Anneliese Dodds Portrait

Anneliese Dodds

Labour (Co-op) - Oxford East

Chair of Labour Policy Review

(since May 2021)
Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer
5th Apr 2020 - 9th May 2021
Shadow Minister (Treasury)
3rd Jul 2017 - 5th Apr 2020


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Wednesday 9th June 2021
Protecting the Public and Justice for Victims
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 193 Labour Aye votes vs 0 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 223 Noes - 0
Speeches
Tuesday 27th April 2021
Oral Answers to Questions

A year ago, the Chancellor personally announced the coronavirus large business interruption loan scheme, or “our loan scheme for large …

Written Answers
Monday 26th July 2021
Oxford-cambridge Arc
To the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether the team working on the Oxford to Cambridge …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
None available
Tweets
None available
MP Financial Interests
Monday 12th April 2021
1. Employment and earnings
24 March 2021, received £181.74. Hours: none since my election to Parliament. (Registered 24 March 2021)
EDM signed
Monday 24th May 2021
Fire and rehire
That this House notes with alarm the growing number of employers who are dismissing and re-engaging staff on worse pay …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Anneliese Dodds has voted in 248 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Anneliese Dodds Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

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

Sparring Partners
Rishi Sunak (Conservative)
Chancellor of the Exchequer
(42 debate interactions)
Steve Barclay (Conservative)
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
(14 debate interactions)
Kevin Hollinrake (Conservative)
(10 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(90 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(5 debate contributions)
Department for Transport
(4 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Anneliese Dodds's debates

Oxford East Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Anneliese Dodds has not participated in any petition debates

Latest EDMs signed by Anneliese Dodds

20th May 2021
Anneliese Dodds signed this EDM on Monday 24th May 2021

Fire and rehire

Tabled by: Grahame Morris (Labour - Easington)
That this House notes with alarm the growing number of employers who are dismissing and re-engaging staff on worse pay and terms and conditions, a practice commonly known as fire and rehire; agrees with the Government that such tactics represent an unacceptable abuse of power by rogue bosses, many of …
49 signatures
(Most recent: 24 Jun 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 36
Independent: 3
Plaid Cymru: 3
Alba Party: 2
Liberal Democrat: 2
Alliance: 1
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 1
Green Party: 1
Scottish National Party: 1
14th January 2021
Anneliese Dodds signed this EDM on Monday 18th January 2021

Godfrey Colin Cameron

Tabled by: Chris Stephens (Scottish National Party - Glasgow South West)
That this House is deeply saddened by news of the death of Godfrey Colin Cameron, a hardworking member of Parliamentary security staff and member of the PCS trade union who passed away aged just 55 after contracting covid-19; extends our sincere condolences to his devoted wife Hyacinth, children Leon and …
139 signatures
(Most recent: 8 Feb 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 117
Scottish National Party: 15
Plaid Cymru: 3
Independent: 2
Alba Party: 1
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
View All Anneliese Dodds's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Anneliese Dodds, 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.


5 Urgent Questions tabled by Anneliese Dodds

Anneliese Dodds has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

Anneliese Dodds has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Anneliese Dodds has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


198 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
1 Other Department Questions
19th Dec 2019
To ask the Prime Minister, when the first meeting of the cross-Cabinet Committee on climate change will take place.

I want us to become the cleanest, greenest society on earth, and inspire countries around the world to follow our lead, and to continue building on the excellent progress this government has made in tackling climate change and improving our environment. The Committee will bring together ministers responsible for domestic and international climate change policy, provide a forum to hold departments to account for their actions to combat climate change and oversee the UK’s preparations to host the UN’s major climate summit COP26, in November 2020. As has been the practice under successive Governments, information relating to the proceedings of Cabinet Committees is not disclosed.

Boris Johnson
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
27th Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of trends in the level of exports from each region and nation of the UK in each month since January 2021; and if he will place that assessment in the Library.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have, therefore, asked the Authority to respond.

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many private companies Ministers and officials in his Department proactively approached to discuss their prospective or continued participation in the ventilator challenge.

On 16 March, the Prime Minister launched the ventilator challenge to meet the UK’s need for mechanical ventilators to fight COVID-19. Following a sift of more than 5,000 initial offers of help, Cabinet Office held preliminary talks with potential suppliers and manufacturers and began a process to assess and develop shortlisted designs and scale them up. The programme was headed by a team of officials from the Government Commercial Function in the Cabinet Office. The NAO has published a comprehensive report on the programme which can be found here.

During the process, 12 technical design reviews were held with the teams of companies working together on designs, staffed by clinicians, the MHRA and officials, the reviews looked at the feasibility of a design delivering the full range of functionality required. Those design reviews reduced the list of potentially viable designs down to fewer than 10, who were paired with companies able to provide the components and help with the scale up. In the end around 100 companies were involved in the manufacturing.

As of December, there were over 30,000 mechanical ventilators available to patients across the United Kingdom. This compares to around 9,000 at the start of the pandemic in March 2020. The Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, described this as a “benchmark for procurement”.

Julia Lopez
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment HMRC has made of the adequacy of the £200 million Ports Infrastructure Fund to ensure the effective running of customs operations at UK ports.

In line with the practice of successive administrations, details of internal discussions within Government are not normally disclosed. Cabinet Office officials are in regular contact with ports across the UK as part of their regular engagement. This includes all ports which applied to the fund. This contact is ongoing. There were no discussions between Cabinet Office officials or ministers and the Rt Hon. Member for Epsom and Ewell regarding the Port Infrastructure Fund.

The Port Infrastructure Fund (PIF) team worked with an independent eligibility and assessment team, with specialist experience and technical expertise in rail, air and maritime port infrastructure design and build to assess the funding applications. The Fund Allocation Authority (FAA), which is made up of representatives from across the relevant government departments such as HMRC, Defra and Border Force, subsequently made decisions about allocations based on the recommendations of the PIF Team.

The Fund received 53 applications from a range of sea ports, rail facilities and airports. Of the 53 ports that applied to the fund, 41 were successful in their application and a total of £200M has been provisionally allocated. 12 ports were not considered eligible or were unsuccessful at assessment phase.

It is a commercial decision for ports as to whether to provide these facilities. In normal circumstances, ports would be expected to fund such facilities themselves. However - in recognition of the unique circumstances of EU Exit, and the tight timescales for putting infrastructure in place - Government has made £470m of funding available to support border readiness.

Ports will need to fund the remaining 34% themselves. As the maximum amount of funding available was £200 million, a 66% award was applied across all applications ensuring all successful bids received a fair and proportionate level of taxpayer funded support.

Julia Lopez
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what discussions he had with HMRC on the timing of announcements made from the Ports Infrastructure Fund.

In line with the practice of successive administrations, details of internal discussions within Government are not normally disclosed. Cabinet Office officials are in regular contact with ports across the UK as part of their regular engagement. This includes all ports which applied to the fund. This contact is ongoing. There were no discussions between Cabinet Office officials or ministers and the Rt Hon. Member for Epsom and Ewell regarding the Port Infrastructure Fund.

The Port Infrastructure Fund (PIF) team worked with an independent eligibility and assessment team, with specialist experience and technical expertise in rail, air and maritime port infrastructure design and build to assess the funding applications. The Fund Allocation Authority (FAA), which is made up of representatives from across the relevant government departments such as HMRC, Defra and Border Force, subsequently made decisions about allocations based on the recommendations of the PIF Team.

The Fund received 53 applications from a range of sea ports, rail facilities and airports. Of the 53 ports that applied to the fund, 41 were successful in their application and a total of £200M has been provisionally allocated. 12 ports were not considered eligible or were unsuccessful at assessment phase.

It is a commercial decision for ports as to whether to provide these facilities. In normal circumstances, ports would be expected to fund such facilities themselves. However - in recognition of the unique circumstances of EU Exit, and the tight timescales for putting infrastructure in place - Government has made £470m of funding available to support border readiness.

Ports will need to fund the remaining 34% themselves. As the maximum amount of funding available was £200 million, a 66% award was applied across all applications ensuring all successful bids received a fair and proportionate level of taxpayer funded support.

Julia Lopez
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
23rd Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if the Government will make an assessment of the potential merits of classifying cleaning staff as key workers.

Our message to the British public is clear: stay at home, in order to protect the NHS and save lives. The position remains, as outlined on gov.uk, that everyone who can work from home should do so.

Where that is not possible, people should go into work where it is safe and they are not symptomatic, isolating or shielding. Relevant guidance including from Public Health England should be followed.

In terms of the provision of education for certain workers, it is already the case that cleaners working in, for example, hospitals and social care could be eligible as long as "their specific role is necessary for the continuation of this essential public service". This is set out here - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision.

The Government has placed restrictions on the operations of certain businesses as part of the strategy to ensure people stay at home and away from others. Separate guidance has been published on this and is also available on gov.uk. Scientific evidence supporting the government’s response is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/scientific-advisory-group-for-emergencies-sage-coronavirus-covid-19-response.

Penny Mordaunt
Paymaster General
8th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the proposed new contract for sub-postmasters on the provision of post office services.

Post Office Limited ran a six-week consultation to seek views from postmasters on the proposed changes to remuneration and supported postmasters in understanding what the proposed approach would mean for their business. This was the first time Post Office had run a consultation on this scale. Post Office are now reviewing and analysing all the comments received from postmasters and will communicate the final changes in September.

The Government continues to protect the branch network by setting minimum access criteria and protects services by setting minimum services to be provided at post offices across the country.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
2nd Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the extent to which the interests of sub-postmasters are being effectively represented by the National Federation of Subpostmastes in the current pay consultation.

The National Federation of SubPostmasters (NFSP) provides an important forum through which postmasters can engage with and challenge the Post Office and the Government.

Following the new Mails Distribution Agreement (MDA2), Post Office proposed some changes in postmaster remuneration and the NFSP has raised concerns about these proposed changes with the Post Office and BEIS.

The Government understands that Post Office is considering postmasters’ concerns and is committed to communicating final changes in September. Progress in this and other areas will continue to be discussed at the regular working group meeting between the NFSP, Post Office and the Government.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
27th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what support and guidance on ventilation during the covid-19 outbreak is being made available to businesses.

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

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of extending the temporary suspension of wrongful trading measures beyond April 2021 in order to align with other business support schemes extended beyond that date during the covid-19 outbreak.

Suspension of liability for wrongful trading is one of a package of regulatory easements introduced by the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020, which expire at the end of March or April.

The further extension of all of these easements is under active consideration by the Government, and an announcement will be made shortly.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
19th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the risk posed by coal tips and other mining spoil in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Wales and (d) Northern Ireland.

The Coal Authority, one of BEIS’s Partner Organisations, owns and manages 40 coal tips across the United Kingdom. Full details of the regulatory of inspections for each site, and when they were last inspected, can be found on the GOV.UK website:


https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disused-colliery-tips-owned-and-inspected-by-the-coal-authority/disused-colliery-tips-managed-by-the-coal-authority-including-location-and-inspection-frequency--2.

The vast majority of coal tips are under private or Local Authority ownership.

Following the Tylorstown slip in Wales in February 2020, the Coal Authority has undertaken work for the Welsh Government to identify the location and ownership of all the coal tips in Wales. Local authorities in England and Scotland were asked to check any tips they owned and report any concerns. No concerns were reported. There are no coal tips in Northern Ireland.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Energy and Clean Growth)
18th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether a state aid limit operates on payments to businesses made after 31 December 2020; what the value of that limit is; and over what time period that limit is applied.

EU State aid limits, which vary depending on the basis on which aid is granted, no longer apply to subsidies granted from 1 January 2021 in the UK. The only exception is aid within scope of the Withdrawal Agreement, specifically Article 10 of the Northern Ireland Protocol and Article 138 in relation to aid for EU programmes and activities within the Multiannual Financial Framework. Instead, the principles and conditions in the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) must be followed, for example, any subsidies must be appropriate, proportionate, and limited to what is necessary to achieve the economic or policy objective. The TCA does not apply to subsidies below 325,000 Special Drawing Rights, approximately £345,000, given to a single enterprise over three fiscal years.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
8th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which local authorities have received or are in the process of receiving funding under the Local Restrictions Support Grant scheme.

The Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG) announced on 9 September provides support to businesses required to close as part of localised restrictions to control Covid-19. On 9 October, government increased the cash grants to businesses eligible under the LRSG to up to £3,000 per month for each hereditament required to close as a result of restrictions. Grants will be issued for each two-week period that a business is closed following the implementation of statutory localised restrictions and business closures.

Business closures in Bolton triggered the LRSG on Wednesday 30 September. We have worked closely with Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council to ensure they can distribute grants to eligible businesses as quickly as possible and will adjust their funding allocation so businesses are able to benefit from the increased grant amount from the beginning of their closure period. We continue to monitor local restrictions across the country and are ready to provide LRSG funding to other local authorities as appropriate.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
8th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the five per cent top-up for discretionary business support that can be received by local authorities in receipt of funds under the Local Restrictions Support Grant scheme, on what basis the five per cent is calculated; and at what stage local authorities are notified of the size of the five per cent top-up.

The 5% discretionary element of the Local Restrictions Support Grant scheme is designed to help those businesses that are required to close but are not on the ratings list, as well as those affected by closures or indirectly forced to close due to restrictions. This funding will only be available in areas that have triggered the main Local Restrictions Support Grant scheme element.

The Government will work with the affected Local Authority to assess the number of businesses in a Local Authority area in scope for the business rate element of the scheme. This will enable a figure to be calculated for that part of the grant fund. An additional 5% of this figure will be supplied to cover the discretionary element of the fund. This will apply for each two-week qualifying period.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
21st Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what advice the Government has provided to employers of clinically extremely vulnerable employees, who have not used the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme for a three-week period prior to the 30 June 2020, and who cannot return safely to work from the 1 August 2020, and who cannot work from home either.

The Government has published clear guidance for employers to help ensure workplaces are as safe as possible for all staff including those vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable workers.

This can be found under section 2, ‘Who should go to work’, within the guides: www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
27th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to planned reforms to the UK insolvency framework, when the new restructuring procedure and new temporary moratorium announced in August 2018 will be implemented.

Government will bring forward legislation for these measures at the earliest opportunity.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
27th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many employers that were identified as non-compliant by the national minimum wage enforcement unit were not publicly named.

The current NMW Naming Scheme commenced in 2013; employers named for National Minimum Wage (NMW) non-compliance since then, and the policy document which sets out how the scheme operates, can be found on gov.uk.

Following a recommendation from the Director of Labour Market Enforcement, the NMW Naming Scheme is currently under review and the Department will shortly publish the outcome of that work. This will detail any changes we are making to the scheme to ensure its continued effectiveness as a deterrent to non-compliance.

All employers who meet the eligibility criteria for naming are given a chance to make a representation as to why they should not be named. Exemptions to naming can be granted in line with the published exemption criteria. In the most recent naming round in July 2018, 95% of eligible cases were ultimately named.

27th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which employers have been named by the national minimum wage enforcement unit for non-compliance in the last three years; and what criteria her Department uses to decide on naming an employer.

The current NMW Naming Scheme commenced in 2013; employers named for National Minimum Wage (NMW) non-compliance since then, and the policy document which sets out how the scheme operates, can be found on gov.uk.

Following a recommendation from the Director of Labour Market Enforcement, the NMW Naming Scheme is currently under review and the Department will shortly publish the outcome of that work. This will detail any changes we are making to the scheme to ensure its continued effectiveness as a deterrent to non-compliance.

All employers who meet the eligibility criteria for naming are given a chance to make a representation as to why they should not be named. Exemptions to naming can be granted in line with the published exemption criteria. In the most recent naming round in July 2018, 95% of eligible cases were ultimately named.

3rd Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the financial effect of the covid-19 outbreak on the independent science centres sector.

We recognise that these are extremely difficult conditions for visitor attractions such as independent science centres. These organisations educate and entertain visitors of all ages on what science is and the important discoveries over the centuries that have changed all our lives. We continue to engage with stakeholders representing attractions such as science centre stakeholders to assess the situation and to gather intelligence on the financial impact.

Businesses and workers in the science centres sector can access the Government’s comprehensive economic support package. This includes the recently extended Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the Bounce Back Loan scheme, VAT payment deferrals for firms and £330bn worth of government backed and guaranteed loans to support businesses.

I have established a Cultural Renewal taskforce and a specific Visitor Economy working group to prepare guidance to help visitor attractions to reopen safely.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
3rd Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the covid-19 outbreak, what plans his Department has to provide support for the independent science centres sector.

We recognise that these are extremely difficult conditions for attractions such as independent science centres. These organisations educate and entertain visitors of all ages on what science is and the important discoveries over the centuries that have changed all our lives.

Businesses and workers in the independent science centres sector can access the Government’s comprehensive economic support package. This includes the recently extended Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the Bounce Back Loan scheme, VAT payment deferrals for firms and £330bn worth of government backed and guaranteed loans to support businesses.

My Department has established a Cultural Renewal taskforce to prepare guidance to help our sector's businesses, including attractions, reopen safely. We will continue to engage with industry to assess how we can most effectively support the attractions sector through this crisis and beyond.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
1st Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether financial support grants provided by the Arts Council during the covid-19 outbreak are treated as taxable income.

The Arts Council always recommends that grant recipients refer to HMRC and/or an independent advisor for advice that takes full account of their personal circumstances for tax. In general, as per the agreement reached between the Inland Revenue and the Arts Council of Great Britain in 1978, which we understand still applies, it is the Arts Council’s understanding that:

  • Grants awarded to support people to take time out to develop and explore their artistic and cultural practice (such as those grants recently made under the Arts Council’s Emergency Response Fund for Individuals) should not be treated as taxable income.

  • Grants awarded to support the delivery of a specific project or projects would be treated as taxable income.’

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
29th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many people have (a) started and (b) completed courses available in The Skills Toolkit online learning platform since it was launched on 28 April 2020.

As of 27 December 2020, there have been an estimated 138,000 course registrations and 25,000 course completions. These are experimental statistics and further information can be found in the official statistical release of 28 January 2021 in the following link: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/apprenticeships-and-traineeships/2020-21.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
29th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the (a) effectiveness of The Skills Toolkit and (b) potential effect of that toolkit on improving the (i) employability, (ii) digital skills and (iii) maths skills of learners.

The digital, numeracy and work readiness skills we have chosen to focus on are the skills that everyone needs to thrive in the 21st Century and ones that evidence suggests are increasingly in demand across almost all sectors and occupations. In deciding which specific courses to offer we have spoken to a range of employers.[1]

We have prioritised high-quality short courses that are free for learners to access online. The digital and numeracy skills we have chosen to focus on are the skills that everyone needs to thrive in the 21st Century and ones that evidence suggests are increasingly in demand across almost all sectors and occupations.[1]

[1] The Employer Skills Survey 2016 found a third of employers identifying digital skills lacking among applications. Research commissioned by DCMS in June 2019 identified 75% of job openings at each level request digital skills. This is backed up by a report conducted for the Industrial Strategy Council last year, which identified at the current rate there will be 5 million people with an acute basic digital skills need by 2030.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
29th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much money from the public purse has been allocated to The Skills Toolkit online learning platform in each year since its inception.

The cost allocated to The Skills Toolkit since it was announced in April 2020 is £952,000. This is all within this financial year.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
29th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department collects data on the protected characteristics of those who have completed courses via The Skills Toolkit online learning platform; and if he will place a copy of an aggregate, non-disclosive summary of this data in the House of Commons Library.

The department does not collect data on the protected characteristics of those who have completed courses via The Skills Toolkit online learning platform.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much money from the public purse has been spent on The Skills Toolkit online learning platform in each year since the beginning of that platform.

The Skills Toolkit was announced in April 2020 and the cost of developing the platform in this financial year is £798,700. This includes the launch and the two subsequent expansions of the platform. A further £325,700 has been spent on communications activities to promote the platform.

As of 1 November 2020 there have been an estimated 119,000 course registrations. As of 1 November 2020 there have been 1,323,450 page views. These are experimental statistics and further information can be found in the official statistical release of 27 November 2020 in the following link: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/apprenticeships-and-traineeships.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
30th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the (a) effectiveness of The Skills Toolkit and (b) effect of that toolkit on improving learners' (i) employability, (ii) digital skills and (iii) maths skills.

The platform was launched on 28 April and as of 30 September 2020 we had 97,615 course starts, 16,219 course completions and 1,100,260 page views. The department continues to review the data and outcomes from the platform in partnership with the providers – such as Google and Microsoft – who host the courses that feature on the platform.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many people on the Erasmus scheme work in schools in the UK.

The Department for Education has made no estimate of the number of people on the Erasmus Scheme working in schools in the UK. This is because the European Commission records the number of incoming mobilities to the UK. Statistical analysis provides a breakdown by country for school staff mobilities (KA101) but does not break down figures for centralised school mobilities, such as strategic partnerships for school education (KA201) and school exchange partnerships (KA229) by country. Under the 2018 call for proposals, the UK had 2,345 participants for KA101, and 1,912 participants under the 2017 call for proposals.

More information can be found in the annual statistical analysis for Erasmus+: https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/about/statistics_en.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Education)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the UK's withdrawal from the EU on the provision of language teaching in the UK.

All teachers from the EU, including those teaching languages, make a welcome and important contribution to our school system. The Government has made an unequivocal guarantee to all EU citizens living and working here by protecting their rights in UK law through the Withdrawal Agreement Act and the EU Settlement Scheme. We have already provided certainty to almost 2.5 million people, including teachers, granted status through the EU Settlement Scheme.

On 19 February, the Government published a policy statement which set out further detail on the future points-based immigration system, that will be introduced from January 2021, to attract the brightest and best talent from around the world. As skilled workers, teachers will score sufficient points for a visa under this system if they have an offer of a teaching job that pays at least as much as the minimum salary range for teachers and they are able to speak English to the required level.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the effect of the UK leaving the EU on teacher recruitment in the UK.

All teachers from the EU, including those teaching languages, make a welcome and important contribution to our school system. The Government has made an unequivocal guarantee to all EU citizens living and working here by protecting their rights in UK law through the Withdrawal Agreement Act and the EU Settlement Scheme. We have already provided certainty to almost 2.5 million people, including teachers, granted status through the EU Settlement Scheme.

On 19 February, the Government published a policy statement which set out further detail on the future points-based immigration system, that will be introduced from January 2021, to attract the brightest and best talent from around the world. As skilled workers, teachers will score sufficient points for a visa under this system if they have an offer of a teaching job that pays at least as much as the minimum salary range for teachers and they are able to speak English to the required level.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many teachers in UK schools are EU nationals.

The Migration Advisory Committee’s report, ‘A full review of the Shortage Occupation List’, published in May 2019, estimated that around 4% of secondary school teachers and around 2% of primary and nursery school teachers were born in the European Economic Area (EEA) (excluding UK).

The Department publishes data on the nationality of initial teacher training (ITT) trainees, which is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/initial-teacher-training-trainee-number-census-2019-to-2020.

In 2019-20, there were 28,859 postgraduate new entrants to ITT whose nationality was known, which was 98% of all postgraduate new entrants. Of these, 5% (1,484) were EEA nationals (excluding UK).

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with the Financial Conduct Authority since 14 February 2020 on improving access to flood insurance for tenants.

Defra ministers have not met with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) since the 14 February 2020.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with the Financial Conduct Authority since 14 February 2020 in respect of improving access to flood insurance for people on low incomes.

Defra ministers have not met with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) since the 14 February 2020.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, on what dates he has had meetings with the Financial Conduct Authority since 14 February 2020 at which the functioning of the UK's flood insurance market has been discussed.

Defra ministers have not met with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) since the 14 February 2020.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the Rural Development Programme for England Network on potential changes to deadlines for funding applications during the covid-19 outbreak.

Defra officials have had a number of discussions with rural stakeholders about the impact of COVID-19 on existing and future Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) projects. Application deadlines for some RDPE schemes, including Historic Buildings Grants, have already been extended. We are examining the timetable for the current round of the Growth Programme and will inform applicants of any changes if they are made.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
29th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the December 2018 document, Our Waste, Our Resources: A strategy for England, what steps her Department has taken to extend the lives of products through repair, reuse and remanufacture.

Our Strategy is guided by the objectives of maximising the value of resource use and minimising waste and its impact on the environment. One of our underlying principles is to prevent waste, where we can, from occurring in the first place.

With this in mind, we have taken steps towards supporting ecodesign of products so they are durable, repairable and capable of remanufacture. We are seeking powers in the Environment Bill to put in place, subject to consultation, ecodesign and consumer information requirements for non-energy using products. As to energy-using products, we will seek to drive change to ensure products can be repaired, reused and remanufactured making use of powers on ecodesign that we are taking back from the EU. The powers in the Environment Bill will enable us to supplement these requirements with consumer information requirements to facilitate sustainable purchasing. We are also reviewing the contribution that producer responsibility schemes for priority products could make to encourage better product design.

Additionally, we are in the process of developing a new Waste Prevention Programme for England, on which it is intended to consult this year, aimed at supporting reuse, repair and remanufacture as well as other means of waste prevention.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
8th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many people over the age of 70 are waiting for a decision on the renewal of their driving licence following the expiry of their existing licence who applied for that renewal after the Government’s covid-19 extension period expired on 31 December 2020.

Drivers whose licence expired between 1 February and 31 December 2020 have had their entitlement to drive in the UK automatically extended for 11 months. The extension started from the date the licence was due to expire. Drivers whose entitlement expires on or after 1 January 2021, are advised to renew their driving licence as normal.

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency’s (DVLA) online services have been available throughout the pandemic and are the quickest and easiest way to renew a driving licence. There are no delays in successful online applications and customers should receive their driving licence within a few days.

However, many people still choose or have to make a paper application for a driving licence. The DVLA receives around 60,000 items of mail every day which must be dealt with in person. Ongoing industrial action by members of the Public and Commercial Services union, along with fewer operational staff being on site to allow for social distancing in line with Welsh Government requirements and an increased demand for its services has led to delays in dealing with paper applications. The DVLA has leased an additional building to accommodate more operational staff.

The number of paper applications awaiting processing fluctuates daily as driving licences are issued and new applications received. Currently, paper applications are likely to take six to ten weeks to process. There may be additional delays in processing more complex transactions, for example, if medical investigations are needed as part of a driving licence application. The latest information on turnaround times for paper driving licence applications can be found here.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
28th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what proportion of funds have been disbursed from the Port Infrastructure Fund to successful applicants; and what the Government's timescale is for disbursement of remaining funds.

Disbursal of funds is set to commence imminently, with several Grant Funding Agreements having been recently finalised following negotiations with awardees, and the remainder being finalised currently.

Funds will be disbursed to each awardee as staged payments, monthly. Following initial payments, the timescales for disbursing remaining funds to any awardee corresponds to that awardee’s project delivery timeline.

Projects are scheduled to be delivered in time for the full implementation of the new Border Operating Model.

Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of Great Western Railway withdrawing from the easitNETWORK discount travel scheme on (a) traffic congestion and (b) air quality in Oxford East constituency.

Great Western Railway’s (GWR’s) withdrawal from easitNETWORK is a matter for the operator, and the Department has therefore made no assessment of its effect on traffic congestion or air quality and has had no discussions with employers in Oxford about this.

Any support for users of the easitNETWORK discount travel scheme when GWR withdraws from that scheme is also a matter for GWR.

Grant Shapps
Secretary of State for Transport
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has held with employers in Oxford that make the easitNETWORK discount travel scheme available to their employees on the effect of Great Western Railway withdrawing from that scheme.

Great Western Railway’s (GWR’s) withdrawal from easitNETWORK is a matter for the operator, and the Department has therefore made no assessment of its effect on traffic congestion or air quality and has had no discussions with employers in Oxford about this.

Any support for users of the easitNETWORK discount travel scheme when GWR withdraws from that scheme is also a matter for GWR.

Grant Shapps
Secretary of State for Transport
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what financial support his Department will provide to users of the easitNETWORK discount travel scheme when Great Western Railway withdraws from that scheme.

Great Western Railway’s (GWR’s) withdrawal from easitNETWORK is a matter for the operator, and the Department has therefore made no assessment of its effect on traffic congestion or air quality and has had no discussions with employers in Oxford about this.

Any support for users of the easitNETWORK discount travel scheme when GWR withdraws from that scheme is also a matter for GWR.

Grant Shapps
Secretary of State for Transport
14th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to Annex 1 of the letter of 24 May 2021 from the Minister for Welfare Delivery to the Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee on Universal Credit Business Case: refreshed costs and savings for 2020/21 and 2021/22, what assumptions her Department has made for the (a) non-take-up in legacy benefits and tax credits in the New Legacy Savings Model mentioned in that Annex and (b) take-up of Universal Credit in that model.

Under the Legacy system, households had to claim separately for benefits received, for instance an in-work lone parents in rented accommodation would need to claim both Tax Credits and Housing Benefit. However, some households may not have realised they were entitled to, or chosen to claim, all the benefits they were entitled to. As an integrated benefit, Universal Credit automatically increases take-up and we estimate that when fully rolled-out, 700,000 households will benefit from claiming their full entitlement in Universal Credit

In the New Legacy Savings model, we have taken the projections for the number of households on Universal Credit and made an adjustment to take account that fewer benefits would have been claimed under the legacy system, based on the above assessment. This adjustment applies to around 10% of households.

Will Quince
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
16th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the Government's plans are for how shielding people can access benefits after the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends.

Those who receive a notification that they need to shield will remain eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) from their employer, and New Style Employment and Support Allowance, subject to the wider eligibility criteria. Where an individual’s income is reduced while off work sick and they require further financial support, for example where they are not eligible for SSP, they may be able to claim Universal Credit, depending on their personal circumstances.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
29th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what guidance has been provided to (a) work coaches and (b) staff of her Department on measures to increase earnings for in-work claimants, including sanctioning for failure to increase earnings beyond the (i) the Administrative Earnings Threshold and (ii) Conditionality Earnings Threshold.

We are developing our understanding of how best to support people to progress in work, through a programme of research and testing. There is currently no active in-work support offer for in-work claimants in Universal Credit and no work related requirements, meaning there would be no sanctions resulting if these are not completed, and no guidance provided.

Those who are earning very small amounts, below the level of the Administrative Earnings Threshold, are treated as out of work and placed in the intensive regime.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
29th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what guidance her Department has issued to (a) work coaches and (b) staff in her Department on assessing whether claimants are reaching (i) the Administrative Earnings Threshold and (ii) the Conditionality Earnings Threshold if the claimant is part of a cohabiting couple.

Comprehensive guidance on assessing the Administrative Earnings Threshold and the Conditionality Earnings Threshold is available to all staff. This guidance is published in the Commons library and the Department is committed to refreshing this at regular intervals.

http://data.parliament.uk/DepositedPapers/Files/DEP2019-0980/2._Administrative_and_Conditionality_Earnings_Thresholds_v3.0.pdf

http://data.parliament.uk/DepositedPapers/Files/DEP2019-0980/71._Labour_Market_regimes_v11.0.pdf

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
22nd Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people in the intensive work search regime that were (a) in and (b) out of work have been sanctioned in each month in each of the last two years.

The information requested is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

However, the member may find it useful to check the UC Sanction Rates tables published on the Stat-Xplore website at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk

Specifically, those available on the intensive work regime that have received a sanction.

Guidance for users is available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Getting-Started.html

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
16th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of the proposed closure of the hydrotherapy pool at Royal Berkshire Hospital on (a) the treatment of (i) long-term health conditions, (ii) musculoskeletal conditions and (iii) people recovering from covid-19 and (b) post-injury rehabilitation.

The Department of Health and Social Care has indicated that it will not be possible to answer this question within the usual time period. An answer is being prepared and will be provided as soon as it is available.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to ensure patients continue to receive specialist hydrotherapy in the event that the hydrotherapy pool at Royal Berkshire Hospital is closed.

The Department of Health and Social Care has indicated that it will not be possible to answer this question within the usual time period. An answer is being prepared and will be provided as soon as it is available.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will publish the correspondence his Department has had with (a) the NHS Berkshire West CCG and (b) Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust on the proposed closure of the hydrotherapy pool at Royal Berkshire Hospital.

A search of the Department’s Ministerial correspondence database has not identified any such correspondence.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the impact of the covid-19 outbreak on eating disorder services at Cotswold House, Oxfordshire; and what steps he is taking to reduce current waiting times for (i) assessment and (ii) psychological treatment at Cotswold House, Oxfordshire.

No specific assessment has been made.

Nadine Dorries
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that patients who pay for their healthcare as a result of their immigration status are not charged for treatment for covid-19; and what monitoring his Department is undertaking on the charging for that treatment by hospitals.

Regulations came into force on 29 January 2020 to add COVID-19 to Schedule 1 of the National Health Service (Charges to Overseas Visitors) Regulations 2015. This means there can be no charge made to an overseas visitor for the diagnosis, or if positive, treatment of COVID-19. This message has been disseminated to National Health Service staff, the public and organisations representing vulnerable migrant groups. It has also been published in forty languages on Public Health England’s Migrant Health Guide.

The Department does not monitor NHS trusts on the individual charges that are made to overseas visitors, or where exemptions for charge are given, for example for the diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to continue provide all local authorities with the 5 per cent discretionary top-up to fund the £500 self-isolation payment.

The Government has provided an initial £50 million to local authorities in England to cover the costs of the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme. This includes £15 million for discretionary payments, which is a fixed envelope until 31 January 2021.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on extending the zero VAT rate for personal protective equipment beyond 31 October 2020.

The introduction of temporary VAT relief was an extraordinary measure designed to relieve the burden of VAT on the price of purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) used for protection from COVID-19 by frontline workers and has particularly aided sectors that cannot recover VAT on such goods due to their VAT exempt status, such as care homes. This was needed during the initial period of the COVID-19 crisis when the global supply of PPE did not meet demand, resulting in inflated prices.

Since then, the Department has stabilised the United Kingdom PPE supply chain to meet current demand and this month, we will have a four-month stockpile of all COVID-19-critical PPE in place, with a tremendous contribution from UK manufacturers.

The Department has committed in the Winter Plan to provide free PPE for COVID-19 needs to Care Quality Commission-registered care homes and domiciliary care providers via the PPE portal until the end of March 2021. Now that supply has increased and prices have stabilised, the temporary zero-rate of VAT on PPE is therefore no longer required and ended on 31 October 2020 as planned.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the 31 October 2020 expiry date for the zero VAT rate for the supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) on the projected level of compliance of the public with Government guidelines on PPE.

The introduction of temporary VAT relief was an extraordinary measure designed to relieve the burden of VAT on the price of purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) used for protection from COVID-19 by frontline workers and has particularly aided sectors that cannot recover VAT on such goods due to their VAT exempt status, such as care homes. This was needed during the initial period of the COVID-19 crisis when the global supply of PPE did not meet demand, resulting in inflated prices.

Since then, the Department has stabilised the United Kingdom PPE supply chain to meet current demand and this month, we will have a four-month stockpile of all COVID-19-critical PPE in place, with a tremendous contribution from UK manufacturers.

The Department has committed in the Winter Plan to provide free PPE for COVID-19 needs to Care Quality Commission-registered care homes and domiciliary care providers via the PPE portal until the end of March 2021. Now that supply has increased and prices have stabilised, the temporary zero-rate of VAT on PPE is therefore no longer required and ended on 31 October 2020 as planned.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the 31 October 2020 expiry date for the zero VAT rate for the supply of personal protective equipment on public health in England.

The introduction of temporary VAT relief was an extraordinary measure designed to relieve the burden of VAT on the price of purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) used for protection from COVID-19 by frontline workers and has particularly aided sectors that cannot recover VAT on such goods due to their VAT exempt status, such as care homes. This was needed during the initial period of the COVID-19 crisis when the global supply of PPE did not meet demand, resulting in inflated prices.

Since then, the Department has stabilised the United Kingdom PPE supply chain to meet current demand and this month, we will have a four-month stockpile of all COVID-19-critical PPE in place, with a tremendous contribution from UK manufacturers.

The Department has committed in the Winter Plan to provide free PPE for COVID-19 needs to Care Quality Commission-registered care homes and domiciliary care providers via the PPE portal until the end of March 2021. Now that supply has increased and prices have stabilised, the temporary zero-rate of VAT on PPE is therefore no longer required and ended on 31 October 2020 as planned.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
8th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when local authorities will be provided with guidance on how to set up the discretionary fund accompanying the new £500 self-isolation payment.

The Test and Trace Support Payment of £500 was introduced on 28 September, to support people on low incomes who are unable to work from home if they are told to self-isolate by National Health Service Test and Trace and will lose income as a result.

We have worked closely with local authorities on the implementation of these payments and have provided them with support and guidance on how to administer the scheme, including discretionary payments.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
23rd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with the European Commission on UK participation in the EU scheme for joint procurement of ventilators and protective equipment for medical staff.

The Government is working with industry, the National Health Service, social care providers and the army to ensure the supply of key medical equipment for the duration of the COVID-19 outbreak. Royal Mail and Amazon have also pledged to support with logistics. In addition, ministers and the Chief Medical Officer are working closely with counterparts in the devolved administrations to ensure an approach that works for the whole of the UK. We are in active discussions with the European Commission on future shared procurement opportunities and we will decide whether to participate in each on the basis of public health requirements at the time. We are exploring all procurement options for medical equipment and will give the NHS and the social care sector everything they need to tackle this outbreak.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
10th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what representations he has made to the World Health Organisation on its decision that biennial reporting of controls on marketing of baby formulas and foods should end in 2026.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is reforming its governance systems, including proposals to consolidate reporting requirements for numerous and often overlapping resolutions across the Organization’s broad health mandate, and to suggest an end date for reporting where one was not specified.

We support efforts by WHO to reform its governance processes, as this will make reporting on progress more efficient, strategic and impactful. In addition, this process will not prevent member states requesting further future reports and World Health Assembly agenda items on the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes beyond 2026.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
31st Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to his oral contribution, of 28 January 2020, Official Report, column 668, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of the classification of 15 HRT products within Category C of the NHS Drugs Tariff, published in June 2018 on the relative availability of HRT products in the UK compared with EU27 nations.

We are aware of ongoing supply issues with some hormone replacement therapy (HRT) preparations. The addition of HRT to the Drug Tariff is completely unrelated to the shortage.

We have been working closely with all suppliers of HRT preparations to maintain overall supply to patients. We have shared relevant information about the supply situation and availability of HRT products with the National Health Service and are having discussions with organisations such as the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare and the British Menopausal Society. In October 2019 we took unprecedented action to ban the parallel export of all HRT products to keep these medicines in the United Kingdom.

We continue to work with all stakeholders to ensure relevant information about the HRT products affected by supply issues and the products that remain available is shared with the NHS on a regular basis.

We anticipate the supply situation will improve later this month (February 2020).

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what proportion of people suffering from motor neurone disease have access to physiotherapy.

This information is not available.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
6th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many motor neurone disease specialist nurses are working in the NHS.

The Department does not hold the information requested.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 10 February 2020 to Question 12373 on Israel: West Bank, how many of those (a) pre-fabricated residential, livelihood and agricultural structures and (b) 30 renewable energy systems (i) are still in use and (ii) have been removed or demolished by the Israeli authorities.

11.37 per cent of the needs-based and emergency services HMG funds as part of an international consortium helping to provide pre-fabricated residential, livelihood and agricultural structures have been demolished by the Israeli authorities. However, none of the 30 renewable energy systems have been lost as a result of confiscations or demolitions. We are deeply concerned by the continued demolition of Palestinian property by the Israeli authorities. Demolitions and evictions of Palestinians from their homes cause unnecessary suffering to ordinary Palestinians; call into question Israel's commitment to a viable two-state solution; and, in all but the most exceptional of cases, are contrary to International Humanitarian Law. We are keeping the case for compensation under review.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 10 February 2020 to Question 12373 on Israel: West Bank, whether the allocated funding has been provided (a) directly as part of UK aid or (b) indirectly through (i) ECHO or (ii) other EU aid programmes.

The allocated funding has been provided directly as part of UK aid. Our assistance supports a stable Palestinian Authority (PA) which can act as an effective partner for peace with Israel and can deliver essential services to Palestinians. UK Aid to the PA supports the provision of education and health services in the West Bank and provides technical assistance to strengthen the PA's financial management. In 2018/19 it helped pay the salaries of 37,600 teachers, doctors, nurses, midwives and other health and education workers, enabling 26,000 Palestinians to get an education (50 per cent girls), 3,300 MMR vaccinations for children, and 111,000 medical consultations. UK aid also helps improve water and electricity services in the West Bank and across the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how much funding the UK has provided to the Occupied Palestinian Territories (a) directly and (b) indirectly through EU aid programmes in each of the last three years.

UK spending on Overseas Development Assistance is detailed in the annual Statistics on International Development. Spending in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPTs) for calendar years 2016-2018 is detailed below. This includes all UK assistance in the OPTs, and for Palestinian refugees across the region, through our support to United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). EU support to the OPTs, available from the OECD, is also detailed in the below grid. This does not include the majority of EU support to UNRWA, which is captured separately. Approximately 15 per cent of EU spending on humanitarian and development assistance is attributable to the UK.

Year

2016

2017

2018

UK ODA (inc. all UNRWA funding)*

£77.2m

£112.5m

£114.8m

EU bilateral spend (approx.)**

£320m

£225m

£226m

15% UK imputed share of EU bilateral spend (approx.)

£48m

£34m

£34m

EU figures calculated using current exchange rates

* https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-on-international-development

** https://stats.oecd.org/

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 28 January 2020 to Question 5527 on Israel: West Bank, how many of the cases funded through the Government’s legal aid programme to Bedouin communities and Palestinians facing demolition or eviction have been (a) successful and (b) unsuccessful in preventing demolition or eviction.

Of those cases provided with legal representation through our legal aid programme, 97 per cent have resulted in suspension of demolitions and evictions, allowing Palestinians to remain in their homes.

4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the oral contribution of 30 January 2020 of the Minister for the Middle East and North Africa, Official Report column 935, on Middle East Peace Plan, what steps in addition to condemnation he plans to take in the event that annexation occurs.

As the Foreign Secretary set out in Parliament on 4 February, any move to unilaterally annex territory would be contrary to international law, damaging to peace efforts, and could not pass unchallenged. Although we will not discuss possible responses to hypothetical situations, we call on all parties to refrain from actions that would imperil the viability of a two-state solution, based on the 1967 lines, and make it harder to achieve a just and lasting peace.

4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 28 January 2020 to Question 5529 on Israel: Palestinians, whetherthe Government plans to replicate the provisions of the Russia (Sanctions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 in relation to Israel in the event that part of the Occupied Palestinians Territories is annexed.

We have made clear our deep concern about the suggestion that any parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territories should be annexed. As the Foreign Secretary set out in Parliament on 4 February, any move to unilaterally annex territory would be contrary to international law, damaging to peace efforts, and could not pass unchallenged. Although we will not discuss possible responses to hypothetical situations, we call on all parties to refrain from actions that would imperil the viability of a two-state solution, based on the 1967 lines, and make it harder to achieve a just and lasting peace.

20th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the statement on 18 Dec 2019 of the UK representative to the United Nations Security Council on increased Israeli demolitions of Palestinian structures in the Occupied West Bank, what steps the Government will take (a) unilaterally and (b) in co-ordination with other EU member states to deter future demolitions of donor-funded structures in Area C by the Israeli authorities.

As we made clear in the UN Security Council, we are deeply concerned by the continued demolition of Palestinian property by the Israeli authorities. Demolitions and evictions of Palestinians from their homes cause unnecessary suffering to ordinary Palestinians; call into question Israel's commitment to a viable two-state solution; and, in all but the most exceptional of cases, are contrary to International Humanitarian Law. Officials from our Embassy in Tel Aviv have repeatedly made clear to the Israeli authorities, most recently on 17 December 2019, our serious concern at the increase in demolitions of Palestinian properties in Area C of the West Bank and in East Jerusalem. The UK and international partners will continue to call for Israel to abandon demolition plans entirely, and instead provide a transparent route to construction for Palestinians in Area C. We support Bedouin communities and Palestinians facing demolition or eviction through our legal aid programme. The UK has also allocated £1.1 million to support essential infrastructure for vulnerable Palestinians in Area C.

20th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, with reference to the statement of 18 Dec 2019 by the UK representative to the United Nations Security Council that any suggestion to annex parts of the of the Occupied Palestinian Territories could not pass unchallenged, what steps the Government will take (a) unilaterally, (b) in co-operation with other EU member states and (c) in co-operation with other members of the Security Council to deter any such annexation.

We have made clear our deep concern about the suggestion that any parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territories should be annexed, including during the UN Security Council Open Debate on the Middle East Peace Process on 21 January. Any declaration of a unilateral border change undermines the rules-based international order and the UN Charter. The UK calls on all parties to refrain from actions in contravention of international law that would imperil the viability of a two-state solution, based on the 1967 lines, and make it harder to achieve a just and lasting peace.

20th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many instances of which the Government is aware have members of the Israeli (a) Government and (b) Knesset suggested that parts or all of the Occupied Palestinian Territories should be annexed by the Israeli Government, since January 2019.

​The British Government does not hold this information. We have made clear our deep concern about the suggestion that any parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territories should be annexed. Such a move would be contrary to international law, damaging to peace efforts, and could not pass unchallenged.

18th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether the Government has provided any support to the Indonesia Government for (a) military training, (b) internal security training and (c) public order training since January 2015; and if he will make a statement.

The UK supports counter-terrorism training for the Indonesian National Police, through the Jakarta Centre for Law Enforcement Cooperation (JCLEC). This includes a broad range of counter terrorism investigation and analytical skills, essential equipment to enhance Indonesia’s forensic, surveillance and IT capabilities; training on the post-terrorist incident response, including first aid training. The British Armed Forces have provided the Indonesian military a number of professional educational courses for officers, and training in specific areas of capability, including maritime security. The UK does not provide Indonesia with any public order training.

19th Dec 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether the Government has sought EU approval for sanctions against people who have been involved in breaches of human rights in Hong Kong.

There are currently no EU sanctions in place against individuals in Hong Kong. In Hong Kong our focus is on supporting a peaceful resolution through meaningful dialogue that addresses the concerns of the Hong Kong people. As the former Foreign Secretary announced on 25 June, no further export licences will be granted to Hong Kong for crowd control equipment for police unless we are satisfied that our concerns about human rights and fundamental freedoms have been addressed thoroughly.

27th Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will place in the Library any contingency plans his Department has prepared in the event that additional economic support is required as a result of a further wave of covid-19.

Throughout the pandemic, the government has sought to protect people’s jobs and livelihoods while also supporting businesses and public services across the UK. To do this, the government has put in place a package of support which will provide businesses and individuals with certainty over the coming months, even as measures to prevent further spread of the virus change. The cumulative cost to the government of the support has been £352 billion since the start of the pandemic.

Thanks to people’s hard work and sacrifice, supported by the success of the initial stages of the vaccine rollout, there is now a path to reopening the economy. We will continue to take a flexible but cautious approach as we review restrictions, and as measures to control the virus change it is right that government support should also evolve. Because of this, we will keep all impacts and policies under review.

To ensure that individuals and businesses have time to plan as the economy reopens in line with the easing of restrictions, schemes such as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, business grants and loans, and business rates and VAT relief are continuing beyond the end of the Roadmap.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has made an assessment of the effect on revenue to the Exchequer of the change to the Statutory Residence Test announced on 9 April 2020 in the (a) 2019-20 and (b) 2020-21 financial years.

COVID-19 measures and guidance related to the Statutory Residence Test (SRT) have been estimated to have a negligible cost to the exchequer. This is because they will in most cases preserve what an individual's tax residence determination would be in the absence of COVID-19.

The number of individuals affected by the change is expected to be small.

Further information is available in the corresponding Tax Information and Impact Note on GOV.UK:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/895361/Statutory_Residence_Test.pdf

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has made an estimate of the number of people who have been affected by the change to the Statutory Residence Test announced on the 9 April 2020 in the (a) 2019-20 and (b) 2020-21 financial years.

COVID-19 measures and guidance related to the Statutory Residence Test (SRT) have been estimated to have a negligible cost to the exchequer. This is because they will in most cases preserve what an individual's tax residence determination would be in the absence of COVID-19.

The number of individuals affected by the change is expected to be small.

Further information is available in the corresponding Tax Information and Impact Note on GOV.UK:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/895361/Statutory_Residence_Test.pdf

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will publish the communication between (a) himself and his Department, (b) the Prime Minister and (c) the Prime Minister’s Office on the changes to the Statutory Residence Test announced on 9 April 2020.

At the start of the pandemic, HMT and HMRC received a large number of requests for easements, all of which were considered, resulting in more than 80 COVID-19 related easements and exemptions being introduced to support businesses and individuals since March 2020, with many of these still in place.

The Government took a principled approach to changing the rules for the Statutory Residence Test so that any individual within certain critical sectors working on COVID-19 related activity would have benefited from the exemption.

For further details, please see the statement published by the Prime Minister’s office on 23 April:
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/information-relating-to-the-ventilator-challenge-and-the-statutory-residence-test

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many (a) individuals and (b) organisations made representations to his Department on the change to the Statutory Residence Test announced on 9 April 2020.

At the start of the pandemic, HMT and HMRC received a large number of requests for easements, all of which were considered, resulting in more than 80 COVID-19 related easements and exemptions being introduced to support businesses and individuals since March 2020, with many of these still in place.

The Government took a principled approach to changing the rules for the Statutory Residence Test so that any individual within certain critical sectors working on COVID-19 related activity would have benefited from the exemption.

For further details, please see the statement published by the Prime Minister’s office on 23 April:
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/information-relating-to-the-ventilator-challenge-and-the-statutory-residence-test

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
25th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the news story, Business rates relief boosted with new £1.5 billion pot, published on 25 March 2021, what the planned timescale is for local authorities to set up local relief schemes to distribute business rates relief.

The Government has announced a £1.5bn pot of additional business rates relief for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic that are not eligible for the retail, hospitality and leisure business rates holiday. The statement by the Minister of State for Regional Growth and Local Government of 25 March 2021 explained the relief will be allocated to local authorities based on the stock of properties in the area and the sector-specific economic impacts of COVID-19.

Formal guidance will follow in due course, setting out the specific considerations that Local Authorities (LAs) should have regard for when providing relief. Relief will be for LAs to award on a discretionary basis. Funding will be available once the legislation relating to MCC provisions has passed and LAs have established their own local relief schemes. The Government will support LAs to do this as quickly as possible, including through new burdens funding.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
25th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what official data on the effects of the pandemic on different sectors will be used to distribute business rates relief announced on 25 March 2021, and if he will place a copy of that data in the Library.

The Government has announced a £1.5bn pot of additional business rates relief for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic that are not eligible for the retail, hospitality and leisure business rates holiday. The statement by the Minister of State for Regional Growth and Local Government of 25 March 2021 explained the relief will be allocated to local authorities based on the stock of properties in the area and the sector-specific economic impacts of COVID-19.

Formal guidance will follow in due course, setting out the specific considerations that Local Authorities (LAs) should have regard for when providing relief. Relief will be for LAs to award on a discretionary basis. Funding will be available once the legislation relating to MCC provisions has passed and LAs have established their own local relief schemes. The Government will support LAs to do this as quickly as possible, including through new burdens funding.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
25th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the news story, Business rates relief boosted with new £1.5 billion pot, published on 25 March 2021, how many of the 170,000 claims for material change in circumstances have been successful.

None of the Material Change of Circumstances (MCC) cases relating to Covid-19 restrictions has been settled by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). All cases were still within the statutory time limits for resolving cases under the Check Challenge Appeal legislation.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to his Department's transparency data on HMT Ministers' meetings, published on 29 October 2020, if he will publish the names of the academics he met on (a) 4 May 2020, (b) 23 May 2020 and (c) 1 June 2020.

The Treasury is not providing details of the individuals listed in the HMT transparency return of 29 October 2020, due to UK GDPR considerations.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if his Department will publish the dates of the five most recent occasions any Minister in his Department met with (a) Greensill Capital or (b) representatives of Greensill Capital.

Ministers routinely meet with a range of private sector stakeholders. Transparency releases are published on a quarterly basis, and are currently publicly available for Ministerial meetings up to and including September 2020, which is in line with normal reporting timelines on disclosures.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what meetings (a) he or (b) Ministers in his Department had with (i) Greensill Capital or (ii) representatives of Greensill to discuss access to covid-19 support schemes in 2020.

Ministers routinely meet with a range of private sector stakeholders. Transparency releases are published on a quarterly basis, and are currently publicly available for Ministerial meetings up to and including September 2020, which is in line with normal reporting timelines on disclosures.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the current size of the unallocated Covid-19 reserve is for 2021-22.

At Budget 2021 the Chancellor announced £18.8bn of funding is available from the COVID-19 reserve in 2021-22.

Treasury officials continue to work with departments to establish COVID-19 funding need as part of the Mains Estimates process, which will be published in the coming months.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
16th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if his Department will publish guidance on which plant and machinery is eligible for the super deduction capital allowances announced in Budget 2021, including any lists of eligible assets that have been prepared by his Department.

Most tangible capital assets used in the course of a business are considered plant and machinery. HMRC publish more detail in the capital allowances manual, available at: https://www.gov.uk/hmrc-internal-manuals/capital-allowances-manual.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate his Department has made of the cost to the public purse of non-structural tax reliefs in (a) 2018-19 and (b) 2019-20; and if he will place a copy of those estimates in the Library.

Information on the costs of reliefs is available on GOV.UK: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/main-tax-expenditures-and-structural-reliefs. These statistics, published annually by HMRC, contain estimates of the costs of non-structural tax reliefs. The estimates reflect the total amount by which users benefit from each relief and not the gain to the Exchequer should the relief be removed. Some reliefs are uncosted, usually due to data limitations.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the report of the UN High-Level Panel on International Financial Accountability, Transparency and Integrity for Achieving the 2030 Agenda (the FACTI panel), what steps he is taking to ensure that the (a) panel meets (i) nationally and (ii) across the Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories and (b) recommendations of that panel to tackle illicit finance including international tax abuse are implemented.

The UK welcomes and supports efforts to enhance financial accountability, transparency and integrity and notes the recommendations within the FACTI Panel’s report.

In relation to illicit finance, the UK shares many of the concerns related to the negative impact of illicit finance, both in its impact on the volume of funds available for development, and the significant costs that the illicit activities related to the financial flows place on society. The UK recognises the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) as the international standard setter on anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing. The FATF found that the UK has one of the strongest systems in the world for combatting illicit finance.

In relation to international tax abuse, the UK has long been a standard-setter and early adopter of OECD international tax standards. This includes international commitments on tax transparency aimed at tackling tax avoidance and evasion, offshore financial centres, and money laundering. The UK will continue to advance international cooperation and develop international standards on tax through the OECD as the primary standard-setting body on global tax matters.

The Overseas Territories and the Crown Dependencies have full control over their own fiscal matters. They have the right to set their own policy to support their economies, within international standards and determine their own tax rates. All Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories with a financial centre have made commitments to implementing global OECD standards on tax transparency and have agreed to introduce publicly accessible registers of company beneficial ownership.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimates his Department has made of the total annual cost of tax reliefs granted to the freeports announced in Budget 2021; and if he will place a copy of those estimates in the Library.

Due to the site-specific nature of reliefs, it is not appropriate to comment on estimates at this stage. The total annual cost of tax reliefs will depend on the exact location and size of the Freeport tax sites. We will consider these costs when agreeing tax sites, and they will therefore be scored at a future fiscal event. The estimated costs will undergo the usual scrutiny from the OBR.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
15th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the annual resource departmental expenditure budget of HM Revenue and Customs has been in each year since 2010.

The table below shows HM Revenue and Customs annual resource budget each year from 2010-11 to 2020-21 as set out in the Published Supplementary Estimates.

Year

Departmental Expenditure Limits (DEL) Administration Budget
£'000

Departmental Expenditure Limits (DEL) Programme Budget
£'000

Total Resource DEL Budget
£'000

2010-11

3,784,260

0

3,784,260

2011-12

974,765

2,791,599

3,766,364

2012-13

962,941

2,727,991

3,690,932

2013-14

880,271

2,774,454

3,654,725

2014-15

832,604

2,685,790

3,518,394

2015-16

855,177

2,752,864

3,608,041

2016-17

899,811

2,961,435

3,861,246

2017-18

870,647

3,110,710

3,981,357

2018-19

966,111

3,108,663

4,074,774

2019-20

1,037,220

3,333,234

4,370,454

2020-21

1,110,118

3,851,341

4,961,459


Note: This table includes depreciation. This table excludes Capital expenditure, Annually Managed Expenditure (AME) and Non-Budget Spending.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate his Department has made of the total value of planned capital investment that will be brought forward into the two-year eligibility period for super-deduction from future financial years.

The OBR provides independent scrutiny of Budget measures (and considers HM Treasury analysis as part of this process). The OBR has said that, at its peak in the financial year 2022-23, the super-deduction will bring forward 10% of business investment with a value of £20bn.

The economic impacts of the super-deduction are incorporated in the OBR’s forecasts contained within its Economic and Fiscal Outlook, which is available online.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if his Department will make an assessment of the effect on the level of inward investment in each year since 2010 of Government corporation tax policy changes since 2010.

The estimated economic impacts of reductions in the rate of Corporation Tax since 2010 were reflected in the OBR’s forecasts at the time those reductions were announced and detailed in the OBR’s published Economic and Fiscal Outlook.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department plans to publish the document entitled HMT ministers' meetings, hospitality, gifts and overseas travel: 1 April to 31 July 2020.

The transparency data titled: ‘HMT ministers' meetings, hospitality, gifts and overseas travel: 1 April to 30 June 2020’ was published here on 29 October 2020: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/hmt-ministers-meetings-hospitality-gifts-and-overseas-travel-1-april-to-30-june


However, it wasn’t added to the collection page on gov.uk at that time due to an administrative error. It can now be viewed on the GOV.UK collection page at the following link https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmt-ministers-meetings-hospitality-gifts-and-overseas-travel

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether investment in software can qualify for 130 per cent super-deduction capital allowance in 2021-22 and 2022-23 under section 815 of the Corporation Tax Act 2009.

The super-deduction capital allowance will allow companies to reduce their taxable profits by 130% of the value of their investment in plant and machinery.

Investment in software can be classified as either a revenue expenditure, in which case it is deductible for tax purposes, or a capital expenditure, in which case it is generally addressed through the intangibles regime instead. This means software would be ineligible for the super-deduction.

However, if a company wishes, they can choose to make an election under s815 Corporation Tax Act 2009 to remove software from the intangibles regime and instead claim capital allowances. In this case, the super-deduction will be available.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps are being taken by HMRC to ensure there is uniform interpretation of customs rules at different entry points into the UK.

HMRC are supporting and building trader capability to ensure compliance across different entry points in the UK during staged controls and when full controls are put in place in January 2022.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to increase the uptake of the Social Investment Tax Relief.

The Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR) was introduced in 2014 to encourage risk finance investments in qualifying social enterprises. HMRC statistics show that up to 2018-19, about 110 enterprises have used the scheme to raise £11.2 million.

At the Budget on 3 March, the Government announced that SITR would be extended for two years, until April 2023, to continue support for qualifying investments into social enterprises. SITR will be extended with its current eligibility rules and targeting, to ensure that the scheme continues to focus on higher risk social enterprises that face the greatest difficulties in accessing finance.

The Government keeps all taxes and reliefs under review in order to ensure they continue to meet policy objectives in a way that is fair and effective. The Government previously published a Call for Evidence in 2019 on SITR’s use to date. The Government will publish a Summary of Responses to this on 23 March.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect on economic activity and investment of the corporation tax taper from 2023-24 on profits between £50,000 and £250,000.

The taper on profits between £50,000 and £250,000 is designed to ensure that the benefit of the small profits rate is targeted at the smallest businesses, while at the same time minimising economic distortions for those to which it applies.

Companies with profits within the taper will continue to be subject to an effective tax rate on profit that is below the main rate.

The economic impacts of the Corporation Tax rate increase are forecast by the independent Office for Budget Responsibility and contained within its Economic and Fiscal Outlook.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to prevent larger businesses dividing into several smaller businesses in order to be eligible for the new small profits rate of corporation tax from 2023-24.

The lower profit limit, below which companies will be eligible for the small profits rate, will be reduced in proportion to the number of associated companies a company has. This is designed to prevent companies with profits over the small profits thresholds from being divided up in an attempt to take advantage of the lower rate. The upper profit limit will also be subject to this rule. Associated companies rules also applied under the previous small profits rate.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the corporation tax super deduction on levels of fraud, abuse and tax avoidance relating to corporation tax.

Expenditure on the provision of plant and machinery for leasing is not eligible for the new 130% super-deduction capital allowance, as is the case with other first year allowances such as Enhanced Capital Allowances in Enterprise Zones.

The super-deduction applies to investment on qualifying plant and machinery, including where that plant and machinery is for the purposes of digital transformation.

The Government takes fraud, abuse and tax avoidance very seriously, which is why the Government has taken repeated action at fiscal events to tackle fraud, abuse and avoidance in the tax system.

The super-deduction has been designed to safeguard against those risks. The legislation includes an anti-avoidance provision that applies to counteract arrangements which are contrived, abnormal or lacking a genuine commercial purpose. Further, there are existing rules that exclude connected party transactions from first-year allowances.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department plans to offer a retention incentive to businesses who continue to employ furloughed workers following the withdrawal of the Job Retention Bonus.

The objective of the Job Retention Bonus (JRB) was to incentivise employers to retain employees between November, when the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) was due to end, and the end of January through a £1,000 bonus paid to the employer. However, the subsequent extension of the CJRS to April (now September) allowed employers to retain their staff during that period by covering 80% of the furloughed employees’ wages. Given this further extension to the end of September, the policy intent of the JRB falls away.

The Government remains committed to redeploying a retention incentive at the appropriate time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether plans in the Winter Economy Plan to give Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans lenders the ability to extend the length of loans from six to ten years (a) have been delivered and (b) are being offered by those lenders.

Following the Chancellor’s announcement at the Winter Economy Plan, to help businesses repay their Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans (CBILS) the Government have amended the CBILS rules to allow lenders to extend loan terms from six to a maximum of ten years where the borrower is in difficulty and lenders judge that the extension will help borrowers repay their loan.

The British Business Bank recently issued guidance to all accredited lenders which allows them to extend the term of existing CBILS facilities beyond 6 years up to a maximum of 10 years. Therefore, lenders are now able to extend the term of existing CBILS facilities to SMEs. An extension can be granted at the discretion of the lender and would be given in line with a lender’s particular forbearance policies.

CBILS term extensions will be offered at the discretion of lenders, unlike the “Pay As You Grow” options for Bounce Back loans. Extensions will be limited to those borrowers that lenders assess are in difficulty and will benefit from the extension, and only for the duration required, meaning that lenders may offer an extension to 7 years, for example, rather than the maximum 10 years allowed.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what alternative communication channels are available to businesses submitting queries to HMRC regarding the movement of goods internationally via The Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system.

Businesses can submit queries regarding the movement of goods internationally to the CHIEF operations team by email at chief.operations@hmrc.gov.uk. Businesses are also able to call the Customs and International Trade helpline on 0300 322 9434. There is also a webchat service available on GOV.UK: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs/contact/customs-international-tradeand-excise-enquiries. Capacity has been scaled up on both teams following the end of the transition period.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether budget representations received by his Department via the budget.representations@hmtreasury.gov.uk email address will be considered as he prepares this year’s budget.

HM Treasury is considering all Budget representations submitted ahead of this year’s Budget, including those submitted via the budget.representations@hmtreasury.gov.uk email address.

The Government’s Budget representations online portal closed on 14 January. This early deadline allows time for representations to be processed and factored into policy-making. Any outstanding representations should be submitted directly to HM Treasury as soon as possible.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of whether easements or forbearance are available to businesses as a result of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement; and whether legal provisions have been communicated to businesses to prevent future prosecution as a result of non-compliance in the initial period following the publication of that Agreement.

The Government has provided extensive guidance to traders to support them, including publishing the detailed Border Operating Model to help traders take the necessary steps. Recognising the impact of coronavirus on businesses’ ability to prepare, the UK Government has taken the decision to introduce the new border controls in three stages up until 1 July 2021. From 1 January to 30 June, traders when importing non-controlled EU goods to GB will have the option to make a declaration in their own records at the time of import followed by a supplementary declaration up to 175 days later, which provides traders and intermediaries with more time to prepare.

While HMRC will penalise deliberate non-compliance, they will seek to support those who make genuine errors to get it right. HMRC are carrying out a range of activities to support and educate traders on their obligations during this period, and are promoting the keeping of good records, which will be crucial in minimising losses to error once supplementary declarations are made.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what meetings have taken place with the EU on the memorandum of understanding on financial services since 1 January 2021.

Officials have had initial conversations with the Commission about the MoU and we are on track to agree it by March. We will not, however, be providing a running commentary on the status or content of the talks.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the average response time is to businesses submitting queries to HMRC via the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system.

CHIEF has been scaled to 360 million declarations per year as part of HMRC’s preparations for the end of the Transition Period, which equates to 111 declarations per second. The CHIEF system message response time is 5 seconds, which is within the Service Level Agreement for all transactions and is currently performing well.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the data published by HMRC on employers who have claimed through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, how many employers (a) have made a successful application to have their details withheld, (b) have a pending application to have their details withheld and (c) paid back the whole grant before the list was produced.

HMRC published a list of some 743,000 employers that claimed through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme in respect of December claim periods on 26 January 2021. Employers can ask for their details to be withheld if they can show that publication would lead to the threat of violence or intimidation toward the employer or other specified associated persons.

Before this date HMRC received 55 applications from employers to have their names withheld.

17 of these applications were accepted and will not be published. Two applications were rejected and 36 were pending. These employers were removed from the list before publication pending resolution of their applications.

To date no employer that has applied to have their details removed from the list has subsequently chosen to pay back their claim.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many and what proportion of queries to HMRC’s Tariff Classification Service are (a) answered within five working days and (b) remain unanswered after five working days in the most recent period for which figures are available.

97.5% of queries are answered within 5 days, with 2.5% of queries being answered after 5 days. The volumes of queries to HMRC’s Tariff Classification Service have nearly doubled in the last six months, and many of these are not classification-related.

The statistics for pre-July 2020 show over 99% of queries were responded to within 5 days.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect on employer uptake of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme of requirements to disclose receipt of CJRS in businesses’ applications to sell goods or services to the public or private sectors as a gauge of business health.

The CJRS supports businesses to preserve employer-employee matches by providing a mechanism to pay the wages of furloughed employees.

The Government continues to monitor CJRS take-up, with HMRC's latest official statistics producing analysis of claims split by characteristics including employer size, sector of the economy, geography, age and gender.

The latest HMRC official statistics for November and December show the number of employments furloughed increased to 3.7 million on 1 November (when the CJRS extension launched), reaching 4.1 million on 11 November, and reduced to 3.8 million on 31 December* (*provisional figure).

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has received any representations on delaying the introduction of IR35 from April 2021.

The Government has been clear that the reform of the off-payroll working rules will be introduced on 6 April 2021. The Government remains committed to introducing this policy in order to address the unfairness of non-compliance with the existing off-payroll working rules. Organisations should continue to prepare for the implementation of the reform. Since the reform was delayed in April 2020, Parliament has passed legislation enacting the reform from April 2021.

Many businesses have already made significant preparations to ensure they are ready for the reform and HMRC are committed to supporting businesses and individuals in the run up to and beyond the reform being implemented. HMRC are providing webinars, workshops and one-to-one calls as well as publishing updated guidance and factsheets to enable businesses to prepare.

The Government regularly engages with a range of stakeholders to inform policy making. The Government continues to engage with key stakeholders and affected organisations in relation to their preparations for the forthcoming reform.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department plans to delay the introduction of IR35 from April 2021.

The Government has been clear that the reform of the off-payroll working rules will be introduced on 6 April 2021. The Government remains committed to introducing this policy in order to address the unfairness of non-compliance with the existing off-payroll working rules. Organisations should continue to prepare for the implementation of the reform. Since the reform was delayed in April 2020, Parliament has passed legislation enacting the reform from April 2021.

Many businesses have already made significant preparations to ensure they are ready for the reform and HMRC are committed to supporting businesses and individuals in the run up to and beyond the reform being implemented. HMRC are providing webinars, workshops and one-to-one calls as well as publishing updated guidance and factsheets to enable businesses to prepare.

The Government regularly engages with a range of stakeholders to inform policy making. The Government continues to engage with key stakeholders and affected organisations in relation to their preparations for the forthcoming reform.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to his oral contribution of 11 January 2021, Official Report column 26, if he will publish the evidence from the Office for Budget Responsibility and Office for National Statistics which found that the UK’s economic performance is in line with comparable countries when corrected for measurement of public sector output.

The UK, along with the rest of the world, continues to face significant economic disruption in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic – no major economy avoided a dramatic fall in GDP earlier in the year.

International comparisons of economic performance are challenging, particularly given the different approaches that countries take to measuring the contribution of public services to GDP. The Office for National Statistics stated in the December Quarterly National Accounts that “international comparisons should be made with care if the estimates being compared are based on different approaches to measuring the volume of non-market output”.

Further, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) set out in their November Economic and Fiscal Outlook that “some countries, including the UK, use direct measures of some public sector output but others assume that it is given by the associated inputs. If the latter approach were still used in the UK, then the fall in GDP the second quarter would have been around 4 percentage points smaller.”

This represents around a fifth of the overall reported fall in UK GDP in the first half of 2020 and, if adjusted for, would leave the UK’s performance over this period closer in line with other advanced economies.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many (a) staff, (b) director-level staff, and (c) director-general level staff have left a post in his Department in each of the last five years.

The number of staff who have left the department from a post over the prior 5 years:

16/17

17/18

18/19

19/20

20/21*

All staff

322

293

341

298

107

Director

Less than 5

Less than 5

Less than 5

Less than 5

Less than 5

Director General

Less than 5

Less than 5

Less than 5

Less than 5

Less than 5

*The data for 20/21 covers the period April 20 to September 20

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many working days have been lost to staff sickness in his Department in each month of the last five years, by directorate.

We do not report on sick days monthly, we do however have a return that we do annually. The number of sick days by directorate in each of the last 5 years can be found in the following tables:

2015/16

Directorate

Sick Days

Business and International Tax

135

Corporate Centre

657

Economics

107

Enterprise & Growth

61

Financial Services

270

Financial Stability

71

Fiscal

103

International

428

IUK

127

Ministerial & Communications

148

National Infrastructure Commission

Fewer than 5

Personal Tax, Welfare & Pensions

207

Public Services

345

Public Spending

227

Strategy, Planning & Budget

68

Treasury Legal Advisors

Fewer than 5

Department

2954

2016/17

Directorate

Sick Days

Business and International Tax

172.5

Corporate Centre

668.5

Economics

102

Enterprise & Growth

76

Financial Services

291

Financial Stability

131.5

Fiscal

68.5

International

318.5

IUK

Fewer than 5

Ministerial & Communications

211

National Infrastructure Commission

27

Personal Tax, Welfare & Pensions

504.5

Public Services

272

Public Spending

190.5

Strategy, Planning & Budget

99

Treasury Legal Advisors

Fewer than 5

Department

3132.5

2017/18

Directorate

Sick Days

Business and International Tax

103

Corporate Centre

595

Economics

119

Enterprise & Growth

133

Financial Services

400

Financial Stability

213.5

Fiscal

250

International

425.5

Ministerial & Communications

347.5

Personal Tax, Welfare & Pensions

178.5

Public Services

190

Public Spending

180.5

Strategy, Planning & Budget

71.5

Treasury Legal Advisors

Fewer than 5

Department

3207

2018/19

Directorate

Sick Days

Business and International Tax

170.5

Corporate Centre

850

Economics

108.5

Enterprise & Growth

116.5

Financial Services

578.5

Financial Stability

135

Fiscal

174.5

International

437.5

Ministerial & Communications

148

Personal Tax, Welfare & Pensions

259

Public Services

268.5

Public Spending

342.5

Strategy, Planning & Budget

50

Department

3639

2019/20

Directorate

Sick Days

Business and International Tax

245

Corporate Centre

906.5

Economics

366

Enterprise & Growth

176.5

Financial Services

490.5

Financial Stability

132.5

Fiscal

241

International

607

Ministerial & Communications

326.5

Personal Tax, Welfare & Pensions

176

Public Services

366

Public Spending

602

Strategy, Planning & Budget

71

Department

4706.5

HM Treasury takes the wellness of its staff seriously. Wellness is incorporated within the Treasury’s Health, Safety and Wellbeing policy. Every quarter, staff complete pulse surveys to assess progress against wellbeing criteria from the annual People Survey. Directors and Deputy Directors take action relating to these results to improve their staff’s wellbeing and stress levels.

HM Treasury has the following support in place for those that are suffering due to stress:

  • Stress and Mental Health Awareness elearning – learn about stress, what the stressors can be and how to identify and lessen stress
  • Stress risk assessment used to identify stressors and implement controls to help reduce/eliminate the stress
  • Workplace Adjustments including flexible working
  • Stress Management guidance
  • Tips to help reduce stress
  • Mental Health First Aiders
  • Employee Assistance Programme – this is a confidential 24/7 helpline that can offer point people to where
  • Occupational Health provision
  • Mental Wellbeing Network
  • Treasury Supporters, who are employees, trained to help colleagues work through any concerns, however serious whatever their cause
  • Wellness Action Plans
  • Time to Talk Workshops
  • HR Advisers and Health, Safety & Wellbeing Team.
Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will place in the Library his Department's staff in each directorate by (a) headcount, and (b) full time equivalent staffing.

The table below contains the count of paid full time equivalent staffing and headcount per directorate for the most recent quarter end, September 2020.

Group / Directorate

FTE

Headcount

Business and International Tax

159.6

164

Corporate Centre

183.2

192

Economics

109.8

114

Enterprise & Growth

189.1

191

Financial Services

180.0

181

Financial Stability

70.3

72

Fiscal

82.5

85

International

170.9

173

Ministerial & Communications

117.5

119

Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation

37.0

38

Office of Tax Simplification

7.9

11

Personal Tax, Welfare & Pensions

126.8

129

Public Services

171.9

174

Public Spending

158.9

163

Strategy, Planning & Budget

73.3

74

HM Treasury

1838.8

1880

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many HMRC staff-hours have been given to receiving training which pertains to elements of HMRC's responsibilities (a) in preparation for or (b) as a result of the UK leaving the EU in each of (a) 2016, (b) 2017, (c) 2018, (d) 2019, and (e) 2020 to date.

Since 2016, HMRC have had a range of roles comprising specialist and non-specialist roles to support the preparation for the UK leaving the EU, as well as operational and support roles for the post-transition period. Not all roles require additional training and HMRC do not track their requirements against all roles. HMRC are therefore unable to provide a breakdown of training time across the years and against staff complement, both for the preparation and post-transition period, without incurring significant additional costs.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to National Savings & Investments, for how many person-days posts have been vacant in each of the last five years.

NS&I does not hold data for how many person-days posts have been vacant in each of the last five years.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to National Savings & Investments, how many staff have left a post in each of the last five years.

Table: Number of staff in NS&I who have left a post in each of the last five years.

Year

Number of Staff

2019-20

34

2018-19

19

2017-18

27

2016-17

23

2015-16

34

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the National Savings & Investments, how many complaints have been received of racist behaviour in the workplace in each of the last five years.

NS&I treats all discrimination, bullying and harassment, as misconduct and follows disciplinary procedure.

NS&I has not received any formal complaints of racist behaviour in the workplace in each of the last five years.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of HMRC's arrangements for throughput at the UK's ports in January 2020 in the event that (a) the UK and the EU secure and (b) do not secure a new trade agreement before the end of the transition period.

The Government has agreed a deal with the EU. The deal provides for streamlined customs arrangements, including recognising respective trusted trader schemes, to support the smooth flow of goods at the border, including ports.

HMRC have been working closely with the border industry, including ports, to ensure they are engaging with the new requirements and have taken the necessary steps to prepare. HMRC will continue to engage in order to identify any further support HMRC can provide.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what HMRC's full-time equivalent staffing levels were for (a) telephone and (b) webchat services providing businesses and individuals with advice on customs arrangements in each of the last 48 months.

Prior to 9 November 2020 customs & international trade telephone enquiries were handled through a combined Excise, Customs & international Trade (EXCIT) helpline. Demand for this line was significantly lower as the majority of the customer base, business and intermediaries alike, were experienced in trading on Rest of the World terms. Given the combined remit, HMRC are unable to provide the data requested.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has for HMRC staffing levels in the next six months for (a) telephone and (b) webchat services providing businesses and individuals with advice on customs arrangements.

Resource deployed on to the Customs & International (CIT) line from 9 November was 20 full time equivalent (FTE), increasing to the planned core level of 100 FTE by 14 December 2020. This provides capacity to handle 10,000 calls/chats per week.

HMRC have also have trained standby resource of a further 100 FTE to support any increase in demand. The standby resource increased to 300 FTE from 21 December 2020. This resource when added to core resource, delivers capacity to handle 38,000 calls/week. Further contingency has also been identified requiring a change in operational priorities across HMRC’s Customer Services Group. Core, standby and contingency resource combined would provide capacity to handle 60,000 calls per week.

Regular reviews are planned to ensure core deployment matches underlying demand.

Alongside the scalable resourcing plan, HMRC extended the opening hours of the CIT line. From 14 December, opening times were 08.00-20.00 Monday-Friday. HMRC also provided a service on 1st and 2nd January 2021 from 08.00-16.00 and are providing a service for each Saturday thereafter.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, on what date prior to his announcement in the House of Commons on 9 October 2020 he first became aware of the problems faced by businesses forced to close as result of covid-19 restrictions that he referred to in that announcement.

The Government recognises that this an extremely challenging time for businesses across the UK, particularly those required to close due to necessary restrictions to protect public health.

During the pandemic, the Government has regularly engaged with businesses and trade groups to understand the needs of businesses and has also continually monitored the impact of restrictions and Covid-19 support. This has informed our efforts to evolve the support available for businesses when necessary, including those changes announced in the Chancellor’s statement in the House of Commons on 9 October 2020.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, on what date prior to his announcement in the House of Commons on 22 October 2020 he first became aware of the problems faced by self-employed people that resulted in the amending of the Job Support Scheme to provide support at the level of 40 per cent of prior trading profits.

The Government has provided, and will continue to provide, generous support to the self-employed during the COVID-19 pandemic through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) The third grant, combined with up to £14,070 worth of support for each individual from the first and second grants, makes the SEISS one of the most generous schemes for the self-employed in the world.

The Government has adapted the generosity of the SEISS in line with the evolution of the virus. Following the announcement on 22 October that the third grant would cover 40 per cent of average monthly trading profits, the Government further increased the value of support to 55 per cent, and later – to 80 per cent of average trading profits for the period covering November to January, capped at £7,500 in total.

The Government’s policy responses are carefully designed to provide certainty and support to people and businesses across the UK to respond to the current public health restrictions. We continue to take a flexible approach and keep all impacts and policies under review.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will place in the Library a copy of the HMRC policy on sending paper cheques to taxpayers.

The particular circumstances of the payment being made determines the payment method used (BACS, cheques, bank transfer or other methods). Wherever possible, HMRC try to give customers the choice to be paid directly into their bank account or by cheque.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the effect of the decision to discontinue sending paper prize warrants to winners of Premium Bonds prizes on the proportion of Premium Bond prize entitlements which are not paid out.

The statistics show that paying prizes directly to the customers bank account has reduced the proportion of Premium Bonds prizes that go unclaimed compared to issuing warrants (cheques).

Since 2011, Premium Bonds holders have been able to have their prizes paid directly into a UK bank account in their name. Between 2011 and end of June 2018, NS&I paid out 110,300,054 prizes by warrant. Of these 569,461 (0.5%) have not yet been cashed and are therefore deemed unclaimed. In comparison between 2011 and December 2020, NS&I have paid out 72,385,607 directly to customers’ bank account. As of September 2020, of these 8,610 (0.01%) of the prizes have not been claimed.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will place in the Library the NS&I policy on sending paper prize warrants to its customers.

Since 2011, Premium Bonds holders have been able to have their prizes paid directly into a UK bank account in their name. Since March 2020, more than 750,000 customers have switched from receiving paper warrants (cheques) to having their prizes paid directly into their bank account or automatically reinvested. As of December 2020, 82.5% of Premium Bonds prizes were either paid directly into a UK bank account or reinvested back into Premium Bonds.

The decision by NS&I announced on 17 September 2020 to pay all Premium Bonds prizes direct to customers’ bank accounts was informed by changing customer behaviours. It will make managing Premium Bonds prize distribution quicker, more cost-effective and have a much lower environmental impact.

Paying prizes directly to the customers bank account also reduces the proportion of Premium Bonds prizes from going unclaimed.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the total combined lifetime budget of the 2021-22 Local Growth Funding, the Future High Streets Fund, the Towns Fund, the Levelling-Up Fund and the Shared Prosperity Fund.

The Spending Review prioritised investment to support growth across the country, including through the National Infrastructure Strategy and by setting out our priority areas to receive multi-year funding settlements. It also set out how we will make decisions differently to support levelling up, for example our changes to the Green Book will better link projects and programmes to government objectives. The specific programmes that you mention are one part of this wider strategy to support growth across the country, with budgets in 21/22 as follows: £621m for the Towns Fund, £600m for the Levelling Up Fund, and £220m to help local areas prepare for the introduction of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. We will set out further funding allocations for later years at future SRs.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to give businesses that borrowed under the Bounce Back Loan Scheme the option to repay their loan over a period of up to 10 years under the Pay as you Grow scheme.

The Government has introduced the ‘Pay as you Grow’ options to give businesses more time and flexibility to repay their loan on the terms that best suit them. This includes the ability to extend the term of the loan from 6 to 10 years (reducing average monthly payments by almost half), as well as the option to temporarily switch to interest-only payments or to take a full repayment holiday for 6 months.

These are standardised options which can be offered by lenders to all businesses. The options can be requested by borrowers ahead of their first repayment or later in the life of the loan. This will enable businesses to repay the loan on the terms which work best for their individual circumstances.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to (a) publish and (b) introduce the retention incentive replacement for the Job Retention Bonus announced on 5 November 2020; and if he will make a statement.

The Job Retention Bonus (JRB) will not be paid in February 2021 and the Government will redeploy a retention incentive at the appropriate time. The purpose of the JRB was to encourage employers to keep people in work until the end of January 2021. However, as the CJRS is being extended to the end of March 2021, the policy rationale of the JRB has fallen away.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate his Department has made of the number of (a) men, (b) women and (c) other gender identities who have made claims under the extended Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

HMRC have published statistics on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). These include information on the employments supported by the CJRS broken down by the employees’ gender. The statistics can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmrc-coronavirus-covid-19-statistics. The statistics do not show other gender identities because HMRC do not hold that information.

HMRC will publish statistics on the CJRS extension in due course. The date of publication will be pre-announced on GOV.UK. HMRC continue to monitor the use of these statistics and make improvements as necessary.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the Government has made an assessment of the potential merits of continuing with an RPI-like measure until such time as index-linked Government bonds based on RPI have matured.

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) is a measure of inflation with a number of shortcomings. To address these shortcomings, the UK Statistics Authority (UKSA) has made a proposal to reform RPI by bringing the methods and data sources of the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) into RPI. Owing to the use of RPI in specific index-linked gilts, prior to 2030 the Chancellor’s consent to this proposal is required before it can be implemented.

At the Budget in March, the government and UKSA launched a consultation to consider whether UKSA’s proposal should be implemented at a date other than 2030, and, if so, when between 2025 and 2030. The consultation closed for responses on 21 August. As part of the consultation, the government invited views on matters including how the holders of the government’s issues of index-linked gilts, all of which use RPI as their reference rate, will be affected by the implementation of reform.

The consultation can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/a-consultation-on-the-reform-to-retail-prices-index-rpi-methodology.

As announced on 9 November, the government and UKSA will respond to the consultation alongside the Spending Review on 25 November.

The 9 November announcement can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-letter-from-rishi-sunak-to-sir-david-norgrove-on-the-date-of-the-government-and-uk-statistics-authoritys-response-to-their-joint-consultation-on-re.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment the Government has made of the effect of switching from RPI to CPIH in 2025 on pension funds’ holdings of index-linked government bonds.

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) is a measure of inflation with a number of shortcomings. To address these shortcomings, the UK Statistics Authority (UKSA) has made a proposal to reform RPI by bringing the methods and data sources of the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) into RPI. Owing to the use of RPI in specific index-linked gilts, prior to 2030 the Chancellor’s consent to this proposal is required before it can be implemented.

At the Budget in March, the government and UKSA launched a consultation to consider whether UKSA’s proposal should be implemented at a date other than 2030, and, if so, when between 2025 and 2030. The consultation closed for responses on 21 August. As part of the consultation, the government invited views on matters including how the holders of the government’s issues of index-linked gilts, all of which use RPI as their reference rate, will be affected by the implementation of reform.

The consultation can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/a-consultation-on-the-reform-to-retail-prices-index-rpi-methodology.

As announced on 9 November, the government and UKSA will respond to the consultation alongside the Spending Review on 25 November.

The 9 November announcement can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-letter-from-rishi-sunak-to-sir-david-norgrove-on-the-date-of-the-government-and-uk-statistics-authoritys-response-to-their-joint-consultation-on-re.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment the Government has made of the effect of switching from RPI to CPIH in 2030 on pension funds’ holdings of index-linked government bonds.

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) is a measure of inflation with a number of shortcomings. To address these shortcomings, the UK Statistics Authority (UKSA) has made a proposal to reform RPI by bringing the methods and data sources of the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) into RPI. Owing to the use of RPI in specific index-linked gilts, prior to 2030 the Chancellor’s consent to this proposal is required before it can be implemented.

At the Budget in March, the government and UKSA launched a consultation to consider whether UKSA’s proposal should be implemented at a date other than 2030, and, if so, when between 2025 and 2030. The consultation closed for responses on 21 August. As part of the consultation, the government invited views on matters including how the holders of the government’s issues of index-linked gilts, all of which use RPI as their reference rate, will be affected by the implementation of reform.

The consultation can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/a-consultation-on-the-reform-to-retail-prices-index-rpi-methodology.

As announced on 9 November, the government and UKSA will respond to the consultation alongside the Spending Review on 25 November.

The 9 November announcement can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-letter-from-rishi-sunak-to-sir-david-norgrove-on-the-date-of-the-government-and-uk-statistics-authoritys-response-to-their-joint-consultation-on-re.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Nov 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate the Government has made of the potential cost of compensating pension funds for losses arising from index-linked government bonds as the result of switching from RPI to CPIH.

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) is a measure of inflation with a number of shortcomings. To address these shortcomings, the UK Statistics Authority (UKSA) has made a proposal to reform RPI by bringing the methods and data sources of the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) into RPI. Owing to the use of RPI in specific index-linked gilts, prior to 2030 the Chancellor’s consent to this proposal is required before it can be implemented.

At the Budget in March, the government and UKSA launched a consultation to consider whether UKSA’s proposal should be implemented at a date other than 2030, and, if so, when between 2025 and 2030. The consultation closed for responses on 21 August. As part of the consultation, the government invited views on matters including how the holders of the government’s issues of index-linked gilts, all of which use RPI as their reference rate, will be affected by the implementation of reform.

The consultation can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/a-consultation-on-the-reform-to-retail-prices-index-rpi-methodology.

As announced on 9 November, the government and UKSA will respond to the consultation alongside the Spending Review on 25 November.

The 9 November announcement can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-letter-from-rishi-sunak-to-sir-david-norgrove-on-the-date-of-the-government-and-uk-statistics-authoritys-response-to-their-joint-consultation-on-re.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
30th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential effect on the financial security of businesses during the covid-19 outbreak of extending the zero VAT rate on the supply of personal protective equipment beyond 31 October 2020.

The temporary zero rate of VAT on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) was an extraordinary measure to help affected sectors (such as hospitals and care homes) during the initial shock of the COVID-19 pandemic and when the global supply of PPE did not meet demand.

This measure came to an end on 31 October (as legislated), as alternative measures introduced by the Government will ensure the supply of COVID-19 related PPE to affected sectors from November. This means the VAT relief is no longer required to ensure the supply of PPE is maintained and businesses that make VATable supplies can also recover any VAT they incur on the purchase of PPE as a business expense.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
30th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the evidential basis was for the decision to choose 31 October 2020 as the expiry date for the zero VAT rate on personal protective equipment.

The temporary zero rate of VAT on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) was an extraordinary measure to help affected sectors (such as hospitals and care homes) during the initial shock of the COVID-19 pandemic and when the global supply of PPE did not meet demand.

This measure came to an end on 31 October (as legislated), as alternative measures introduced by the Government will ensure the supply of COVID-19 related PPE to affected sectors from November. This means the VAT relief is no longer required to ensure the supply of PPE is maintained and businesses that make VATable supplies can also recover any VAT they incur on the purchase of PPE as a business expense.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
8th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that information on the eligibility of self-isolation payment claimants is being shared with the (a) Department of Health and Social Care and (b) Department for Work and Pensions in a timely manner.

Operation of the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme in England does not require HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) information to be disclosed to the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC).

Local Authorities are administering the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme in England. All central government departments directly involved in the scheme (DHSC, MHCLG, DWP and HMRC) are collaborating to make sure Local Authorities have access to information necessary to administer this scheme and provide a clear view of its use.

HMRC have been working closely with DWP to make use of HMRC information to support the scheme. HMRC already disclose earnings and tax credit information to DWP under the Welfare Reform Act 2012. HMRC have agreed for DWP to extend its disclosure of taxpayer information to support Local Authorities in England which are administering the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme. This will provide information on claimants to Local Authorities in a legal, secure, proportionate and efficient way to enable Local Authorities to determine who is eligible for the scheme.

Under the Commissioners for Revenue and Customs Act 2005, HMRC have a duty of confidentiality for information they hold. HMRC may only disclose taxpayer information under a limited number of circumstances, such as where legislation provides an information sharing gateway with another department for a specific purpose. Consent is generally required from HMRC for onward disclosure to organisations beyond those directly receiving taxpayer information

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
30th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of the (a) Job Support Scheme in (i) 2020-21 and (ii) 2021i22, and b) take-up of that scheme in terms of number of employments.

The Job Support Scheme is designed to protect jobs in businesses that are facing lower demand over the winter months due to COVID-19, to help their employees remain attached to the workforce. The total cost of the Job Support Scheme will depend on take-up; based on equivalent earnings to the average CJRS claim, the Government estimates the scheme would cost up to £1.8 billion for every million employments under the scheme for six months.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what conditions on (a) environmental performance, (b) treatment of employees, (c) continuation as a going concern, (d) tax practices, (e) corporate behaviour including the use of share buybacks and dividend payments and (f) executive remuneration are imposed on companies receiving support through the (a) Coronavirus Job Retention scheme, (b) Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan scheme, c) Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan scheme and (d) COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility.

The Government support measures are well-targeted at businesses most in need, bearing in mind the need to act very quickly to deliver this unprecedented package. The OBR has said that that the positive actions the Government have taken “should…help to limit any long-term economic ‘scarring’, by keeping workers attached to firms and helping otherwise viable firms stay in business.”. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme in particular, has supported more than 1.2 million firms to furlough 9.6 million jobs. We expect everyone to act responsibly and in the spirit of these packages, and only claim and use support as intended. In addition:

Under the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS), borrowers are required to restrict dividend payments, which means they are only allowed to make dividends payments which were a) declared before the CLBILS loan was taken out, b) are in keeping with similar dividends payments made in the preceding 12 months, and c) do not have a material negative impact on the borrower’s ability to repay the loan. In addition to restrictions on dividends payments, firms borrowing more than £50m will be required to agree to not make dividend payments or share buybacks, and to restrictions on pay and bonuses for senior management. These restrictions remain in place until the loan has been repaid.

Issuers participating in the Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) are required to commit to restraint on their capital distributions (including dividends and share buybacks) and on senior pay. This applies to all commercial paper (CP) maturing after 19 May 2021. Issuers will be required to provide a letter of commitment to HM Treasury in relation to this if a) an increase in an issuer's CCFF limit, over and above that suggested by the issuer’s investment rating, is requested and approved, and/or b) a CCFF transaction is entered into which involves CP maturing on or after 19 May 2021. HM Treasury reserves the right to publish this letter, should it become aware that the terms of the letter have not been complied with.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the return of HMRC preferential creditor status on (a) the willingness of retail banks to extend credit and loans, and (b) the ability of retail banks to renew the facilities of existing borrowers.

The recent legislative change gives HMRC second preferential creditor status for certain taxes. This change ensures that when a business enters insolvency, more of the taxes paid in good faith by its employees and customers, but held temporarily by the business, go to fund public services as intended, rather than be distributed to other creditors.

This change is not expected to have a significant impact on financial institutions, the lending market or wider economy. This measure is forecast to raise up to £220 million a year. To put this into perspective, bank lending to small and medium-sized businesses alone in 2019 was £57 billion.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans his Department has to inform UK seafarers who have been unable to work due to covid-19 travel restrictions that they may face a tax bill as a result of not qualifying for the Seafarers Earnings Deduction.

The Seafarers Earnings Deduction (SED) offers a 100 per cent reduction in income tax on maritime employment income for UK and EEA resident seafarers who have a qualifying period of time absent from the UK. The qualifying period must be made up of at least 365 days, but return visits to the UK during that time up to a maximum of 183 consecutive days can count towards the qualifying period. This is among the most generous reliefs available to seafarers worldwide.

In addition, the Government has introduced a broad range of support to help meet this challenge. This includes the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme and mortgage holidays for homeowners and landlords.

Guidance is available on GOV.UK for seafarers to check whether they are eligible for SED and what steps they need to take to claim, including a worksheet which seafarers can use each year to determine their eligibility.

As with other areas of tax policy, the Government is keeping this under review in light of the pandemic.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
25th Jun 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has for requiring government departments to reduce their spending in the 2020-21 financial year.

Departments have been reviewing their plans for this year in light of the focus they are putting on Covid-19 response and recovery, accelerating and reprioritising activity as necessary.

As we exit the current crisis, we will take stock of the economy and public finances and make further decisions as required

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
23rd Jun 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the oral contribution of the Prime Minister on 10 June 2020 Official Report, column 281, what progress the Government has made on providing support to newly shielding people who are not eligible for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

On 22 June, the Prime Minister set out a series of steps to relax further the current public health guidance for those identified as clinically extremely vulnerable to shield at home. This means from 1 August they will be able to return to work if they are unable to work from home, provided their workplace is COVID-safe.

The Government is asking employers to work with it in order to ease the transition back to a more normal way of life for their clinically extremely vulnerable employees. It is important that this group continue to take careful precautions, and employers should do all they can to enable them to work from home where this is possible, including moving them to another role if required. Where this is not possible, those who have been shielding should be provided with the safest onsite roles that enable them to maintain social distancing from others.

If employers cannot provide a safe working environment, the clinically extremely vulnerable will continue to have access to an unprecedented package of financial support. This is not limited to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, but also includes changes to Statutory Sick Pay to make it payable from day one, the introduction of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, and an increase in the generosity of welfare payments worth a further £8bn.

The Government will continue looking at what support is required for the clinically extremely vulnerable population as the public health guidance changes.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
23rd Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will suspend the tax credit income disregard for reductions in earnings for the financial year 2020-21 to ensure that where earnings fall households' tax credit entitlement takes full account of that loss.

This Government is doing whatever it can to ensure that individuals, families and businesses are supported during the Covid-19 outbreak.

The Government recognises that Tax Credits were introduced in the early 2000s and no longer fully reflect the world of work for many people. That is one of the reasons why we are introducing Universal Credit. Universal Credit replaces Tax Credits and several other legacy benefits, to provide a single system of means-tested support for working age people. Universal Credit is assessed and paid monthly and is based on claimants’ actual earnings in the month, rather than their annual income. As HMRC and DWP are experiencing significant increased demand, the Government has chosen to prioritise the safety and stability of the benefits system overall. That is why we have introduced measures that can be operationalised as quickly and safely as possible in order to provide support to those who need it most.

Suspending the income disregard in Working Tax Credit (WTC) would not benefit claimants on the lowest incomes who are already in receipt of the maximum support available through WTC.

This Government has taken additional steps to support those affected by Covid-19 and has announced a wide-ranging package of measures to support individuals, families and businesses affected by Covid-19. These measures include:

  • Making Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) available for individuals diagnosed with Covid-19 or those unable to work because they are self-isolating in line with Government guidance. This is in addition to the change announced by the Prime Minister that SSP will be payable from day 1 instead of day 4 for affected individuals.
  • Increasing the standard allowance in Universal Credit and the basic element of Working Tax Credit by up to £20 per week
  • A further temporary relaxation of earnings rules for self-employed Universal Credit claimants
  • Increasing the Local Housing Allowance for Universal Credit and Housing Benefit claimants to the 30th percentile of market rents.
  • Introducing the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to help firms continue to keep people in employment. Businesses can put workers on temporary leave and the Government will pay them cash grants to cover 80% of their wages up to a cap of £2,500, providing they keep the worker employed.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
20th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what support his Department plans to provide for small charities and social enterprises during the covid-19 pandemic.

Last week, the Chancellor announced £330 billion of guarantees for the economy, and charities and social enterprises are an important part of the system. Many charities and social enterprises will be eligible for the new Business Interruption Loan Scheme for loans of up to £5m, with no interest due for the first twelve months. Further, many charities are already eligible for 80% charitable rate relief, they will benefit from the new enhanced retail rate relief at 100%. Charities will also benefit from the new Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Further detail of government support is available at: www.businesssupport.gov.uk

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the Answer of 12 March 2020 to Question 27067 on Corporation Tax: Digital Technology, whether he has made an assessment of the potential effect on UK tax revenues of the changes proposed in the OECD's Two-pillar approach to address the tax challenges arising from the digitalisation of the economy.

The impact on UK tax revenues remains highly sensitive to the detailed design and implementation of the OECD proposals, which remain the subject of discussion.

It is therefore too early to provide a detailed assessment.

The UK will continue to work constructively with international counterparts on these proposals as they progress.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect on UK tax revenues of the changes proposed in the OECD's Two-pillar approach to address the tax challenges arising from the digitalisation of the economy.

Securing a global solution to the tax challenges posed by digitalisation remains a priority for the Government.

The Government continues to play an active role in shaping the proposals under consideration within the OECD, with a view to delivering an enduring multilateral solution that works in the UK’s long-term fiscal and economic interests.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
4th Feb 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to increase the Lower Earning Limit in line with the primary national insurance contribution threshold.

The Primary Threshold will increase above inflation from £166 to £183 per week. This does not affect State Pension entitlement.

The Government has announced that the Lower Earnings Limit, the point at which employees start to build State Pension entitlement, will be increased in line with inflation from £118 to £120 per week from April 2020.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
29th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the oral contribution of the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, of 13 March 2019, Official Report, column 179WH, when the Government plans to lay the draft regulations that will ensure that investments held in Child Trust Fund accounts will retain their tax-free status after maturity.

The Child Trust Funds (Amendment) Regulations 2020 (SI2020/29) were laid on 15 January 2020 - www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/29/contents/made

Child Trust Funds (CTF) accounts will start to mature in September 2020 when the first children reach 18. These regulations ensure maturing CTF will retain their tax-free status and also provide that funds in a mature CTF may be transferred to an ISA without counting towards the individual’s annual ISA subscription limit.

HMRC has improved the National Insurance number notification letter, which is sent out prior to a child’s 16th birthday, to raise awareness of the Child Trust Funds scheme. The letter informs young people that they may have money in a Child Trust Fund and signposts them to HMRC’s guidance on accessing and managing the account.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
29th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the oral contribution of the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, of 13 March 2019, Official Report, column 177WH, whether any changes have been made to the letter that his sent to young people informing them of their national insurance number when they reach 16 years old.

The Child Trust Funds (Amendment) Regulations 2020 (SI2020/29) were laid on 15 January 2020 - www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/29/contents/made

Child Trust Funds (CTF) accounts will start to mature in September 2020 when the first children reach 18. These regulations ensure maturing CTF will retain their tax-free status and also provide that funds in a mature CTF may be transferred to an ISA without counting towards the individual’s annual ISA subscription limit.

HMRC has improved the National Insurance number notification letter, which is sent out prior to a child’s 16th birthday, to raise awareness of the Child Trust Funds scheme. The letter informs young people that they may have money in a Child Trust Fund and signposts them to HMRC’s guidance on accessing and managing the account.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many times HMRC has been required to refund tax paid by former employees as a function of termination payments as a result of an incorrect decision in relation to injury to feelings being classified as connected to the termination in each of the last five years.

Payments made to an individual as compensation for injury to feelings can be paid tax free where they are not connected with the termination of an employment. HM Revenue and Customs have recently updated guidance that sets out the circumstances in which compensation payments are, or are not, connected with the termination of an employment.

The information requested is not available as HMRC do not hold data relating to tax refunds for incorrect decisions regarding payments made for injury to feelings connected to the termination of employment.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many pubs have a rateable value of under £100,000.

As at 31 March 2019, there were 38,790 non-domestic properties in the Rating List in England and Wales with a Rateable Value of under £100,000 that are classified as public houses.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many FTE staff worked in the national minimum wage enforcement unit in each month in each of the last three years.

The Government is determined that everyone who is entitled to the National Minimum Wage (NMW) receives it.

All businesses, irrespective of size or business sector, are responsible for paying the correct minimum wage to their staff.

If anyone thinks they are not receiving at least the minimum wage, they can contact Acas, in confidence, on 0300 123 1100 or submit a query online using the link https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pay-and-work-rights-complaints .

The Government has more than trebled annual funding for minimum wage enforcement since 2014, providing a total budget of £26.3m in 2018-19. The additional investment has enabled a significant expansion of resources dedicated to enforcing the NMW.

The table below provides a breakdown of Full Time Equivalent (FTE) staff working in NMW enforcement, by month, for the last 3 years.

Other staff across HMRC also contribute to enforcing the NMW, including lawyers, technical advisors and those specialising in criminal investigations. These staff are not included in these numbers.

2016-2017

2017-2018

2018-2019

April

256

388

403

May

257

389

399

June

270

395

402

July

269

394

419

August

271

396

418

September

279

395

424

October

288

394

424

November

287

393

438

December

321

390

435

January

350

409

421

February

346

415

424

March

352

412

429

HMRC do not specifically record data on current and former employees when logging complaints. The table below shows the total number of complaints received from workers by HMRC, for each month, for the last 3 years.

2016-2017

2017-2018

2018-2019

April

143

414

808

May

236

310

611

June

175

299

598

July

206

454

617

August

165

341

213

September

176

342

342

October

219

501

302

November

154

626

287

December

147

550

331

January

174

665

266

February

313

754

297

March

465

771

252

Total

2573

6027

4924

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many (a) current and (b) former employees have contacted the national minimum wage unit in relation to alleged non-compliance by their employer in each month in each of the last three years.

The Government is determined that everyone who is entitled to the National Minimum Wage (NMW) receives it.

All businesses, irrespective of size or business sector, are responsible for paying the correct minimum wage to their staff.

If anyone thinks they are not receiving at least the minimum wage, they can contact Acas, in confidence, on 0300 123 1100 or submit a query online using the link https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pay-and-work-rights-complaints .

The Government has more than trebled annual funding for minimum wage enforcement since 2014, providing a total budget of £26.3m in 2018-19. The additional investment has enabled a significant expansion of resources dedicated to enforcing the NMW.

The table below provides a breakdown of Full Time Equivalent (FTE) staff working in NMW enforcement, by month, for the last 3 years.

Other staff across HMRC also contribute to enforcing the NMW, including lawyers, technical advisors and those specialising in criminal investigations. These staff are not included in these numbers.

2016-2017

2017-2018

2018-2019

April

256

388

403

May

257

389

399

June

270

395

402

July

269

394

419

August

271

396

418

September

279

395

424

October

288

394

424

November

287

393

438

December

321

390

435

January

350

409

421

February

346

415

424

March

352

412

429

HMRC do not specifically record data on current and former employees when logging complaints. The table below shows the total number of complaints received from workers by HMRC, for each month, for the last 3 years.

2016-2017

2017-2018

2018-2019

April

143

414

808

May

236

310

611

June

175

299

598

July

206

454

617

August

165

341

213

September

176

342

342

October

219

501

302

November

154

626

287

December

147

550

331

January

174

665

266

February

313

754

297

March

465

771

252

Total

2573

6027

4924

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many retail businesses have a rateable value of under £51,000.

As of 31 March 2019, there were 467,040 non-domestic properties in the Rating List in England and Wales with a Rateable Value of under £51,000 that are classified as part of the retail sector.

The Valuation Office Agency publishes statistics on the stock of properties at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/non-domestic-rating-stock-of-properties-including-business-floorspace-2019. The next published update to the above statistics is planned for July 2020.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
19th Dec 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many tax credit overpayments were made in each of the last 12 months; and what the average repayment was.

Overpayments are a feature of the annualized tax credits system. Figures for the value of overpayments relating to 2019-20 tax credits awards will not be known until all awards have been finalised in January 2021.

The most recent estimate of overpayments relates to the 2017-18 award year and can be found in the following publication.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-and-working-tax-credits-statistics-finalised-annual-awards-supplement-on-payments-2017-to-2018

In this year, 1.45 million tax credits awards had an overpayment at the point of finalisation. The total value of overpayments was £1.55 billion.

Estimates of the average value of repayments in each of the last 12 months are not readily available. Tax credits repayments are repaid through a number of routes, including through the Universal Credit (UC) system. Information on the monthly value of all these repayments could only be collected at disproportionate cost.

For the year 2017/18, HMRC received repayments of £1.29bn. These repayments were made on overpayments from all previous award years. On top of this, £188m of tax credits overpayments transferred to DWP as customers migrated to UC.

Rishi Sunak
Chancellor of the Exchequer
18th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment she has made of the potential effect of not providing official confirmation of (a) protected rights and (b) a pending application to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) on the rights of EU nationals and relevant family members while they wait for a decision on that application to the EUSS.

Under the Citizens’ Rights (Application Deadline and Temporary Protection) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020, those who apply before the deadline, but whose application is not decided until after it, will have their existing EU law rights protected pending the outcome of their application, including any appeal.

Those who have submitted a valid EUSS application by 30 June 2021 will be issued with a certificate of application. Pending the outcome of the application, they will be able to rely on their certificate of application as proof of eligibility to access their right to work or rent when this is verified by the Home Office employer and landlord checking services.

The Department for Work and Pensions and HM Revenue & Customs will also be able to determine an individual’s status with the Home Office using existing services.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
18th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether people who (a) had a freedom of movement right to reside on 31 December 2020 or (b) were defined as a relevant family member of a person who had a freedom of movement right to reside on 31 December 2020 and (c) make an application to the EU Settlement Scheme on or before 30 June 2021 will still have the right to reside with protected rights while their application is being decided after 30 June 2021.

Under the Citizens’ Rights (Application Deadline and Temporary Protection) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020, those who apply before the deadline, but whose application is not decided until after it, will have their existing EU law rights protected pending the outcome of their application, including any appeal.

Those who have submitted a valid EUSS application by 30 June 2021 will be issued with a certificate of application. Pending the outcome of the application, they will be able to rely on their certificate of application as proof of eligibility to access their right to work or rent when this is verified by the Home Office employer and landlord checking services.

The Department for Work and Pensions and HM Revenue & Customs will also be able to determine an individual’s status with the Home Office using existing services.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
5th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the value was of property in the UK that has been investigated as suspected proceeds of corruption from 2016 to 2020.

The National Crime Agency’s International Corruption Unit (ICU) investigates bribery of foreign public officials by individuals or companies from the UK, and money laundering by corrupt foreign officials and their associates.

The ICU and other UK law enforcement agencies investigating the proceeds of corruption do not specifically collate information on the value of property investigated. However, since its inception in 2015, the ICU has restrained or detained £742m worth of assets linked to corruption globally, in addition to confiscating £7 million worth of assets and returning assets totalling £199 million.

13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether her Department plans to continue to allocate funding to organisations that support vulnerable EU nationals to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme from the end of March 2020 until that scheme closes.

On 6 March 2020, the Home Office announced a further £8 million of funding to help vulnerable EU citizens apply to the EU Settlement Scheme. There have already been more than 3.2 million applications to the EU Settle-ment Scheme and nearly 2.9 million granted status, with over a year left to go.

Last year, the Home Office awarded £9 million funding to 57 charities across the UK who have helped hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people already. The further £8 million of funding for the 2020-2021 financial year will ensure important information continues to get through to those hardest to reach.

The 57 charities currently funded by the Home Office will have their funding extended until the end of June 2020, to allow their work to continue during the bidding process for new funding.Successful organisations will be fully supported by the Home Office and will be able to speak to caseworkers directly to discuss individual cases.

As with all government funding, there will be a competitive bidding process to ensure the right support is provided to all parts of the UK and makes best use of public money.

The bid process will begin shortly and more details will be announced in due course.The EU Settlement Scheme was launched in March 2019 and gives EU citizens and their family members the status they need to live and work in the UK after 30 June 2021.

There is a wide range of support available online, over the phone and in person to help them apply.This includes a helpline open 7 days a week where 250 staff based in Liver-pool answer questions and help people apply. There are 1,500 Home Office staff working on the scheme in total.

Home visits and telephone support are available from a tutor for those lacking in digital skills or without internet access.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans her Department has to publish data on numbers of people that convert from pre-settled status to settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme.

The latest published figures show that the total number of applications received up to 31 January 2020 was more than 3.1 million, with over 2.7 million granted status (58% granted settled status and 41% granted pre-settled status). https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/eu-settlement-scheme-statistics-january-2020

Figures reported in the statistical publications account for applications to the system, including individuals making applications on more than one occasion. For example, an individual who has been granted pre-settled status can make a new application at a later stage to apply for settled status. As these are separate applications with separate outcomes, they are counted as separate applications and outcomes in the statistics.

This is consistent with how applications are reported across wider Home Office statistics.

Our initial analysis of applications suggest that repeat applications currently represent less than two per cent of all applications. This is a small percentage of the over 3 million applications we have received. To continue to meet user needs, the Home Office is exploring options for identifying and reporting follow-on applications (i.e. those moving from pre-settled to settled status) as part of our regular statistical publications.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many referrals her Department’s team investigating deprivation of citizenship received in the last 12 months.

We do not comment on referrals or ongoing investigations but do publish information in respect of cases where a deprivation order has been served.

Figures for conducive deprivation orders, which are made under Section 40(2) of the 1981 British Nationality Act, have been published as part of the transparency report on disruptive and investigatory powers. Three reports have been published to date in 2015, 2017 and 2018:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/473603/51973_Cm_9151_Transparency_Accessible.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/593668/58597_Cm_9420_Transparency_report_web.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disruptive-and-investigatory-powers-transparency-report-2018

Section 40(3) of the 1981 British Nationality Act, allows for deprivation of citizenship where fraud, false representation or concealment of material facts have been used to obtain British citizenship. Since February 2020 these figures have been published via the Transparency report on asylum data, which can be found using the links below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/asylum-transparency-data-february-2020

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average time was for an investigation into the deprivation of citizenship in each of the last five years.

We do not comment on referrals or ongoing investigations but do publish information in respect of cases where a deprivation order has been served.

Figures for conducive deprivation orders, which are made under Section 40(2) of the 1981 British Nationality Act, have been published as part of the transparency report on disruptive and investigatory powers. Three reports have been published to date in 2015, 2017 and 2018:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/473603/51973_Cm_9151_Transparency_Accessible.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/593668/58597_Cm_9420_Transparency_report_web.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disruptive-and-investigatory-powers-transparency-report-2018

Section 40(3) of the 1981 British Nationality Act, allows for deprivation of citizenship where fraud, false representation or concealment of material facts have been used to obtain British citizenship. Since February 2020 these figures have been published via the Transparency report on asylum data, which can be found using the links below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/asylum-transparency-data-february-2020

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what progress his Department has made on ensuring that staff on the MP Enquiry line have access to the EU Settlement Scheme database.

All MP Enquiry Line staff and the majority of supporting MPAM staff, have access to the EU Settlement Scheme database.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
13th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how much revenue accrued to the public purse from visit visa applications which went on to be refused, in each of the last four quarters; and how much of that revenue was profit.

The Home Office does not hold the information in the format requested. Visa income is not differentiated between the various categories in which they are received and so our financial systems will not allow us to provide this level of detail.

Visa and immigration income data is published annually in the Home Office Annual Report and Accounts. See page 137 of the Home Office 2018-19 Annual Report and Accounts for the most recent disclosure of visa and immigration income.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachmentdata/file/807126/6.5571_HO_Annual_Report_201920_WEB.PDF

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what her Department's target is for issuing ASPEN cards; and what recent assessment her Department has made of performance against those targets.

The HO does not routinely collect data on the time taken to issue ASPEN cards but we are continuing to work with all accommodation providers to ensure that applicants are able to access financial support upon dispersal. There is an Emergency Support Payment (ECP) provision available from Providers to ensure that Service Users are supported until receipt of their ASPEN Card.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average time spent is (a) waiting to get through to and (b) on hold on a telephone call to Migrant Help.

Migrant Help have sustained an average call waiting time of less than a minute since 8th January.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average time spent is to process (a) s95, (b) s4 and (c) s96 asylum support applications from application to receipt of support.

The Home Office monitors closely the performance of asylum support application decision making and has a range of targets for processing support applications depending on the nature of the application being made.

Inormation on processing times is not recorded in a format suitable for publication and there are no plans to publish such statistics at this time.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average time taken is from receipt of correspondence by Migrant Help to replying to the sender since the introduction of the new Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility contract.

There are various types of correspondence received by Migrant Help via a range of routes. It is therefore not possible to give average times, however all correspondence received through Royal Mail is dealt with within 48 hours of receipt.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department has taken to increase staffing levels for the Migrant Help phone line.

Migrant Help have been recruiting and training staff to ensure they are resourced sufficiently to meet demand and they are working closely with accommodation providers and the Home Office to ensure that appropriate escalation mechanisms are in place so that service users can access support.

Staffing levels for both AIRE (Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility) and EAGL (Eligibility, Advice & Guidance) are more than double what they were when the lines first opened in September 2019.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the staff turnover has been on the Migrant Help phoneline since the introduction of the new Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility contract.

Migrant Help have been recruiting and training staff to ensure they are resourced sufficiently to meet demand and they are working closely with accommodation providers and the Home Office to ensure that appropriate escalation mechanisms are in place so that service users can access support.

Staffing levels for both AIRE (Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility) and EAGL (Eligibility, Advice & Guidance) are more than double what they were when the lines first opened in September 2019.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many people have been wrongly removed to their country of origin after having their asylum claims refused while Appeal Rights Exhausted and have then been returned back to the UK, in each of the last five years.

The UK has a proud record of providing protection for asylum seekers fleeing persecution. Each case is considered sensitively, appropriately and on its individual merits. All available evidence is carefully and sensitively considered against a background of relevant case law and in light of published country information, which covers country specific issues.

The UK only ever returns those who both the Home Office and the courts are satisfied do not need our protection and have no legal basis to remain in the UK.

Providing the information requested in relation to number of people returned to the UK following removal would require a manual check of individual records and I am therefore not able to provide this to you. In a small number of cases each year individuals are brought back to the UK either by the Home Office or a Court for further consideration of their case. When this occurs, we review all circumstances with the Courts as appropriate.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has made an assessment of the effect of removing service standards from asylum claims on the time taken to conclude those claims for (a) adult claimants and (b) minors.

Until October 2018, there was a published Service Standard in place to decide 98% of straight-forward cases within six months from date of claim. Whilst the operation consistently achieved this for three years, the number of non-straight forward cases awaiting a decision grew rapidly and it became clear that the former service standard no longer best served those that used our services. For these reasons, former Ministers agreed that we should move away from the service standard to reprioritise cases in the short term, whilst we come to longer term arrangement for service standards that meet the needs of all parties.

As a result, we moved away from the 6-month service standard to concentrate on older claims, cases with acute vulnerability and those in receipt of the greatest level of support, including Unaccompanied Asylum-Seeking Children (UASC). That has meant some claims that would have been categorised as straightforward and received a decision within 6 months have waited longer.

However, it would be difficult to attribute this to changes to the service standard, as asylum intake has been significantly higher than expected levels since October 2018.. Published statistics show that there were 35,566 asylum applications in the UK (main applicants only) in the year ending December 2019, an increase of 21% from the previous year.

This means that despite a number of interventions, the number of claims awaiting a decision has grown.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she plans to publish her Department's review of the provision of Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility Assistance.

AIRE is the new Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility service provided by Migrant Help. The AIRE contract contains a number of formal performance measures, including Key Performance Indicators, which provide a mechanism by which the effectiveness of contract delivery can be measured. These are monitored in formal monthly and quarterly contract governance meetings. Measures can be taken where performance falls short of the standards we set.

We will continue to monitor performance and the effectiveness of the contracts through the monthly Contract Management Groups and quarterly Strategic Review Management Boards.

Further information about the performance measures within the contract can be found in the contracts, published here: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Notice/028be8bb-3c69-494d-bfdd-59c2e1b34379?p=@UFQxUlRRPT0=NjJNT08=

There are currently no plans to publish a review into the provision of AIRE.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department has taken to ensure that the standards set out in the Statement of Requirements for the Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility Assistance contract are being met.

AIRE is the new Advice, Issue Reporting and Eligibility service provided by Migrant Help. The AIRE contract contains a number of formal performance measures, including Key Performance Indicators, which provide a mechanism by which the effectiveness of contract delivery can be measured. These are monitored in formal monthly and quarterly contract governance meetings. Measures can be taken where performance falls short of the standards we set.

We will continue to monitor performance and the effectiveness of the contracts through the monthly Contract Management Groups and quarterly Strategic Review Management Boards.

Further information about the performance measures within the contract can be found in the contracts, published here: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Notice/028be8bb-3c69-494d-bfdd-59c2e1b34379?p=@UFQxUlRRPT0=NjJNT08=

There are currently no plans to publish a review into the provision of AIRE.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the date of receipt was of the oldest outstanding asylum claim.

The date of receipt of the oldest outstanding asylum claim is 23rd August 2012.

There are cases in particular where more complex issues arise around a claimant’s entitlement to asylum and there is a need for us to engage in wider stakeholder involvement, alongside additional analysis and scrutiny. These cases continue to be processed as quickly as possible, but the Secretary of State has to be satisfied that our decisions are compliant with the 1951 Refugee Convention prior to service as this is a mandatory requirement.

The Home Office does not routinely publish information on the trends in the level of time taken from the date of an asylum claim to the date of a substantive asylum interview as this information is not held in a reportable format

However, the Home Office do publish information on the number of main asylum applications awaiting an initial decision, by duration from the period end of March 2020, and can be found in table ASY_04 of the published Immigration statistics www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-march-2020/list-of-tables#asylum-and-resettlement

Over the last 18 months, UK Visas and Immigration have increased the number of Asylum decision makers and support staff as part of a rolling recruitment campaign and mobilised a transformation programme that seeks to simplify, streamline and digitise processes as part of the plans to speed up the asylum decision making process and reduce the time from date of claim to substantive interview.

In line with the Home Office’s commitment to protect the health and wellbeing of its staff and applicants as a top priority in response to COVID-19, Asylum Operations made the decision to cease face to face substantive asylum interviews with effect from Thursday 19th March 2020.

However, it is crucial to our applicants that we restart processing their applications for protection as soon as it is safe to do so. The Home Office has successfully used video technology to support remote interviewing for more than 2 years and has appropriate operating procedures that are designed to ensure participants are able to give the best account of their circumstances.

To keep people safe but allow the Home Office to gather the additional information needed to make a decision on their claim for protection, Asylum Operations have secured additional mobile digital and video interviewing kit that enables more applicants to be interviewed remotely. We remain committed to restarting substantive asylum interviews as soon we can establish a process that allows the participants - applicants, representatives, interpreters and interviewers - to do so safely.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the date was of receipt by her Department of the oldest outstanding further submission relating to an asylum claim.

Our records indicate that the oldest outstanding Further Submission relating to an asylum claim was received on 18 October 2005.

UK Visas and Immigration has undertaken exercises to review the oldest Further Submissions cases. Where more complex issues arise, it can take time to progress the decision on a case, but we keep all cases under regular review, and they are decided as soon as it is possible to do so.

The Home Office does not routinely publish information on the timing of further submissions. However, the Home Office does publish information on the number of main asylum applications awaiting an initial decision and this can be found in table ASY_04 of the published Immigration statistics www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-march-2020/list-of-tables#asylum-and-resettlement

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to reduce the time between the date of an asylum claim and the date of a substantive asylum interview.

The date of receipt of the oldest outstanding asylum claim is 23rd August 2012.

There are cases in particular where more complex issues arise around a claimant’s entitlement to asylum and there is a need for us to engage in wider stakeholder involvement, alongside additional analysis and scrutiny. These cases continue to be processed as quickly as possible, but the Secretary of State has to be satisfied that our decisions are compliant with the 1951 Refugee Convention prior to service as this is a mandatory requirement.

The Home Office does not routinely publish information on the trends in the level of time taken from the date of an asylum claim to the date of a substantive asylum interview as this information is not held in a reportable format

However, the Home Office do publish information on the number of main asylum applications awaiting an initial decision, by duration from the period end of March 2020, and can be found in table ASY_04 of the published Immigration statistics www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-march-2020/list-of-tables#asylum-and-resettlement

Over the last 18 months, UK Visas and Immigration have increased the number of Asylum decision makers and support staff as part of a rolling recruitment campaign and mobilised a transformation programme that seeks to simplify, streamline and digitise processes as part of the plans to speed up the asylum decision making process and reduce the time from date of claim to substantive interview.

In line with the Home Office’s commitment to protect the health and wellbeing of its staff and applicants as a top priority in response to COVID-19, Asylum Operations made the decision to cease face to face substantive asylum interviews with effect from Thursday 19th March 2020.

However, it is crucial to our applicants that we restart processing their applications for protection as soon as it is safe to do so. The Home Office has successfully used video technology to support remote interviewing for more than 2 years and has appropriate operating procedures that are designed to ensure participants are able to give the best account of their circumstances.

To keep people safe but allow the Home Office to gather the additional information needed to make a decision on their claim for protection, Asylum Operations have secured additional mobile digital and video interviewing kit that enables more applicants to be interviewed remotely. We remain committed to restarting substantive asylum interviews as soon we can establish a process that allows the participants - applicants, representatives, interpreters and interviewers - to do so safely.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will publish the information she holds on trends in the level of time taken from the date of an asylum claim to the date of a substantive asylum interview in the last five years.

The date of receipt of the oldest outstanding asylum claim is 23rd August 2012.

There are cases in particular where more complex issues arise around a claimant’s entitlement to asylum and there is a need for us to engage in wider stakeholder involvement, alongside additional analysis and scrutiny. These cases continue to be processed as quickly as possible, but the Secretary of State has to be satisfied that our decisions are compliant with the 1951 Refugee Convention prior to service as this is a mandatory requirement.

The Home Office does not routinely publish information on the trends in the level of time taken from the date of an asylum claim to the date of a substantive asylum interview as this information is not held in a reportable format

However, the Home Office do publish information on the number of main asylum applications awaiting an initial decision, by duration from the period end of March 2020, and can be found in table ASY_04 of the published Immigration statistics www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-march-2020/list-of-tables#asylum-and-resettlement

Over the last 18 months, UK Visas and Immigration have increased the number of Asylum decision makers and support staff as part of a rolling recruitment campaign and mobilised a transformation programme that seeks to simplify, streamline and digitise processes as part of the plans to speed up the asylum decision making process and reduce the time from date of claim to substantive interview.

In line with the Home Office’s commitment to protect the health and wellbeing of its staff and applicants as a top priority in response to COVID-19, Asylum Operations made the decision to cease face to face substantive asylum interviews with effect from Thursday 19th March 2020.

However, it is crucial to our applicants that we restart processing their applications for protection as soon as it is safe to do so. The Home Office has successfully used video technology to support remote interviewing for more than 2 years and has appropriate operating procedures that are designed to ensure participants are able to give the best account of their circumstances.

To keep people safe but allow the Home Office to gather the additional information needed to make a decision on their claim for protection, Asylum Operations have secured additional mobile digital and video interviewing kit that enables more applicants to be interviewed remotely. We remain committed to restarting substantive asylum interviews as soon we can establish a process that allows the participants - applicants, representatives, interpreters and interviewers - to do so safely.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
28th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the timeframe is for the conclusion of case-handling instructions following the conclusion of the Immigration4U trial.

There are currently 85 cases on hold pending the drafting of case handling instructions since the conclusion of the Immigration4U trial. Although the main trial ended on 26 November 2018, the second trial did not conclude until 2 June 2019.The Home Office is in the final stages of writing the guidance.

The Home Office will ensure decision makers will be provided with the requisite training and support to ensure that these applications are promptly concluded. The applications will be prioritised in date order.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
28th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she plans to take to ensure that immigration cases that are on hold as a result of the prosecution and conviction of Immigration4U immigration advisors are promptly concluded.

There are currently 85 cases on hold pending the drafting of case handling instructions since the conclusion of the Immigration4U trial. Although the main trial ended on 26 November 2018, the second trial did not conclude until 2 June 2019.The Home Office is in the final stages of writing the guidance.

The Home Office will ensure decision makers will be provided with the requisite training and support to ensure that these applications are promptly concluded. The applications will be prioritised in date order.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
28th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many cases are on hold pending the drafting of the case-handling instructions since the conclusion of Immigration4U trial on 26 November 2018.

There are currently 85 cases on hold pending the drafting of case handling instructions since the conclusion of the Immigration4U trial. Although the main trial ended on 26 November 2018, the second trial did not conclude until 2 June 2019.The Home Office is in the final stages of writing the guidance.

The Home Office will ensure decision makers will be provided with the requisite training and support to ensure that these applications are promptly concluded. The applications will be prioritised in date order.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
12th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will publish the feasibility study of the Centre of Excellence for Human Security.

I can confirm that the internal feasibility assessment has concluded and the next steps will be published shortly.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
6th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether he has had discussions with his Kuwaiti counterpart on the potential for deploying RAF Reaper drones for operations over the Strait of Hormuz.

We are in regular communication with all our regional allies. However, I am withholding information on the location of Reaper aircraft as its release would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the Armed Forces.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Energy and Clean Growth)
16th Jul 2021
To the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether the team working on the Oxford to Cambridge Arc Spatial Framework has undertaken analysis of the different approaches to environmentally-friendly planning by local authorities along the Arc; and if they will publish this analysis.

Environmental sustainability is at the heart of our approach to the Oxford-Cambridge Arc, with a core focus for the Spatial Framework development being sustainable green growth.

The natural environment does not fit within administrative boundaries, so a cross-boundary approach is intended to make it easier to deliver against environmental priorities across the whole area. This includes working closely with local partners across the Arc including local planning authorities.

To ensure sustainability is embedded in the Spatial Framework we are producing a Sustainability Appraisal to address environmental issues alongside social and economic issues as the framework and its policies develop. This will inform decision-making and help achieve improved sustainability outcomes. A Sustainability Appraisal Scoping Report has been prepared as part of our public consultation this summer. This provides more information on our approach and on the Arc's environmental assets.

Two further stages of public consultation on the Spatial Framework will follow, including a second consultation on policy options, and a third consultation on the draft framework. Each stage will be supported by the Sustainability Appraisal and evidence to explain our approach to policy development.

We also appreciate the significant work that has already been undertaken by local partners to develop an evidence base to support planning. We will review the existing evidence and use the most relevant, up-to-date and reliable analysis, to help inform the Spatial Framework's development.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
15th Jul 2021
To the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether officials in his Department working on the Oxford to Cambridge Arc Spatial Framework have undertaken analysis of the engagement of representatives of cities and other urban areas along the Arc in the Arc governance bodies; and if he will make a statement.

When we formally launched the process to develop the Spatial Framework, we announced our intention to work closely with local partners throughout its development. Local authorities will therefore be encouraged to engage in all three public consultations and will have the opportunity to further engage through on-going discussions with government.

We also frequently engage with a wide range of local representatives and partners from across the breadth of the Arc’s communities to ensure all local views shape how we unlock the unique potential of the region.

An analysis of stakeholder engagement on the Spatial Framework will be released following the first public consultation this Summer, which was launched today, when we will publish a summary of comments received and our response to the consultation.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
15th Jul 2021
To the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether officials in his Department working on the Oxford to Cambridge Arc Spatial Framework have undertaken analysis of varying approaches to the delivery of affordable and social housing by local authorities along the Arc.

The development of the Spatial Framework is at a very early stage. In preparing the Spatial Framework we are committed to going through a robust process of building our evidence base to understand the most sustainable approach to housing growth for the Arc, and will go beyond the typical local planning horizon by planning to 2050. The Spatial Framework therefore presents the opportunity to set future expectations for affordable housing that can be delivered in a way that meets the needs of local residents.

In February, when we formally launched the process to develop the Spatial Framework, we committed to conducting wide and meaningful engagement to give as many people as possible the opportunity to help shape the Spatial Framework.

Today we launched the first of three public consultations on the Spatial Framework, which will include consulting on the issue of affordable housing and meeting the future housing needs of the area: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/creating-a-vision-for-the-oxford-cambridge-arc.

We intend to carry out three phases of planned public consultation for the Spatial Framework over a two-year period, so there will be two further opportunities for people to have their say. The next stage of the Spatial Framework consultation, which we hope will take place in Spring 2022, will focus on policy options to deliver sustainable growth in the Arc to 2050, including policy options relating to housing.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
27th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment his Department has made of the sectoral distribution of local authority covid-19 support funding; and if he will place a copy of that assessment in the Library.

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

Luke Hall
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
21st Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether it remains the Government's policy to hold a public consultation on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

The Government has committed to create the UK Shared Prosperity Fund as the successor to EU structural funds, including the European Social Fund. The fund will bind together the whole of the United Kingdom, tackling inequality and deprivation in each of our four nations.

The Government recognises the importance of reassuring local areas on the future of local growth funding now we have left the European Union, and of providing clarity on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. Government officials have been working closely with key partners on the design and priorities of the fund, including through a series of engagement events attended by over 500 stakeholders from across a variety of sectors. Government looks forward to continuing to work closely with partners as we develop the fund and has been clear that final decisions on the design must take place after a cross-government Spending Review.

26th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what the average wait time is between an appeal being lodged at the Employment Appeals Tribunal to that appeal being heard.

HM Courts & Tribunals Service does not hold published information on the average time between an appeal being lodged at the Employment Appeal Tribunal and that appeal being heard.

Internal Management Information held works to a target of 75% of appeal cases heard within 26 weeks of appeal registration. Registration differs to lodgement as when an appeal is received/lodged with the Employment Appeal Tribunal, it will be assessed by a member of the Judiciary prior to any registration.

Latest performance indicates that between April 2019 and September 2019, 77% of Employment Appeal Tribunals were heard within 26 weeks of registration. This is internal management information only and the data is provisional and subject to further change.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)