides critical support to democratic governance in the country and is more relevant than ever in an election year.

1st Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what funding her Department provides to help prevent children from being forced into the mining of conflict minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The UK is working to promote socially responsible practices, including eliminating child labour, in the mining sector in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Through funding of the EU European Partnership for Responsible Minerals, DFID helps promote responsible sourcing of minerals; and also funds the Carter Center to improve transparency and governance of the sector.

13th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether she has made representations to the Bangladeshi Government on its proposed transfer of Rohingya refugees to Bhasan Char island.

My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified and in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. We have concerns and questions about the island’s fitness for this purpose and have raised those with the Government of Bangladesh. The UK Government has not been involved in plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. We continue to work with our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability.

29th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether her Department has made an assessment of the effect on humanitarian access to Rohingya refugees of resettling those people on Bhasan Char island.

My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. The UK Government has concerns that the island may not provide safe accommodation for Rohingya refugees and we have shared these concerns with the Government of Bangladesh. We will continue to do so, including in international meetings. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

29th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what plans the Government has to raise concerns with representatives of the Bangladesh Government on the proposal to resettle Rohingya refugees on Bhasan Char island at the next Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting.

My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. The UK Government has concerns that the island may not provide safe accommodation for Rohingya refugees and we have shared these concerns with the Government of Bangladesh. We will continue to do so, including in international meetings. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

29th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether her Department has provided (a) financial and (b) other support to the Government of Bangladesh for the development of Bhasan Char as a resettlement area for Rohingya refugees.

My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. The UK Government has concerns that the island may not provide safe accommodation for Rohingya refugees and we have shared these concerns with the Government of Bangladesh. We will continue to do so, including in international meetings. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

28th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the merits of the proposed transfer of Rohingya refugees to Bhasan Char Island.

We are aware of the Government of Bangladesh’s plans to relocate some Rohingya refugees to Bashan Char Island. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

28th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether she has made an assessment of the viability of Bhasan Char Island the relocation of Rohingya refugees.

We are aware of the Government of Bangladesh’s plans to relocate some Rohingya refugees to Bashan Char Island. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

28th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether she has received assurances from her counterpart in the Bangladesh Government on the adequacy of food, water and other resources for Rohingya refugees relocated to Bhasan Char Island.

We are aware of the Government of Bangladesh’s plans to relocate some Rohingya refugees to Bashan Char Island. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

28th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether she plans to contribute to the relocation of Rohingya refugees to Bhasan Char Island.

We are aware of the Government of Bangladesh’s plans to relocate some Rohingya refugees to Bashan Char Island. The UK Government has had no involvement in developing plans for the proposed relocation of refugees to the island. My officials and I have made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified, informed and voluntary, in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws. We continue to work with the Government of Bangladesh and our humanitarian partners to further understand this proposal and its suitability. We have not received a request from the Government of Bangladesh to contribute to the relocation of refugees to Bhasan Char Island, or details of plans regarding the provision of food, water or other resources to people who may be accommodated on the Island.

22nd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what proportion of her Department's aid budget is being spent on environmental projects; and whether the objectives of the 25 Year Environment Plan will be taken into account in future aid spending.

The Department for International Development (DFID) is working closely with other Government Departments as part of a comprehensive Government effort to protect the environment. The Government has committed £5.8bn (2016-2021) to tackle climate change, the biggest environmental challenge of our time. DFID will deliver £3.6bn of this commitment. In 2016/2017, this was £755m, 7% of DFID’s total spend. DFID and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs fund, alongside other countries, the $4.43 billion Global Environment Facility sixth replenishment (2014 – 2018) which works to address climate change as well as broader environmental challenges such as biodiversity loss, land degradation, international waters and chemicals and waste. All relevant Government commitments, including the 25 Year Environment Plan, are taken into account when considering future aid spending. In addition, all DFID programmes must avoid doing harm to the environment, and environmental safeguards are one of the risk categories considered as part of departmental programme management requirements.

17th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the National Audit Office's report entitled, Investigation into the Department's approach to tackling fraud, published on 9 February 2017, whether her Department plans to change its commitment to spend at least 50 per cent of its budget in fragile states and regions.

The Government intends to fulfil its commitment to spend 50% of DFID’s budget in fragile states and regions.

This spend is subject to rigorous measures to tackle fraud across DFID’s budget, as noted in the National Audit Office’s report.

9th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the National Audit Office report of 9 February 2017, entitled Investigation into the Department's approach to tackling fraud, what the value is of the third of reported fraud loss not recovered since 2003.

The value of the third of reported fraud loss not recovered between FY2003-2004 and FY2016-2017 was £6,384,486.

Year

Losses Not Recovered (£)

2003-2004

983,974

2004-2005

59,920

2005-2006

576,435

2006-2007

197,430

2007-2008

133,637

2008-2009

253,143

2009-2010

260,751

2010-2011

115,186

2011-2012

1,177,968

2012-2013

492,217

2013-2014

207,481

2014-2015

745,358

2015-2016

1,036,449

2016-2017

144,537

Total

6,384,486

9th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the National Audit Office report of 9 February 2017, entitled Investigation into the Department's approach to tackling fraud, how much of the two-thirds of the reported fraud loss recovered since 2003 was recovered between (a) 2003 and 2009 and (b) 2010 and 2016.

The value of reported fraud loss recovered between (a) FY2003-2004 and FY2009-2010 was £1,833,832 and (b) FY2010-2011 and FY2016-2017 was £9,300,064.

Year

Value Recovered (£)

2003-2004

1,972

2004-2005

65,278

2005-2006

40,535

2006-2007

981,963

2007-2008

93,058

2008-2009

452,385

2009-2010

198,641

2010-2011

477,031

2011-2012

1,986,911

2012-2013

837,381

2013-2014

566,991

2014-2015

1,552,292

2015-2016

2,235,169

2016-2017

1,644,289

Total

11,133,896

9th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps her Department is taking to tackle the fraudulent use of aid disbursed by her Department.

The Department for International Development has robust measures in place to protect, prevent, and detect the fraudulent use of aid. We have controls embedded throughout the programme cycle, from design through mobilisation, delivery and closure; this includes a comprehensive risk management framework which requires risks to be identified prior to any disbursement of aid.

All organisations that receive funding from DFID are required to provide evidence about the use of funds, including audited financial statements which are examined as we monitor programme performance and delivery.

We have a zero tolerance approach to fraud and this applies to all those within the delivery chain who are entrusted with UK taxpayers’ funds. When fraud is identified we respond swiftly and effectively to recover funds wherever possible.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much her Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer the my hon. Friend to the answer given by my Rt Hon. Friend the Minister for the cabinet Office today to UIN: 36288

22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against her Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found here.

http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en

19th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the implications for her policies of the Clean Clothes Campaign memorandum, published on 28 January 2016; and if she will raise the matters discussed in that memorandum with the Bangladeshi government.

Ensuring the safety of garment sector workers around the world is of critical importance. Whilst progress has been made since the Rana Plaza factory collapse in 2011, the Clean Clothes Campaign is right to say safety improvements in factories in Bangladesh need to speed up. The second review of the EU-US-Bangladesh Sustainability Compact, conducted in the first week of February, acknowledged the complexities involved in making improvements across the garment sector and highlighted it as a priority area where all involved – brands, factories and the government – need to work together to make progress.

The UK is addressing this sector-wide issue in two ways. Firstly, our programme is improving the institutional capacity of the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments to enable this government body to follow up on Corrective Action Plans; there are now 270 inspectors in place (up from around 90 in 2013) who are trained and equipped to do their jobs. We are also active in the 3+5 high-level platform that meets periodically to monitor progress of the Sustainability Compact action plan. Through future 3+5 discussion, we will continue to emphasise the urgency of taking forward remediation in factories.

15th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much her Department has allocated to promoting freedom of worship in 2015-16; and how much her Department has spent on assisting religious minorities against persecution in developing countries in each of the last three years.

The UK’s development and humanitarian aid is not targeted at specific groups but at the poorest, regardless of race, religion, creed, or nationality. The UK attaches great importance to ensuring that people of all faiths can participate fully in society and live without fear of abuse or discrimination.DFID works closely with the FCO to raise concerns on freedom of religion with partner governments.DFID does not collect specific data on allocation of funds for promoting freedom of worship.

8th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps she is taking to provide assistance to people in Madaya, Syria; and if she will work with allies of the UK, the United Nations and non-governmental organisations to provide humanitarian relief to that region.

The UK has been at the forefront of the response to the crisis in Syria and the region. We have pledged over £1.1 billion, making us the second largest bilateral donor after the US. We also co-sponsored and lobbied hard for the passage of UN Security Council Resolutions 2165, 2191 and 2258 which call on the parties to allow rapid, safe and unhindered access for humanitarian aid to besieged and hard to reach places. We are working to bring about an inclusive political solution to end the conflict in Syria through our engagement in the International Syria Support Group, with the UN Special Envoy for Syria, and with the Syrian Opposition.

The UK has provided support to the UN and international NGOs (INGOs) since the start of the conflict to deliver aid in hard to reach and besieged areas of Syria, including Madaya.


On 11 January 2016, the UN, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent confirmed that aid convoys of humanitarian assistance had arrived in the hard to reach towns of Madaya, Foah and Kefraya. Two further convoys have been given permission. The convoy is expected to meet survival needs of the 40,000 persons inside Madaya, and of 20,000 people inside Foah and Kefraya. DFID funding to UN agencies is directly supporting the current convoy with food parcels, nutritional supplements, essential drugs and non-food items including winterisation kits.


The UK worked with partners in the UN Security Council to put humanitarian access in Madaya, and across Syria, on the Security Council’s agenda on Monday 11 January.


In February 2016, the UK will invite world leaders to London for a Conference to support immediate needs and identify longer-term solutions to address the needs of those affected by the crisis.


22nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much her Department spent on the Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) in the last year; how often the ICAI audits the projects of her Department; and under what criteria such audits are carried out.

The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) does not audit DFID projects, this is the responsibility of DFID’s Internal Audit Department. Instead ICAI produces detailed studies covering the impact of any UK Overseas Development Assistance (ODA). The criteria for selecting studies is entirely ICAI’s concern as an independent body. They develop plans based on their criteria including coverage, materiality, interest and risk and also after public consultation. Priorities are agreed with the International Development Committee (IDC).

In 2014/15 ICAI’s expenditure was £3.4m. Since May 2011 ICAI has published 46 reports.

22nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what effect the auditing of her Department's projects by the Independent Commission for Aid Impact has had on the performance of her Department's projects.

The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) does not audit DFID projects. Instead ICAI produces detailed studies covering the impact of any UK Overseas Development Assistance (ODA). DFID takes the work of ICAI very seriously. The specific impact of ICAI’s work varies from report to report but as ICAI noted in their Follow-up report published in June 2015 “Country offices and teams within DFID centrally have both in their approach and in the actions taken, shown in most cases a serious intent to address the issues we have raised”.

22nd Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how the reports, evidence and recommendations of the Independent Commission for Aid Impact are scrutinised within her Department.

DFID takes the work of Independent Commission on Aid Impact (ICAI) very seriously. Each study and follow up activity is overseen by a senior civil servant in DFID. ICAI reports are communicated to all relevant staff and published on DFID’s intranet. The Department then publishes a response, agreed by Ministers, to every ICAI recommendation setting out specific actions it will take. The Department also publishes an annual update on progress against previous recommendations online.

As ICAI noted in their follow-up report published in June 2015, “Country offices and teams within DFID centrally have both in their approach and in the actions taken, shown in most cases a serious intent to address the issues we have raised”.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, pursuant to the Answer of 27 February 2017 to Question 64007, whether his Department is able to identify domestic cat and dog fur from non-domestic cat and dog fur that enters or is sold in the UK; and whether he plans to introduce regulatory proposals to include non-domestic cat and dog fur currently not covered by Council Regulation (EC) No 1523/2007 after the UK leaves the EU.

I refer the hon Member for St Albans to the answer given by my Rt. Hon Friend the Minister of State for International Trade (Greg Hands) on 27 February 2017, UIN: 64023. Answer included below:

The import, export and placing on the market of cat and dog fur, and products made from such fur is prohibited under EU legislation (Council Regulation (EC) No 1523/2007). As part of our exit from the EU and through the Great Repeal Bill, these controls will be carried over into UK law.

Border Force will act to enforce the legislation if illegal cat and dog fur products are detected during the course of carrying out other customs import and export checks, or following receipt of specific intelligence. In these cases, samples are taken and forensically examined. Consignments are seized where they are confirmed to contain cat or dog fur.

17th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of regulations to prevent dog and cat fur from entering the UK.

The import, export and placing on the market of cat and dog fur, and products made from such fur is prohibited under EU legislation (Council Regulation (EC) No 1523/2007). As part of our exit from the EU and through the Great Repeal Bill, these controls will be carried over into UK law.

Border Force will act to enforce the legislation if illegal cat and dog fur products are detected during the course of carrying out other customs import and export checks, or following receipt of specific intelligence. In these cases, samples are taken and forensically examined. Consignments are seized where they are confirmed to contain cat or dog fur.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Nov 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what estimate he has made of the volume of goods imported from Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories to the UK in the last 12 months.

Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories report their trade through Israel. It is not possible to disaggregate imports from Israeli settlements from other Israeli imports.

HMRC figures show the UK imported 340,000 tonnes of goods from Israel in the 12 months ending September 2016. These goods were worth £1 billion.

16th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the Law Commission’s report on Taxi and Private Hire Services, May 2014, if the Government will implement recommendation 21.

Since the Law Commission’s comprehensive review of taxi and private hire regulation in England and Wales the sector has undergone profound and rapid change. At a Westminster Hall Debate last year, the Rt Hon John Hayes MP announced the formation of a Task and Finish group to consider any regulatory issues and remedies, including the Commission’s recommendations.

I am grateful to my honourable friend for the time she has dedicated as a member of this group and look forward to considering the recommendations contained in the group’s report.

15th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many accidents involving pedicabs have been reported in each of the last three years; and what steps his Department is taking to reduce accidents involving those vehicles.

The Department for Transport does not separately identify pedicabs in road casualty data. However, following discussions with Transport for London and other stakeholders, we have concluded that there is a need to regulate pedicabs and are investigating a suitable legislative slot to do this.

16th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many taxi and private hire vehicle drivers have been reported for offences against passengers in each of the last five years.

The Department for Transport does not currently hold any data on the number of taxi or private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers who have been reported for offences against passengers.

I am glad that my honourable Friend has agreed to be a member of my Task and Finish Group on Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle (PHV) licensing, which is considering cross-border working, enforcement and passenger safety as key areas for discussion. I have tasked the group with providing focused recommendations for action, which I look forward to receiving for consideration in the New Year.

16th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many taxi and private hire drivers have been reported for offences against passengers whilst working outside their own licensing authority area in each of the last five years.

The Department for Transport does not currently hold any data on the number of taxi or private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers who have been reported for offences against passengers.

I am glad that my honourable Friend has agreed to be a member of my Task and Finish Group on Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle (PHV) licensing, which is considering cross-border working, enforcement and passenger safety as key areas for discussion. I have tasked the group with providing focused recommendations for action, which I look forward to receiving for consideration in the New Year.

20th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent representations he has received seeking reductions in levels of noise pollution from people living under Luton Airport's flight path.

The Secretary of State has received several representations from both members of the public and MPs about aircraft noise from Luton Airport. The government has also recently consulted on UK Airspace Policy and there were numerous consultation responses from individuals concerning Luton Airport. The government is considering these responses and will announce final policy decisions in due course.

The Civil Aviation Authority is also due to launch a post-implementation review of recent flight path changes at Luton in September.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many rail freight interchanges there are in the UK; and what the utilisation rate is on the freight network.

The UK has 16 intermodal rail freight interchanges. These are:

o Birmingham International Railfreight Terminal

o Daventry International Railfreight Terminal

o Hams Hall

o Widnes

o Wentloog

o Selby

o Doncaster Railport

o Grangemouth

o Trafford Park Euroterminal

o Trafford Park

o Lawley Street

o Leeds – Freightliner

o Mossend Euroterminal

o Wakefield Euroterminal

o Willesden Euroterminal

  • Barking

In addition to these interchanges, there are a large number of port-located rail terminals and small independent facilities nationwide.

The usage and available capacity of these terminals varies by facility and time of year. However, overall changes in the rail freight market means there has been an increase, in recent years, in imports and exports of containerised goods through the major ports (intermodal freight), increasing utilisation at these sites.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many strategic rail freight interchanges have been granted planning permission since 2000; and of those granted permission how many have been built.

Since 2000, development consent has been given for ten Strategic Rail Freight Interchanges across Great Britain. The Department for Transport does not monitor progress in constructing these sites. However we understand that not all of these interchanges have yet been constructed.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer my Hon Friend to the answer given by my Rt Hon Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office (Matthew Hancock) today to UIN 36288.

26th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of the number of people who were charged to appeal against a parking ticket in each of the last three years.

Parking is a devolved matter and policy in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is the responsibility of the respective Government.

Information on parking penalties in England is not held centrally. Records of the number of penalty charge notices issued are contained in annual reports from the traffic adjudicators – London Tribunals covers London Councils and the Traffic Penalty Tribunal reports on authorities outside London.

25th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what safeguards are in place to protect information held by the DVLA on those who use its services.

The safeguards that are in place to protect information held by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) vary depending on the channel used and sensitivity of the data processed through the service.

All the DVLA’s information systems and electronic services are subject to a formal assessment before they are made available to the public. This ensures that there are adequate policies, procedural and technical controls in place to protect the data.

Privacy Impact Assessments are also completed to identify and address any privacy risks associated with the service and ensure that personal data is processed in compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

21st Jul 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking as part of his Department's current review of noise policy to ensure that (a) tranquillity and (b) densely populated areas are clearly defined in Civil Aviation Authority guidance.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) lead on airspace change and the process is set out in their publication CAP 725. The Department for Transport provide guidance to the CAA relating to the exercise of its air navigation functions. This sets out the Government’s position on flights over densely populated and tranquil areas. Any review of these publications would consider points made in consultation.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the maximum amount available to councils who apply for extra funding for potholes is; and what funding his Department provides to tackle pot holes in St Albans.

The Department for Transport provides capital funding to local highway authorities from the local maintenance highways maintenance capital block grant and over the four year period from 2011 Hertfordshire County Council's allocation is £77.6 million. St Albans falls within Hertfordshire County Council's area of responsibility for road maintenance.

The Department has also allocated additional funding to authorities to help repair roads damaged due to severe weather events, and for Hertfordshire County Council this includes £1.446 million in 2010/11, £3.87 million in March 2011 and more recently over £3.62 million in March 2014.

A £200 million Pothole Fund was announced in the Budget on 19 March 2014. From this, £168 million is being made available to councils in England through a bidding exercise. Further details on the fund will be made available shortly.

25th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department is taking to tailor medical assessments for benefits to take account of the needs of ME sufferers.

Both the assessment for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) are functional assessments designed to respectively contribute towards the extra costs that arise as a result of a long-term health condition or disability, and to assess an individual’s capability to work. Both benefits are based on the impact of a person’s disability or health condition, not on the condition itself. This is important, as we recognise that the same condition can affect different people in different ways.

Assessors are provided with training and guidance in the full range of health conditions, including ME. For instance, all WCA assessors have access to a learning module on chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)/ME, that is externally quality assured by an expert clinician. Furthermore, the PIP providers have recently been involved in a programme of engagement with CFS/ME stakeholders, and have developed a comprehensive suite of training products on CFS/ME.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have (a) applied for and (b) received support from the access to work scheme, whose main disabling condition was recorded as Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis or inflammatory bowel disease, in each of the last five years.

The information requested is not available

Penny Mordaunt
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have received personal independence payments whose main disabling condition was recorded as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis since 2013.

Between April 2013 and April 2017 there have been 3,700 awards for Personal Independence Payment where the main disabling condition recorded was Crohn’s disease and 1,300 awards where the main disabling condition was ulcerative colitis.

Penny Mordaunt
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have (a) applied for and (b) received employment and support allowance, whose main disabling condition was recorded as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, in each of the last 10 years.

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) was introduced in October 2008.

The available information is shown in the following tables:

Table 1: Number of individuals making an initial claim to Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) whose main disabling condition was recorded as Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis, Great Britain, 2008 - 2016

Year of ESA claim start

Initial ESA
claims

2008 (Oct – Dec)

300

2009

2,200

2010

2,200

2011

2,600

2012

2,800

2013

2,700

2014

2,800

2015

2,600

2016 (Jan - Sep)

1,800

Table 2: Number of individuals assigned to ESA Support Group or the ESA Work Capability Group following their Work Capability Assessment (for initial, repeat or IB reassessment claims), whose main disabling condition was recorded as Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis, Great Britain, 2008 - 2016

Year of ESA claim start

Initial ESA
claims

Repeat ESA
assessments

IB
reassessments

2008 (Oct – Dec)

100

100

.

2009

700

600

.

2010

800

700

.

2011

1,100

1,300

1,300

2012

1,600

1,900

2,300

2013

1,200

1,000

1,800

2014

1,200

400

200

2015

1,200

300

100

2016 (Jan - Sep)

700

-

-

Source for Tables 1 and 2: Application data is derived from administrative data held by the DWP and assessment data provided by the Healthcare Provider.

Notes for Tables 1 and 2:

  1. The figures are rounded to the nearest 100. ‘–‘denotes figures that are zero or less than 50. ‘.’ denotes not applicable.
  2. The information for 2016 is provided up to September 2016 only; this is the latest data available at time of request.
  3. Data is available for ESA from October 2008 and for IB reassessment claims from April 2011.
  4. An individual may have made more than one ESA claim or assessment in any given year. These individuals will only be counted once in each of the figures provided.
  5. The primary medical condition recorded on the claim form does not itself confer entitlement to ESA. So, for example, a decision on entitlement for a customer claiming ESA on the basis of Crohn’s disease or Ulcerative Colitis would be based on their ability to carry out the range of activities assessed by the work capability assessment.
Penny Mordaunt
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
27th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, for what reasons state pensions are not provided to those who have lived in care homes for the previous 12 weeks or more.

Both State Pension and Pension Credit are payable to people who permanently reside in care homes. However, entitlement to Pension Credit including entitlement to any Pension Credit additional amounts depends on individual circumstances, which may change when a person moves permanently into a care home. For example, those in receipt of Attendance Allowance may receive the additional amount for severe disability included in Pension Credit. As Attendance Allowance provides support for care costs, payment will stop after 4 weeks, if care is funded by the Local Authority in order to avoid duplicate care funding. Entitlement to the additional amount will end when payment of Attendance Allowance stops and this could lead to cessation of entitlement to Pension Credit.

27th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when the proposed changes to the Pension Protection Fund's compensation cap extension will be implemented; and if he will make a statement.

The regulations to implement the increase in the Pension Protection Fund’s compensation cap for long service were laid on 7 March 2017, and subject to Parliamentary approval, will come into force on 6 April 2017.

14th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with which overseas banks located in which countries his Department is working on overseas state pension fraud and error.

The Department combats overseas state pension fraud and error by means of data matching and life certificates.

DWP continues to explore how to extend and improve existing data matching arrangements. However, at present, the Department does not have any formal arrangements with overseas banks regarding notifications of death.

On occasions, DWP will receive notification from an overseas bank informing the Department that a payment has been rejected because of the death of a payee.

6th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 2 November 2016 to Question 50587, on state retirement pensions, by what means overseas claimants are audited.

The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) operates a proof of life programme (referred to as a Life Certificate) where State Pension customers residing permanently outside the United Kingdom are required to provide independent evidence, in the form of a witness statement, confirming that they are alive. The Life Certificate also provides verification of a customer’s address and contact telephone number and forms an integral part of DWP’s strategy to reduce fraud and error by ensuring that State Pension is paid to the right person at the right time. In addition to the Life Certificate, DWP has agreements in place with some countries to exchange data when a customer is deceased.

26th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people in (a) the UK and (b) resident in overseas countries over the age of 100 received the state pension in each of the last three years; and how many such people lived in each such overseas country in each of those years.

DWP does not hold information on the number of people over the age of 100 who live in each overseas country.

The table below shows the information requested for numbers aged 100 or over recorded on our State Pension administrative data as of February 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Please note these figures will include dormant cases where no State Pension is in payment but their cases have not been fully closed. This will happen when, for example, the Department has lost touch with a customer or does not have a validated date of death. These cases are suspended, with no payments being made, rather than being completely closed. It is not possible for us to identify and remove these cases from the centrally held figures below.

February 2014

February 2015

February 2016

Abroad not known

-

-

-

Alderney

-

-

-

Australia

300

300

300

Austria

-

-

-

Bangladesh

-

-

-

Barbados

-

-

-

Belgium

-

-

-

Bermuda

-

0

0

Canada

100

200

200

Chile

0

-

0

Croatia

-

0

0

Cyprus

-

-

-

Denmark

0

0

-

Djibouti

0

0

-

Dominica

-

-

-

France

-

-

-

French Overseas Departments

0

-

0

Germany

-

-

-

Ghana

0

0

-

Gibraltar

0

0

-

Great Britain

20,100

20,500

20,700

Greece

-

-

-

Grenada

-

-

-

Guernsey

-

-

-

Hong Kong

-

-

-

Hungary

-

-

-

India

-

-

-

Israel

-

-

-

Italy

-

-

-

Jamaica

-

-

-

Jersey

-

-

-

Kenya

-

-

-

Lebanon

-

0

0

Lithuania

0

-

-

Luxembourg

0

-

-

Malta

-

-

-

Monaco

-

0

0

Montserrat

0

-

-

Morocco

-

-

-

New Zealand

-

-

-

Nigeria

-

0

0

Northern Ireland

-

-

-

Norway

-

-

-

Not known

-

-

-

Not yet recorded

-

0

0

Pakistan

-

-

-

Peru

-

0

0

Philippines

0

-

-

Poland

-

-

-

Portugal

-

-

-

Republic of Ireland

-

-

-

Republic of Yemen

-

-

-

South Africa

-

-

-

Spain

-

-

-

Sri Lanka

0

0

-

St Kitts and Nevis

-

0

0

St Lucia

-

-

0

St Vincent and The Grenadines

-

-

-

Swaziland

0

0

-

Sweden

-

-

-

Switzerland

-

-

-

Tanzania

0

0

-

The Czech Republic

-

0

0

The Netherlands

-

-

-

Tours

-

-

0

US Virgin Islands

0

0

-

USA

100

100

100

Ukraine

-

-

-

United Arab Emirates

-

-

-

Zimbabwe

-

-

-

Great Britain

20,100

20,500

20,700

Overseas

1,200

1,300

1,300

Total

21,300

21,800

21,900

Source: DWP - Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study.

Notes:

  1. Figures are rounded to the nearest 100, “-“ indicates less than 100 cases. Totals may not sum due to rounding.
  2. February 2016 is the latest data available.
  3. Countries where there are no people aged 100 or over recorded in our data as in receipt of the State Pension are not listed above.
3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given by my Rt Hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office today to UIN: 36288

22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against his Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found here.

http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much the Government has contributed to the Your first EURES job scheme; how many vacancies have been filled under that scheme in the UK since 2012; and how many UK workers have found work in the EU under that scheme.

The UK Government has not contributed any financial resources to the Your First EURES Job project. As this project is led by the EU Commission, the UK Government does not collect or hold information relating to the number of EU job seekers that have found jobs in the UK, or the number of UK jobseekers that have found work elsewhere in the EU through Your First EURES Job.

3rd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what modelling his Department used to propose the new transitional benefit arrangements for EU migrants; when benefit payments under those arrangements will be greater than zero per cent; and what proportion of benefits EU migrants will be able to claim in each of the next five years.

These details are a matter for the implementation of the proposal, and further announcements will be made in due course.

Priti Patel
Home Secretary
4th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will take steps to allow people in receipt of the War Disablement Pension for mesothelioma to apply for the new compensation settlement award.

Specified payments are set out in the Mesothelioma Scheme Regulations and include payments under the Naval, Military and Air Forces Etc. (Disability and Death) Service Pensions Order 2006 and payments under the Armed Forces and Reserve Forces (Compensation Scheme) Order 2011. If a person is eligible for or in receipt of a war disablement pension under either of these Orders then they are not eligible for a payment under the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (DMPS).


The Department does not intend to change the rules relating to specified payments in relation to DMPS.

9th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps he is taking to support parents of babies who spend time in neonatal care; if he will take steps to extend the statutory maternity pay of premature babies; and if he will estimate the cost to the public purse of such steps.

The Government currently has no plans to extend Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) for the parents of premature or sick babies who spend time in neo-natal care.


SMP is designed to help working women during pregnancy and after childbirth by providing a measure of earnings replacement enabling them to stop work for a reasonable period around the birth to prepare for and recover from childbirth.


Working women are generally able to choose when they want their payments to begin and this flexibility in the start date for maternity pay was introduced in response to medical opinion that the woman herself is best able to judge the point at which she should give up work. This ensures sufficient time off to allow for different situations, including instances where babies are delivered at an earlier date and where babies need hospital care following birth.


The standard rate of SMP is part of a package of financial support to working families which includes Statutory Paternity Leave and Pay, Parental Leave and Flexible working. Tax Credits and Child Benefit are also available through HM Revenue and Customs to all families who qualify.


Additionally, the introduction of Statutory Shared Parental Leave and Pay for babies due on or after 5 April 2015 enables eligible mothers, fathers, and partners to choose how to share time off work after their child is born, giving parents much more flexibility in how to use their leave entitlement. This flexibility will be particularly valuable to parents who have to deal with difficult or unexpected circumstances and it allows parents, for the first time, to take leave together in a way that suits them.






Priti Patel
Home Secretary
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much local authorities in (a) St Albans, (b) Hertfordshire, (c) the East of England and (d) the UK have returned to his Department in unused discretionary housing payment funding since 2011; and what steps he is taking to ensure that such funds are targeted towards those most in need.

The Department has responsibility for the funding of Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP) in Great Britain, but not the UK. The table below shows the amounts of unused DHPs returned to the Department since 2011 for the respective areas. The figures for 2013/14 will be available in due course once the information has been collated from local authorities.

Local Authority Area

Under Spend since 2011

St Albans

£18,717

Hertfordshire

£72,108

Eastern England

£1,494,137

Great Britain

£20,982,679

The Department provides local authorities with a guidance manual and good practice guide to aide them in the administration of the DHP scheme. This has recently been updated following informal consultation with stakeholder groups and local authority practitioners. The new guidance encourages councils to make longer term awards where appropriate to those with ongoing needs.

13th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that (a) heart monitors, (b) TENS machines and (c) mobility aids that are no longer required are returned for use by other patients.

There is a responsibility on National Health Service trusts to make the very best use of all resources and items where they are safely and legally reusable and returnable.

The policy on the return of equipment is a matter for each individual NHS trust. The policy should be included in the trust’s Sustainable Development Management Plan (SDMP). The publication of a trust’s SDMP is a requirement under Service Condition 18 of the NHS Standard Contract. This should be available for inspection by any member of the public.

13th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department has plans to ensure that more medical equipment is returned and reused by other patients; and if he will make a statement.

The return, reuse or recycling of equipment is decided locally between the relevant commissioners and providers of equipment. There is a responsibility on National Health Service trusts to make the best use of all resources and items including recycling and reuse of equipment where it is safe and cost effective to do so.

The Department does not collect data on expenditure on reusable medical equipment and no estimate has been made of these costs.

13th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate his Department has made of the cost to the public purse of reusable medical equipment that was not returned in each of the last three years.

The return, reuse or recycling of equipment is decided locally between the relevant commissioners and providers of equipment. There is a responsibility on National Health Service trusts to make the best use of all resources and items including recycling and reuse of equipment where it is safe and cost effective to do so.

The Department does not collect data on expenditure on reusable medical equipment and no estimate has been made of these costs.

21st Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what role the General Medical Council plays in (a) assessing and (b) enforcing safeguarding measures put in place by NHS trusts after patients have made serious allegations of sexual assault.

The General Medical Council (GMC) is the independent regulator of medical doctors in the United Kingdom, and is not responsible for assessing or enforcing measures put in place by National Health Service trusts.

All UK registered doctors are expected to meet the professional standards set out in the GMC’s Good Medical Practice. To maintain their licence to practise, a doctor must demonstrate, through the revalidation process, that they work in line with the principles and values set out in this guidance.

If an allegation is made about a doctor that their fitness to practise is impaired, the GMC has a duty to investigate and take action to safeguard the health and well-being of the public. In the most serious cases fitness to practise proceedings can result in doctors being removed from the medical register.

Steve Barclay
Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the ability of the General Medical Council (GMC) to investigate concerns about the sexual misconduct of doctors working in the NHS; and if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of lifting the GMC's five-year rule on investigations relating to such misconduct.

All United Kingdom registered doctors are expected to meet the professional standards set out in the General Medical Council’s (GMC) Good Medical Practice.

If an allegation of misconduct is made about a doctor who may not meet the professional standards required, the GMC has a duty to investigate and take action to safeguard the health and well-being of the public. In serious cases fitness-to-practise proceedings can result in doctors being removed from the medical register.

The GMC has confirmed that if it considers an allegation to be in the public interest, it will investigate no matter how much time has passed.

Under s.35CC(5) of the Medical Act, an allegation which is more than five years old will only be investigated where it is in the public interest to do so. Five years is considered a reasonable time frame for an allegation to be brought. After that time there may be practical issues for investigation, for example the accessibility of evidence. It would not be appropriate for the regulators to use their resources on cases where there is limited evidence when there is no public interest in investigating.

Steve Barclay
Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
24th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the ability of the General Medical Council to investigate concerns about doctors working in the NHS; and if he will make an assessment of the merits of lifting the GMC's 5-year rule on investigations.

Under s.35CC(5) of the Medical Act, an allegation which is more than five years old will only be investigated by the General Medical Council where it is in the public interest to do so.

Five years is considered a reasonable time frame for an allegation to be brought. After that time there may be practical issues for investigation, for example the accessibility of evidence. It would not be appropriate for the regulators to use their resources on cases where there is limited evidence when there is no public interest in investigating.

Steve Barclay
Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
15th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent assessment he has made of trends in children's mental health; and what step he is taking to tackle mental ill health among children.

The Department has commissioned a new national prevalence survey of children and young people’s mental health – the first since 2004. The survey will estimate the extent of mental ill health in the 2-19 year old population. It will examine the impact of issues such as social media and cyberbullying, self-harm and eating disorders. The survey will also analyse the data by characteristics such as ethnicity and deprivation to understand their impacts further. Final publication of findings is anticipated in autumn 2018.

Children and young people’s mental health is a top priority for this Government and we are investing more than ever before across mental health.

We are making an additional £1.4 billion available until 2019/20, transforming services and giving access to 70,000 additional children and young people. Our recent Green Paper Transforming Children and Young People’s Mental Health Provision aims to improve provision of services in schools, bolster links between schools and the National Health Service and pilot a four week waiting time for NHS services.

Since 2015/16, Local Transformation Plans have been put in place, covering every clinical commissioning group area in England, and these set out how local agencies will work together to improve children and young people’s mental health across the full spectrum of need.

A national programme of work is supporting local areas, including the extension and expansion of the use of evidence-based interventions, tackling stigma, improving data and information to inform greater transparency and accountability and developing a specialist and stronger workforce.

We have also committed to rolling out mental health first aid training for every secondary school by 2019 and to every primary school as part of the Green Paper.

1st Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the amount of non-ordinarily resident upfront charges collected in each of the last five years; and what amount is expected to be collected in each of the next five years.

National Health Service trusts and foundation trusts in England all already have a statutory responsibility to make and recover charges from patients who are not ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom and are chargeable for their healthcare.

Upfront charging of overseas visitors for non-urgent or immediately necessary care has been recommended best practice by the Department for several years, including in published national charging guidance.

The published impact assessment estimates a £9 million income for 2017/18 and £23 million for each subsequent year from mandating upfront charging. It is also estimated than an extra income of £9 million for 2017/18 and £21 million for each subsequent year would be identified due to increased compliance since amendments to the charging regulations were made. We expect these incomes to be identified on top of the currently identified income from visitors and migrants, which in 2016/17 amounted to £81 million.

The Department does not have estimates for each of the last five years on the number of upfront charges collected for non-ordinarily residents.

1st Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the level of unpaid NHS charges in each year since 2010, broken down by NHS Trust.

Since the financial year 2014/15, the amounts written off as bad debt in relation to direct charges made to overseas visitors and migrants are part of National Health Service trusts’ and foundation trusts’ annual accounts and are published on Gov.uk broken down by NHS trust.

According to the published annual accounts, there have been £17 million in 2014/15, £16 million in 2015/16, and £17 million in 2016/17 written off as bad debt in relation to direct charges made to overseas visitors and migrants across England. At the same time, direct charges made to overseas visitors and migrants have increased from £47 million in 2014/15, through £69 million in 2015/16, to £81 million in 2016/17.

11th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether e-cigarettes can be promoted in public health campaigns under the Tobacco Products Directive.

As announced in the England Tobacco Control Plan published 18 July 2017, the Department will monitor the impact of regulation and policy on e-cigarettes and novel tobacco products in England, including evidence on safety, uptake, health impact and effectiveness of these products as smoking cessation aids, to inform our actions on regulating their use.

Public Health England will continue to provide the evidence annually on e-cigarettes and other novel nicotine delivery systems until the end of Parliament in 2022 and will include within quit smoking campaign messages about the relative safety of e-cigarettes compared to smoking.

The Department has published guidance on Article 20(5) of the EU Tobacco Products Directive covering restrictions on advertising electronic cigarettes. That guidance states that “a public health campaign about relative risks of e-cigarettes versus tobacco products by Public Health England or local stop smoking services are not advertisements made in the course of a business and therefore not covered by these restrictions”. The guidance is published here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/proposals-for-uk-law-on-the-advertising-of-e-cigarettes/publishing-20-may-not-yet-complete

The Government will review where the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union offers opportunities to re-appraise current regulation to ensure this continues to protect the nation’s health.

The Government also has a statutory duty to conduct an implementation review of the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 by the end of May 2021 to assess its impact.

11th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will make it his policy to exclude e-cigarettes from the Tobacco Products Directive ban on advertising when the UK leaves the EU.

As announced in the England Tobacco Control Plan published 18 July 2017, the Department will monitor the impact of regulation and policy on e-cigarettes and novel tobacco products in England, including evidence on safety, uptake, health impact and effectiveness of these products as smoking cessation aids, to inform our actions on regulating their use.

Public Health England will continue to provide the evidence annually on e-cigarettes and other novel nicotine delivery systems until the end of Parliament in 2022 and will include within quit smoking campaign messages about the relative safety of e-cigarettes compared to smoking.

The Department has published guidance on Article 20(5) of the EU Tobacco Products Directive covering restrictions on advertising electronic cigarettes. That guidance states that “a public health campaign about relative risks of e-cigarettes versus tobacco products by Public Health England or local stop smoking services are not advertisements made in the course of a business and therefore not covered by these restrictions”. The guidance is published here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/proposals-for-uk-law-on-the-advertising-of-e-cigarettes/publishing-20-may-not-yet-complete

The Government will review where the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union offers opportunities to re-appraise current regulation to ensure this continues to protect the nation’s health.

The Government also has a statutory duty to conduct an implementation review of the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 by the end of May 2021 to assess its impact.

11th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effect of the advertising ban on the use of e-cigarettes.

As announced in the England Tobacco Control Plan published 18 July 2017, the Department will monitor the impact of regulation and policy on e-cigarettes and novel tobacco products in England, including evidence on safety, uptake, health impact and effectiveness of these products as smoking cessation aids, to inform our actions on regulating their use.

Public Health England will continue to provide the evidence annually on e-cigarettes and other novel nicotine delivery systems until the end of Parliament in 2022 and will include within quit smoking campaign messages about the relative safety of e-cigarettes compared to smoking.

The Department has published guidance on Article 20(5) of the EU Tobacco Products Directive covering restrictions on advertising electronic cigarettes. That guidance states that “a public health campaign about relative risks of e-cigarettes versus tobacco products by Public Health England or local stop smoking services are not advertisements made in the course of a business and therefore not covered by these restrictions”. The guidance is published here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/proposals-for-uk-law-on-the-advertising-of-e-cigarettes/publishing-20-may-not-yet-complete

The Government will review where the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union offers opportunities to re-appraise current regulation to ensure this continues to protect the nation’s health.

The Government also has a statutory duty to conduct an implementation review of the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 by the end of May 2021 to assess its impact.

11th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to ensure that public health campaigns are able to promote the use of e-cigarettes to aid smoking cessation.

As announced in the England Tobacco Control Plan published 18 July 2017, the Department will monitor the impact of regulation and policy on e-cigarettes and novel tobacco products in England, including evidence on safety, uptake, health impact and effectiveness of these products as smoking cessation aids, to inform our actions on regulating their use.

Public Health England will continue to provide the evidence annually on e-cigarettes and other novel nicotine delivery systems until the end of Parliament in 2022 and will include within quit smoking campaign messages about the relative safety of e-cigarettes compared to smoking.

The Department has published guidance on Article 20(5) of the EU Tobacco Products Directive covering restrictions on advertising electronic cigarettes. That guidance states that “a public health campaign about relative risks of e-cigarettes versus tobacco products by Public Health England or local stop smoking services are not advertisements made in the course of a business and therefore not covered by these restrictions”. The guidance is published here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/proposals-for-uk-law-on-the-advertising-of-e-cigarettes/publishing-20-may-not-yet-complete

The Government will review where the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union offers opportunities to re-appraise current regulation to ensure this continues to protect the nation’s health.

The Government also has a statutory duty to conduct an implementation review of the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 by the end of May 2021 to assess its impact.

20th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, (a) how many times and (b) when the prescription charge exemption criteria have been reviewed in the last 30 years.

It is not possible to confirm how many times the full list of exemptions have been subject to review in the last 30 years. To identify and confirm details of each review would be of disproportionate cost as the information may not be fully held centrally.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the process is for reviewing the prescription charge exemption criteria.

There is no set process or timeframe for reviewing prescription charges exemptions. With a range of charge exemptions already in place, almost 90% of items prescribed are free on the National Health Service in England. Furthermore, the cost of pre-payment certificates has been frozen, ensuring people can get access to affordable prescriptions.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many prescription charge prepayment certificates have been purchased in each of the last five years.

The number of 3-month and 12-month Prescription Prepayment Certificates (PPC) purchased in each of the last five calendar years is provided in the table below:

Year

Number of PPCs sold

2012

1,468,233

2013

1,531,016

2014

1,651,977

2015

1,798,037

2016

1,916,220

Source: NHS Business Services Authority

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to support those diagnosed with Ataxia.

Ataxia can be the result of a hereditary condition (the most common being Friedreich's ataxia), it can be acquired through brain injury or neurological disease and may also result from a condition called idiopathic late-onset cerebellar ataxia. Certain disorders can also cause ataxia in people for short periods of time.

The treatment and support patients of people living with the condition will need will depend on the type of ataxia, the severity of symptoms and level of independence and patients’ needs, which should be assessed on a case by case basis. Subject to assessment, treatment may include pharmacological treatment to reduce and manage symptoms, physiotherapy, and speech and language therapy and psychological support.

Whilst much of the treatment will be provided by local NHS commissioners, some patients may need access to specialised services, commissioned by NHS England. This may be because they have high levels of need or require a particular treatment, though in the case of ataxia telangiectasia, NHS England commissions services specifically for this condition because of its rarity and the complexity of symptoms.

15th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether NHS England makes provision to facilitate the transport of returned medical equipment from patients to hospitals.

There is a responsibility on the National Health Service to make the very best use of all resources, including items of medical equipment, which are safe and legally reusable and returnable. Policy on the return of medical equipment is a matter for each individual organisation and should be included in their Sustainable Development Management Plan. NHS England has no generic policy in place for dealing with such matters or for the facilitation of transport to return medical equipment from patients to hospitals.

Typically around 60% of medical equipment issued is recovered and reused. However, not all medical equipment is recovered and not all recovered is suitable for reuse. Information about the costs of medical equipment is not collected centrally as many areas have local arrangements for pooled budgets with the local authority under Section 75 of the National Health Service Act 2006 for an integrated community equipment service. No estimate has been made of the cost to NHS trusts of unreturned crutches since January 2016.

15th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether (a) NHS England and (b) any individual NHS trust has a system in place for receiving used medical equipment from patients.

There is a responsibility on the National Health Service to make the very best use of all resources, including items of medical equipment, which are safe and legally reusable and returnable. Policy on the return of medical equipment is a matter for each individual organisation and should be included in their Sustainable Development Management Plan. NHS England has no generic policy in place for dealing with such matters or for the facilitation of transport to return medical equipment from patients to hospitals.

Typically around 60% of medical equipment issued is recovered and reused. However, not all medical equipment is recovered and not all recovered is suitable for reuse. Information about the costs of medical equipment is not collected centrally as many areas have local arrangements for pooled budgets with the local authority under Section 75 of the National Health Service Act 2006 for an integrated community equipment service. No estimate has been made of the cost to NHS trusts of unreturned crutches since January 2016.

15th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, who has responsibility for (a) auditing returned medical equipment and (b) assessing whether such equipment can be reused by NHS trusts.

There is a responsibility on the National Health Service to make the very best use of all resources, including items of medical equipment, which are safe and legally reusable and returnable. Policy on the return of medical equipment is a matter for each individual organisation and should be included in their Sustainable Development Management Plan. NHS England has no generic policy in place for dealing with such matters or for the facilitation of transport to return medical equipment from patients to hospitals.

Typically around 60% of medical equipment issued is recovered and reused. However, not all medical equipment is recovered and not all recovered is suitable for reuse. Information about the costs of medical equipment is not collected centrally as many areas have local arrangements for pooled budgets with the local authority under Section 75 of the National Health Service Act 2006 for an integrated community equipment service. No estimate has been made of the cost to NHS trusts of unreturned crutches since January 2016.

15th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will estimate the cost to NHS trusts of unreturned crutches since January 2016.

There is a responsibility on the National Health Service to make the very best use of all resources, including items of medical equipment, which are safe and legally reusable and returnable. Policy on the return of medical equipment is a matter for each individual organisation and should be included in their Sustainable Development Management Plan. NHS England has no generic policy in place for dealing with such matters or for the facilitation of transport to return medical equipment from patients to hospitals.

Typically around 60% of medical equipment issued is recovered and reused. However, not all medical equipment is recovered and not all recovered is suitable for reuse. Information about the costs of medical equipment is not collected centrally as many areas have local arrangements for pooled budgets with the local authority under Section 75 of the National Health Service Act 2006 for an integrated community equipment service. No estimate has been made of the cost to NHS trusts of unreturned crutches since January 2016.

15th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many pieces of medical equipment were (a) unreturned by patients and (b) discarded by the NHS in England in each year since 2014; and if he will estimate the cost of such equipment to the NHS in each such year.

There is a responsibility on the National Health Service to make the very best use of all resources, including items of medical equipment, which are safe and legally reusable and returnable. Policy on the return of medical equipment is a matter for each individual organisation and should be included in their Sustainable Development Management Plan. NHS England has no generic policy in place for dealing with such matters or for the facilitation of transport to return medical equipment from patients to hospitals.

Typically around 60% of medical equipment issued is recovered and reused. However, not all medical equipment is recovered and not all recovered is suitable for reuse. Information about the costs of medical equipment is not collected centrally as many areas have local arrangements for pooled budgets with the local authority under Section 75 of the National Health Service Act 2006 for an integrated community equipment service. No estimate has been made of the cost to NHS trusts of unreturned crutches since January 2016.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate his Department has made of the cost to the NHS of treating foreign visitors to the UK; and what information his Department holds on the (a) nationality of and (b) health services accessed by those patients in each year since 2010.

National Health Service trusts do not report patient care by nationality.

An independent report by Prederi, entitled “Quantitative assessment of visitor and migrant use of the NHS in England” was commissioned by the Department to understand better the impact of treating visitors and migrants and was published on 22 October 2013. The report estimated the gross value of NHS-funded healthcare provided to non-European Economic Area visitors and temporary migrants was approximately £2 billion per year.

Trusts provide data within their annual accounts showing information on the cash recovered in-year relating to invoices raised in current and previous years. Since 2013-14, the Department has been collecting data on the amount invoiced by NHS trusts and NHS foundation trusts, together with amounts recovered and written off by those organisations.

NHS trusts will take appropriate steps to recover any debts incurred by patients, including reporting the debt to the Department. Immigration Rules enable the Home Office to refuse a person with an outstanding NHS debt of £500 or more entry to, or further leave to remain in, the UK until the debt is paid. The Department shares information for this purpose with the Home Office and provides trusts with guidance on how and when to do so safely and appropriately.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the attrition rate in frontline staff in the East of England Ambulance Service between August 2015 and October 2016.

NHS Improvement (NHSI) is responsible for overseeing National Health Service trusts. NHSI advises that East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust’s (EEAST’s) performance has seen a sustained improvement since March 2016. However, the Trust is still not meeting the national standards for category A (immediately life-threatening) calls. In August 2016, it responded to 68.9% of Red 1 calls and 62.3% of Red 2 calls within eight minutes, against a standard of 75%. For all category A calls, it responded to 90.8% within 19 minutes, against a standard of 95%.

NHSI advises that overall demand on the Trust’s services has increased by 4.6% over the last 12 months, although the higher acuity ‘Red’ demand has increased by approximately 15%. This substantial increase in high acuity demand represents thousands more calls needing a response against the eight-minute standard. In 2016/17, to the end of August 2016, the Trust had responded to 3,699 more high acuity patients (Red 1 and Red 2 calls) in eight minutes than in the same period in 2015/16.

NHSI advises that staff turnover at EEAST has been steadily reducing over the last eight months. Turnover of EEAST frontline staff for the period 1 August 2015 to 30 September 2016 was 7.12%. The Trust’s reference period for reporting staff turnover is 1 January 2015 to 31 December 2015, and within this period turnover was 8.31%. Based on the most recent national benchmarking data for June 2016, turnover for all staff at EEAST was 9.85%, fifth lowest of the 11 English ambulance trusts.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent assessment he has made of the performance of the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

NHS Improvement (NHSI) is responsible for overseeing National Health Service trusts. NHSI advises that East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust’s (EEAST’s) performance has seen a sustained improvement since March 2016. However, the Trust is still not meeting the national standards for category A (immediately life-threatening) calls. In August 2016, it responded to 68.9% of Red 1 calls and 62.3% of Red 2 calls within eight minutes, against a standard of 75%. For all category A calls, it responded to 90.8% within 19 minutes, against a standard of 95%.

NHSI advises that overall demand on the Trust’s services has increased by 4.6% over the last 12 months, although the higher acuity ‘Red’ demand has increased by approximately 15%. This substantial increase in high acuity demand represents thousands more calls needing a response against the eight-minute standard. In 2016/17, to the end of August 2016, the Trust had responded to 3,699 more high acuity patients (Red 1 and Red 2 calls) in eight minutes than in the same period in 2015/16.

NHSI advises that staff turnover at EEAST has been steadily reducing over the last eight months. Turnover of EEAST frontline staff for the period 1 August 2015 to 30 September 2016 was 7.12%. The Trust’s reference period for reporting staff turnover is 1 January 2015 to 31 December 2015, and within this period turnover was 8.31%. Based on the most recent national benchmarking data for June 2016, turnover for all staff at EEAST was 9.85%, fifth lowest of the 11 English ambulance trusts.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the size of increase in demand of the ambulance service in the East of England in the last 12 months; and whether his Department plans to take steps to meet that demand.

NHS Improvement (NHSI) is responsible for overseeing National Health Service trusts. NHSI advises that East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust’s (EEAST’s) performance has seen a sustained improvement since March 2016. However, the Trust is still not meeting the national standards for category A (immediately life-threatening) calls. In August 2016, it responded to 68.9% of Red 1 calls and 62.3% of Red 2 calls within eight minutes, against a standard of 75%. For all category A calls, it responded to 90.8% within 19 minutes, against a standard of 95%.

NHSI advises that overall demand on the Trust’s services has increased by 4.6% over the last 12 months, although the higher acuity ‘Red’ demand has increased by approximately 15%. This substantial increase in high acuity demand represents thousands more calls needing a response against the eight-minute standard. In 2016/17, to the end of August 2016, the Trust had responded to 3,699 more high acuity patients (Red 1 and Red 2 calls) in eight minutes than in the same period in 2015/16.

NHSI advises that staff turnover at EEAST has been steadily reducing over the last eight months. Turnover of EEAST frontline staff for the period 1 August 2015 to 30 September 2016 was 7.12%. The Trust’s reference period for reporting staff turnover is 1 January 2015 to 31 December 2015, and within this period turnover was 8.31%. Based on the most recent national benchmarking data for June 2016, turnover for all staff at EEAST was 9.85%, fifth lowest of the 11 English ambulance trusts.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the average response time was to emergency red calls for ambulance services in (a) the East of England and (b) England in the last period for which figures are available.

The information is not available in the format requested. NHS England publishes the number of Category A Red One and Red Two calls responded to within eight minutes and the number of ambulances arriving at the scene within 19 minutes for a Category A call.

This data is published on a monthly basis at both an England national level and at individual ambulance trust level. Data up to August 2016, Ambulance System Indicators Time Series to August 2016, is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/ambulance-quality-indicators/

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he has taken to improve the service quality provided by call handlers who respond to NHS 111 and 999 calls; and what funding he plans to allocate to those services in the next five years.

The service quality provided by call handlers who respond to 999 and 111 calls is the responsibility of local providers of these services.

Computer-aided dispatch and clinical decision support systems are used to guide call handers through 999 and 111 calls. These systems have embedded clinical governance processes which keep them under continual internal evidence based review.

In the future, the 111 phone number will be the “front door” to a 24/7 integrated urgent care service. It will provide access to a ‘clinical hub’ which offers patients access to a wide range of clinicians supported by access to clinical records.

National Health Service ambulance trusts (who operate 999 call handling services) and providers of NHS111 services are commissioned and funded locally by NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs). CCGs work with these providers to take decisions on funding on a yearly basis.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department has taken to encourage students to become ambulance service paramedics upon graduating.

The latest available data from NHS Digital NHS Hospital and Community Health Service monthly workforce statistics shows that there are now over 2,200 more paramedics in the National Health Service than in May 2010.

As set out in Health Education England’s (HEE) 2016/17 Workforce Plan for England, planned paramedic training places have increased by 60%, to over 1,600. The workforce plan estimates that by 2020 there is likely to be an 11% growth in the available paramedic workforce.

HEE is partnering with the East of England Ambulance Service Trust, the University of East Anglia (UEA) and Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) to give aspiring paramedics the chance to gain the experience, skills and knowledge required to support applications for the Paramedic Science degree programme (BSc) at UEA and ARU for entry in September 2017.

20th Oct 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people over the age of 18 diagnosed with (a) Asperger's syndrome and (b) autism there are in (i) St Albans, (ii) Hertfordshire and (iii) England; and what care his Department provides for people diagnosed with those conditions.

Information on the number of people diagnosed with autistic spectrum conditions is not collected centrally.

Clinical commissioning groups are responsible for commissioning health services for their local population. In doing so, they should have regard to best practice and guidance such as the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence’s guideline Autism spectrum disorder in adults: diagnosis and management and the Government’s Think Autism strategy.

6th Sep 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential benefits of mobile surgical health theatres; and whether such centres are included in the Sustainability and Transformation Plans.

Under the Directed Enhanced Services directions to NHS England, there is a Minor Surgery Scheme, the underlying purpose of which is to ensure that a wide range of minor surgical procedures are made available as part of the primary medical services provided throughout England. Minor surgery is also one of the additional services which are set out in the General Medical Services Contract Regulations. It is for local areas to decide whether they include the development of these centres in their Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

26th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the proportion of e-cigarette users who will return to smoking tobacco products in the year ending May 2017 as a result of the Tobacco Products Directive.

No such estimate has been made given the range of factors which may impact on rates of smoking tobacco and use of e-cigarettes.

26th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his policy is on e-cigarettes as a potential gateway to smoking.

The Government has set a regulatory framework in place that aims to prevent the take up of e-cigarettes by children and non-smokers whilst making them freely available to smokers who wish to use them to quit tobacco use. Gateway effect is difficult to prove or disprove but to date, in the United Kingdom, we have not seen any significant use of e-cigarettes outside of existing smokers and ex-smokers.

9th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what information his Department holds on whether there is a link between the number of years of e-cigarette use and those people smoking tobacco in the future.

The Department does not hold data on this.

9th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of restricting advertising on e-cigarettes on people using tobacco products.

The best thing a smoker can do for their health is to quit smoking. We know that there are now over a million people who have completely replaced smoking with e-cigarettes and that the evidence indicates that they are significantly less harmful to health than smoking.

Whilst the Government recognises the potential benefits of e-cigarettes, the quality of products on the market remains variable. It is right therefore that proportionate regulation is introduced to introduce minimum standards for safety and quality of all e-cigarettes and e-liquids and that information is provided to consumers so that they can make informed choices. This is the aim of the regulatory framework set out in the revised Tobacco Products Directive.

The Impact Assessment that accompanied the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 assessed the expected impact of the advertising provisions on demand for e-cigarettes to be insubstantial. There is already a very high awareness of e-cigarettes and their role in replacing tobacco use amongst the public. The restrictions on advertising in certain media do not prevent businesses communicating, factually, directly to individual smokers or ex-smokers about their products, either in physical stores or internet pages under their control.

The restrictions do not prevent the publication of independently compiled reviews or discussion between users and potential users in internet forums. A balance is therefore struck between reducing exposure of children to imagery and marketing of these products and providing sufficient information to smokers wishing to use these products to support them in quit attempts.

6th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the Royal College of Physician's report, Nicotine without smoke: Tobacco harm reduction, published in April 2016.

The Department has and will continue to keep abreast of all evidence and consider it in developing policy. The report published by the Royal College of Physicians is consistent with the Government’s current policy that the best thing a smoker can do for their health is to quit smoking and quit for good, but we recognise that e-cigarettes have a role to play in helping some people to quit.

6th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will make it his policy to conduct an annual review of the effect of the Tobacco Products Directive.

Comprehensive tobacco control measures act in concert. The Government monitors the impact of all tobacco control measures using a range of data sources, some of which are reported annually. The Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 and The Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Regulations 2015, which implement most elements of the Tobacco Products Directive in the United Kingdom, contain a review clause, with the first review of the operation of the legislation falling before 2021.

4th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the implications for his Department's policies of the Report, Nicotine without smoke: tobacco harm reduction, published by the Royal College of Physicians in April 2016.

The Department has and will continue to keep abreast of all evidence and consider it in developing policy. The report published by the Royal College of Physicians is consistent with the Government’s current policy that the best thing a smoker can do for their health is to quit smoking and quit for good but that e-cigarettes have a role to play in helping some people quit.

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the Minister of State for the Cabinet Office on 11 May to Question 36288.

26th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 18 April 2016 to Question 32700, what assessment his Department has made of the (a) extent to which clinical need can be determined in the absence of a comprehensive specialist initial assessment and (b) extent to which Local Transformation Plans assess need.

Whilst there are a range of health care professionals, for example youth workers and teachers, who deliver interventions and support for children and young people with mental health conditions, clinical need should be determined by a specialist initial assessment in line with guidance produced by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

To improve awareness and knowledge of children and young people’s mental health, the Department of Health has invested £3 million into expanding MindEd, which is a free e-learning platform, so that those in contact with children can better recognise when help is needed and can ensure they get it.

MindEd for Families was also recently launched on 21 April, funded by the Department for Education, to improve knowledge and awareness, reduce stigma and improve parents and carers’ ability to intervene early in mental health issues.

In developing local transformation plans, local areas were asked to work with their key partners across health, education, youth justice and local authorities, and crucially, involving young people and their families, to agree locally how best to meet the mental health needs of children and young people in their local populations. These plans should address the full spectrum of mental health, from prevention and resilience building, to support and care for existing and emerging mental health problems, as well as transitions between services.

22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against his Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found at:

http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en

8th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 24 March 2016 to Question 31409, on Trauma and the report of the work of the Children and Young People's Mental Health Taskforce, Future in Mind, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that children and young people who have been sexually abused or exploited receive a comprehensive specialist initial assessment and referral to appropriate services providing evidence-based interventions according to their need.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services are provided on the basis of clinical need in line with guidance produced by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

Following guidance published by NHS England in August 2015, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) have produced Local Transformation Plans for children and young people’s mental health with their local partners, as proposed in Future in mind. These include plans for how CCGs will ensure that the needs of all children and young people are met locally. These plans cover the full spectrum of mental health issues: from prevention and resilience building, to support and care for existing and emerging mental health problems, as well as transitions between services and addressing the needs of the most vulnerable. This includes those who have been exposed to sexual abuse or exploitation.

17th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many inflammatory bowel disease services have defined referral pathways in place to ensure that appropriate support is offered from a psychologist or counsellor with specialist knowledge of that condition.

This information is not collected. The organisation of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) services is a local matter.

IBD is the collective name used to describe ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. To support commissioners to deliver local services for people with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published the best practice guidance ‘Crohn’s Disease Management in Adults, Children and Young People’, in October 2012 and ‘Ulcerative Colitis Management in Adults, Children and Young People’ in June 2013.

Both guidelines mention providing access to psychological support and the role it can play in patient care. In addition, patient education and patient information support are also highlighted as priorities for implementation. Commissioners should have regard to NICE guidance when delivering local services. The guidance can be found at the following links:

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/CG152/chapter/Key-priorities-for-implementation

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166/chapter/Key-priorities-for-implementation

17th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate his Department has made of how many inflammatory bowel disease services offer all people who are newly diagnosed a patient education session to help them understand their condition.

This information is not collected. The organisation of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) services is a local matter.

IBD is the collective name used to describe ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. To support commissioners to deliver local services for people with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published the best practice guidance ‘Crohn’s Disease Management in Adults, Children and Young People’, in October 2012 and ‘Ulcerative Colitis Management in Adults, Children and Young People’ in June 2013.

Both guidelines mention providing access to psychological support and the role it can play in patient care. In addition, patient education and patient information support are also highlighted as priorities for implementation. Commissioners should have regard to NICE guidance when delivering local services. The guidance can be found at the following links:

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/CG152/chapter/Key-priorities-for-implementation

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166/chapter/Key-priorities-for-implementation

16th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to implement the recommendations for trauma-focussed care outlined in the report Future in Mind.

It is important that awareness of trauma (from abuse or neglect) and the impact it can have on children and young people’s mental health is raised across the workforce and that there is clarity on roles and responsibilities. The Department has asked that Health Education England (HEE) and NHS England work together to consider the training required for the health and wider children’s workforce to become more trauma aware, building this into HEE’s work programme.

Routine Enquiry (asking about experience of trauma at every appropriate health appointment for over 16 year olds) and sensitive enquiry in all children and young people’s services (which was proposed in Future in Mind) will be tested in key services shortly. However, there is still work to do to make sure we reach out to all parts of the workforce who may see the presentation of trauma in the children that they work with. Routine and sensitive enquiry by frontline health professionals such as general practitioners and mental health professionals is an important starting point, but it will be just as important to use those working in schools and the community to raise awareness more broadly and initiate learning about trauma and its impact on mental health.

16th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 2 March 2016 to Question 28334, from which clinical networks and professional bodies NHS England will approach for advice; what plans he has to appoint clinical advisers in kidney care in order to continue to progress (a) the Think Kidneys programme, (b) ongoing work relating to acute kidney injury and (c) other work programmes that have been led by the National Clinical Director for Renal Disease for NHS England; and who will take over responsibility for delivering that work.

As previously set out, from 1 April 2016 NHS England will be supported by 16 National Clinical Directors (NCDs). In areas where there will no longer be a specific NCD, such as for renal disease, NHS England will secure expert clinical advice from its Clinical Networks and through its relationships with professional bodies and by appointing clinical advisors. Further details will be available shortly. The recruitment of Clinical Reference Group (CRG) Chairs, including the CRG Chair for Renal Services, is due to begin in April.

Think Kidneys is scheduled to continue until the end of 2016, and a strategy for the longer term is being developed. Wider work on renal disease will be taken forward through the specialised commissioning infrastructure within NHS England and through joint working with the Royal Colleges and specialist societies.

9th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many nationals of other EU member states have used accident and emergency services in each of the last 10 years.

The Department does not hold this information.

9th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many nationals of other EU member states have used NHS maternity services in each of the last 10 years.

The Department does not hold this information.

9th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many nationals of other EU member states have received acute care at hospital trusts in each of the last 10 years.

The Department does not hold this information.

9th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many nationals of other EU member states registered with a GP in each of the last 10 years.

The requested information is not collected centrally.

24th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to ensure that (a) the Think Kidneys programme, (b) ongoing work relating to acute kidney injury and (c) other work programmes being led by the National Clinical Director for Renal Disease for NHS England will continue to be taken forward following the discontinuance of that director's post.

Following a review of the National Clinical Directors (NCDs), NHS England will be supported by 16 NCDs from 1 April 2016. Objectives for the NCDs will be set according to the priority areas and major programmes, as set out in the Mandate and planning guidance, and where there are established programmes of service improvement.

Where there will no longer be a specific NCD role for renal disease, NHS England will secure expert clinical advice from its Clinical Networks and through its relationships with professional bodies and by appointing clinical advisors.

Think Kidneys is scheduled to continue until the end of 2016, and a strategy for the longer term is being developed. Wider work on renal disease will be taken forward through the specialised commissioning infrastructure within NHS England and through joint working with the Royal Colleges and specialist societies.

24th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the effect on survival rates in kidney patients and on the Domain 1 outcomes of the NHS Outcomes Framework of transplants unsuccessful because of the lack of availability of immunosuppression treatments that the patient can tolerate, following the recommendation from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (review of TA 85) [ID456] to restrict access to such agents.

We have made no such assessment.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has not yet published its final updated guidance on the use of immunosuppressive therapy for kidney transplant in adults (review of TA85) or on the use of immunosuppressive therapy for kidney transplant in children and young people (review of TA99). NICE is developing resource impact reports to support implementation of its guidance which will be published alongside its final technology appraisal guidance.

George Freeman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
28th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what support is available for children who have been abused to avoid long-lasting psychological problems; and if he will make a statement.

NHS England published a Commissioning Framework for Adult and Paediatric Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) Services in August 2015 which outlines the core services in SARCs and referral pathways to other services. These are now being rolled out throughout England.

Local Transformation Plans will set out how local organisations will use the additional investment of £1.4 billion the Government is making during the course of this Parliament to transform local Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. All clinical commissioning groups working closely with their partners in local government, Children’s Services and education, have developed plans to transform their local offer. These plans cover the full spectrum of mental health issues: from prevention and resilience building, to support and care for existing and emerging mental health problems, as well as transitions between services and addressing the needs of the most vulnerable. The guidance issued by NHS England in August specifies that the plans should set out what will be done to address the needs of children and young people who are particularly vulnerable to mental health problems including, for example, those who have been exposed to sexual abuse or exploitation.

15th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people in (a) St Albans, (b) Hertfordshire, (c) East of England and (d) the UK have Lyme disease; and what steps is he taking to better treat such people.

In 2014, there were 730 laboratory confirmed Lyme disease cases reported in England & Wales. The data submitted is at the level of referring hospital; it does not indicate either where the patient lived or where they were when they contracted the disease and is not recorded at county or regional level. Most Lyme disease cases are diagnosed clinically and treated by general practitioners (GPs).

The National Health Service provides treatment for Lyme disease following current international best practice, and Public Health England (PHE) have issued guidance notes for medical professionals aimed at improving recognition, as well as a referral pathway for GPs to follow to seek specialist help for patients who suffer complications from the disease. PHE are investigating the feasibility of creating a network of physicians to develop standardised investigation and treatment protocols for Lyme disease patients with the aim of improving outcomes.

With Liverpool University and partners internationally, the rare and imported pathogens laboratory is setting up a research programme into the diagnosis of Lyme disease.


21st Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many people in (a) St Albans, (b) Hertfordshire and (c) England and Wales have type 1 or 2 diabetes; and what steps he is taking to ensure that (i) there is early diagnosis and treatment of both type 1 and 2 diabetes and (ii) that prevention measures for type 2 are in place.

The number of people diagnosed with diabetes in St Albans, Hertfordshire and England and Wales living with type 1 or type 2 diabetes is shown in the table below.



Number of people diagnosed with diabetes 2013/14

St Albans

4,833

Hertfordshire

50,047

England

2,814,004*

Wales

177,212*


Source: Public Health Outcomes Framework http://www.phoutcomes.info/

Note: * represents all patients aged 17 and over who have been diagnosed with diabetes and included on general practitioner (GP) registers. No distinction is made in the type of diabetes that has been diagnosed, i.e. type 1 or type 2 diabetes.



The NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (DPP) is a joint initiative between NHS England, Public Health England and Diabetes UK, that aims to deliver an evidence based behavioural programme to support people to reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The NHS Health Check programme provides an opportunity to help prevent and detect type 2 diabetes, with an estimated 20,000 new cases of diabetes and kidney disease identified earlier each year.


Improving outcomes for those at risk of and with diabetes is of great concern to this Government. Building on the DPP, the Department is developing its plans in this area. These will be published in due course.


17th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the impact on prostate cancer patients of the delisting of the drug cabazitaxel by the Cancer Drugs Fund; what steps NHS England plans to take to maintain access to cabazitaxel for prostate cancer patients until it has been subject to review by NICE; and what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the Individual Funding Request process for cancer drugs.

NHS England has advised that cabazutaxel (Jevtana) was removed from the national Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF) list on 12 March 2015 as the CDF clinical panel concluded that the clinical benefits of cabazitaxel in patients with metastatic castrate-resistant prostate cancer, who had received prior treatment with docetaxel, were insufficient for it to merit retention on the national list. The full decision summary is available at:

www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/ncdf-summ-cabaztxl-post-doctxl.pdf

Patients currently receiving cabazitaxel through the Fund will remain on that treatment until such a time when they are no longer receiving benefit from the treatment. Clinicians will still be able to apply for individual patients to receive cabazitaxel on an exceptional basis.

NHS England follows a standard operating procedure when responding to individual requests to fund cancer treatments. This requires a response to the request within 10 working days following a receipt of a complete submission from the clinician. Further details are available at:

www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/pe/cdf/

George Freeman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
17th Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effect on gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GIST) patients of the delisting of the drug regorafenib by the Cancer Drugs Fund; and what steps he is taking to ensure that GIST patients have access to appropriate drugs and treatment.

NHS England has advised that the decision to remove regorafenib (Stivarga) for the treatment of gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GIST) from the national Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF) list has been subject to a formal appeal and referred back to the CDF clinical panel for reconsideration. Regorafenib will therefore remain available through the Cancer Drugs Fund until this process is completed and subject to the final outcome.

George Freeman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what contact NHS England had with the Renal Association and the British Renal Society on commissioning of dialysis services before putting forward its proposals to devolve commissioning to clinical commissioning groups.

NHS England has advised that there was contact between NHS England and stakeholder groups, including the Renal Association (RA) and the British Renal Society (BRS), prior to the proposals being made.

NHS England is in dialogue with key stakeholders about both the opportunities and challenges of transferring responsibility for renal services. The head of the Specialised Services Task Force in NHS England recently met stakeholders from renal service representative groups (including RA and BRS) and heard their concerns directly.

NHS England has recently established a Task & Finish group through the NHS Commissioning Assembly. This group comprises representatives from clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and NHS England, and will oversee the development and delivery of proposals for commissioning of specialised services in 2015-16 and beyond.

Within this Task & Finish group, a sub-group will be responsible for planning and managing the transition process for services that are being transferred from national to CCG commissioning (including renal dialysis) from 1 April 2015.

17th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the cost would be of awarding all NHS staff the annual increment plus a one per cent pay rise; and what the actual cost is of the Government's current proposals on pay for NHS staff.

The Government has had to make difficult decisions this year on pay but staff will be receiving an award worth at least 1% either through annual incremental progression or a non-consolidated payment for those at the top of the payscales.

Just over half of Hospital and Community Health Service (HCHS) staff would be expected to receive incremental pay progression worth an average of around 3.5%. This is estimated to cost nearly £800 million, or around 1.75% of paybill, in 2014-15. Some of this cost would be expected to be offset by the net effects of joiners and leavers on the mix of staff across incremental pay points, but it remains the case that paybill pressures would be nearly £800 million lower without incremental progression.

For 2014-15, the cost of the Pay Review Bodies’ recommendations of a 1% pay uplift for all HCHS staff would have been around £450 million, or 1% of paybill. By contrast, the headline cost of non-consolidated awards worth 1% of basic pay for those at the top of their pay band, as actually awarded, is estimated at around £150 million, or around 0.35% of paybill.

The Government is committed to a National Health Service that provides safe, compassionate care. The choice we faced was either to invest more in pay or to protect the front line; we cannot afford to do both. The Government believes the decision to protect the front line, whilst a difficult decision to make, was the correct one.

17th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the cost to the (a) emergency services and (b) NHS of dealing with injuries arising from wild horses on road in the latest period for which figures are available.

This information is not held centrally and no estimate has been made.

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the current average waiting time is for elective surgery in (a) St Albans constituency, (b) Hertfordshire, (c) the East of England and (d) England.

The information is shown in the following table.

Average (median) waiting time in weeks from referral to admission to hospital for consultant-led elective treatment, March 2014

Area

National Health Service organisation

Number of weeks

St Albans

NHS Herts Valley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)

10.0

Hertfordshire

NHS Herts Valley CCG

10.0

NHS East and North Hertfordshire CCG

8.6

East of England

East Anglia Area Team

8.6

Essex Area Team

10.2

Hertfordshire and the South Midlands Area Team

8.3

England

8.8

Source:

Consultant-led referral to treatment waiting times, commissioner data for admitted patient pathways, March 2014. Published by NHS England at:

www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/rtt-waiting-times/rtt-data-2013-14/#Mar14

5th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many operations have been cancelled because of scheduling error in (a) St Albans, (b) Hertfordshire and (c) England since 2005.

Information is not available in the format requested. Such information as is available is shown in the following table.

Table: Cancelled elective operations, 2005-06 to 2013-14

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust

East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust

England

2005-06

621

856

60,803

2006-07

929

682

52,005

2007-08

1,081

873

57,382

2008-09

527

965

63,644

2009-10

383

358

62,296

2010-11

314

297

58,295

2011-12

367

220

57,087

2012-13

486

150

63,517

2013-14

357

179

64,192

Notes:

Cancelled elective operations are defined as operations that were cancelled by the hospital for non-clinical reasons on the day the patient was due to arrive in hospital, or after the patient has arrived in hospital, or on the day of the operation or surgery. The data does not distinguish between scheduling errors and other non-clinical reasons for cancellation.

Source:

Cancelled elective operations. Published quarterly by NHS England at www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/cancelled-elective-operations/

25th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with his (a) Myanmar and (b) Bangladeshi counterpart on the safe repatriation of the Rohingya refugees in southern Bangladesh.

We are clear that any repatriation of refugees must be safe, voluntary, dignified and meet international humanitarian principles and standards. We agree with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) that the conditions for such repatriation do not yet exist in Rakhine.

Following recent reports of potential repatriations, we worked closely with the UNHCR, and engaged with the Governments in Bangladesh and Myanmar to underline that returns must be safe, voluntary and dignified. We welcome Bangladesh's continued commitment to the principle of voluntariness and note Myanmar's acknowledgement that some Rohingya have a right to return. We will continue to make representations to the Governments of both Bangladesh and Myanmar.

Heather Wheeler
Assistant Whip
7th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations he has made to his Bangladeshi counterpart on reported protests and clashes between garment factory workers and police forces in that country; and if he will make a statement.

​To date I have not made representations to the Government of Bangladesh regarding protests by garment factory workers or their clashes with police. Officials at our High Commission in Dhaka continue to monitor the situation, and reports of violence are concerning. Bangladesh remains a Human Rights Priority Country for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and freedom of expression, including the freedom of assembly, is a key concern. I raised more general concerns regarding freedom of expression in Bangladesh with Information Minister Tarana Halim on 14 December. The Foreign Secretary raised his concerns regarding freedom of expression with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on 24 September 2018 at the UN General Assembly in New York.

17th Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many independent election observers (a) his Department and (b) other nations provided for the general election in Bangladesh; and what assessment he has made of the legitimacy of that election.

​In partnership with USAID and the Swiss Development Cooperation, the Department for International Development supported a total of 4542 domestic observers deployed during the Bangladesh Election. The EU sent a two person Election Expert Mission. The Government of Bangladesh refused permission for deployment of 9300 observers from 15 NGOs. On 1 January I released a statement expressing my concern about the conduct of the Bangladesh general election. There have been numerous credible allegations of irregularities, blocks on proper observation and the intimidation of voters. I repeated my concerns regarding the election to the Bangladesh High Commissioner when we met on 10 January. I have urged the Government of Bangladesh to carry out a full, credible and transparent resolution of all complaints related to the conduct of the elections.

19th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps the Government has taken to raise concerns with the Israeli Government on the imminent demolition of Khan al-Ahmar.

We have raised concerns with the Israeli authorities at senior levels, including with the Israeli Prime Minister and Israeli Attorney General, urging them not to go ahead with their plan to demolish the village. Officials from our Consulate General in Jerusalem continue to visit Khan al-Ahmar, most recently on 18 December. The same day, our Permanent Representative to the UN made clear during a UN Security Council debate on the situation in the Middle East that "we welcome the temporary postponement of plans to demolish the Bedouin community of Khan al-Ahmar but we remain gravely concerned about the fate of this community. The United Nations has said this demolition could amount to forcible transfer in violation of International Humanitarian Law. As I’ve said before in this Chamber, the Israel Government is not obligated to demolish Khan al-Ahmar. It has the power to change its mind and we urge it to do so”.

19th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment the Government has made of the effects of Israel’s settlement expansion on the welfare Palestinian refugees in the West Bank.

​I issued a statement on 27 December expressing our disappointment in the latest announcement by the Government of Israel to advance over 2,800 housing units in settlements in the West Bank. Such actions are illegal under international law and call into question Israel’s commitment to any future peace agreement with the Palestinians. We strongly urge Israel to cease such actions. We regularly raise our grave concerns on this issue with the Government of Israel and urge it to reverse its policy of settlement expansion.

18th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what estimate he has made of the number of Palestinian children subjected to military detention in the last five years.

​While we have not made an overall estimate of the number of Palestinian children subjected to military detention in the last five years, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s annual Human Rights and Democracy report routinely lists the number of minors held in Israeli military detention. According to the 2017 report, there were approximately 358 minors detained as of the end of 2017.

18th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent steps the Government has taken return the UK lawyer delegation to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories to assess the military detention of Palestinian children in the absence of an offer by the Israeli Government to facilitate that contact.

The treatment of Palestinian children in Israeli military detention remains a human rights priority for the UK. We will continue to call upon Israel to improve its practices in line with international law and obligations. We have offered to help the Israeli authorities through expert-to-expert talks with UK officials. The offer still stands and we hope Israel will take us up on it. While we recognise that Israel has made some improvements, it needs to do much more to safeguard vulnerable people in its care.

13th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations he has made to his counterpart in the Bangladesh Government on ensuring freedom to (a) campaign and (b) assemble in advance of the parliamentary elections in that country.

The British Government has been consistently clear that we wish to see a free, fair and pluralistic election in Bangladesh. I have repeatedly encouraged the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to engage in an effective dialogue to this end. Through our High Commission in Dhaka we have been clear that the Election Commission should be allowed to continue its important work, including the registration of voters, without inteference. We have consistently made the case for international oversight of the election and the EU has agreed to send an Election Expert Mission. Through the Department for International Development funding, the UK will also support local observation of the general election.

The Foreign Secretary raised his concerns regarding the next election in Bangladesh with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when they met at the UN General Assembly in New York on 24 September. In a call on 1 November with State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shahriar Alam, I again made the case for a free, fair and participatory election. Allowing freedom of expression and freedom of assembly is an integral aspect of this, and through our High Commission in Dhaka the UK continues to make its concerns heard regarding freedom of expression in Bangladesh.

13th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to ensure (a) international oversight by observers and (b) the accuracy of the voter registration database in relation to parliamentary elections in Bangladesh; and if he will make a statement.

​The British Government has been clear that we want to see a free, fair and pluralistic election in Bangladesh and I have repeatedly encouraged the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to engage in an effective dialogue to this end. Through our High Commission in Dhaka we have been clear that the Election Commission should be allowed to continue its important work, including the registration of voters, without interference. We have consistently made the case for international oversight of the election and the EU has agreed to send an Election Expert Mission. Through the Department for International Development funding, the UK will also support local observation of the general election.

The Foreign Secretary raised his concerns regarding the next election in Bangladesh with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when they met at the UN General Assembly in New York on 24 September. In a call on 1 November with State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shahriar Alam, I again made the case for a free, fair and participatory election. Allowing freedom of expression and freedom of assembly is an integral aspect of this, and through our High Commission in Dhaka the UK continues to make its concerns heard regarding freedom of expression in Bangladesh.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether he has made an assessment of the adequacy of the recent treatment of road safety protesters by the Bangladeshi authorities in Dhaka.

I was deeply concerned by the violence we saw in Dhaka in response to protests on road-safety this summer. In a statement on 7 August, the British High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Alison Blake, together with other EU Heads of Mission, called on the Government of Bangladesh to investigate incidents of unlawful or disproportionate violence against road safety protestors and journalists and hold the perpetrators to account. Subsequently, Joint Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Department for International Development Minister Alistair Burt expressed our concern regarding the response to the road safety protests with the Government of Bangladesh, during his visit to Bangladesh from 28-31 August.

Bangladesh remains a Human Rights Priority Country for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. We raised freedom of expression as a key concern in Bangladesh during the UN Human Rights Council Universal Periodic Review and we continue to encourage the Government of Bangladesh to work with Bangladeshi Civil Society to address their concerns regarding freedom of expression.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what discussions he has had with his counterpart in the Bangladeshi Government on the recent treatment of road safety protesters in Bangladesh.

I was deeply concerned by the violence we saw in Dhaka in response to protests on road-safety this summer. In a statement on 7 August, the British High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Alison Blake, together with other EU Heads of Mission, called on the Government of Bangladesh to investigate incidents of unlawful or disproportionate violence against road safety protestors and journalists and hold the perpetrators to account. Subsequently, Joint Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Department for International Development Minister Alistair Burt expressed our concern regarding the response to the road safety protests with the Government of Bangladesh, during his visit to Bangladesh from 28-31 August.

Bangladesh remains a Human Rights Priority Country for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. We raised freedom of expression as a key concern in Bangladesh during the UN Human Rights Council Universal Periodic Review and we continue to encourage the Government of Bangladesh to work with Bangladeshi Civil Society to address their concerns regarding freedom of expression.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make representations to the Bangladeshi Government on the restrictions to free speech enacted by that country's Digital Security Act and the effect of that Act on free and fair elections in that country.

I remain very concerned by continuing restrictions on freedom of expression in Bangladesh. The Digital Security Act has attracted significant Civil Society and media criticism in Bangladesh, including for the vagueness of its text, which they fear could be used to prosecute a range of behaviours, and for its harsh sentences. On 27 September, the UK, along with other EU Missions in Dhaka, issued a statement raising concerns that the Act could undermine freedom of expression. Subsequently, the Acting High Commissioner met the Bangladeshi Information Minister on 9 October to emphasise our concerns. Bangladesh remains a Human Rights Priority Country for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. We raised freedom of expression as a key concern in Bangladesh during the UN Human Rights Council Universal Periodic Review.

I am clear that the UK wants to see a free, fair and pluralistic general election in Bangladesh, and continuing restrictions on freedom of expression will have a negative impact on that election. I have consistently encouraged the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to engage in an effective dialogue to this end. I made these points to senior members of the Government of Bangladesh, including State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shahriar Alam, and members of the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party during my visit to Bangladesh from 29 June to 1 July this year. The Foreign Secretary made these points to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when they met on 24 September at the UN General Assembly in New York.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent steps his Department has taken to ensure the safe release of the photographer Shahidul Alam from prison in Bangladesh.

I was deeply concerned by the violence we saw in Dhaka in response to road safety protests by students following the tragic deaths of two school age students on 29 July, and the subsequent arrest of Shahidul Alam. Joint Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Department for International Development Minister Alistair Burt expressed UK concern regarding the response to the road safety protests, and raised Dr Alam's case, with the Government of Bangladesh, during his visit to Bangladesh from 28-31 August. The Foreign Secretary raised Dr Alam's case with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when they met on 24 September at the UN General Assembley in New York.

Bangladesh remains a Human Rights Priority Country for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. We raised freedom of expression as a key concern in Bangladesh during the UN Human Rights Council Universal Periodic Review.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of electronic voting on voter fraud in the upcoming election in Bangladesh.

The UK Government has consistently made a clear desire to see a free, fair and pluralistic general election in Bangladesh. I have consistently encouraged the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to engage in an effective dialogue to this end. Dialogue should address concerns regarding the use of electronic voting machines and the potential for voter fraud. I made clear my concerns regarding the election to senior members of the Government of Bangladesh, including State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shahriar Alam, and members of the opposition Bangladesh National Party, during my visit to Bangladesh 29 June - 1 July. The Foreign Secretary underlined the importance of free, fair and non-violent elections in Bangladesh with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when they met on 24 September at the UN General Assembley in New York.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to encourage (a) free and fair elections and (b) political activism in Bangladesh.

I have consistently made it clear that the UK wants to see a free, fair and pluralistic general election in Bangladesh, and we have consistently encouraged the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to engage in an effective dialogue to this end. I made these points to senior members of the Government of Bangladesh, including State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shahriar Alam, and members of the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party during my visit to Bangladesh from 29 June - 1 July. The Foreign Secretary also made these points to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when they met on 24 September at the UN General Assembly in New York.

The UK is active in supporting civil society and greater political participation in Bangladesh. We sponsor a range of project work through the £16.2 million DFID Strengthening Political Participation Phase Two programme. The programme includes work with the Bangladesh Youth Leadership Centre designed to empower Bangladeshi youth to take a more active role in politics, and a Capable Media for Strong Democracy project to build the capability of Bangladesh's media in achieving objective media reporting. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office also supports Article 19, an NGO supporting freedom of expression internationally, to monitor freedom of expression in Bangladesh.

16th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with his Bangladeshi counterpart on proposals to move Rohingya refugees to Bhasan Char island.

​I discussed the Government of Bangladesh's proposal to move Rohingya refugees from camps in Cox's Bazar to Bhashan Char island with State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Shahriar Alam, during my visit to Bangladesh from 29 June - 1 July. We have asked the Government of Bangladesh to allow for a United Nations technical assessment to assess the viability of the island. I am clear that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified and in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws.

5th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what information he holds on when the UNHCR plans to report on the feasibility and desirability of relocating Rohingya refugees to Bhashan Char Island.

​I hope a planned visit to Bhashan Char by the Government and UN Joint Consultative Working Group can be facilitated as soon as possible. We expect the UN to report once it has visited the island. In advance of the visit, and to inform discussions with the Government on Bhashan Char, the UNHCR has produced a position paper outlining its concerns and the key principles for acceptable relocation. I have repeatedly made clear to the Government of Bangladesh that any relocation of refugees must be safe, dignified and in accordance with international humanitarian principles, standards and laws

1st Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to help prevent the mining and trading of conflict minerals overseas.

The UK does not regard the mining and trading of 3TG (tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold, also known as "conflict minerals") as problematic in itself. These minerals are key components for modern technology. Under the right conditions, the mining of these minerals can build both prosperity and security for local communities. However, there is also a risk that their mining can be linked to a range of deplorable practices from human rights abuses to illicit financing of conflict.

It is these risks that the UK is committed to addressing by encouraging compliance with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Mineral Supply Chains from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas. The implementation of this guidance will be made mandatory for the biggest importers in the EU via the EU Regulation on the Responsible Sourcing of Conflict Minerals. This will come into force in January 2021.

The UK will continue to implement this regulation after leaving the EU as it will be rolled over into UK Law via the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill. The Department for Buiness Energy and Industrial Strategy will act as the UK's Competent Authority, monitoring the implementation of the regulation in the UK.

In addition to direct action via the EU Regulation, the UK supports the European Partnership for Responsible Minerals (EPRM). This is a multi-stakeholder initiative consisting of governments, civil society and the private sector that is recognised by the EU as an official "accompanying measure" to the EU Regulation. The EPRM aims to increase the proportion of "responsibly sourced minerals" by operating along the full length of the supply chain, from building capability to implement the EU Regulation amongst EU business, to providing funding for projects aimed at improving conditions and building capability at minesites to enable them operate in a way consistent with OECD Due Diligence Guidelines. Further detail is available at https://europeanpartnership-responsibleminerals.eu/.

14th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, in response to the Answer of 14 May 2018 to Question 141018 on Bangladesh: Politics and Government, what representations his Department has made to the Government of Bangladesh oh ensuring protections are put in place for voter safety during the upcoming election to encourage participation.

The Election Commission in Bangladesh has an essential role in ensuring the proper conduct of the next general election including provision for voter safety. The UK has consistently called on the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to ensure that the Election Commission can carry out its important work free from political interference, and to ensure a non-violent election. We will continue to engage on the need for robust democratic mechanisms and the proper application of election law during the next general election.

3rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether the Government will have a role in monitoring the forthcoming general election in Bangladesh.

​The UK is supporting election monitoring in Bangladesh by funding short and long term domestic observers through a Department for International Development programme. We have not to date received any request from the Bangladesh Government to deploy our own election monitors. We shall continue to engage with the Government of Bangladesh, the Election Commission and political parties on the need for robust democratic mechanisms and the proper application of election law during the general election which we understand will take place at the end of 2018.

3rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect of the imprisonment of the main opposition party leader in Bangladesh on free, fair, and transparent electoral processes in that country.

​I remain concerned that the imprisonment of Khaleda Zia, the main opposition leader in Bangladesh, impedes an effective dialogue between the main parties and could increase the risk of violence around the election which as a consequence may not be fully participatory. The Foreign Secretary met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Foreign Minister Ali during his visit to Bangladesh from 9 to 10 February. He stressed the importance of free and fair elections and affording political space to the opposition.

3rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what progress has been made on voter registration in rural areas in Bangladesh for the forthcoming general election in that country.

​The FCO is keen to see accurate voter registration lists compiled and updated throughout Bangladesh in advance of the forthcoming general election, this is why we have called on the Government of Bangladesh and opposition parties to allow the Election Commission to carry out its important work independently and free of political interference.

3rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what discussions he has had with representatives of the Bangladesh Government at the recent Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London on ensuring free and fair elections in that country.

I met Foreign Minister Ali on 19 April in the margins of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting and during a 30 minute long meeting we discussed amongst other issues the importance of free, fair and participatory elections in Bangladesh.

14th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations were made by the Government to the EU during the drafting of the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation (EU) 2017/821; and if he will make it his policy to incorporate that regulation into UK law after the UK leaves the EU.

The Government welcomed the original Commission proposal for a voluntary due diligence certification scheme. When it became clear that this was unacceptable to the European Parliament, the UK and most other Member States accepted the shift to a scheme which is mandatory, but only for importers of the largest quantities when annual imports exceed the relevant thresholds. Mandatory due diligence obligations will therefore cover the majority of imported minerals but only a small minority of importing companies. We view this as a good compromise, which will both have a positive effect on the ground in conflict-affected and high-risk areas and preserve the competitiveness of UK business.

It is our intention that this Regulation will be incorporated into UK law once we have left the EU via the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill.

27th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations his Department has made to authorities in Bangladesh on the relocation of Rohingya refugees to the Cox's Bazar area.

The UK is deeply concerned for the welfare of the Rohingya community in Burma. When meeting with members of the Bangladesh government during my visit to Dhaka from 2 to 4 March, I welcomed the humanitarian assistance provided by Bangladesh to the Rohingya people and discussed how the UK and Bangladesh can work together to encourage a durable solution in Burma. I also received a briefing on the situation with the Rohingya refuges from UN agencies working on the ground in the Cox's Bazar area.

The Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my noble Friend, the Rt Hon. the Baroness Anelay of St Johns discussed the issue of Rohingya refugees when she met with the Bangladesh High Commissioner in February. I also raised the matter with the Bangladesh High Commissioner in November.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
12th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the Answer of 13 November 2015 to Question 15102, what recent representations the British Embassy in Tel Aviv has made to Israeli authorities since the Israeli government demolition order in November 2016 of the Bedouin village in Umm al-Hiran in the Negev.

I raised concerns about plans to demolish the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran when I spoke to the Israeli Ambassador on 23 November. Although the demolition did not happen before 30 November, the threat remains. The UK continues to call on the Israeli authorities and Bedouin community to work together to find a solution that meets the needs and respects the rights of the people affected.

12th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the (a) economic effect and (b) effect on the garment industry in Bangladesh of recent violence in that country.

Bangladesh’s export market, in particular the ready-made garments sector plays a pivotal role in Bangladesh’s economy. A loss of investor confidence, due to recent violence and attacks against foreign nationals, could adversely harm Bangladesh’s economy and as a consequence its impressive progress towards middle-income status.

Extremist related violence is an international problem that requires all countries to work closely together to prevent atrocities and tackle the root causes. Along with the international community we are committed to supporting Bangladesh in this global challenge. As the largest grant aid donor to Bangladesh we continue to address some of the root causes such as poverty and economic marginalisation.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
9th Jun 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the cost was of operating the British Embassy in Ankara and the Consulate-General in Istanbul in each of the last five years.

During the financial year 2015/16 the administrative cost of operating HMG’s network in Turkey was £8,598,421. For the financial year 2014/15 it was £11,085,874. For 2013/14 it was £9,402,577. For 2012/13 it was £8,462,061 and for 2011/12 it was £7,585,285.56. This includes the costs of all our missions in Turkey: the British Embassy in Ankara, the British Consulate General in Istanbul, the British Consulate in Izmir, the British Vice Consulate in Antalya, and the British Honorary Consulates in Bodrum, Fetiye and Marmaris. It does not include the cost of UK-based staff working in Turkey, which could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

9th Jun 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many people are part of the team working on projects to improve Turkey's prospects of joining the EU based at the British Embassy in Ankara; and what the total cost of that team was in the last 12 months.

Four members of staff at the British Embassy in Ankara work either for all or part of their time on projects to promote reform and democratisation, as a full part of our work to promote UK interests in Turkey. The total annual cost of these staff for that project work was approximately £76,000 for Financial Year 2015/2016. This does not include the cost of the one UK-based member of staff which could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

The UK remains committed to supporting security and prosperity across Europe, where we will continue to have close relationships and mutual interests.

In countries aspiring to join the EU, our bilateral focus will remain on strengthening stability, security, good governance and the economic fundamentals; and on building the resilience and capability to tackle global threats and challenges such as irregular migration and terrorism.

9th Jun 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many meetings the team working on projects to improve Turkey's prospects of joining the EU, based at the British Embassy in Ankara, have had with representatives of the Turkish government in the last 12 months.

Staff in the projects team at the British Embassy in Ankara regularly meet their Turkish Government counterparts on a range of business, including promoting reform and democratisation towards European standards. The UK remains committed to supporting security and prosperity across Europe, where we will continue to have close relationships and mutual interests. In countries aspiring to join the EU, our bilateral focus will remain on strengthening stability, security, good governance and the economic fundamentals; and on building the resilience and capability to tackle global threats and challenges such as irregular migration and terrorism.
20th May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the Answer of 4 May 2016 to Question 33530, on EU law, if he will place in the Library a list of those proposals on which texts have been agreed at COREPER level and which are waiting full council consideration.

The Committee of Permanent Representatives (COREPER) prepares items for agreement by Ministers attending the Council of the European Union, in line with the UK negotiating position agreed by HMG Ministers. Legislative proposals are subject to scrutiny by Parliament in accordance with the Scrutiny Reserve Resolutions prior to adoption at Council. Council meetings are reported to both Houses by Written or, in exceptional cases, Oral Statements, with letters sent to the European Select Committees in recess. Provisional agendas for Council and COREPER meetings can be accessed through the website of the Council of the European Union: http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/documents-publications/

3rd May 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given by my Rt Hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office today to UIN: 36288.

22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many infraction proceedings the EU has initiated against his Department in each of the last 10 years; what the reasons were for each such proceeding being undertaken; and what the outcome was of each such proceeding.

The information requested is publicly available on the website of the European Commission where the infringement cases for each member state can be found. This includes the infringement and the decision. These records go back to 2002 and can be found here: http://ec.europa.eu/atwork/applying-eu-law/infringements-proceedings/infringement_decisions/?lang_code=en
19th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many officials in his Department work in the referendum unit.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is appropriately resourced to support the Government’s priorities. It is not possible to identify a precise figure for full time equivalent staff working on the referendum because a range of staff are involved across various FCO departments – eg EU department, legal advisers, press office – and for some of whom the proportion of their time devoted to referendum issues varies day by day.

12th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will place in the Library a list of EU draft legislation that has been forwarded to the European Parliament but which has currently been frozen by European Commissioner Timmermans through the application of Better Regulation principles.

The European Commission has committed itself to withdraw, modify or repeal legislative proposals through a number of processes. In the 2015 Commission Work Programme, there were 80 proposed withdrawals. Of these, 73 have now been delivered. The remaining seven have been modified by the Commission, or were proposals where the Council and the European Parliament had not been able to come to an agreement, but have since made progress. A list can be found in the Official Journal of the European Union [http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=OJ:C:2015:080:FULL&from=EN]. In the 2016 Commission Work Programme, the Commission is working on the withdrawal or modification of a further 20 proposals. The Commission has also reduced the number of new initiatives proposed in its annual work programmes by over 80 per cent compared to 2014.

Under the UK’s new settlement with the EU, the European Commission has agreed for the first time to set specific targets to reduce the overall burden on business in key sectors. The Commission has also committed to ‘establish a mechanism to review the body of existing EU legislation for its compliance with the principle of subsidiarity and proportionality’; in setting priorities for this review, the Commission will be duty-bound to consult the Council and national parliaments. Further information can be found in the Government’s White Paper, “The best of both worlds: the United Kingdom’s special status in a reformed European Union”.

18th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the conclusions of the report from Open Doors, Freedom of Religion and the Persecution of Christians; and if he will make a statement.

The Government is firmly committed to promoting and protecting the right to freedom of religion or belief around the world, and to being a strong voice internationally in defence of this fundamental right. We value our close working relationship with organisations such as Open Doors and their insights from practical work around the world. We welcomed their recent report, which Baroness Anelay of St Johns, FCO Minister for Human Rights, was pleased to discuss with Open Doors on 13 January.

Our new strategic approach to human rights refocuses our work around three themes: democratic values and the rule of law; strengthening the rules-based international system; and human rights for a stable world. Our work on freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) is integral to all three of these themes.

We have an active programme of religious literacy training amongst staff from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and across Whitehall, including through our new Diplomatic Academy.

Multilaterally, we are working through the UN General Assembly to establish an internationally agreed set of principles for promoting tolerance through education. We also carry out project work in a range of countries, working with non-governmental organisations on issues such as promoting better understanding between faiths, bridging sectarian divides, promoting dialogue between faith groups and government and offering technical advice on amending discriminatory laws. Earlier in January, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office announced an uplift to £10.6 million for the 2016/17 programme, named the Magna Carta Fund for Human Rights and Democracy. We are encouraging strong bids for projects focused on promoting freedom of religion or belief, and promoting FoRB as one way of tackling the root causes of extremism.

15th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure freedom of religion or belief are promoted in countries with high levels of persecution on the grounds of religion or belief.

This Government is firmly committed to promoting and protecting the right to freedom of religion or belief around the world, and to being a strong voice internationally in defence of this fundamental right. Our work on freedom of religion or belief continues to be an integral part of our new strategic approach to human rights, refocusing our work around three themes: democratic values and the rule of law; strengthening the rules-based international system; and human rights for a stable world.

We also carry out project work in a range of countries where the level of persecution is high, working with non-governmental organisations on issues such as promoting better understanding between faiths, bridging sectarian divides, promoting dialogue between faith groups and government and offering technical advice on amending discriminatory laws. In the next financial year, there will be more funding available for such work through the £10.6 million Magna Carta Fund for Human Rights and Democracy. At the multilateral level, we are working through the UN General Assembly to establish an internationally agreed set of principles for promoting religious tolerance through education.

15th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent representations he has made to the UN Human Rights Council on the persecution of Christians.

The UK has a strong record of supporting freedom of religion or belief, including christianity, at the Human Rights Council. We supported the resolution on freedom of religion or belief in both the Human Rights Council and the UN General Assembly in 2015, and will look to do so again in March 2016. The UK also supported the appointment of the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion and Belief, who is tasked with monitoring and reporting these issues worldwide.

In addition, we regularly support language in country specific resolutions about the importance of protecting religious minorities, as evidenced in the Syria resolution of September 2015. We also regularly work with EU partners to ensure a strong EU position on freedom of religion or belief at the Human Rights Council.

When raising persecution faced by one faith group, we endeavour to frame our remarks in the wider context of the rule of law and freedom – making the point that when one faith community is persecuted, the liberty of all is jeopardised.

5th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the outcome was of his Department's visit to Um-il-Hiran and Ateer; whether he plans to visit that region; and if he will make a statement.

Officials from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and our Embassy in Tel Aviv visited three Bedouin communities in the Negev, including Um al Hiran, on 5 August. This visit, arranged through the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality (NCF), deepened our understanding of the constant risk of demolition faced by both recognised and unrecognised Bedouin villages; the restrictions on construction in even Government-planned Bedouin towns; and the unequal provision of services to communities of different ethnicities in the Negev. We remain concerned about this situation and will continue to work with partner countries, to address the inequalities.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the EU-Israel Association Agreement on the degree to which human rights are respected in Israel.

The EU-Israel Association Agreement provides a useful structure in which to discuss the EU’s human rights concerns, and to work with Israel to address these. It is important that these discussions take place.The EU regularly discusses its concerns with Israel in meetings at all levels, including regular political level meetings and through an informal human rights working group. In addition to this, human rights concerns are regularly raised through the work of the local EU delegation in Israel.

10th Oct 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 12 September 2014 to Question 208803, what further representations he has made to the Israeli government on the expropriation of land near Bethlehem since 7 September 2014.

During my visit to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories between 5-8 October, I discussed my strong concerns about the issue of settlements and land expopriation with the Israeli Justice Minister on 6 October.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what discussions he has had with the government of Bangladesh on locating the British national Mujibur Rahman Mujib after his disappearance on 4 May 2014.

Our High Commission in Dhaka raised the case of missing British National Mr Mujibur Rahman Mujib with the government of Bangladesh on 7 May. We have urged the Bangladeshi authorities to do everything possible to locate Mr Mujib and his driver, to resolve the circumstances of their disappearance and to keep us informed of all developments in the case. Meanwhile, the British Government is providing consular support to Mr Mujib's family.

25th Sep 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will suspend the 2019 Loan Charge while the review of that charge is ongoing.

The Government remains committed to tackling tax avoidance schemes, but it has listened to concerns about the impact of the Loan Charge on individuals. An independent review is under way to consider the appropriateness of the Loan Charge as a policy response, and its impact on individuals.

The reviewer, Sir Amyas Morse, has been asked to provide recommendations by mid-November so that any individuals affected can have certainty about their next steps in advance of the 31 January 2020 Self - Assessment deadline.

While the Review is under way, it is right that the Loan Charge remains in force, in line with current legislation.

HMRC has made clear it will consider all personal circumstances to agree a manageable and sustainable payment plan wherever possible and there is no maximum limit on how long a customer can be given to pay the charge.

Further information about the Review and guidance for affected taxpayers is available at www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-independent-loan-charge-review.

25th Jul 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what (a) financial and (b) other support her Department provides to pubs in high value property areas.

To provide support for pubs, the Government announced a freeze on beer duty at Budget 2018. The price of a typical pint of beer in 2019 will be 2p lower than it would have been had duty increased with inflation. Cuts and freezes to alcohol duty since 2013 have provided over £5.2 billion in support for the alcoholic drinks sector; revenues that would have otherwise gone to the Exchequer.

Many pubs are also benefitting from the business rates retail discount announced at Budget 2018, which is cutting bills by one third for two years. It is available to properties with a rateable value below £51,000, and is worth an estimated £1 billion to businesses. Up to 75% of pubs in England could be eligible for the discount, subject to state aid limits and eligibility for other reliefs.

Pubs are also benefitting from wider reforms and reductions to business rates. In total, since Budget 2016 the Government has announced measures which are saving businesses more than £13 billion over the next five years.

25th Jul 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps his Department is taking to increase the level of support it provides to the FinTech sector in the UK.

The UK has been independently ranked as the best place in the world to start and grow a Fintech firm, and the government is committed to maintaining the UK’s leading edge in the sector. That is why the government has delivered against all of the commitments made in the Fintech Sector Strategy, which was launched last year.

The government announced at Mansion House 2019 that HM Treasury would launch a review into the payments landscape, which looks to ensure that regulation and infrastructure is able to keep pace with new payments models. The government also announced that it would explore building on the success of Open Banking by developing an agenda for ‘Open Finance’, looking at ways to safely and securely share data across a wider range of financial services products. This will further revolutionise the sector and increase the ability of Fintech firms to compete with traditional financial services firms.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Mar 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if his Department will make an estimate of the potential costs of the UK's contributions to the EU budget in the event that the UK remains in the EU for a period of two years.

The Government will bring forward proposals for a third meaningful vote as soon as possible and, if it is passed, an extension to 22 May will provide the time to pass the necessary legislation. If Parliament does not agree a deal this week, the EU has agreed to extend Article 50 until 12 April.

If Article 50 were to be extended for two years, as an EU Member State we would continue to have rights and obligations until exit.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
28th Feb 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent discussions the Government has had with (a) peer-to-peer lenders and (b) other organisations in the fintech sector on proposals for regulation of the sector in the Financial Conduct Authority's July 2018 CP18/20 consultation paper.

The Government has regular conversations with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the peer-to-peer (P2P) lending sector and other Fintech organisations on a range of topics, including the FCA’s proposed new rules for P2P lending.

The Government has implemented a proportionate, principles based regime for P2P lending that balances the need for consumer protection with allowing the sector to grow and evolve. As the FCA’s CP18/20 makes clear, P2P lending is an increasingly important source of finance for small businesses, and the Government remains supportive of the industry. As the independent conduct regulator for the financial services industry, the FCA is best placed to set the appropriate regulatory requirements for P2P lending.

The UK has been independently ranked by EY and Deloitte as the world’s leading hub for Fintech – the best place in the world to start and grow a Fintech firm. The Government is committed to ensuring that it remains the best place in the world for Fintech, and has set out how it intends to do that in the ambitious Fintech Sector Strategy, launched in March 2018.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Feb 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions the Government has had with the Financial Conduct Authority on the potential effect on the strength of the UK's peer-to-peer lending sector of the proposals on marketing restrictions in the FCA July 2018 CP 18/20 consultation paper.

The Government has regular conversations with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the peer-to-peer (P2P) lending sector and other Fintech organisations on a range of topics, including the FCA’s proposed new rules for P2P lending.

The Government has implemented a proportionate, principles based regime for P2P lending that balances the need for consumer protection with allowing the sector to grow and evolve. As the FCA’s CP18/20 makes clear, P2P lending is an increasingly important source of finance for small businesses, and the Government remains supportive of the industry. As the independent conduct regulator for the financial services industry, the FCA is best placed to set the appropriate regulatory requirements for P2P lending.

The UK has been independently ranked by EY and Deloitte as the world’s leading hub for Fintech – the best place in the world to start and grow a Fintech firm. The Government is committed to ensuring that it remains the best place in the world for Fintech, and has set out how it intends to do that in the ambitious Fintech Sector Strategy, launched in March 2018.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
18th Dec 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many people are being pursued for repayments under the 2019 Loan Charge in (a) St Albans and (b) the UK since it came into force.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’. These loans were paid in place of ordinary remuneration, with the sole purpose of avoiding income tax and National Insurance contributions. In reality these loans were never repaid. When taking into account the loan they received, loan scheme users have on average twice as much income as the average UK taxpayer.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the 2019 loan charge. Information is not held at constituency level.

Since the announcement of the 2019 loan charge at Budget 2016, HMRC has agreed settlements on disguised remuneration schemes with employers and individuals of over 650 million pounds. More than 90% of this amount was collected from employers, with less than 10% from individuals.

HMRC has simplified the process for those who choose to settle their use of avoidance schemes before the charge arises, so that those earning less than £50,000 a year and no longer engaging in tax avoidance can agree a payment plan of up to five years without the need for detailed supporting information. There is no maximum period within which an overall settlement can be agreed, and HMRC will deal with individual cases appropriately and sympathetically.

29th Nov 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits for the tourism industry of a reduction in VAT on hotels and tourist attractions.

The government explored the impact of VAT on the tourism industry in its recent call for evidence, in the context of a focus on Northern Ireland. The government published its response at Budget 2018.

In light of the legal restrictions on VAT devolution and the fiscal implications of reform on a UK wide reform, the government will not be making a change at this time.

This is a complex issue, affecting an important source of revenue for the Exchequer and the government will continue to analyse the evidence and receive representations, in order to keep these issues under close review.

26th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much (a) tin, (b) tantalum, (c) tungsten and (d) molybdenum has been imported into the UK as scrap metal exempt of import duty in each year since 2010.

The value and weight of these imports is set out in the tables attached.

26th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much (a) tin, (b) tantalum, (c) tungsten and (d) molybdenum has been imported into the UK in each year since 2010.

The value and weight of these imports is set out in the tables attached.

23rd Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much duty has been paid on imports of (a) tin, (b)tantalum and (c) tungsten and molybdenum into the UK since 2010.

The duty paid on these imports is set out in the table attached.

Table: Customs Duty Paid on Non-EU Imports of Tin, Tungsten, Molybdenum and Tantalum, 2014*-2017 (*earliest duty data available)

15th Jan 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate his Department had made of amount of tax collected from self-employed pedicab riders in the last five years.

HMRC is unable to provide the information requested as it is not held in a readily available form.

1st Nov 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much tax revenue the Treasury has raised from stamp duty land tax by tax bands in each year since 2010; and what estimate he has made of revenue expected in each of the next five years.

Statistics on stamp duty land tax receipts since 2010, by price band, are published in the Annual Stamp Taxes Publication 2016-17, which can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Forecast revenues for stamp duty land tax for 2017-2018 to 2020-21 are published by the Office of Budget Responsibility in Table 2.6 of the Economic and Fiscal Outlook – supplementary fiscal tables.

http://budgetresponsibility.org.uk/download/march-2017-economic-and-fiscal-outlook-supplementary-fiscal-tables-receipts-and-other/

1st Nov 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the amount of tax credit underpayments in each year since 2003.

The number and total value of tax credits underpayments are available in the publication “Child and Working Tax Credits Statistics, Finalised Annual Awards Supplement on Payments in 2015-16”. The statistics are available on gov.uk at the following location:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/617181/Child_and_Working_Tax_Credits_statistics_finalised_annual_awards__supplement_on_payments_-_2015_to_2016.pdf

The table on page 8 provides information on the amount of tax credit underpayments in each year since 2003-04, up until the latest available year of 2015-16.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
1st Nov 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of transactions in each stamp duty land tax band since 2010; and what estimate he has made of that number for the next five years.

Statistics on stamp duty land tax receipts since 2010, by price band, are published in the Annual Stamp Taxes Publication 2016-17, which can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Forecast residential property transactions 2017-2018 to 2020-21 are published by the Office of Budget Responsibility as part of the determinants of the fiscal forecast in Table 4.1 of the Economic and Fiscal Outlook – supplementary fiscal tables.

http://budgetresponsibility.org.uk/efo/economic-fiscal-outlook-march-2017/

30th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department will review the turnover model that is used to set business rates on ATMs located in undefined retailers' forecourts.

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) is responsible for assessing Rateable Values for business rates. The Rateable Value represents the annual rent a property would achieve if let on the open market at a valuation date set in law. Rents paid for sites for automated teller machines (ATMs) are used to determine the appropriate Rateable Value.

The level of rent paid for ATM sites varies with the volume of transactions. Those with the lowest rents usually have a low volume of transactions and higher rents are paid for the more intensely-used sites. Using this approach to compare one site with another has been discussed and agreed with various industry representatives. The VOA has no plans to change this approach.

14th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how the new rates for stamp duty land tax for first-time buyers and second-home owners have been calculated; and what estimate he has made of the effect of those new rates on the housing market.

The rates and structure of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) is set out in the below table. There are higher rates of SDLT for the purchase of additional residential properties. The higher rates are 3 percentage points above the standard SDLT rates and the latest HM Revenue and Customs data indicates that the revenue generated from the higher rates will exceed what was originally forecast when the policy was announced. An individual purchasing their first property will be subject to the standard rates of SDLT. As with all taxes, the Government keeps the SDLT regime under review.

Purchase price of property

Standard rate paid on portion of price within each band

Higher rates paid on portion of price within each band

Up to £125,000

0%

3%

Over £125,000 and up to £250,000

2%

5%

Over £250,000 and up to £925,000

5%

8%

Over £925,000 and up to £1,500,000

10%

13%

Over £1,500,000

12%

15%

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the total value of receipts from stamp duty land tax in England was in (a) 2012-13, (b) 2013-14, (c) 2014-15, (d) 2015-16 and (e) 2016-17; and if he will make a statement.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the stamp duty land tax receipts from additional residential properties in St Albans District were in (a) 2012-13, (b) 2013-14, (c) 2014-15, (d) 2015-16 and (e) 2016-17.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the Stamp Duty Land Tax receipts in London were in (a) 2012-13, (b) 2013-14, (c) 2014-15, (d) 2015-16 and (e) 2016-17.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the value of Stamp Duty Land Tax receipts in London from additional residential properties has been in (a) 2012-13, (b) 2013-14, (c) 2014-15, (d) 2015-16 and (e) 2016-17.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many additional residential property transactions valued between (a) £125,000.01 and £250,000, (b) £250,000.01 and £925,000, (c) £925,000.01 and £1.5 million and (d) over £1.5 million there were in London in (i) 2012, (ii) 2013, (iii) 2014, (iv) 2015 and (v) 2016; and what the total Stamp Duty Land Tax Revenue generated by those transactions was in each of those years by price band.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the value of Stamp Duty Land Tax receipts has been in St Albans district in (a) 2012-13, (b) 2013-14, (c) 2014-15, (d) 2015-16 and (e) 2016-17.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many residential property transactions valued between (a) £125,000.01 and £250,000, (b) £250,000.01 and £925,000, (c) £925,000.01 and £1.5 million and (d) over £1.5 million there were in London in (i) 2012, (ii) 2013, (iii) 2014, (iv) 2015 and (v) 2016; and what the total Stamp Duty Land Tax revenue generated by those transactions was in each of those years by price band.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many residential property transactions valued between (a) £125,000.01 and £250,000, (b) £250,000.01 and £925,000, (c) £925,000.01 and £1.5 million and (d) over £1.5 million there have been in St Albans district since 2012; and what the total Stamp Duty Land Tax revenue generated by those transactions was in (i) 2012, (ii) 2013, (iii) 2014, (iv) 2015 and (v) 2016 by price band.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

13th Mar 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many additional residential property transactions valued between (a) £125,000.01 and £250,000, (b) £250,000.01 and £925,000, (c) £925,000.01 and £1.5 million and (d) over £1.5 million there have been in St Albans district since 2012; and what the total Stamp Duty Land Tax revenue generated by those transactions was in (i) 2012, (ii) 2013, (iii) 2014, (iv) 2015 and (v) 2016 by price band.

Annual statistics on the total number of transactions and total Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) receipts by country (including England), region (including London) and local authority (including St Albans) are published by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the annual ‘UK Stamp Tax Statistics’. These publications cover the financial years from 2012-13 to 2015‑16.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-stamp-tax-statistics

Table 3.6 of the latest release, for 2015-16, also contains statistics broken down by the price band of the property and the region.

Statistics relating to 2016-17 are due to be published in September 2017.

The higher rate of SDLT paid on ‘additional properties’ was introduced in April 2016. An estimate of the total number of transactions and receipts from additional properties is published in HMRC’s ‘Quarterly Stamp Duty Statistics’.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-stamp-duty-statistics

Further breakdowns of the SDLT statistics, for example by alternative price bands, or by calendar year, are not readily available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

3rd Jun 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost of publishing the leaflets entitled Tax credits: coming to the UK - WTC/FS5 and Social Security abroad: N138.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) publishes the WTC/FS5 and NI38 leaflets online at www.gov.uk. The cost of publishing and updating these leaflets online is negligible.

The NI38 leaflet is available online only. The WTC/FS5 leaflet was last printed in September 2014 at cost of 142.80 (net). Since demand for print copies of this leaflet is very low, HMRC plans for this leaflet to be only available online from October 2016.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
26th May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential implications of the EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee's decision of 27 May 2016 to introduce European Taxpayer Identification Numbers for the administration of tax in the UK.

To date there has been no formal proposal for a European Tax Identification Number (EU TIN), and this European Parliament committee has no power to put forward a proposal in the tax space.

Tax is a Member State competence. All Member States have to agree with unanimity on tax proposals, so if a proposal were brought forward regarding an EU TIN the UK would need to formally agree in order for it to proceed.

24th May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the UK's reste à liquider payments were in each of the last 10 years; and if he will estimate the value of those payments in each of the next 10 years.

Reste à liquider (RAL) represents, in a particular year, the sum of outstanding commitments which have been agreed, but that may be paid in a future period. No sum is specifically allocated to the UK.

The total amounts of EU budget payments of RAL are only available for the past 9 years. The payments of RAL sit within the spending limits set out in the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020.

The amount of payments on RAL made in EU budgetary years is provided in the European Commission’s annual Report on Budgetary and Financial Management.

The 2015 edition can be viewed at the following link:

http://ec.europa.eu/budget/library/biblio/documents/2015/2015_report_budgetary_financialmanagement.pdf.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
23rd May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost of providing public services for EU nationals who remain in the UK for less than one year.

No estimate has been made of the cost of providing public services for EU nationals who remain in the UK for less than one year.

The Government’s ambition is to reduce permanent migration into this country to a more manageable level.

We remain committed to bringing migration down to sustainable levels, which is in the best interests of our country. The Government has taken steps to control migration by dealing with those who shouldn't be here, by deporting illegal immigrants and improving the skills of British workers, so we reduce the demand for skilled migrants.

The Prime Minister has re-negotiated the UK’s position within the EU to close back-door routes into the UK and exert greater control over EU migration by tackling the draw of our welfare system.

But net migration remains too high and there is still more work to do.

Data recently released by HMRC showed recently-arrived EU migrants paid £2.5 billion more in tax than they received in tax credits or child benefit in 2013/14.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
23rd May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether it is his Department's policy to provide additional funding to local authorities for providing public services for nationals of other EU member states who remain in the UK for less than one year; and if he will make a statement.

‘Additional funding’ has been interpreted to mean welfare expenditure. There is no policy of additional welfare expenditure for nationals of other EU member states who remain in the UK for less than one year.

If the UK votes to remain in the EU, the Prime Minister’s February deal will take effect. Included in the deal is the ‘Emergency Brake’, a mechanism to exclude recently-arrived EEA workers from access to full UK in-work benefits for 4 years. Initially the Brake will involve complete exclusion for in work benefits. The deal also confirmed that in future the UK will not have to pay any means-tested unemployment benefits to EU nationals who come to the UK as job seekers.

23rd May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the income tax paid each year by EU nationals who remain in the UK for less than one year in each of the last three years.

The information requested is not available.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
23rd May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of annual claims made for (a) tax credits and (b) child benefit by EU nationals who remain in the UK for less than one year in each of the last three years.

The information requested is not available.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
3rd May 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much his Department and its agencies and non-departmental public bodies have spent on infraction proceedings in each of the last 10 years.

I refer the my hon. Friend to the answer given by my Rt Hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office today to UIN: 36288

21st Apr 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to page 136 of the publication, HM Treasury analysis: the long-term economic impact of EU membership and the alternatives, published in April 2016, whether the total net international migration figure of 185,000 per year from 2021 includes (a) Turkey, (b) Montenegro and (c) Serbia.

The “HM Treasury analysis: the long-term economic impact of EU membership and the alternatives” uses the ONS central projection of total net international migration, defined as the movement of people to or from countries outside of the UK. As such, it applies to citizens of all countries outside the UK, including Turkey, Montenegro and Serbia.

17th Mar 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the total amount that the UK will contribute to the EU budget in each of the next five years.

The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) is responsible for forecasting UK contributions to the EU Budget. Details of the OBR’s latest forecast of UK gross and public sector net contributions to the EU Budget on a financial year basis can be found in Table 2.25 of its Supplementary Fiscal Tables.

The OBR forecast is not directly comparable to the UK contributions set out in the 2015 EU Finances White Paper which averaged £7.1bn over the most recent period (Table 3.B). This is because the OBR’s net contribution to the EU budget does not include receipts that are not administered by UK government bodies and therefore does not reflect all EU transactions with the UK.

16th Mar 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much in VAT-based contributions the UK paid to the EU in each of the last 10 years; and if he will estimate the amount of such contributions in each of the next five years.

The European Commission’s annual Financial Report provides calendar year historical contributions figures.

10th Mar 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost to UK firms of implementing Capital Requirement Directive IV.

The Capital Requirements Directive IV (CRD IV) implements, in the EU, the prudential banking standards agreed by the international Basel Committee. The Government supports these global standards to ensure that we do not again face severe economic impacts as a result of inadequate banking regulation and would have implemented these with or without EU legislation.

It is difficult to isolate the costs and benefits from other prudential banking measures introduced since the global financial crisis. And the benefits in particular are hard to capture as they take time to materialize. However, the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) stated in its cost-benefit analysis carried out 2013 that ‘the CRDIV package is net beneficial to the UK economy.’

Taking all of the prudential measures together, the PRA has estimated that the net economic benefit is £8.25bn per annum.

7th Mar 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will publish contingency plans that have been made by his Department in the event of a UK exit from the EU.

As the Prime Minister and the Chancellor have said, the civil service is working to support the Government’s position that Britain is stronger, safer and better off remaining in a reformed EU

As required by the EU Referendum Act 2015, the Government is producing clear information, ahead of the referendum, on the outcome of renegotiation, the rights and obligations in EU law, an assessment of alternatives to membership and publishing the process for leaving.

The Treasury will publish a comprehensive analysis of our membership of a reformed EU and the alternatives, including the long-term economic costs and benefits of EU membership and the risks associated with an exit before 23 June.

19th Feb 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much was paid in (a) child tax credits and (b) child benefit for children within the European Economic Area outside the UK in the most recent period for which figures are available; and what assessment he has made of the effect on the level of such payments of proposed reforms to the payment of those benefits to such children under the terms of the renegotiation proposed by the European Council.

The information is not available in the form requested.

The Government’s new settlement means that EU nationals whose children live abroad will ultimately receive Child Benefit at a rate that reflects the conditions – including the standard of living and child benefit paid – of the country where their child lives. This will restore fairness to the system. Meanwhile, Child Tax Credit is being phased out, and we do not have to pay the new Universal Credit for children living in other countries. That means as Universal Credit is fully rolled out, the only benefit we will pay for children living in other Member States will be the indexed rate of Child Benefit.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
1st Feb 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what progress he is making on his Department's review of business rates; and when he plans to report the findings of that review to the House.

The Government received a large number of responses to the business rates review. The review will be fiscally neutral and will report at Budget 2016.

5th Nov 2015
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what proportion of eligible policyholders in (a) St Albans, (b) Hertfordshire, (c) the east of England and (d) the UK have received funds from the Equitable Life Payment Scheme; what proportion of funds owed to those people has been so received; and what steps he is taking to ensure that people are tracked down and compensated before that scheme's closure.

The Equitable Life Payment Scheme does not hold a breakdown of payments made on a geographical basis. TheWritten Ministerial Statement of 3rd November sets out more detail on the Scheme’s progress and the efforts made to trace eligible policyholders. A copy can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-november-2015-progress-report/equitable-life-payment-scheme-november-2015-progress-report

16th Dec 2014
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the new rates of stamp duty, under what category land will be sold if planning permission has been granted for both commercial and residential purposes.

Undeveloped land is treated as non-residential property for stamp duty land tax (SDLT) purposes. The existence or otherwise of planning permission is immaterial.

14th Oct 2014
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will commission research into the fiscal effects of raising the Stamp Duty Land Tax threshold.

The fiscal effect of raising the Stamp Duty Land Tax threshold is likely to be a reduction in SDLT receipts as fewer property transactions will be charged SDLT. A HMRC publication for Budget 2014 (‘Direct Effects of Illustrative Tax Changes’, 19 March 2014) found that an increase in the £125,000 threshold by £5,000 would cost £35 million in its first year and £40 million subsequently.

Published research was undertaken by HMRC examining the impact of a first-time buyer’s relief that was in place between 2010 and 2012 (‘Evaluating the Impact of Stamp Duty Land Tax First Time Buyers Relief’, November 2011). It found that there was a substantial deadweight effect as many of the property transactions would have taken place anyway. The estimated increase in the number of transactions as a result of the introduction of the relief was between 0-1%.

14th Oct 2014
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what research his Department has undertaken or commissioned into the effects of changes in the level of Stamp Duty Land Tax on the number of property transactions completed between 2005-06 and 2013-14.

The fiscal effect of raising the Stamp Duty Land Tax threshold is likely to be a reduction in SDLT receipts as fewer property transactions will be charged SDLT. A HMRC publication for Budget 2014 (‘Direct Effects of Illustrative Tax Changes’, 19 March 2014) found that an increase in the £125,000 threshold by £5,000 would cost £35 million in its first year and £40 million subsequently.

Published research was undertaken by HMRC examining the impact of a first-time buyer’s relief that was in place between 2010 and 2012 (‘Evaluating the Impact of Stamp Duty Land Tax First Time Buyers Relief’, November 2011). It found that there was a substantial deadweight effect as many of the property transactions would have taken place anyway. The estimated increase in the number of transactions as a result of the introduction of the relief was between 0-1%.

10th Oct 2014
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what comparative assessment he has made of tax revenue received from stamp duty land tax in 2013-14 and the figures projected in this area by the OBR in March 2014.

In 2013-14 SDRT receipts were £9,273m. In the March 2013 Economic and fiscal outlook OBR report SDRT receipts for 2013-14 were forecast to be £9,500m. The full report is available at this link:

http://budgetresponsibility.org.uk/economic-fiscal-outlook-march-2014/

The numbers of historic property transactions occurring in different price bands for the requested years is published as part 3 of the publication “Annual UK Property Transactions Statistics 2014”. The latest release can be found at this link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/annual-uk-property-transactions-statistics-2013

The OBR has responsibility for forecasting SDLT, and currently the OBR produce a total SDLT forecast which is not split by tax band.

10th Oct 2014
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he last met the National Association of Estate Agents and similar groups to discuss the effect of stamp duty land tax on the housing market; and for when the next such meeting is planned.

Treasury Ministers have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors as part of the process of policy development and delivery.

Details of ministerial and permanent secretary meetings with external organisations on departmental business are published on a quarterly basis and are available at:
https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmt-ministers-meetings-hospitality-gifts-and-overseas-travel

10th Oct 2014
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what proportion of property transactions have been liable for stamp duty land tax between each of the stamp duty thresholds in each year since 2005-06; and what estimate he has made of such figures in each of the next five years.

In 2013-14 SDRT receipts were £9,273m. In the March 2013 Economic and fiscal outlook OBR report SDRT receipts for 2013-14 were forecast to be £9,500m. The full report is available at this link:

http://budgetresponsibility.org.uk/economic-fiscal-outlook-march-2014/

The numbers of historic property transactions occurring in different price bands for the requested years is published as part 3 of the publication “Annual UK Property Transactions Statistics 2014”. The latest release can be found at this link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/annual-uk-property-transactions-statistics-2013

The OBR has responsibility for forecasting SDLT, and currently the OBR produce a total SDLT forecast which is not split by tax band.

19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate her Department has made of the cost of retail crime to the UK economy in 2017; and what steps her Department is taking to tackle retail crime.

The Government recognises the impact that retail crime has on businesses. The British Retail Consortium, for example, estimated that the direct financial cost of crime to the UK retail industry was £660 million in 2015-16. We do not yet have data for the estimated cost of retail crime to the UK retail industry in 2017.

We work closely with the retail sector through the National Retail Crime Steering Group, which brings together representatives from industry, Government and the Police. This includes the British Retail Consortium and the Association of Convenience Stores to understand better the crime issues that affect the sector and how we can best work together to prevent and respond to these crimes.

19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to reduce incidences of knife crime against shop workers.

Tackling knife crime is a priority for the Government. Our work to tackle knife crime is centred on four key strands – working with the police on operations and enforcement, work on the legislative framework, work with retailers on responsible sales, and early intervention and prevention. All this work is designed to protect the public wherever they are and wherever they work.

All acts of violence and abuse against retail staff are serious matters whenever and wherever they occur. All such incidents should be reported to the police and taken seriously, investigated and, where appropriate, the perpetrators taken through the courts and met with tough sentences.

At the national level, we are working with the police and the retail sector to identify what more can be done to prevent and respond to violence and abuse against retail staff, as part of the work of the National Retail Crime Steering Group. The Steering Group is jointly chaired by the Home Office and the British Retail Consortium.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
15th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment the Government has made of the effectiveness of hostile vehicle mitigation measures in relation to pedicabs.

The police and our security services monitor vehicle attack threats closely, and act on intelligence. All forces have reviewed security measures in place, and additional physical security measures have been put in place at some locations, for example in busy city centres and on bridges. All police forces have access to the National Barrier Asset (NBA), which is a central resource of temporary Hostile Vehicle Mitigation barriers, gates and fences that provide protection against vehicle based attacks.
The Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) provide the guidance and specifications for Hostile Vehicle Mitigation (HVM) where testing of HVM takes into account weight and speed of a vehicle. The NBA is compliant with these specifications.

15th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many pedicab riders have received cautions or arrests for the last twelve months for which records are available.

The Home Office does not hold this information centrally.

30th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what guidance her Department provides to businesses on preventing retail crime; and what the total cost of retail crime was in 2016.

The Government recognises the impact that retail crime has on businesses. The British Retail Consortium has, for example, estimated that the direct financial cost of crime to the UK retail industry was £660 million in 2015-16.

We have not issued general guidance on preventing the different forms of crime that can impact on businesses, which includes shoplifting, criminal damage and fraud. We do, however, work closely with the retail sector and I [the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Vulnerability, Safeguarding and Countering Extremism] have met with representative bodies including the British Retail Consortium and the Association of Convenience Stores, who are also represented on the National Retail Crime Steering Group, to understand better the crime issues that affect the sector and how we can best work together to prevent and respond to these crimes.

20th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many EU nationals were detained in prison under immigration powers in each quarter of (a) 2014, (b) 2015 and (c) 2016.

The following link provides published data issued by the Ministry of Justice as at 31 December 2016. Data regarding foreign nationals detained in prison can be found in tab 1.6. Data on specific nationalities can be found in tab 1.7.

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/585874/prison-population-31-dec-2016.xlsx

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 8 March 2017 to Question 65944, on asylum, for what reasons her Department does not record that data; for what reasons the target was set at 28 days; and by what measure targets on asylum seekers' access to benefits, employment and accommodation are met.

All those granted refugee status in the UK are given access to the labour market and benefits, and are encouraged to access organisations that can assist with integration. It is a matter for individuals as to when and where they choose to exercise these rights. Data on the processing times of mainstream benefit applications is a matter for the Department for Work and Pensions. Following the final determination of a claim for asylum, the grace period during which support continues is prescribed in Regulation 2 of the Asylum Support Regulations 2000 and was developed with input from a range of stakeholders.

13th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 8 March 2017 to Question 65944, on asylum, for what reasons her Department set a 19-day target within which asylum seekers should move from initial accommodation to dispersed accommodation; and how her Department records the transfer of asylum seekers to dispersed accommodation from initial accommodation.

The transfer of asylum seekers from initial accommodation to dispersal accommodation is managed and delivered by individual accommodation providers. The Home Office measures and monitors the performance of suppliers based against a suite of KPIs, including the timeliness and quality of service provision. The 19-day turnaround for dispersal from Initial Accommodation is an internal management expectation based on established process timescales. UKVI monitors the transfer of asylum seekers to dispersed accommodation using a variety of sources.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 27 February 2017 to Question 64009, what proportion of and how many asylum seekers have moved from initial accommodation to dispersed accommodation within the 19-day period in each year since 2014.

I am sorry but the Home Office does not record this information centrally and it could only be provided at disproportionate cost by examination of individual records.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 20 February 2017 to Question 63853, what proportion of and how many asylum seekers access (a) mainstream benefits, (b) the labour market and (c) secure accommodation within 28 days of leave being granted.

I am sorry but the Home Office does not record this data.

28th Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 21 February 2017 to Question 63970, how many asylum claims lodged in the UK have been rejected in each year since 2014; and what proportion and how many claims lodged were correctly decided upon the first time in each such year.