Ruth Jones Portrait

Ruth Jones

Labour - Newport West

First elected: 4th April 2019

Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

(since August 2020)

Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill
22nd Jun 2022 - 7th Jul 2022
Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill [HL]
9th Feb 2022 - 10th Feb 2022
Down Syndrome Bill
19th Jan 2022 - 26th Jan 2022
Glue Traps (Offences) Bill
12th Jan 2022 - 19th Jan 2022
Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee
11th May 2020 - 21st Sep 2020
Business and Trade Committee
11th May 2020 - 21st Sep 2020
Environmental Audit Committee
8th May 2019 - 6th Nov 2019


Department Event
Thursday 14th March 2024
09:30
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Oral questions - Main Chamber
14 Mar 2024, 9:30 a.m.
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (including Topical Questions)
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Note: This event involves a Department with which this person is linked, and does not guarantee their actual attendance.
Department Event
Thursday 9th May 2024
09:30
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Oral questions - Main Chamber
9 May 2024, 9:30 a.m.
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (including Topical Questions)
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View calendar
Note: This event involves a Department with which this person is linked, and does not guarantee their actual attendance.
Division Votes
Wednesday 21st February 2024
Motor Vehicles (Driving Licences) (Reform)
voted No - in line with the party majority
One of 77 Labour No votes vs 0 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 63 Noes - 81
Speeches
Friday 23rd February 2024
Community and Suspended Sentences (Notification of Details) Bill
I beg to move, That the Bill be now read a Second time.

I am delighted to rise to bring …
Written Answers
Friday 16th February 2024
Primates: Animal Welfare
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department plans to take to …
Early Day Motions
Tuesday 7th January 2020
Australia bushfire crisis
That this House acknowledges that the Commonwealth of Australia is fighting one of its worst bushfire seasons, fuelled by record-breaking …
Bills
Wednesday 6th December 2023
Community and Suspended Sentences (Notification of Details) Bill 2023-24
A Bill to require offenders serving community and certain other sentences to provide information about names used and contact details.
MP Financial Interests
Monday 30th October 2023
2. (b) Any other support not included in Category 2(a)
Name of donor: Labour Animal Welfare Society
Address of donor: 30 Station Road, Calrton, Nottingham NG4 3AX
Amount of donation …
EDM signed
Monday 25th October 2021
Campaign to secure the future of the Covid Memorial Wall
That this House welcomes the creation of the Covid Memorial Wall on Albert Embankment by Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice; …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Ruth Jones has voted in 798 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Ruth Jones 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
Rebecca Pow (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
(102 debate interactions)
Alan Whitehead (Labour)
Shadow Minister (Climate Change and Net Zero)
(28 debate interactions)
Victoria Prentis (Conservative)
Attorney General
(20 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Cabinet Office
(39 debate contributions)
HM Treasury
(34 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
Legislation Debates
Environment Act 2021
(18,002 words contributed)
Agriculture Act 2020
(12,301 words contributed)
Animal Welfare (Sentience) Act 2022
(3,738 words contributed)
View All Legislation Debates
View all Ruth Jones's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Ruth Jones

23rd September 2021
Ruth Jones signed this EDM on Monday 25th October 2021

Campaign to secure the future of the Covid Memorial Wall

Tabled by: Afzal Khan (Labour - Manchester, Gorton)
That this House welcomes the creation of the Covid Memorial Wall on Albert Embankment by Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice; notes that this memorial now includes over 150,000 hand-painted hearts to symbolise all those who lost their lives during the coronavirus pandemic; praises the work of Covid-19 Bereaved Families for …
139 signatures
(Most recent: 21 Feb 2022)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 97
Scottish National Party: 15
Liberal Democrat: 10
Conservative: 5
Democratic Unionist Party: 5
Independent: 3
Plaid Cymru: 3
Green Party: 1
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 1
18th March 2021
Ruth Jones signed this EDM as a sponsor on Thursday 18th March 2021

Agriculture

Tabled by: Keir Starmer (Labour - Holborn and St Pancras)
That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, praying that the Heather and Grass etc. Burning (England) Regulations 2021 (S.I., 2021, No. 158), dated 15 February 2021, a copy of which was laid before this House on 16 February 2021, be annulled.
10 signatures
(Most recent: 11 May 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 8
Independent: 1
Green Party: 1
View All Ruth Jones's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

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

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


1 Urgent Question tabled by Ruth Jones

Monday 21st November 2022

Ruth Jones has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Ruth Jones


A Bill to require offenders serving community and certain other sentences to provide information about names used and contact details.

Commons - 40%

Last Event - 2nd Reading
Friday 26th January 2024

Ruth Jones has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


2116 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
44 Other Department Questions
8th Mar 2023
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps the Government is taking to support women’s equality in the workplace.

The Government is determined to support women in the workplace. We are supporting several Private Members’ Bills which will improve their employment rights. These include Bills which will extend redundancy protections for pregnant women, give employees better access to flexible working and strengthen protections against sexual harassment.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
16th Jan 2023
To ask the hon. Member for Broxbourne, representing the House of Commons Commission, if he will meet the hon. Member for Newport West to discuss (a) recycling and (b) waste on the parliamentary estate.

The Commission is always happy to hear from Members to understand their views, and a meeting will be arranged.

Parliament recently completed a 10-year environmental campaign. We set a target to reduce our waste by weight by 30% against our 2008/09 baseline. This target had been increased during the campaign due to our success in meeting the first target we set ourselves. At the end of the campaign, we had achieved a reduction of 61%. We also achieved a recycling and recovery rate of 65% against our target of 75% by 2020/21.

Future targets are in the process of consultation and approval. These will run through to 2050 with the future waste target being based on the waste hierarchy as well as a further target for the reduction of the total waste Parliament generates. Additional targets will be set for a circular economy.

24th Oct 2022
To ask the President of COP26, which members of the Government will be attending COP27 in Egypt.

COP26 President Alok Sharma will attend COP27 and negotiate on behalf of the UK. The wider composition of the UK Government's delegation will be announced in due course.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, whether it remains her Department's policy to end period poverty by 2025.

Period poverty is an issue the government takes very seriously and has taken a number of steps to address the problem.

Since January 2020, a Department for Education scheme provides free period products in schools and 16-19 education institutions in England. 94% of eligible secondary schools had accessed this scheme by December 2021. We are pleased to confirm that the continuation of free period products in schools in England for all learners who need them until 2024. We have expanded the range of products included to ensure more environmentally friendly and sustainable products, based on user feedback.

Additionally, from 1 January 2021, the ‘tampon tax’ has been abolished - with a zero rate of VAT applying to all period products. Prior to the abolition of the tax, a Tampon Tax Fund was in place to allocate the funds generated from the VAT on period products, to projects which improve the lives of disadvantaged women and girls. A final round of £11.25 million in grant funding was awarded in November 2021 to distribute the VAT collected on period products in the final nine months of the 2020/21 financial year, before the tax ended.

As well as these steps, in 2019, NHS England announced that it would offer period products to every hospital patient who needs them and the Home Office changed the law to ensure that all people in custody are provided with health and hygiene products for free, to include period products.

In March 2020, in light of COVID-19, the work of the Period Poverty Taskforce was paused to free up resources to focus on the pandemic.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
13th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent steps she has taken to support more women into work.

There are nearly two million more women in work since 2010, with many benefiting from the wider work the Government is doing to support women into employment.

We are committed to changing the culture of the workplace so that every woman can get into work and thrive. Most recently we have: called on all employers to empower women to negotiate their pay by providing greater transparency, announced a pilot to help women return to STEM roles where their talents are most needed, and launched a new taskforce to increase the number of women-led high-growth businesses. These are just some of the ways in which we are ensuring that women are supported to reach their full potential throughout their careers.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, when he last met Ministers in the Welsh Government in Cardiff.

COP26 Devolved Administrations Ministers Meetings, which I chair, have formally convened five times. Communiqués from these meetings can be found on GOV.UK. The Welsh Government Minister for Climate Change has been present at these meetings.

Energy policy, including energy efficiency, falls within the remit of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). With support from the devolved administrations, BEIS established an Inter-Ministerial Group (IMG) that is responsible for discussing Net Zero, Energy and Climate Change. This aims to meet every two months and brings together Ministers from the four administrations to discuss emission reduction efforts across the UK. This intergovernmental engagement on net zero will continue to facilitate collaboration and coordination across devolved and reserved competence, ensuring we are delivering effectively for all parts of the UK.

We are committed to working with the devolved administrations to achieve our shared goals of leading the charge against climate change.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
16th May 2022
To ask the President for COP26, whether he plans to advance the work of the Glasgow Dialogue Pact to support the creation of a loss and damage finance fund by COP27; and if he will take steps to advance efforts to mobilise finance from wealthy nations towards that fund.

The Glasgow Climate Pact (GCP) put in place a new Glasgow Dialogue that will discuss the arrangements for the funding of activities to avert, minimise and address loss and damage, but it did not agree to the creation of a loss and damage finance fund by COP27. The first dialogue will take place in June 2022, and further dialogues will take place every year to 2024. The GCP also noted existing funding for climate, disaster reduction and response is relevant to loss and damage.

We continue to encourage donors to increase the attention given to loss and damage which was reiterated at the Ministerial meeting including over 40 governments, hosted by Denmark on 12th and 13th May and co-chaired by the UK and Egypt.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
6th Jan 2022
To ask the hon. Member for City of Chester, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what steps are being taken to improve levels of political literacy among young people in Newport West.

The Electoral Commission has an important duty to promote public awareness of the UK’s electoral systems.

Following the extension of the franchise to 16 and 17 year olds in Wales, the Commission has been working with teachers and youth leaders to support citizenship education, and has shared new education resources for young people across the UK, including versions specific to Wales.

The Commission continues to develop further political literacy resources for young people across the UK, and will publish additional materials ahead of the upcoming elections in May 2022. It has also recently established a youth voice network to inform this work, which includes representation from young people in Wales.

The Commission is also promoting Welcome to Your Vote week to schools this month, to help young people to feel more confident and more prepared to engage in democracy.

6th Jan 2022
To ask the hon. Member for City of Chester, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what recent assessment the Electoral Commission has made of the impact of introducing voter ID on turnout among Black, Asian and ethnic minority communities in (a) Newport West, (b) Wales and (c) the UK.

The Electoral Commission’s independent evaluation of the Government’s pilots, held in 2018 and 2019, found no evidence that turnout was significantly affected by the trialled introduction of an ID requirement at polling stations.

However, the evaluations noted that the pilots were not representative of the UK population and it was therefore not possible to draw definitive conclusions, particularly about the likely impact at a national poll with higher levels of turnout.

The Commission will have significant responsibilities to raise public awareness about the new ID requirement. This will have a predominant focus on those demographics known to be less likely to have the necessary identification, including those from lower socio-economic groups, those with disabilities and the unemployed.

25th Nov 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions she has had with the Welsh Government on the Government’s response to the recent increase in spiking injections of young women in nightclubs.

I have regular discussions with colleagues across government on a range of equalities issues. Reports of spiking, whether that is adding substances to drinks or injecting people with needles, are extremely concerning, and this is an issue which the Government takes very seriously.

The Home Secretary has already asked the National Police Chiefs’ Council to urgently review the extent and scale of the issue, and the Home Office is receiving regular updates from the police who are working locally, regionally and nationally, including with partners in the National Crime Agency. Police forces in Wales have been involved in these discussions and the Welsh Government will be kept apprised of any developments.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
25th Nov 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions she has had with the Home Secretary on the Government’s response to the recent increase in spiking injections of young women in nightclubs.

I have regular discussions with colleagues across government on a range of equalities issues. Reports of spiking, whether that is adding substances to drinks or injecting people with needles, are extremely concerning, and this is an issue which the Government takes very seriously.

The Home Secretary has already asked the National Police Chiefs’ Council to urgently review the extent and scale of the issue, and the Home Office is receiving regular updates from the police who are working locally, regionally and nationally, including with partners in the National Crime Agency. Police forces in Wales have been involved in these discussions and the Welsh Government will be kept apprised of any developments.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
19th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, further to the Answer of 18 November 2021 to Question 71459, on UN Climate Conference 2021, if he will publish (a) the names of each of the 33 members of the Government who attended the COP26 Summit in Glasgow and (b) which 15 Government departments those attendees represented.

Alongside the Prime Minister and COP President, 33 Ministers attended COP26 from 15 different Departments across Government. Please see list below:

Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP

HMT

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP

FCDO

Lord Ahmad

FCDO

Rt Hon James Cleverly MP

FCDO

Rt Hon Amanda Milling MP

FCDO

Vicky Ford MP

FCDO

Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng MP

BEIS

Rt Hon Greg Hands MP

BEIS

Lord Callanan

BEIS

Lee Rowley MP

BEIS

Eddie Hughes MP

DLUHC

Rt Hon Lord Goldsmith

DEFRA

Rt Hon George Eustice MP

DEFRA

Rebecca Pow MP

DEFRA

Jo Churchill MP

DEFRA

Rt Hon Nadhim Zahawi MP

DfE

Baroness Barran

DfE

Rt Hon Michelle Donelan MP

DfE

Alex Burghart MP

DfE

Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP

DHSC

Gillian Keegan MP

DHSC

Trudy Harrison MP

DfT

Robert Courts MP

DfT

Rt Hon Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP

DIT

Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP

MoD

Rt Hon Alister Jack MP

SO

Rt Hon Simon Hart MP

WO

Rt Hon Nadine Dorries MP

DCMS

Wendy Morton MP

FCDO

John Glen MP

HMT

Rt Hon Therese Coffey MP

DWP

Helen Whately MP

HMT

Rt Hon Steve Barclay MP

CO

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
15th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, which members of the Government attended the COP26 conference in Glasgow.

Alongside the Prime Minister and COP President, 33 Ministers attended COP26 from 15 different Departments across Government. Please see list below:

Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP

HMT

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP

FCDO

Lord Ahmad

FCDO

Rt Hon James Cleverly MP

FCDO

Rt Hon Amanda Milling MP

FCDO

Vicky Ford MP

FCDO

Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng MP

BEIS

Rt Hon Greg Hands MP

BEIS

Lord Callanan

BEIS

Lee Rowley MP

BEIS

Eddie Hughes MP

DLUHC

Rt Hon Lord Goldsmith

DEFRA

Rt Hon George Eustice MP

DEFRA

Rebecca Pow MP

DEFRA

Jo Churchill MP

DEFRA

Rt Hon Nadhim Zahawi MP

DfE

Baroness Barran

DfE

Rt Hon Michelle Donelan MP

DfE

Alex Burghart MP

DfE

Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP

DHSC

Gillian Keegan MP

DHSC

Trudy Harrison MP

DfT

Robert Courts MP

DfT

Rt Hon Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP

DIT

Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP

MoD

Rt Hon Alister Jack MP

SO

Rt Hon Simon Hart MP

WO

Rt Hon Nadine Dorries MP

DCMS

Wendy Morton MP

FCDO

John Glen MP

HMT

Rt Hon Therese Coffey MP

DWP

Helen Whately MP

HMT

Rt Hon Steve Barclay MP

CO

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
8th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how many members of the Government attended the COP26 summit in Glasgow.

Alongside the Prime Minister and COP President, 33 Ministers from 15 different Departments attended COP26. Ministers supported the delivery of COP26 through participation in Presidency theme day events and engagement with international counterparts to help secure COP objectives.

4th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, if the Government will conduct an inquiry into accessibility at COP26 for people with disabilities.

We remain committed to an inclusive COP26 that is accessible to all; the venue was designed to facilitate that. The permanent structures are fully wheelchair accessible and the venue holds gold level accessibility status. For the temporary structures a complete accessibility audit was completed and they are fully compliant. There are blue badge spaces for the conference, along with two fully accessible shuttle routes.

2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions she has had with the Welsh Government on its LGBTQ+ Action Plan for Wales.

The Equality Hub is in regular contact with Welsh Government officials and has held discussions covering the LGBTQ+ action plan for Wales as well as wider LGBT policy, including most recently the proposals to ban conversion therapy in England and Wales.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
1st Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how many and what proportion of world leaders travelled to COP26 by air.

Our default approach is that travel to and from Glasgow is by train or other appropriate public ground transportation. COP26 will be carbon neutral. Our principal priority is to reduce emissions from the conference with any unavoidable carbon emissions from COP26 to be offset. We are working to achieve PAS2060 Carbon Neutrality validation for COP26 to ensure this approach. We have also encouraged delegates to consider low-carbon travel options and will be offsetting the emissions associated with travel, including those of the COP President and UK officials in the run up to COP26.

1st Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how many and what proportion of UK Government ministers travelled by air to COP26 in Glasgow.

Our default approach is that travel to and from Glasgow is by train or other appropriate public ground transportation. COP26 will be carbon neutral. Our principal priority is to reduce emissions from the conference with any unavoidable carbon emissions from COP26 to be offset. We are working to achieve PAS2060 Carbon Neutrality validation for COP26 to ensure this approach. We have also encouraged delegates to consider low-carbon travel options and will be offsetting the emissions associated with travel, including those of the COP President and UK officials in the run up to COP26.

1st Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of the absence of President Erdogan of Turkey from COP26 in Glasgow on the outcomes of that conference.

COP26 is a critical moment for the future of our planet. We welcome President Erdogan's announcement that Turkey plans to reach net zero by 2053 and that Turkey has ratified the Paris Agreement. The UK looks forward to hearing more on Turkey’s climate plans and working with the delegation from Turkey to bring key negotiations issues to a constructive conclusion at COP26.

27th Oct 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the UN Environment Programme's The Emissions Gap Report 2021; and if he will make a statement.

The UN Environment Programme's Emissions Gap Report 2021 makes clear, if countries deliver on their 2030 Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and net zero commitments which have been announced by the end of September, we will be heading towards average global temperature rises of 2.2C.

In the opening days of COP26 momentum has continued to build, with new net zero commitments from the likes of India (the world’s third largest emitter), meaning that over 90% of the global economy is now covered by a net zero target.

But we know that to keep 1.5C within reach we need more, so we will continue to press leaders for more ambitious climate action.

22nd Oct 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he has taken to involve children and young people in the preparation for the COP26 summit.

The UK COP26 Presidency is committed to amplifying the voices of young people from across the world in the lead up to and at COP26 this November. The COP President committed to meeting with young people on international visits over the last year and has established the COP26 Civil Society and Youth Advisory Council, which he chairs together with two youth representatives.

On the road to COP26, we have worked with our COP26 partner, the Government of Italy, to deliver the ‘Youth4Climate2021: Driving Ambition’ event held in Milan in September, and we are endorsing the 16th UN Conference of Youth event held in Glasgow.

At COP26, we will host a dedicated Youth & Public Empowerment Day to elevate youth voices and demonstrate the critical role of education and empowerment to drive climate action. We have been working closely with YOUNGO (the official children’s and youth constituency to the UNFCCC) and diverse youth organisations to co-create the events programme for the day.

21st Oct 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, how her Department has marked Black History Month 2021.

This year, the Government marked Black History Month with the #TransformingToday campaign. Throughout the month, the Cabinet Office has coordinated the government-wide campaign, #TransformingToday, which has celebrated Black British talent, trailblazers and pioneers. There has been a particular focus on our Covid heroes. As Minister of State for Equalities I wrote an opinion piece for Black History Month Magazine and took part in an interview with Sky News’ Trevor Phillips on the topic of Black History Month.

There have been numerous central events including a No10 reception celebrating the success of Black interns, entrepreneurs and others, attended by the Prime Minister. There was also an event highlighting service with school pupils from three schools and Victoria Cross recipient Johnson Beharry; as well as other events in skills and digital helping to support Black people in their ambitions.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
20th Oct 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the implications for the outcomes of the COP26 summit of President Putin's decision not to attend that summit.

As hosts of COP26, we strongly encourage leaders to attend given this is a critical moment for the future of our planet. The Prime Minister is looking forward to meeting all the leaders who have confirmed attendance – over 120 so far.

We look forward to working with the delegation from Russia to bring key negotiations issues to a constructive conclusion at COP26, and to ambitious announcements from Russia to help keep 1.5C in reach, in line with President Putin’s announcement last week that Russia would achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2060.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
20th Oct 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the implications for the outcomes of the COP26 summit of President Xi of China's decision not to attend that summit.

As hosts of COP26, we strongly encourage leaders to attend given this is a critical moment for the future of our planet. The Prime Minister is looking forward to meeting all the leaders who have confirmed attendance – over 120 so far.

We look forward to working with the delegation from China to bring key negotiations issues to a constructive conclusion at COP26, and to ambitious announcements from China to help keep 1.5C in reach, in line with President Xi’s announcement last year that China would achieve climate neutrality by 2060.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
7th Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what discussions he has had with his counterparts in (a) the EU, (b) the US, (c) China, (d) Australia and (e) the African Union on ending the exploration and licensing of new fossil fuel supplies.

Accelerating the global energy transition from coal to clean power is a top priority of the UK COP26 Presidency. We have engaged the EU, US, China, Australia, and African countries, amongst others, to encourage ambitious action on the transition away from fossil fuels to clean power and to increase international cooperation to speed this change.

We launched the Energy Transition Council to bring together the political, financial and technical leaders of the global power sector to ensure that clean power is the most attractive option for new power generation for all countries. The Council engages with over twenty countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, and North America. We have pushed many developed economies to end public support to fossil fuels overseas, to match UK policy.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
7th Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, whether tackling toxic air is part of his priorities for the COP26 summit.

For COP26, countries are being asked to come forward with ambitious 2030 Green House Gas emissions reduction targets that align with reaching net zero by the middle of the century. To deliver on these stretching targets, countries will need to accelerate the global phase out of coal, encourage renewables deployment, curtail deforestation, and speed up the switch to electric vehicles.

By tackling the causes of climate change, we can also reduce the impacts of poor air quality on premature deaths throughout the world. As set out in its NDC the UK supports and is pushing for decarbonisation approaches that strive to improve air quality and minimise adverse impacts on human health. Our domestic policy pathway will be outlined in the UK’s Net Zero Strategy which will be published ahead of COP26.

Through our COP26 campaigns, we are seeking closer integration with public health objectives to facilitate a global green, healthy and sustainable recovery from the COVID 19 pandemic.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
7th Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how many Black and minority ethnic people are part of the UK's COP26 negotiating team.

We have recently appointed a Diversity and Inclusion lead in the Campaigns and Engagement Team to lead on inclusivity and diversity for a successful and fully inclusive COP.

For additional wider information, the Government publishes statistics on Civil Service demographics annually on March 31st via the Office for National Statistics. This can be found on the GOV.UK website at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/civil-service-statistics-2021.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, when he last met Ministers in the Welsh Government.

I am working with the Welsh Government, alongside the other devolved administrations, to ensure an inclusive and ambitious COP26 for the whole of the UK. I chair a regular COP26 Devolved Administrations (DAs) Ministerial Group which the Minister for Climate Change, Julie James MS, attends on behalf of the Welsh Government. Our last meeting was in June and our next meeting will be later this month.

The COP26 Unit also worked with the Welsh Government and other DAs to encourage proposals from stakeholders, such as the renewables industry, across the UK via the Expression of Interest process for events or showcasing in UK Government managed spaces at COP26.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent assessment he has made of the Government’s preparedness for the COP26 summit.

COP26 is an event of global importance where the world must work together to secure a comprehensive and ambitious set of outcomes that accelerate climate action and keep 1.5C alive. This includes finalising the Paris Rulebook, supporting the full implementation of the Paris Agreement and addressing the gaps on ambition in reducing emissions this decade, mobilising finance, and adapting to our changing world.

COP26 logistical preparations are well established and we have a robust governance structure, involving close co-operation between Scottish, wider UK and international partners to ensure we host a safe and secure event that meets our objectives. Our preparations include a thorough risk assessment and mitigation plan along with a robust testing and exercise programme.

In terms of COVID, the COP26 Unit has been working closely with public health officials, the Scottish Government, the WHO, the UNFCCC and all our partners to create a comprehensive set of COVID mitigations to ensure preparedness for the conference – the safety of participants and the local population is at the heart of all our planning. This includes a specific test, trace and protect regime, social distancing, enhanced ventilation, face coverings and vaccinations.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent assessment he has made of the Government’s preparedness for COP26.

COP26 is an event of global importance where the world must work together to secure a comprehensive and ambitious set of outcomes that accelerate climate action and keep 1.5C alive. This includes finalising the Paris Rulebook, supporting the full implementation of the Paris Agreement and addressing the gaps on ambition in reducing emissions this decade, mobilising finance, and adapting to our changing world.

COP26 logistical preparations are well established and we have a robust governance structure, involving close co-operation between Scottish, wider UK and international partners to ensure we host a safe and secure event that meets our objectives. Our preparations include a thorough risk assessment and mitigation plan along with a robust testing and exercise programme.

In terms of COVID, the COP26 Unit has been working closely with public health officials, the Scottish Government, the WHO, the UNFCCC and all our partners to create a comprehensive set of COVID mitigations to ensure preparedness for the conference – the safety of participants and the local population is at the heart of all our planning. This includes a specific test, trace and protect regime, social distancing, enhanced ventilation, face coverings and vaccinations.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
18th Aug 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what plans she has to mark the 40th anniversary of the march to Greenham Common.

The Equality Hub has no current plans to mark this anniversary.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
30th Jun 2021
To ask the hon. Member for Broxbourne, representing the House of Commons Commission, what estimate the Commission has made of the cost to the public purse of the House of Commons energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The cost of energy usage for the House of Commons in 2019, 2020 and 2021 is as follows:

2019 was £5,021,736 – which comprised

Electricity £3,779,328
Gas £896,753
Water £345,655

2020 was £4,564,901 – which comprised

Electricity £3,925,822
Gas £419,870
Water £199,209

2021 estimate is £5,278,854 – comprising

Electricity £4,315,496
Gas £553,674
Water £409,684

Estimate was based on full occupation and Energy price increases.

30th Jun 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what estimate she has made of the cost to the public purse of her Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The Equality Hub is part of the Cabinet Office, therefore I refer the hon. Member to the answer to PQ 25146.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent discussions she has had with local government on the Government’s consultation on sexual harassment in the workplace.

The Government consultation on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace focussed on ensuring that laws to protect people from harassment at work are operating effectively. We received 133 responses to our technical consultation, including from the LGA and a range of trade unions.

We have considered all of the responses received and listened carefully to the experiences shared through this consultation. We will be setting out the Government’s response shortly, and officials continue to engage with a range of stakeholders as they consider next steps.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent discussions she has had with the trade unions on the Government’s consultation on sexual harassment in the workplace.

The Government consultation on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace focussed on ensuring that laws to protect people from harassment at work are operating effectively. We received 133 responses to our technical consultation, including from the LGA and a range of trade unions.

We have considered all of the responses received and listened carefully to the experiences shared through this consultation. We will be setting out the Government’s response shortly, and officials continue to engage with a range of stakeholders as they consider next steps.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent progress she has made on publishing the Government’s response to its consultation on sexual harassment in the workplace.

The Government consultation on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace focussed on ensuring that laws to protect people from harassment at work are operating effectively. We received 133 responses to our technical consultation, including from the LGA and a range of trade unions.

We have considered all of the responses received and listened carefully to the experiences shared through this consultation. We will be setting out the Government’s response shortly, and officials continue to engage with a range of stakeholders as they consider next steps.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent assessment she has made of the accuracy of the data and evidence used in the March 2021 report of the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities.

The independent Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities took an evidence-led approach, using quantitative data and qualitative research drawn from a number of sources which are referenced throughout the document. This includes statistical datasets derived from the Race Disparity Unit’s ‘Ethnicity Facts and Figures’ website, other Government sources and a range of already published analysis from within and outside Government.

The Government is currently considering the Commission’s report and the evidence it considered in shaping its recommendations, and we will respond later in the summer.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
19th May 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the Public Sector Equality Duty in ensuring that Equality Impact Assessments are (a) undertaken and (b) published on Government policies.

Under the Public Sector Equality Duty all public authorities are required by law to ensure that they have due regard to equality considerations when carrying out their functions. My officials in the Equality Hub provide advice to Government Departments and other public bodies where appropriate to assist with this.

Due regard can be had through documentation often referred to as an ‘equality impact assessment’ but production of an equality impact assessment, as such, is not a legal requirement, and different approaches to compliance with the duty may be appropriate depending on the circumstances.

There is no statutory requirement to publish assessments and practice varies. Decisions on publication are a matter for the public body concerned, given the particular circumstances.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
1st Mar 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on preparations for COP26.

The UK Government is working with the Welsh Government, alongside the other Devolved Administrations to ensure an inclusive and ambitious COP26 for the whole of the UK. I met with the Welsh Government Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs when I chaired the first meeting of the COP26 Devolved Administrations Ministerial Group on 6 November 2020. We discussed the UK Presidency objectives for COP26 and public and stakeholder engagement. The next meeting is scheduled this month. There is also ongoing official level engagement with the Welsh Government on COP26.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how much the Government has spent on preparations for COP26 since (a) 1 January 2020 and (b) 1 January 2021.

Discussions on costs for COP26 are currently ongoing, and final budgets are yet to be confirmed. After the event, spend will be reported in the usual way.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
9th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent assessment he has made of progress towards (a) limiting global heating to well below 2°C and (b) limiting heating to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.

We have seen significant momentum on climate ambition in recent months, with the likes of China, Japan and South Korea committing to net zero emissions and over 40 Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) being submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to date.

However, it is clear that more needs to be done to close the gap to the Paris Agreement temperature goals. As the incoming COP President, I will continue to press all parties to increase their climate commitments to the highest level of ambition possible.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
9th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent steps he has taken to promote tackling biodiversity loss alongside climate action as part of COP26 preparations.

Through our COP26 Nature Campaign, we are advancing work in four core areas: tackling the drivers of deforestation, promoting sustainable and climate-resilient agriculture, mobilising increased and more targeted finance for nature, and driving political ambition on nature.

We have already made good progress. For example, the UK pioneered the ‘Leaders’ Pledge for Nature’, which now has over 80 signatories. The pledge sets out ten urgent actions to put nature on a path to recovery by 2030 and cements the links between biodiversity loss and climate change.

More recently, the Prime Minister announced that the UK will commit at least £3 billion to climate change solutions that protect and restore nature and biodiversity over five years.

We have also established the FACT (Forest, Agriculture and Commodity Trade) Dialogue to protect forests and biodiversity, while promoting trade.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
30th Dec 2020
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on tackling online abuse targeted at women.

Ministers and officials have regular meetings and discussions across government departments, on a variety of issues, including online abuse targeted at women. Details of Ministerial meetings are published quarterly on the gov.uk website. In line with the practice of successive administrations, details of internal discussions are not usually disclosed.

The full government response to the Online Harms White Paper sets out how the proposed legal duty of care on online companies will work in practice. Under the new laws, all companies will need to take swift and effective action against illegal online abuse. If any company fails to tackle illegal content, or if companies providing Category 1 services fail to enforce their terms and conditions, they could face an investigation and enforcement action.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
31st Jan 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what the full operational budget for the Crown Prosecution Service was in each of the last five years.

Information on the budgets and expenditure for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is publicly available and can be found in the Parliamentary accountability and audit report sections of the annual reports. This includes CPS operational budgets which can be publicly accessed and does cover each of the last five years. The annual reports can be accessed here: www.cps.gov.uk/publication/annual-reports-and-business-plans

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
19th Oct 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the CPS in ensuring access to justice for the victims of crime in Newport West constituency.

The CPS is committed to ensuring that victims of crime are able to access justice in England and Wales. Last year, the CPS commissioned independent research to better understand what victims want and need, and to identify areas for improvement.

On the 27 June 2022, the CPS published its response to the research findings, setting out key areas of action.

A long-term Victim Transformation Programme has been launched. Under phase one, the CPS is working on the development of a new operating model to improve the way it communicates and engages with all victims.

It is a 2–3-year programme of work, with a phased approach to implementation starting in the next calendar year.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many staff were employed by the Crown Prosecution Service in each of the last 10 years.

The number of staff employed by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) during the periods specified is available in the table below. During this period the CPS has undertaken continuous improvement and modernisation programmes to improve efficiency and effectiveness. These included digitalisation, development of a national resourcing model, standard operating practices, resource efficiency measures, smarter/remote working practices, and establishment of remote teams. As a national service for England and Wales, the consequence of these measures is that we now have the ability to shift work to where capacity resides which is both much more efficient, and also fairer on the workforce.

Financial Year Q1

Average Full Time Equivalent Staff

2012-13

7093

2013-14

6568

2014-15

6034

2015-16

5708

2016-17

5505

2017-18

5594

2018-19

5554

2019-20

5589

2020-21

5790

2021-22

6414

2022-23

6714

*The system reports data as at the last day of the month rather than the first or any date in-between therefore the table is presented to the nearest reportable date to the questions asked. The data has been extracted from the CPS Oracle HR database and is accurate at point of enquiry on 5 September 2022. Consequent changes to data input may mean that this data will change at some point in the future

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many of the cases referred to the Crown Prosecution Service for a charging decision in each of the past five years were still awaiting a charging decision after six months.

Data is collated by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) showing the number of individual pre-charge consultations that are recorded as taking longer than 180 days (six months). The table below shows the number and proportion of these in each of the last four years – this data was introduced from April 2018.

2018-2019

2019-2020

2020-2021

2021-2022

Total Consultations

288,319

289,529

299,587

253,836

Consultations over 180 days (6 months)

1,336

507

461

491

% over 180 days (6 months)

0.5%

0.2%

0.2%

0.3%

CPS consultation data counts the number of consultations submitted for a full code or threshold test, also known as pre-charge reviews, recorded on the Case Management System.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many data incidents her Department (a) recorded and (b) reported to the Information Commissioner's Office in (i) 2018-19, (ii) 2019-20 and (iii) 2020-21.

The Attorney General’s Office have had no data incidents recorded or reported to the Information Commissioner's Office in (i) 2018-19, (ii) 2019-20 and (iii) 2020-21.

12th Jan 2022
To ask the Attorney General, whether she was involved in drafting the contents of the Prime Minister's oral answer of 12 January to the hon. Member for Vale of Clwyd.

The Law Officers have regular discussions with Ministerial colleagues across government on a range of topics.

By convention, whether the Law Officers have been asked for formal advice, and the contents of any such advice, is not disclosed outside Government.

12th Jan 2022
To ask the Attorney General, whether she had discussions with the Prime Minister before his oral answer of 12 January to the hon. Member for Vale of Clwyd on the content of that answer.

The Law Officers have regular discussions with Ministerial colleagues across government on a range of topics.

By convention, whether the Law Officers have been asked for formal advice, and the contents of any such advice, is not disclosed outside Government.

30th Jun 2021
To ask the Attorney General, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of his Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The following table sets out the total expenditure on energy (£) by the Government Legal Department (GLD) including HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI), the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the Serious Fraud Office (SFO). These figures are published as part of each Department’s respective annual reports.

Total Expenditure on Energy (£)

Financial year

GLD + HMCPSI

CPS

SFO

2018-19

568,725

757,000

135,000

2019-20

672,193

657,000

174,000

2020-21

333,033

357,000

Awaiting National Audit Office approval

The Attorney General’s Office (AGO) is unable to provide this information. As published in the HM Procurator General and Treasury Solicitor Annual Report and Accounts 2019/20, ‘The AGO occupies shared accommodation in 5-8 The Sanctuary, London and it is not possible to separately identify their energy or water consumption or recycling of waste’.

The AGO has recently moved, all accommodation interests are now managed through the Government Property Agency (GPA) and that body will publish any sustainability data in relation to the AGOs occupation within 102 Petty France, London.

Lucy Frazer
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
13th Jan 2020
To ask the Attorney General, what recent discussions he has had with the Director of Public Prosecutions on the effectiveness of the CPS in prosecuting cases involving domestic violence.

The CPS takes cases of domestic abuse extremely seriously, and is determined to bring perpetrators to justice and provide victims with the greatest possible protection from repeat offending.

In 2019, the CPS – together with the police and HM Court and Tribunals Service – led the implementation of a national domestic abuse best practice framework for magistrates’ court cases. This aims to ensure consistent good practice by criminal justice agencies involved in domestic abuse casework, from investigation through to court. For example, it encourages more timely court listings and the provision of holistic support for victims, so that they are helped through both the criminal justice process and with wider issues, such as housing and finances.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the UK leaving the EU on the protection of human rights in the UK.

The United Kingdom has a long tradition of ensuring rights and liberties are protected domestically and of fulfilling its international human rights obligations. The decision to leave the European Union does not change this. We fully intend to maintain our leading role in the promotion and protection of human rights, democracy, and the rule of law.

13th Jan 2020
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the CPS is taking to improve the prosecution rate of people responsible for forced marriages.

The CPS takes the prosecution of forced marriage seriously. Each CPS Area has a lead prosecutor on forced marriage who works closely with the police and other prosecutors. The CPS’s legal guidance on forced marriage assists prosecutors and is reviewed regularly. For example, it was revised last year to address cases where the victim lacks capacity to consent to marriage. Since April 2019, the joint police and CPS forced marriage working group has developed training for prosecutors and agreed a protocol for the investigation and prosecution of forced marriage. The CPS is also working with stakeholders to identify and address the obstacles to the prosecution of forced marriage.

14th Jul 2023
To ask the Prime Minister, how many visits he has made to Wales since his appointment.

As Prime Minister I visit all parts of the United Kingdom. My last official visit to Wales was on 22 - 23 March when I was delighted to announce, on a joint visit with the First Minister, that Anglesey Freeport and Celtic Freeport had been successful in their bids to establish new Freeports - backed by up to £26 million each in UK Government funding, and expected to bring forward an estimated £5 billion of private and public investment and create around 20,000 new, high-skilled jobs.


Details of my official visits can be found on the gov.uk website as part of the government’s transparency agenda. I also undertake party political visits across the United Kingdom, including most recently to Wales in April.


Details of my future official visits will be announced in the usual way.

Rishi Sunak
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
14th Jul 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many visits he has made to Wales since his appointment.

I attended a Civil Service Live event at Cardiff’s City Hall on Thursday 13 July 2023, marking my first official trip to Wales since being appointed. I look forward to visiting Wales again in the future.

6th Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps the Government is taking to improve the energy efficiency of Government buildings.

As set out in the Net Zero Strategy, the Government aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from public sector buildings by 75% by 2037. To support this, £2.5 billion is being invested through the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme over the financial years 2020/21 to 2024/25 to provide grants for public sector bodies in England to fund heat decarbonisation and energy efficiency measures.

The Office for Government Property has published the Net Zero Estate Playbook providing guidance to support government property organisations to decarbonise their estate. This includes recommendations of how to reduce operational energy use, including through fabric improvements.

The Government Property Function on 15 November published its Government Property Strategy, which commits to delivering a range of interventions designed to create a smaller, better, and greener public estate. The greener element is focused on supporting delivery of the Greening Government Commitments, which include carbon emissions reduction targets for all government departments.

6th Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, for what reason some Government buildings are lit internally outside of normal working hours.

The Government Property Agency (GPA) in the Cabinet Office manages government office buildings on behalf of occupying departments. This response is limited to the office estate that it manages.

There are many reasons why government buildings could be lit outside normal working hours. For example, cleaning, engineering, and security teams all carry out duties out of hours, alongside civil servants and ministers undertaking urgent tasks.. This work could not be done without internal lighting in government buildings.

14th Oct 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many times the Prime Minister has visited Chequers since her appointment as Prime Minister.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer of UIN 54005, 18 October 2021 [of session 2021 - 2022].

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Oct 2022
To ask the Prime Minister, how many times she has (a) met and (b) spoken to the First Minister of Wales since 6 September 2022.

I most recently met the First Minister of Wales at the Service of Reflection for the Life of Her late Majesty The Queen at Llandaff Cathedral, Cardiff on 16 September. My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Wales, most recently met the First Minister of Wales at the opening of South Wales Police Learning Centre on 30 September.

14th Oct 2022
To ask the Prime Minister, how many times she has (a) met and (b) spoken to the Taoiseach since 6 September 2022.

I refer the hon. Member to the details of my official meetings, which can be found on gov.uk at:
PM call with Taoiseach Micheál Martin: 9 September 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
PM meetings with foreign leaders: 17 and 18 September 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

I also met the Taoiseach at the Service of Reflection for the Life of Her late Majesty The Queen in St. Anne's Cathedral, Belfast, on 13 September.

12th Oct 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent estimate he has made of the average annual grocery bill for residents in Newport West constituency.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 12 October is attached.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Prime Minister, how many meetings of the British-Irish Council he has attended in person since July 2019.

A list of ministerial delegates at each ministerial meeting or summit are included in the official communiques. These can be found on the British-Irish Council website https://www.britishirishcouncil.org/publications.

18th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether he discussed with the Welsh Government plans to announce a level 4 alert under the Heatwave Plan for England before that announcement was made on 15 July 2022.

Officials from the Welsh Government were first engaged by their counterparts in the Cabinet Office and the Met Office with respect to the possible severity of the current heatwave on 7 July 2022.

The First Minister for Wales was directly engaged by Cabinet Office Ministers on 14 July 2022.

11th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many former Ministers will be entitled to severance pay since 6 June 2022.

Under the provisions of the Ministerial and other Pensions and Salaries Act 1991, a former eligible minister only becomes entitled to a severance payment in the event that they are not appointed to another relevant office within three weeks of stepping down. Currently, no minister who has left office since 6 June 2022 is entitled to a severance payment.

19th Apr 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the fixed penalty notices issued to hon Members of Her Majesty's Government in April 2022, if he will undertake a review of the adequacy of the Ministerial Code.

The Ministerial Code is the responsibility of the Prime Minister of the day, as befits his or her constitutional position as the Sovereign’s principal adviser, and is customarily updated and issued upon their assuming or returning to office.

Section 1.6 of the Ministerial Code sets out that Ministers are personally responsible for deciding how to act and conduct themselves in the light of the Code, and for justifying their actions and conduct to Parliament and the public.

With reference to the fixed penalty notice, I would refer you to the Prime Minister’s statement to the House of 19 April 2022.

25th Mar 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he is taking to tackle alleged racial discrimination in his Department.

A ‘Respect and Inclusion review’ for the Cabinet Office is currently underway. In the recent Declaration on Government reform, Ministers and Permanent Secretaries committed to set a new standard for diversity and inclusion, including guaranteeing fairness at work and zero tolerance for Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination.

Our position at the centre of government - delivering against an ambitious agenda - means we have a responsibility to get this right. The review will have a particular focus on race and disability where our data shows scope for improvement.

8th Feb 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he plans to take with Cabinet colleagues to use public procurement to help support the growth of British industries based in Newport West constituency.

The Government wants businesses from every corner of the UK to be successful in bidding for UK public contracts.

We are reforming the procurement rules to make it simpler, quicker and cheaper for suppliers, including SMEs and social enterprises, to bid for public sector contracts. The Welsh Government has confirmed that it will join the reforms.

The reforms will support the Government’s levelling up priorities by making it easier for public sector buyers to take account of social value when awarding contracts.

Under the Government’s Social Value policy, contracting authorities can already set rigorous environmental and social standards, and other criteria, that play to the strengths of supply chains who can meet those standards. The scope to take societal benefits into account when awarding contracts will be increased, playing to the strengths of UK firms who are well placed to deliver benefits.

11th Jan 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether it his policy to support improved work-life balance as part of public services' recovery from the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government has put the recovery of public services at the heart of its building back better and levelling up agenda. We are investing £3.7 billion to build 40 new hospitals and we’re investing a further £4.7 billion in the core school budget by 2024-25. There are almost 10,000 more nurses and over 5,100 doctors now working in the NHS compared to last year, and we have recruited over 11,000 police officers.

The Government’s 2019 manifesto committed to encourage flexible working and consult on making it the default unless employers have good reasons not to. Since then, COVID-19 has changed working practices for many and led to the recognition of the need for more flexible working hours to balance work with other personal commitments. The Government intends to build on what we have learnt and ran a consultation proposing to reform the existing Right to Request flexible working from September to December 2021. We are currently analysing responses and will issue a formal Government response in due course.

11th Jan 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether it is his policy to promote improved working conditions through Government procurement policy.

Government encourages employers to better support all employees to remain in and thrive through work.

Through our new approach to extend the use of the Social Value Act, effective from 1 January 2021, additional social benefits can be taken into account via the delivery of contracts.

To promote consistency across departments, we developed a tool called the ‘Social Value Model’ for use by all organisations in scope of the new policy. The tool has provisions to improve health and wellbeing in the contract workforce.

6th Jan 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people in Newport West constituency received an award in the Birthday Honours or New Years Honours in (a) 2015, (b) 2016, (c) 2017, (d) 2018, (e) 2019 and (f) 2020.

The Government publishes honours transparency data broken down by both town/city and county. Data is collected using the county the recipient gives as their correspondence address. This is usually their home address rather than their place of origin. This data relates only to the main Prime Minister’s List and does not include data from the Defence List or the Overseas and International List, neither of which are administered by the Cabinet Office. The transparency data for the New Year Honours and Birthday Honours Lists between 2008 and 2022 can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/honours-reform-and-operation#honours-lists

The Government does not collate data against political administrative areas and, therefore, we cannot provide information regarding honours awarded in Newport West or any other individual constituency.

4th Jan 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the attendee lists from the last three COBRA meetings.

As a matter of policy, the Government does not comment on the details of COBR meetings.

6th Dec 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, whether he took steps to mark Small Business Saturday 2021.

To mark Small Business Saturday I hosted a food and drink market in Downing Street to showcase British businesses that are making the most out of our international trade. We currently export to 207 countries but this Government is supporting British food and drink exporters to sell even more of their brilliant produce abroad.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last met the Chief Rabbi.

Formal Ministerial meetings with external organisations are published each quarter on gov.uk.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, how he plans to mark Chanukah 2021.

I hosted a reception at 10 Downing Street to mark Chanukah. I also released a video message wishing a very happy Chanukah to Jewish people in the UK and around the world.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, on which date the Prime Minister last met the Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain.

Formal Ministerial meetings with external organisations are published each quarter on GOV.UK.

The Government, under successive administrations, has a long-standing policy of non-engagement with the Muslim Council of Britain. Previous MCB leaders have taken positions that contradict our fundamental values and these have not been explicitly retracted.

25th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on how to ensure small businesses in Newport West constituency are supported in bidding for Government contracts.

Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the UK economy. That is why we are making sure the power of Government spending supports this vital sector, both as part of our economic recovery from COVID-19 and our levelling up agenda. We are increasing opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in a variety of ways - from transparently publishing contract pipelines to simplifying bidding processes.

Business support organisations play an important role in supporting SMEs in industry and can offer advice on business growth including ways of accessing government procurements and signposting opportunities. We have strong links with industry associations and they are supportive of the government's aims to continue engagement with SMEs.

25th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what discussions he has had with representatives of business organisations on supporting small businesses in Newport West bidding for Government contracts.

Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the UK economy. That is why we are making sure the power of Government spending supports this vital sector, both as part of our economic recovery from COVID-19 and our levelling up agenda. We are increasing opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in a variety of ways - from transparently publishing contract pipelines to simplifying bidding processes.

Business support organisations play an important role in supporting SMEs in industry and can offer advice on business growth including ways of accessing government procurements and signposting opportunities. We have strong links with industry associations and they are supportive of the government's aims to continue engagement with SMEs.

25th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help increase opportunities for businesses in Newport West bidding for contracts on major infrastructure projects.

Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of the UK economy. That is why we are making sure the power of Government spending supports this vital sector, both as part of our economic recovery from COVID-19 and our levelling up agenda. We are increasing opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in a variety of ways - from transparently publishing contract pipelines to simplifying bidding processes.

Business support organisations play an important role in supporting SMEs in industry and can offer advice on business growth including ways of accessing government procurements and signposting opportunities. We have strong links with industry associations and they are supportive of the government's aims to continue engagement with SMEs.

25th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he is taking to help improve provision of mental health services for former armed service personnel in Newport West.

Our ambition is to ensure that no veteran’s request for help will go unanswered. The Prime Minister recently announced an additional £5 million for service charities following the UK's withdrawal from Afghanistan, which will be used on a range of projects including increasing capacity in mental health support. In March, the government also announced an additional £10 million to the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust to distribute to charitable projects supporting veterans’ mental health needs. This is on top of the annual £10 million awarded to the Trust.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what progress his Department has made on supporting education and reskilling opportunities for former service personnel in Newport West.

This information is not held centrally.

Ensuring veterans enter appropriate post service employment is a top priority for this Government.

Eligible Service personnel and veterans can access three schemes: Standard Learning Credit, Enhanced Learning Credit and Publicly Funded Further and Higher Education schemes, which can help individuals pursue their personal and professional development through education. These schemes are available both during their Service and, for two of the schemes, for between five and ten years after discharge, based on the circumstances of departure.

The next iteration of the Veteran Strategy Action Plan will outline the next steps that this Government will take, including on education and reskilling, to deliver its ambition of making this country the best place in the world to be a veteran.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
23rd Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 23 November 2021 to Question 75126 on UN Climate Conference 2021: Government, how many Ministers in his Department travelled to COP26 by airplane.

Ministers took the train to COP26 in Glasgow, unless there were exceptional circumstances that meant travelling by train was not an option.

Travel disruption due to adverse weather on 31 October resulted in train cancellations, meaning some Ministers had to pursue alternative means of transport.

Any unavoidable carbon emissions from COP26 will be offset, including those associated with travel.

22nd Nov 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last met the First Minister of Wales.

I last met the First Minister of Wales on 2 November at the Welcome to Glasgow COP26 event.

22nd Nov 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last met David Cameron.

Formal Ministerial meetings with external organisations are published each quarter on gov.uk

15th Nov 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, what assessment he has made of the time taken for publication National Security Adviser's report on the future of Newport WaferFab.

As I said at the Liaison Committee on 7 July 2021, the National Security Adviser is reviewing the case. It would be inappropriate to comment until the review has concluded.

8th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent discussions he has had with Maroš Šefčovič on the Northern Ireland protocol.

As of 1 March this year, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster no longer leads on the Northern Ireland Protocol. Lord Frost is the Minister responsible for oversight of the implementation of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement and Withdrawal Agreement, including the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Lord Frost last met EU Commission VP Maroš Šefčovič in London, on Friday 12 November, as part of the ongoing discussions on the Northern Ireland Protocol.

2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment she has made of the strength of EU-UK relations.

The Trade and Cooperation Agreement allowed the beginning of a new relationship between a sovereign UK and our European partners and friends. We will continue to be natural partners with the EU on many of the world’s more pressing issues such as our shared commitment to democracy and human rights, building back better from COVID-19, cooperation on climate change and biodiversity, global health, and economic resilience. But there remain significant issues in the relationship, including the Northern Ireland Protocol, which we need to put onto a durable footing.

2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the progress in implementing the commitments set out in the Joint Report agreed between the EU and the UK in December 2017.

The Government’s July Command Paper set out the Joint Report’s influence on the negotiation framework of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, specifically its flawed contribution to the ‘Northern Ireland Backstop’, an agreement which Parliament subsequently refused to approve.

The foundation of our approach is the protection of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement and the need for a new balance in the arrangements covering the Ireland/Northern Ireland Protocol to ensure they are sustainable and have support from all communities. We continue to engage in regular technical talks with the EU about implementation of this Protocol, as well as all other aspects of the Withdrawal Agreement.

21st Oct 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, how he marked Black History Month 2021.

I am proud to lead a country celebrated for its dynamism and diversity, where every day black Britons are making history. To mark Black History Month I shared a video message celebrating this and hosted a reception on 25th October at Downing Street. This reception celebrated the contribution of black entrepreneurs, businesses, and professionals to the UK. I met young people, entrepreneurs, and business leaders, including members of the 10,000 Black Interns programme. I have been pleased to see events and activity taking across government to mark this important event.

9th Sep 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent steps has he taken to promote algorithmic accountability in the public sector.

Building on the existing work on algorithmic and data ethics, the Government is developing appropriate and effective mechanisms to deliver more transparency on the use of algorithmic assisted decision making within the public sector.

To further support responsible data and AI innovation in the public sector, we have launched a new Data Ethicist role for the Digital, Data and Technology Capability Framework.

3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, whether he has plans to meet President Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe in 2021.

Details of my official meetings will be announced in the usual way.

3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, whether he has plans to meet President Hichilema of Zambia.

Details of my official meetings will be announced in the usual way.

3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, how many times he has discussed Afghanistan with the NATO Secretary General in 2021.

I have discussed Afghanistan in all of my conversations with the NATO Secretary General in 2021.

3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last spoke to Prime Minister Mottley of Barbados.

I recently wrote to Prime Minister Mottley to assure her of the UK’s commitment to tackling Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) and to thank her for her work in this area. Furthermore, my Rt Hon friend the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, and Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, UK Minister of State for the Caribbean, speak to Ministerial colleagues in Barbados regularly. The most recent such call was on 18 March this year. The UK High Commissioner to Barbados is also in close contact with the Government of Barbados including Prime Minister Mia Mottley. They last met on 24 August 2021.

22nd Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many staff employed in Number 10 are from a black or minority ethnic background.

The Cabinet Office has a headcount of 8,889 as of 31 July 2021 (Data Source: SOP platform) of which 4,972 staff have declared their ethnic background. There are 984 ethnic minority members of staff in management grades that have declared their ethnicity; this is 19.8% of all staff that have declared their ethnic background. This is higher than the Civil Service average of 14.3% (Source: Annual Civil Service Employment Survey) and the Economic Active Population for ethnic minority people which is 13.6% (Source: ONS August 2021) The absolute number of ethnic minority staff in management positions is likely to be higher given the number of staff who have not made a declaration. The Cabinet Office has plans to increase the declaration rate in the department with a campaign during National Inclusion week in September.

Number 10 is an integral part of the Cabinet Office and is included in this figure.

Management grades are identified as grades Executive Officer (EO) and above.


For more wider information the government publishes statistics on Civil Service demographics annually on March 31st via the Office for National Statistics. This can be found on the Gov.uk website at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/civil-service-statistics-2021

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
21st Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many Black and ethnic minority staff hold management positions in his Department.

The Cabinet Office has a headcount of 8,889 as of 31 July 2021 (Data Source: SOP platform) of which 4,972 staff have declared their ethnic background. There are 984 ethnic minority members of staff in management grades that have declared their ethnicity; this is 19.8% of all staff that have declared their ethnic background. This is higher than the Civil Service average of 14.3% (Source: Annual Civil Service Employment Survey) and the Economic Active Population for ethnic minority people which is 13.6% (Source: ONS August 2021) The absolute number of ethnic minority staff in management positions is likely to be higher given the number of staff who have not made a declaration. The Cabinet Office has plans to increase the declaration rate in the department with a campaign during National Inclusion week in September.

Number 10 is an integral part of the Cabinet Office and is included in this figure.

Management grades are identified as grades Executive Officer (EO) and above.


For more wider information the government publishes statistics on Civil Service demographics annually on March 31st via the Office for National Statistics. This can be found on the Gov.uk website at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/civil-service-statistics-2021

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
15th Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister of the Cabinet Office, what his planned timetable is for the conclusion of Sir Stephen Lovegrove's review into the sale of Newport Wafer Fab.

The Government does not comment on national security matters.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
1st Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what his policy is on his Department's rates of recycling of plastic, paper, metal and other products; and if he will make a statement.

We continually review the waste generated on our estate and work with our commercial colleagues on circular economy principles to reduce the amount of waste that arrives on our sites. Where we can’t avoid this we work with our suppliers to move any waste we generate up the waste hierarchy.

Further information on Greening Government Commitments can be found at https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/883779/ggc-annual-report-2018-2019.pdf

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
1st Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what his policy is on rates of recycling of plastic, paper, metal and other products in 10 Downing Street; and if he will make a statement.

We continually review the waste generated on our estate and work with our commercial colleagues on circular economy principles to reduce the amount of waste that arrives on our sites. Where we can’t avoid this we work with our suppliers to move any waste we generate up the waste hierarchy.

Further information on Greening Government Commitments can be found at https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/883779/ggc-annual-report-2018-2019.pdf

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
1st Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of Number 10 Downing Street's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The cost to the public purse of Cabinet Office's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021 is shown below:

2019/20

2020/21

2021/22*

£820,820

£837,439

£837,616

* Estimated.


This information mainly covers the buildings that are part of the Affiliates Cluster and where the Cabinet Office is the major occupier -

Dover House

Admiralty House

70 Whitehall

10 Downing Street

35 Great Smith Street

Information for buildings where the Cabinet Office is a minor occupier is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
30th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of his Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The cost to the public purse of Cabinet Office's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021 is shown below:

2019/20

2020/21

2021/22*

£820,820

£837,439

£837,616

* Estimated.


This information mainly covers the buildings that are part of the Affiliates Cluster and where the Cabinet Office is the major occupier -

Dover House

Admiralty House

70 Whitehall

10 Downing Street

35 Great Smith Street

Information for buildings where the Cabinet Office is a minor occupier is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
29th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether any Government Ministers have discussed Government contracts on their private email addresses.

I refer the hon. Member to my response on 28 June 2021.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
29th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much was spent from the public purse on settling 75 per cent of the costs of Good Law Project vs Cabinet Office, case CO2437/2020.

Final costs will be determined in due course.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
27th Apr 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last spoke to President Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe.

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

13th Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, which African Governments will be represented at the upcoming G7 summit.

The Prime Minister has invited his South African counterpart President Cyril Ramaphosa to attend the G7 Leaders’ Summit in Cornwall as a guest.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of trading arrangements between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answers given in Oral Questions for the Cabinet Office on 11 February. Guidance and published information are available on gov.uk. (https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2021-02-11/debates/6E3520D6-EB1E-4576-9D40-954A467494C9/TradeUKAndEU)

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the trading arrangements between the UK and the EU.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answers given in Oral Questions for the Cabinet Office on 11 February. Guidance and published information are available on gov.uk. (https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2021-02-11/debates/6E3520D6-EB1E-4576-9D40-954A467494C9/TradeUKAndEU)

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent steps he has taken to simplify trading arrangements between the UK and the EU.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answers given in Oral Questions for the Cabinet Office on 11 February. Guidance and published information are available on gov.uk. (https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2021-02-11/debates/6E3520D6-EB1E-4576-9D40-954A467494C9/TradeUKAndEU)

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
25th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of UK businesses opening new firms in the EU single market on levels of employment in the UK.

I refer the Hon Member to the response I gave to PQ132802 on 30 December 2020.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
6th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to increase funding for unconscious bias training.

There is no central budget for unconscious bias training specifically. Instead, departments are able to access a blend of free at point of access online learning, and learning purchased through current contracts. The information requested on spend is therefore not held centrally.


Further to the statement on 15 December, standalone Unconscious Bias training has been removed from Civil Service learning platforms.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
6th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much the Government has spent on unconscious bias training in each of the last 10 years.

There is no central budget for unconscious bias training specifically. Instead, departments are able to access a blend of free at point of access online learning, and learning purchased through current contracts. The information requested on spend is therefore not held centrally.


Further to the statement on 15 December, standalone Unconscious Bias training has been removed from Civil Service learning platforms.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
30th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate his Department has made of the number of women who have left the workforce as a result of the covid-19 outbreak.

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

12th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to improve electoral registration levels among young voters.

Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) have statutory responsibility for maintaining complete and accurate registers for their areas. The Government is committed to encouraging democratic engagement amongst all electors, including young people and BAME individuals.

Since 2013/14, the Government has provided more than £27m to fund activities to promote electoral registration and democratic engagement more widely.

The Government is working with the electoral sector, including the Scottish and Welsh Governments, and Public Health England, to identify and resolve challenges involved in delivering the May 2021 elections, including ensuring polling stations are safe and COVID-secure places to vote.

12th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to ensure the May 2021 elections can be carried out safely in the event that the covid-19 outbreak is ongoing.

Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) have statutory responsibility for maintaining complete and accurate registers for their areas. The Government is committed to encouraging democratic engagement amongst all electors, including young people and BAME individuals.

Since 2013/14, the Government has provided more than £27m to fund activities to promote electoral registration and democratic engagement more widely.

The Government is working with the electoral sector, including the Scottish and Welsh Governments, and Public Health England, to identify and resolve challenges involved in delivering the May 2021 elections, including ensuring polling stations are safe and COVID-secure places to vote.

12th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to improve voting levels among Black, Asian and minority ethnic voters.

Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) have statutory responsibility for maintaining complete and accurate registers for their areas. The Government is committed to encouraging democratic engagement amongst all electors, including young people and BAME individuals.

Since 2013/14, the Government has provided more than £27m to fund activities to promote electoral registration and democratic engagement more widely.

The Government is working with the electoral sector, including the Scottish and Welsh Governments, and Public Health England, to identify and resolve challenges involved in delivering the May 2021 elections, including ensuring polling stations are safe and COVID-secure places to vote.

22nd Sep 2020
To ask the Prime Minister, what plans he has to appoint a Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief.

I refer the Hon Member to the answer I gave on 22 September to my Hon Friend the Hon Member for Romford and the Hon Member for Glasgow North.

17th Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps the Government is taking to improve mental health support for veterans in (a) Newport West, (b) Wales and c) the UK.

The Government is taking a number of measures to improve mental health support for veterans across the UK. From the beginning of service in the Armed Forces, personnel now undergo ‘through-life’ psychological resilience training, and upon leaving they have access to the Defence Transition Service (DTS), launched in October 2019. The DTS provides support for Service leavers and families who are the most likely to face challenges during transition to civilian life, including an impact on their mental health.

Wherever they live in the UK, all veterans are able to receive specialist mental health support if they need it. As healthcare is a devolved matter, further questions regarding Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland should be addressed to the relevant devolved administration.

As well as the statutory services delivered by the NHS, the Government provides funding to a range of charity and third sector organisations, through the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust and, most recently, a £6 million emergency COVID-19 Impact Fund. This funding has supported fantastic organisations across the four nations to deliver services to support the mental and physical wellbeing of veterans.

We are also investing in research, to improve our understanding of mental health amongst serving and ex-service personnel. This includes a recent study looking at the impact of COVID-19 on veterans and a long term veterans study examining a range of mental health and wellbeing factors; both of these are led by Kings College. A further two studies will contribute to improving the data and understanding around suicide; the first examining the cause of death, including suicide in members of the Armed Forces who have served since 2001 and a further study looking at the events in the 12 months leading up to known suicides in the last five years of anyone from the Armed Forces community.

Johnny Mercer
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Minister for Veterans' Affairs)
9th Jun 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he has taken to ensure that civil servants in public-facing roles are able to work safely during the covid-19 outbreak.

Government advice remains that people should work from home where possible.

For civil servants whose roles require them to be in the workplace, advice has also been provided to support them in line with the government guidance on safer working during Covid-19. In addition, a Workplace Incident Framework, developed with trade unions, sets out the activity that must take place when an individual develops Covid-19.

Departments are working closely with individuals to ensure their personal circumstances are fully factored into decisions about their working arrangements. This includes supporting ethnic minority individuals based on their particular circumstances and ensuring they have the right to challenge a proposed return to the workplace if they have concerns, to have those concerns properly considered and addressed and to not return where they feel this has not been done.

Measures to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading Covid-19 for temporary agency workers have been put in place, including a payment scheme to support the pay of temporary agency workers who cannot work for reasons associated with Covid-19 (up to the value of 80% of their salary to a cap of £2,500 per month) and the use of virtual pre-employment screening checks and interviews.

9th Jun 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the risk to BAME (a) civil servants and (b) contracted workers working in Government Departments of (i) contracting and (ii) spreading covid-19.

Government advice remains that people should work from home where possible.

For civil servants whose roles require them to be in the workplace, advice has also been provided to support them in line with the government guidance on safer working during Covid-19. In addition, a Workplace Incident Framework, developed with trade unions, sets out the activity that must take place when an individual develops Covid-19.

Departments are working closely with individuals to ensure their personal circumstances are fully factored into decisions about their working arrangements. This includes supporting ethnic minority individuals based on their particular circumstances and ensuring they have the right to challenge a proposed return to the workplace if they have concerns, to have those concerns properly considered and addressed and to not return where they feel this has not been done.

Measures to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading Covid-19 for temporary agency workers have been put in place, including a payment scheme to support the pay of temporary agency workers who cannot work for reasons associated with Covid-19 (up to the value of 80% of their salary to a cap of £2,500 per month) and the use of virtual pre-employment screening checks and interviews.

1st May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent progress the Government has made on negotiating the UK's future relationship with the EU.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer given to PQ 39669 on 4 May 2020.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
1st May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of trends in the level of life expectancy.

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

11th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of extending the length of the transition period following the outbreak of covid-19 in Europe.

The transition period ends on 31 December 2020. This is enshrined in UK law. Our preparations for the end of the transition period continue as normal and remain a priority.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what assessment has she made of the potential barriers to exporting for businesses based in Newport West constituency.

DBT has developed a Barriers to Exporting Framework that sets out the key barriers that businesses face across their exporting journey. DBT’s free export support helps businesses in Newport West and across Wales overcome these barriers to expand their exporting activity.

Welsh businesses can access free export support through Great.gov.uk, including sector specialists and overseas trade advisers, the Export Support Service, the Export Academy and UK Export Finance.

My department recently announced that we will be appointing new International Trade Advisors (ITAs) in Wales, to provide tailored support for Welsh SME exporters to take advantage of new export opportunities.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what estimate she has made of the number of zero-hours contracts in Newport West constituency.

Zero hours contracts (ZHC’s) are an important part of the UK’s flexible labour market. They are useful where there is not a constant demand for staff, allowing flexibility for both employers and individuals.

Individuals on zero hours contracts represent a very small proportion of the workforce. The ONS publishes quarterly data for the number of individuals in work on ZHC’s in the UK. The ONS figures are reported for Wales and estimates that between April – June 2023 47,000 people aged 16 or over in employment in Wales were on a ZHC. This is up from 46,000 between April – June 2017. Figures are not reported at constituency level.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
18th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what assessment she has made of the adequacy of the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations 1988.

Fire safety requirements for UK domestic upholstered furniture are acknowledged as being among the highest in the world. However, it is important that changes are made to take account of modern-day hazards and risks.

As a result, the Government announced it would develop a new approach to the fire safety of domestic upholstered furniture to maintain and improve fire safety and take account of modern-day hazards.

A consultation on proposals for a new approach closed on 24 October and the Government will issue a response in due course.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
19th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what evidence her Department has on the impact on health of toxic smoke inhalation generated by chemical flame retardants.

In developing the draft proposals for the new approach to the fire safety of domestic upholstered furniture, the Government considered a wide range of evidence, including evidence submitted during the Environmental Audit Committee’s inquiry into Toxic Chemicals in Everyday Life. The proposals reflect the need to maintain and improve fire safety whilst reducing the risks posed by chemical flame retardants.

The Government is currently consulting on these proposals and welcomes feedback from stakeholders.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
19th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, for what reason smoke toxicity was not included in the scope of the draft Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations.

In developing the draft proposals for the new approach to the fire safety of domestic upholstered furniture, the Government considered a wide range of evidence, including evidence submitted during the Environmental Audit Committee’s inquiry into Toxic Chemicals in Everyday Life. The proposals reflect the need to maintain and improve fire safety whilst reducing the risks posed by chemical flame retardants.

The Government is currently consulting on these proposals and welcomes feedback from stakeholders.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
13th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, how much from the public purse was spent on travel for UK trade envoys to nations on the African continent in each of the last five years.

Please find below a table giving the number of visits and costs by the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to nations on the African continent over the last five years.

Financial Year

Number of Visits

Costs

2019-2020

11

£43,764

2020-2021

1

£7,132

2021-2022

9

£49,455

2022-2023

10

£63,800

2023-2024*

8

£24,465

Total

39

£188,616

*Figures for 2023-24 are up to 15 September 2023.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on the agenda for the Northern Ireland investment conference in September 2023.

The Secretary of State for Business and Trade and Secretary of State for Northern Ireland as joint hosts for the Summit invited a range of Cabinet colleagues to attend and participate in the Northern Ireland Investment Summit. As a result, we expect a strong ministerial delegation to attend.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what discussions she has had with her US counterpart on trade and investment opportunities in (a) Northern Ireland and (b) Wales.

The Secretary of State has regular discussions with her counterpart US Trade Representative Katherine Tai. Most recently they met at the G20 Summit on 25 August. The Secretary of State regularly raises the opportunities for US trade and investment into all regions of the UK. Around 260 US-owned businesses already operate in Northern Ireland and in 2021, businesses in Northern Ireland exported goods and services worth £2.2 billion to the United States. In the same year, good and services exports from Wales to the US stood at £4.4 billion.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether she has had discussions with the US Special Envoy for Northern Ireland on trade and investment relations between the US and Northern Ireland.

The Secretary of State will meet the US Special Envoy to Northern Ireland for Economic Affairs Joe Kennedy III at the upcoming Northern Ireland Investment Summit on 12-13 September. Lord Johnson met Special Envoy Kennedy in July and discussed the importance of US investment in Northern Ireland and how to ensure this delivers tangible benefits for Northern Ireland business.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, how many times she has met the US Special Envoy for Northern Ireland.

The Secretary of State will meet the US Special Envoy to Northern Ireland for Economic Affairs Joe Kennedy III at the upcoming Northern Ireland Investment Summit on 12-13 September. Lord Johnson met Special Envoy Kennedy in July and discussed the importance of US investment in Northern Ireland and how to ensure this delivers tangible benefits for Northern Ireland business.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what discussions she has had with her Irish counterpart on the Northern Ireland investment conference in September 2023.

The Irish Government were invited to the Northern Ireland Investment Summit by the Northern Ireland Office on 25th July 2023.

The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has discussed the Summit with the Tánaiste, Micheál Martin, most recently at the British Irish Association conference.

Officials in NIO, DBT and British Embassy Dublin engage regularly with Irish Government officials on a range of issues, including the Investment Summit.

We are looking forward to a successful Summit that can help improve prosperity in Northern Ireland.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, how much the Government has spent on the Northern Ireland investment conference as of 1 September 2023.

Total spend on the Northern Ireland investment conference is forecast to come within the £2m allocated budget as of 01 September 2023.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what steps she is taking to support the creation of new businesses in Newport West constituency.

The government aims to make the UK the best place in the world to start, scale up and grow a business.

The Start Up Loans Company, part of the Government-owned British Business Bank, provides loans and pre- and post-application support to new entrepreneurs, including a year of free business mentoring for successful applicants. As of June 2023, the scheme has provided 168 loans to businesses in Newport West to the value of £1,710,240.

Additionally, the Help to Grow and GOV.UK websites contain links to the full range of government funding and information on starting up and running a business.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what recent assessment she has made of the potential impact of fire and rehire practices on the labour market in (a) Newport West constituency and (b) Wales.

The government does not collect data on dismissal and re-engagement. We previously asked the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service to gather evidence into how dismissal and re-engagement is being used by employers. This report was published in June 2021 and is available from https://www.acas.org.uk/fire-and-rehire-report.

The government is taking action to address the practice of dismissal and re-engagement. We have consulted on a draft Statutory Code of Practice and are currently analysing responses. The Code sets out employers’ responsibilities when seeking to change contractual terms and conditions of employment and seeks to ensure dismissal and re-engagement is only used as a last resort.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what recent estimate she has made of the level of compliance with the national minimum wage in (a) Newport West constituency and (b) Wales.

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

The government takes enforcing the minimum wage seriously and has more than doubled the budget for compliance and enforcement to £27.8 million for 2022/23, up from £13.2 million in 2015/16.

In 2021/22, HMRC returned arrears of almost £70,000 to 661 workers in Wales. Since 2015, the Government has ordered employers to repay over £100 million to over 1 million workers.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what recent steps she has taken to increase trade with countries in the Southern African Development Community.

This month my department launched the Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS), which lowers tariffs and simplifies trading rules to increase exports and support growth in 65 countries, including 37 African countries.  Changes to rules of origin in the DCTS will make it easier for these countries to source raw materials regionally and still pay zero tariffs. All Southern African Development Community (SADC) nations are now covered by either the DCTS or our two Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs)

We are using our two EPAs (covering 9 SADC nations) to grow trade and have a team of experts across the region helping British businesses to increase trade and investment.  This is in addition to country-specific activity across SADC, including the inaugural UK-Mauritius Strategic Trade Partnership this past April, led by UK Trade Envoy Mr Andrew Selous MP.

Furthermore, in 2024, the Prime Minister will host the second UK-African Investment Summit to showcase investment opportunities and advance two-way trade.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what recent steps she has taken to help small businesses in Newport West constituency grow.

The Government provides extensive support to all types of businesses, through our Help to Grow Management, Business Support Helpline and 38 Growth Hubs.

Businesses in Newport West will have benefitted from the Government’s reversal of the National Insurance rise, saving SMEs approximately £4,200 on average, the cut to fuel duty, extended for a further 12 months and raising the Employment Allowance to £5,000.

The Energy Bill Relief and Energy Bill Discount Schemes were implemented to protect SMEs from high energy costs over the winter. The Autumn Statement announced £13.6 billion of support for businesses over the next five years, reducing the burden of business rates for SMEs.

The Government is providing financial support – since 2012, 168 SMEs in Newport West have received Start Up loans to the value of £1,710,240.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
20th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, pursuant to the Answer of 27 April 2022 to Question 157481 on chemicals, what tests have been conducted on imported and ecommerce consumer products for the presence of lysmeral above legal concentration limits.

There have been no changes to the regulatory position of Lysmeral under REACH since the answer given by my Hon. Friend the Member for Bury St Edmunds (Jo Churchill) on 27 April 2022, UIN 157481. That means there are no grounds under REACH for testing for its presence in products.

Lysmeral is a prohibited substance for use in cosmetics under annex II of the Cosmetics Regulations 2009 and has been since December 2022. Enforcement authorities, the Office for Product Safety and Standards and Trading Standards, test products where intelligence dictates the need to do so because, for example, it is suspected that a particular product contains a banned or limited substance.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
26th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment she has made of the implications for her policies of plans to grant new oil and gas licences.

New oil and gas licences will aid the UK’s delivery of net zero, reduce imports of LNG with much higher emissions than UK gas, strengthen UK and European energy security as UK oil is overwhelmingly refined and predominantly consumed in the UK and Europe, will help lower production emissions, manage the decline of production in the basin, support and protect the 200,000 jobs dependent on the industry, preserve tax revenues, strengthen the UK’s balance of payments and retain the skills, expertise, investment, and supply chains needed to support the transition to low carbon and renewable technologies necessary for net zero to be reached by 2050.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what recent assessment she has made of the adequacy of the energy mix in (a) Newport West and (b) Wales.

Given energy moves between different parts of the UK to balance supply and demand, the Department assesses the adequacy of the energy mix on a national basis. The annual Statutory Security of Supply Report 2023 (December 2023) concludes that Great Britain is anticipated to maintain adequate supplies of electricity and gas to meet consumers’ demands over the short- and long- term.

UK Energy Mix for

2022

Coal

2%

Primary oils

34%

Natural gas

38%

Bioenergy & waste

10%

Primary electricity

11%

Other

4%

Source DUKES 1.1

Source: DUKES Table 1.1, Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics (DUKES) Chapter 1, Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, 24 Aug. 2023

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
14th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if she will meet the hon. Member for Newport West to discuss a complaint about the mis-selling of Green Deal loans by HELMS submitted by a constituent in 2019.

I would invite the hon. Member to write to provide further detail on the complaint she is referring to. The Department will then be able to advise on the status of the complaint to inform the request for discussion.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many members of His Majesty's Government (a) have attended and (b) plan to attend COP28 as of 5 December 2023.

A total of 11 Government Ministers from across different Government Departments are due to have attended COP28.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, which Ministers will attend COP28.

My Rt hon Friends the Prime Minister and Secretary of State will attend COP28, as well as Ministers from the following departments: Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, HM Treasury, Department for Transport, and Department for Health and Social Care.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
18th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps she has taken to help (a) lower energy costs and (b) improve energy security for (i) households and (ii) businesses in Newport West constituency.

Since October 2022, the Government has covered nearly half a typical household’s energy cost and continues to support the most vulnerable with Cost-of-Living payments, including in Newport West. The Government is delivering on energy efficiency, lower electricity costs and energy security by boosting diverse sources of homegrown energy.

The default tariff price cap will continue to protect households, and the Energy Price Guarantee will remain in place as a safety net through to April 2024. Eligible businesses will also continue to receive support under the Energy Bills Discount Scheme and Energy and Trade Intensive Industries schemes.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
14th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether he plans to attend the African Climate Action Summit.

The UK is committed to working with African partners to drive long-term climate action and the UK Government will be represented at the African Climate Action Summit in September.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
25th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what estimate his Department has made of the number of families in fuel poverty living in Newport West constituency.

Fuel poverty is devolved. Modelled estimates for fuel poverty in Wales can be found through: www.gov.wales/fuel-poverty-modelled-estimates-wales-headline-results-october-2021-html

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
20th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment he has made of the impact of Government policy on home insulation and retrofitting on (a) the UK’s net zero target and (b) levels of fuel poverty.

The Government is firmly committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050, and to upgrading as many homes as possible to achieve EPC band C by 2035 where cost-effective, practical and affordable. By 2021, 47% of homes in England had reached EPC C, up from 14% in 2010.

In England, our statutory fuel poverty target is to ensure that as many fuels poor households as is reasonably practicable achieve a minimum energy efficiency rating of a Band C by 2030. In 2022, an estimated 52.8 per cent of all low-income households were living in a property with a fuel poverty energy efficiency rating (FPEER) of band C or better.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
20th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how much and what proportion of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero's capital departmental expenditure will be allocated to energy efficiency measures.

At the 2023 Budget, HM Treasury published indicative Capital Department Expenditure Limit budgets for the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, which will be confirmed at Main Estimates 2023-24. These indicative budgets are £5.9 billion in 2023-24 and £8.2 billion in 2024-25.

The Department’s current plans include investments of over £1.3 billion in 2023-24 and £1.5 billion in 2024-25 into measures supporting energy efficiency, including the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund and Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, when he last met the leadership of Shell Energy.

Ministers regularly meet with external stakeholders. Details of ministerial meetings with external organisations are published quarterly and can be found on GOV.UK at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/beis-ministerial-gifts-hospitality-travel-and-meetings.

The latest published data covers July to September 2022 and further data is due to be published in March. In line with Cabinet Office Guidance organisations are listed instead of individuals.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
18th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will meet with the hon. Member for Newport West to discuss the issues relating to the future of Newport Wafer Fab.

My Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State and I are always happy to meet colleagues to discuss important issues. If she would like to have a meeting, she is always welcome to reach out to our offices through the usual communication channels.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that small and medium-sized enterprises are receiving the correct level of support from the Energy Bill Relief Scheme in Newport West constituency.

The Energy Bill Relief Scheme is set out in legislation and will be applied in a uniform way by all licensed suppliers. The regulations include a robust compliance and enforcement regime to ensure requirements are being met. Suppliers are also required to inform customers about the details of support, including the amount of the discount and discounted supply price.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many small and medium sized businesses have received Government funding for support in Newport West constituency during the cost of living crisis in the last 12 months.

The Government recognises the impact rising prices are having on businesses, including those in Newport West.

Businesses in Newport West will have benefitted from the Government’s reversal of the National Insurance rise, saving SMEs on average £4,200, cut fuel duty for 12 months and the Energy Bill Relief Scheme, to protect SMEs from high energy costs over the winter. The Employment Allowance was increased to £5,000 from April and we have continued to provide business rate relief worth over £7bn, freezing the business rates multiplier for a further year.

The Government is providing financial support - 161 SMEs in Newport West have received Start Up Loans to the value of £1,612,340 as of November 2022.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had recent discussions with the Welsh Government on the potential impact of the cost of living crisis on businesses in Newport West constituency.

Ministers regularly engage with business leaders and networks, including those in Newport West, to better understand the challenges and explore ways to mitigate the impact rising prices are having on their businesses.

The Government has reversed the National Insurance rise, saving SMEs £4,200 on average, cut fuel duty for 12 months and raised the Employment Allowance to £5000. In addition, we have brought in the Energy Bill Relief Scheme, which is shielding businesses across the country from soaring energy prices, saving some around half of their wholesale energy costs.

We have also announced £13.6 billion of support for businesses over the next five years, reducing the burden of business rates for SMEs.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had recent discussions with (a) businesses and (b) businesses representatives in Newport West constituency on the potential impact of the cost of living crisis on those businesses.

The Government recognises the impact rising prices are having on businesses, including those in Newport West, and is engaging with businesses across the UK to understand these challenges and explore ways to mitigate them.

The Government has reversed the National Insurance rise, saving SMEs £4,200 on average; cut fuel duty for 12 months; raised the Employment Allowance to £5,000 and introduced the Energy Bill Relief Scheme which is shielding businesses across the country from soaring energy prices, saving some around half of their wholesale energy costs.

We have also announced £13.6 billion of support for businesses over the next five years, reducing the burden of business rates for SMEs.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
30th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his officials visited the Newport Wafer Fab prior to the announcement of the divestment decision.

On 9 May 2022, Government officials with expertise in the semiconductor sector visited the facility and met representatives of Nexperia. The Secretary of State for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy called in the acquisition and began the assessment process on 25 May 2022. As is required under the National Security and Investment Act, the Secretary of State considered all representations made by the company when making the Final Order.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
30th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he considered evidence (a) that the UK and Welsh Governments (i) were aware in advance of and (ii) raised no objections to the acquisition of Newport Wafer Fab by Nexperia and (b) of the level of investment by Nexperia into the Water Fab since its acquisition when making his decision on divestment.

The National Security and Investment Act was not in force when the original acquisition took place in 2021. The Secretary of State used retrospective powers to call-in and assess the acquisition under the Act. The Secretary of State takes decisions under the Act in a quasi-judicial capacity, based on the facts and evidence presented to him. The Act only allows the Secretary of State to make a Final Order to prevent, remedy or mitigate risks to national security, and not for wider political or economic reasons. As you’d expect, I’m unable to comment on the details of national security assessments.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
30th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what process his Department followed to prepare the national security assessment prior to the Newport Wafer Fab divestment decision; and what evidence his Department received as part of that process.

The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy takes decisions under the National Security and Investment Act 2021 in a quasi-judicial capacity. The Investment Security Unit coordinates expertise from across Government so that the Secretary of State may make decisions based on the evidence. It would not be appropriate to comment on the detail of national security assessments.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
15th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the impact of the rising cost of (a) fuel and (b) energy on small businesses in Newport West constituency; and what steps he is taking to help tackle those impacts.

The Energy Bill Relief Scheme came into force on the 1 November and will provide a discount on energy bills for all eligible non-domestic customers, including small businesses on non-domestic tariffs and businesses running tourist attractions, whose current gas and electricity prices have been significantly inflated in light of global energy prices. Small businesses that are on domestic tariffs will receive support through the domestic Energy Price Guarantee scheme.

The schemes will initially run for 6 months covering energy use from 1 October 2022 to 31 March 2023 and will help support growth, prevent unnecessary insolvencies and protect jobs.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
15th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to help tackle the impact of the rising cost of (a) gas and (b) energy on tourist attractions in Newport West constituency.

The Energy Bill Relief Scheme came into force on the 1 November and will provide a discount on energy bills for all eligible non-domestic customers, including small businesses on non-domestic tariffs and businesses running tourist attractions, whose current gas and electricity prices have been significantly inflated in light of global energy prices. Small businesses that are on domestic tariffs will receive support through the domestic Energy Price Guarantee scheme.

The schemes will initially run for 6 months covering energy use from 1 October 2022 to 31 March 2023 and will help support growth, prevent unnecessary insolvencies and protect jobs.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on proposals to support small businesses in Newport West constituency.

BEIS works regularly with the Welsh Government on a range of issues, including support for business. Although many of the levers are devolved, the UK Government has acted to protect Welsh businesses from rising energy bills this winter, through the Energy Bill Relief Scheme.

The Government’s Growth Plan cuts taxes and energy bills for businesses. The Plan will drive more private sector investment and cut red tape.

The Start Up Loans Company, part of the Government-owned British Business Bank, provides support to new entrepreneurs. Since the Start Up Loans programme was launched in 2012, it has provided 161 loans to businesses in Newport West, totalling £1,612,340.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the impact of rising energy costs on the glass manufacturing sector.

The Government is determined to secure a competitive future for energy intensive industries (EIIs) including the glass industry. In recent years, the Government has provided EIIs with extensive support, including more than £2 billion to help with the costs of energy and to protect jobs. The British Energy Security Strategy announced the three-year extension of the EII Compensation Scheme, doubling its budget. The Strategy also announced a consultation on plans to consider increasing support offered by the related EII Exemption Scheme. That consultation closed on the 16 September and the Government will respond in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last held discussions with Cabinet colleagues on the Mayor of London's Solar Action Plan.

Ministers are in regular contact with Cabinet colleagues to discuss a range of issues of mutual interest, including options for facilitating deployment of low-cost renewable technologies such as solar PV.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much his Department spent on energy in each of the last three years.

At the Department’s headquarters building at 1 Victoria Street, London, the net spend on gas and electricity for the last three financial years was as follows:

2019/20

2020/21

2021/22

Gas

£76,668

£100,439

£136,274

Electricity

£641,927

£455,386

£563,925

Total

£718,595

£555,825

£700,199

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to help support pubs in Newport West constituency with increases in the cost of energy.

The Government announced a new six-month scheme – the Energy Price Guarantee for Businesses (EPGB) – to protect all businesses and other non-domestic energy users from soaring energy costs. It will offer comparable support to that being provided for consumers and we expect the scheme to be available in the autumn. After this initial six-month scheme the Government will provide focused support for vulnerable sectors, targeted to make sure those most in need get support.

The Government is also supporting pubs with business rates relief, freezing alcohol duty rates on beer, cider, wine and spirits, and by increasing the employment allowance.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
14th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the cost to consumers of poor business practices.

The Government published the Consumer Protection Study in April 2022. The study explores many factors contributing to consumer detriment including some which could be considered poor business practices such as misleading advertising, unfair terms and conditions and misleading pricing. The study can be viewed at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/consumer-protection-study-2022.

14th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on the potential impact of increases in the energy price cap on living standards.

The Government understands the pressures that households are facing with the cost of living and in particular, the impact rising energy prices is having on consumers.

The Government recently announced a £15 billion package to support households with the cost of living, in addition to the over £22 billion previously committed, to help domestic energy customers with the cost of living and rising energy bills.

This support includes helping all domestic electricity customers in Great Britain cope with the impact of higher energy bills, with £400 off their bills from October through the expansion of the Energy Bills Support Scheme.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
14th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with representatives of the British glass industry.

BEIS ministers and officials regularly meet with glass manufacturers, British Glass and through the Energy Intensive Users Group to discuss a number of issues relevant to the glass sector.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
14th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had discussions with the Welsh Government on the impact of rising fuel costs on the road hauliers industry in that country.

The Road Haulage sector is a matter for the Department of Transport.

At the Spring Statement 2022, the Government announced a temporary 12-month cut to duty on petrol and diesel of 5 pence per litre as part of ongoing Government efforts to address the rising cost of living.

The Government estimates that this cut represents a saving worth around £1,500 for the average road haulier over the next six months.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken to support small businesses in Newport West constituency.

Although business support is largely a devolved matter, the Government also provides a range of support that all businesses across the UK can access. This includes information on starting up and running a business on GOV.UK, and our new Help to Grow Schemes which will help small businesses across the UK learn new skills, reach new customers, and boost profits.

The Government backed British Business Bank helps make finance markets work better for small businesses, and 160 businesses in Newport West have benefitted from over £1.6 million in Start Up Loans since the programme was launched in 2012. At Spending Review 2021 we announced an additional £1.6 billion of funding for the next generation of UK Funds, including £130 million for a new fund in Wales that will provide debt and equity finance for innovative Welsh businesses.

13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to prevent a reduction in the number of small businesses in the UK.

The Government provides a range of support that all businesses can access. These include information on starting up and running a business on GOV.UK, one to one advice via our free Business Support Helpline and through 38 Growth Hubs across England, government backed Start-Up Loans, and our Help to Grow schemes.

Small businesses will also benefit from the £15 billion of targeted government support to help with the rising cost of living. This brings the total cost of living support measures announced to £37 billion this year. Government has cut fuel duty for 12 months, raised the Employment Allowance to £5,000, and is zero-rating VAT on energy-saving materials. This builds on existing support, including business rates relief worth £7 billion over five years.

21st Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to his oral statement of 26 May 2022 on Economy Update, Official report, column 449, what steps he is taking to ensure that people on shared electricity tariffs receive financial support.

Households supplied with electricity via a contract entered into by their landlord are protected by the Maximum Resale Price provisions put in place by Ofgem. This prevents landlords reselling energy at a higher price than they paid the energy supplier.

Further to my rt. hon. Friend Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer’s announcement on 26 May, the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has announced the Energy Bills Support Scheme (EBSS), a £37billion cost of living assistance package and will deliver a £400 non-repayable grant to households over winter 22/23. The Government continues to work with consumer groups and suppliers on delivery and is exploring ways in which households, who do not have direct contract for electricity might receive similar support

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of trends in the level of energy costs for people in Newport West constituency.

Quarterly statistics on energy prices by region may be found online at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/quarterly-energy-prices . The Government do not have data at the constituency level.

The Government recognises the impact rising energy prices is having on consumers and has put in place a package of support worth £9.1 billion to help domestic energy customers with the cost of rising energy bills.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
28th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the impact of rising global gas prices on achieving the Government's net zero targets; and what steps he plans to take to mitigate that impact.

The UK's exposure to volatile gas prices reinforces the importance of the government’s plans for a strong renewable energy sector to strengthen the UK’s future energy security and resilience.

The Government will shortly set out an energy supply strategy which will drive forward renewable energy and nuclear capacity to bolster domestic supply and help drive down energy costs.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
14th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking with Cabinet colleagues to mitigate the impact of rising fuel costs on motorists in Newport West constituency.

The Government is conscious of the impact of fuel prices on households across the country and has therefore decided to keep fuel duty frozen for the twelfth consecutive year.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
2nd Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps the Government has taken to assess the adequacy of the level of remuneration that musicians in Newport West constituency receive from music streaming services.

A comprehensive programme of research and extensive stakeholder engagement is underway to investigate the issues around music creator remuneration highlighted by the Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport Select Committee’s inquiry into the economics of music streaming. This work will strengthen the Government’s evidence base on this issue.

25th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has any plans to extend the Warm Home Discount scheme.

The Warm Home Discount is a key policy in the Government’s strategy to tackle fuel poverty and reduce the energy costs of low-income and vulnerable households. The Government has therefore committed to extend the scheme until 2026, as outlined in the Energy White Paper.

The Government consulted on expanding and reforming the Warm Home Discount from 2022. Under the plans, the total spending will increase from around £350 million to £475 million per year, and the value of the rebates will increase to £150. As a result of the additional funding, 780,000 more low-income and vulnerable households will receive rebates on their energy bills every winter, with the majority receiving the money automatically and without having to apply.

The Government’s response to the consultation is due to be published this spring, with the expanded and reformed scheme coming into force from the 2022/23 scheme year.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
12th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much of Innovate UK’s increased budget will be made available to support the maritime sector.

Following the Spending Review, BEIS will set R&D budgets through to 2024/25. Further details of how this funding will be allocated will be announced in due course.

10th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the impact of rising electricity prices on the sustainability of UK steelmakers.

We recognise the effect rising energy prices are having on businesses of all sizes and we are regularly engaging with them to discuss impacts and mitigations.

Since 2013, we have provided more than £2 billion in relief to help energy intensive industries with the costs of electricity, with over £600 million for steel. In addition, we have various funds in place to support businesses with high energy use to cut their bills, including the £315 million Industrial Energy Transformation Fund.

Lee Rowley
Minister of State (Minister for Housing)
7th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the impact of the Welsh-based financial services company Admiral closing its Newport office on the economy of Newport West constituency.

It is disappointing that in streamlining its office presence in South Wales Admiral has announced it will begin a phased exit of its Newport City Centre offices in 2022. However, it is positive that the leader of Newport City Council has committed to working closely with Admiral and its landlord to ensure the building’s future use is fully explored and secured.

The UK Government is playing its part in supporting Newport’s post-pandemic economy and is investing over £2m through the Community Renewal Fund to level up the city. This includes a project to develop entrepreneurs in the Pillgwenlly area of Newport. Developing entrepreneurs and start-up businesses will be key to the future of Newport’s economy and its newly developed workspaces.

7th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what forecast he has made of trends in the cost of gas and electricity in the UK up to the end of 2022.

The Government is monitoring the significant increases in wholesale energy prices closely, and meeting regularly with Ofgem, suppliers and consumer groups to understand the future impact on consumers as well as to discuss potential mitigations.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
7th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the proposed increase in the rate of National Insurance on levels of fuel poverty in Newport West constituency.

Fuel poverty is a devolved matter. The Department only has responsibility for England. Therefore, no estimate has been made by the Department on the impact of proposed changes to National Insurance on levels of fuel poverty in Newport West constituency, Wales.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
7th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what forecast he has made of trends in the cost of fuel in the UK up to the end of 2022.

Retail prices of petroleum products such as petrol and diesel are primarily driven by the underlying price in the global market of crude oil (priced in US$) and exchange rates. Recognising that fuel is a major cost for households and businesses, the Government has kept fuel duty frozen for 12 successive years.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
6th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the efficacy of the smart meter programme in reducing fuel poverty.

Households are achieving sustained savings using their smart meters and In-Home Displays. These provide accurate, near real-time information about energy consumption in pounds and pence so consumers can easily understand how to use less and save money on their bills. Evidence collected throughout the rollout to date shows that these savings are being realised, with prepayment customers seeing an estimated reduction in electricity consumption of 3% and gas consumption of 0.5%. The Government continues to actively monitor the impact of smart metering on consumers, including on those in vulnerable circumstances, through large-scale consumer research.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the impact of rising energy costs on the weekly budgets of people in Newport West constituency.

The Government is committed to protecting energy customers, especially the most vulnerable. The Energy Price Cap will continue to protect consumers, ensuring they pay a fair price for their energy this winter. Low income and fuel poor households will continue to be supported with their energy bills through the Warm Home Discount, which provides eligible households with a £140 discount. Winter Fuel Payments and Cold Weather Payments will ensure that the most vulnerable are better able to heat their homes through the winter. The Government also announced an additional £500 million for local authorities through the new Household Support Fund to support vulnerable households meet daily needs such as utility bills.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken to mitigate the impact of rising energy costs on families in Newport West constituency.

The Government is committed to protecting energy customers, especially the most vulnerable. The Energy Price Cap will continue to protect consumers, ensuring they pay a fair price for their energy this winter. Low income and fuel poor households will continue to be supported with their energy bills through the Warm Home Discount, which provides eligible households with a £140 discount. Winter Fuel Payments and Cold Weather Payments will ensure that the most vulnerable are better able to heat their homes through the winter. The Government also announced an additional £500 million for local authorities through the new Household Support Fund to support vulnerable households meet daily needs such as utility bills.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had any discussions with the Welsh Government on tackling the ethnicity pay gap.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy talks regularly with the Welsh Government on a wide range of labour market issues.

The recent Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities report contained specific recommendations on pay gap reporting. We are considering our response to the Commission’s report and will discuss this with the Welsh Government in due course.

4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has discussed the rise in energy costs with the Welsh Government.

Yes, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State has met with Devolved Administrations, including the Welsh Government at a ministerial level to discuss rising energy prices. Engagement at an official level is ongoing.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
23rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, pursuant to the Answer of 23 November 2021 to Question 75126 on UN Climate Conference 2021: Government, how many Ministers in his Department travelled to COP26 by airplane.
22nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential effect on staff health and wellbeing of policies on holiday similar to that offered by FinnCap.

Almost all workers are legally entitled to 5.6 weeks paid holiday a year and employers should do everything reasonably practicable to ensure that they are able to take as much of their leave as possible in the year to which it relates. Employers can offer more holiday than the statutory minimum, which would be agreed as part of individual contracts.

The Government is also exploring additional ways that employers can offer flexibility to workers to balance work and other responsibilities. We are consulting on a series of measures to change the existing legislative framework so that it is more effective at supporting flexible working.

22nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the deforestation situation in Brazil's Amazon rainforest.

The Government welcome the Brazilian government’s recent commitments made at COP26 to reduce emissions by 50% by 2030, formalising the 2050 net-zero pledge and importantly, to eliminate illegal deforestation by 2028. The Government is also pleased to see Brazil’s commitment, as part of the Glasgow Leaders Declaration at COP26, to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030. Therefore, the Government is developing a strong cross-government integrated plan that builds on the established partnership HMG has developed with federal and subnational governments in Brazil.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
22nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to help support energy efficiency measures at homes in Newport West constituency.

The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) requires larger suppliers to deliver energy efficiency and heating measures to achieve bill savings for low income and vulnerable household. In summer 2021 the Government consulted on a successor ECO which will run until 2026, with the value boosted from £640 million to £1 billion a year.

In addition, as outlined in the Government’s Heat and Buildings Strategy, the Boiler Upgrade Scheme will launch in England and Wales from Spring 2022, and will provide capital grants to support the installation of low carbon heat technologies. Grants of £5,000 will be offered for air source heat pumps and biomass boilers, and £6,000 for ground source heat pumps. Homeowners, small businesses, and private landlords will be eligible for the Boiler Upgrade Scheme.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
16th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what proportion of the £10 million of annual funding provided to NC3Rs has been spent on (a) replacing the use of animals, (b) refining the use of animals and (c) reducing the number of animals used.

The National Centre for the 3Rs (NC3Rs) works nationally and internationally to drive the uptake of replacement, reduction and refinement of animal use technologies and ensure that advances in them are reflected in policy, practice and regulations on animal research.

As funding is committed to projects that may involve more than one of the 3Rs, it is not possible to provide exact proportions. However, a searchable database with details of every NC3R funded project is available at NC3Rs .

12th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how he travelled to COP26 in Glasgow.

The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Kwasi Kwarteng, travelled by train to COP26.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
8th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what support his Department is providing to help the steel industry to decarbonise.

In collaboration with the UK Steel Council, we are considering the implications of the recommendation of the Climate Change Committee to ‘set targets for ore-based steelmaking to reach near-zero emissions by 2035’ and the business environment necessary to support the transition..

The Net Zero Strategy sets out how we intend to meet our Carbon Budget 6 ambition of reducing industrial emissions by 63-76% by 2035, compared to the 2019 level. Hydrogen-based steelmaking, Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage, and electrification are some of the technological approaches being examined as part of this process.

We will continue to work with the steel industry regarding its decarbonisation.

Lee Rowley
Minister of State (Minister for Housing)
8th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with manufacturers in Newport West constituency on the rise in energy prices.

Ministers and officials continue to engage constructively with businesses to understand, and to help mitigate the impacts of, high global gas prices. The Government’s priority is to ensure costs are managed and energy supplies maintained.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
25th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of effect of recent increases in petrol prices on people in Newport West constituency.

The Government is aware that the increase in petrol price may be difficult for families. Therefore, for the twelfth year in a row, at the Budget, fuel duty was frozen. This has saved the average driver in the Newport West constituency a cumulative £1,900 compared to the pre-2010 escalator.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
19th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what support he is providing to increase the UK’s green shipbuilding capabilities.

The Department is supporting the Government’s Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution, as well as a range of research and innovation programmes to develop technologies that will have spill-over benefits in various markets, including the shipbuilding sector.

The Department is also supporting several green shipping projects, including hydrogen ferry trials in Orkney and a hydrogen refuelling port on Teesside. Innovate UK is also facilitating the delivery of the Department for Transport’s £20 million Clean Maritime Demonstration Programme to bring forward green propulsion solutions for the maritime sector.

In addition, the Department is working closely with UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) to ensure that UK shipyards are aware of the organisation’s funded programmes and facilities, so that they have the opportunity to access these.

Lee Rowley
Minister of State (Minister for Housing)
19th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to introduce a Home shipbuilding credit guarantee scheme to support the development of UK shipbuilding.

The Department has consulted upon the reintroduction of a Home Shipbuilding Credit Guarantee Scheme as a potential contribution to a refreshed National Shipbuilding Strategy. The case for the scheme is under consideration at the current time and a final decision will be announced in due course.

The Government already offers a range of financial support instruments to businesses through the British Business Bank and through UK Export Finance.

Lee Rowley
Minister of State (Minister for Housing)
10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to prioritise science and research in the levelling up agenda in (a) Newport West constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK.

We recognise the need to take a comprehensive place-based approach to economic growth, that responds to the varying needs of places. We will publish a detailed approach for levelling up through R&D as part of the forthcoming Levelling Up White Paper.

Ahead of then, UKRI’s Strength in Places Fund (SIPF) is the first major national competitive R&D fund that takes a place-based approach contributing to the Government’s wider levelling up ambitions. In June 2020, BEIS announced an award of £25m to the CS Connected project in the first wave of SIPF, to develop South Wales’ compound semiconductor cluster. Project partners are from across the region including Newport. This summer, BEIS announced a £22m award to the media.cymru project to develop Cardiff’s media cluster.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to strengthen rights to flexible working for workers in Newport West constituency.

The UK has one of the best employment rights records in the world and we have made good progress in bringing forward measures that add flexibility for workers while ensuring the protection of employment rights, such as banning the use of exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts.

The Government continues to work closely with businesses, trade unions and other groups to develop options for supporting the flexibility of the labour market.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken to review the terms and conditions of employment in sectors of the economy experiencing labour shortages.

In general, terms and conditions of employment, except where they are subject to statutory minimum standards such as the national minimum wage, are a contractual matter for negotiation and agreement between employers and employees (or their representatives).

The Government is keen to see employers make long term investments in the UK domestic workforce instead of relying on labour from abroad, and businesses should be looking at how to make employment more attractive, including through wage increases and offering training.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to extend employment rights to all workers in Newport West constituency.

The UK has one of the best employment rights records in the world and we have made good progress in bringing forward measures that add flexibility for workers while ensuring the protection of employment rights, such as banning the use of exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts.

An individual’s employment rights, are determined by their employment status (employee, limb (b) worker or self-employed). Employees are entitled to all rights including rights to flexible working (subject to qualifying periods) and have responsibilities towards their employer. So-called “limb (b) workers” are only entitled to some rights such as the National Minimum Wage but have increased flexibility and fewer obligations to their employer. The self-employed generally have no employment rights but have complete flexibility in their work. We believe our three-tiered employment status structure provides the right balance for the UK Labour Market.

We understand the importance of clarity around employment status and to ensure that individuals and businesses are aware of their rights and responsibilities. The Government will continue to work closely with businesses, trade unions and other groups to ensure that any options to clarify employment status are effective, preserving the flexibility of the labour market while making it easier to understand for individuals.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to support manufacturing in (a) Wales and (b) the UK.

The Government is committed to supporting UK manufacturing businesses and recognises the vital role they play in the UK economy, by driving innovation, exports, job creation and productivity growth. We hold regular discussions with industry stakeholders to better understand the issues affecting supply chains, and recognise the significant pressures being felt by industry as a result of supply chain disruption, as well as the impact this is placing on businesses. Successful resolution of these issues will be a joint effort between industry and Government, and we will continue to engage with other departments to find practical solutions to these challenges, which are not unique to the UK.

In order to support UK manufacturing, we are investing £147 million through a Manufacturing Made Smarter Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund programme and have invested £730 million in the seven High Value Manufacturing Catapult centres, supporting manufacturers in bringing new technologies to market.

Furthermore, we have introduced a Super Deduction that will cut manufacturers’ tax bill by 25p for every pound they invest in new equipment, which means they can reduce their taxable profits by 130% of the cost. In addition, the Government has a target for total R&D investment to reach 2.4% of GDP by 2027 and in our recent Innovation Strategy we have committed to increase our annual public investment in R&D to a record £22billion.

The Government has provided over £3.4 billion in direct support to businesses in Wales throughout the pandemic. This is on top of our support for the manufacturing sector through our £4.8m commitment to the development of Holyhead Hydrogen Hub, £30m for the Global Centre of Rail Excellence and £30m for Celsa Steel.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to help tackle supply chain issues affecting businesses in (a) Newport West constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK.

The Government is committed to supporting UK manufacturing businesses and recognises the vital role they play in the UK economy, by driving innovation, exports, job creation and productivity growth. We hold regular discussions with industry stakeholders to better understand the issues affecting supply chains, and recognise the significant pressures being felt by industry as a result of supply chain disruption, as well as the impact this is placing on businesses. Successful resolution of these issues will be a joint effort between industry and Government, and we will continue to engage with other departments to find practical solutions to these challenges, which are not unique to the UK.

In order to support UK manufacturing, we are investing £147 million through a Manufacturing Made Smarter Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund programme and have invested £730 million in the seven High Value Manufacturing Catapult centres, supporting manufacturers in bringing new technologies to market.

Furthermore, we have introduced a Super Deduction that will cut manufacturers’ tax bill by 25p for every pound they invest in new equipment, which means they can reduce their taxable profits by 130% of the cost. In addition, the Government has a target for total R&D investment to reach 2.4% of GDP by 2027 and in our recent Innovation Strategy we have committed to increase our annual public investment in R&D to a record £22billion.

The Government has provided over £3.4 billion in direct support to businesses in Wales throughout the pandemic. This is on top of our support for the manufacturing sector through our £4.8m commitment to the development of Holyhead Hydrogen Hub, £30m for the Global Centre of Rail Excellence and £30m for Celsa Steel.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with businesses and trade unions on supply chain issues in (a) Newport West constituency and (b) Wales.

The Government is committed to supporting UK manufacturing businesses and recognises the vital role they play in the UK economy, by driving innovation, exports, job creation and productivity growth. We hold regular discussions with industry stakeholders to better understand the issues affecting supply chains, and recognise the significant pressures being felt by industry as a result of supply chain disruption, as well as the impact this is placing on businesses. Successful resolution of these issues will be a joint effort between industry and Government, and we will continue to engage with other departments to find practical solutions to these challenges, which are not unique to the UK.

In order to support UK manufacturing, we are investing £147 million through a Manufacturing Made Smarter Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund programme and have invested £730 million in the seven High Value Manufacturing Catapult centres, supporting manufacturers in bringing new technologies to market.

Furthermore, we have introduced a Super Deduction that will cut manufacturers’ tax bill by 25p for every pound they invest in new equipment, which means they can reduce their taxable profits by 130% of the cost. In addition, the Government has a target for total R&D investment to reach 2.4% of GDP by 2027 and in our recent Innovation Strategy we have committed to increase our annual public investment in R&D to a record £22billion.

The Government has provided over £3.4 billion in direct support to businesses in Wales throughout the pandemic. This is on top of our support for the manufacturing sector through our £4.8m commitment to the development of Holyhead Hydrogen Hub, £30m for the Global Centre of Rail Excellence and £30m for Celsa Steel.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to support the generation of green hydrogen.

This August, the UK published the first ever UK Hydrogen Strategy, alongside key policy detail on how the Government will support new low carbon hydrogen production and ensure standards are in place to deliver the carbon emissions savings, government need to meet net zero. This is the most substantive hydrogen strategy and policy package of its kind in the world and one that places the UK firmly at the forefront of the race to develop hydrogen as a promising replacement for fossil fuels in the global transition to net zero.

The UK Hydrogen Strategy sets out the Government’s ‘twin-track’ approach to supporting both electrolytic ‘green’ and carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS)-enabled ‘blue’ hydrogen production. The UK has expertise and assets to support these and other low carbon production routes, helping us drive cost effective supply volumes in the 2020s in line with our 2030 5GW ambition, whilst scaling up electrolytic hydrogen.

The Government are currently consulting on new policy interventions to support low carbon hydrogen, including the £240m Net Zero Hydrogen Fund, a hydrogen business model to incentivise the production and use of low carbon hydrogen, and a UK standard to ensure hydrogen production the government support is sufficiently low carbon.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the future of exploration of oil and gas in the North Sea.

As we move towards net-zero, oil and gas will play a smaller role, but still important in meeting UK energy demand. All scenarios proposed by the Climate Change Committee setting out how we could meet our 2050 net zero emissions target include demand for oil and natural gas.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
10th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to promote a green recovery from the covid-19 pandemic in Newport West constituency.

The Government is determined to seize the once-in-a-generation economic opportunities of the net zero transition by creating new business opportunities and, by one estimate, supporting up to 2 million green jobs by 2030 across all regions of the UK. The UK has a strong base to build upon, in 2019 there were already over 410,000 jobs in low carbon businesses and their supply chains across the country.

The Ten Point Plan is part of my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister’s mission to level up across the country, mobilising £12 billion of Government investment to create and support a further 90,000 green collar jobs across the UK by 2024, and up to 250,000 by 2030.

Many of the initiatives and funding announced within the Ten Point Plan will apply in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. For example, the Government will invest up to £1 billion to support the establishment of Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage in at least four industrial clusters, creating ‘SuperPlaces’ in areas such as central and north-eastern Scotland, south Wales, the Humber, Teesside and Merseyside.

Ahead of COP26, the Government will bring forward further bold proposals, including a Net Zero Strategy, to cut emissions and create new jobs and industries across the whole country, going further and faster towards building a stronger, more resilient future and protecting our planet for this generation and those to come.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last met Ministers in the Welsh Government.

My Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy last met the Minister for the Economy in the Welsh Government on 14th July 2021.

I have also met the Welsh Minister for the Economy to discuss policies on innovation and space, most recently on 22nd June and 30th June.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last spoke to the Minister for the Economy in the Welsh Government.

My Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy last met the Minister for the Economy in the Welsh Government on 14th July 2021.

BEIS Ministers meet Ministers from the Devolved Administrations regularly through the Net Zero and Business and Industry Inter-ministerial Groups. These last met on 30th June and 28th July respectively.

18th Aug 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the effect of the closure of the Honda plant in Swindon on levels of employment in that area.

Following Honda’s announcement in February 2019 that it would close its Swindon plant in 2021, the company has worked closely with Government, Local Authorities and other stakeholders to support affected employees. The Government-led Honda Taskforce was instrumental in securing a new future for the Swindon site and attracting investment into Swindon, including over £44 million to regenerate the town centre. The sale of the site to Panattoni that Honda announced on 26 March represents £400million of private investment for the region and will create around 2,000 new jobs.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last met with representatives of the Wales Trades Union Congress.

The UK Government is committed to building back better from the pandemic as one United Kingdom. Ministers and officials from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy engage regularly with the trade unions on a variety of issues.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of Tesco and Sainsbury's continuing to ask shoppers to wear masks in their stores in England after 19 July 2021; and if he will make a statement.

On Monday 5 July, my Rt hon Friend the Prime Minister set out the Covid-19 Response: Summer 2021 plan for living with Covid from 19 July. Lifting restrictions does not mean the risks from Covid-19 have disappeared. However, at this new phase of the pandemic response, we are moving to an approach that enables personal risk-based judgments. The Working Safely guidance is clear that wearing a face covering can still help to reduce risk of transmission of the virus. Therefore, we recommend people to continue to wear face coverings once the legal restrictions are lifted, particularly in crowded and enclosed places, when they are likely to come into contact with people they do not normally meet.

Businesses are free to determine their own face coverings policy based on a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks of Covid-19 in the workplace and identify control measures to manage that risk. Businesses must take equalities law into account when determining their entry policies. Employees and customers who wish to wear a face covering should be supported to do so.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations (a) he and (b) other member of the Government have received from Chinese Government on the purchase of Newport Wafer Fab.

Ministers engage regularly with their colleagues on a range of issues, such as the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab. The Government does not comment on the content of these conversations.

The Government does not comment on the detail of commercial transactions or of national security assessments.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has carried out an impact assessment of the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab; and if he will make a statement.

Ministers engage regularly with their colleagues on a range of issues, such as the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab. The Government does not comment on the content of these conversations.

The Government does not comment on the detail of commercial transactions or of national security assessments.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last discussed the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab with the leadership of Newport City Council.

Ministers engage regularly with their colleagues on a range of issues, such as the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab. The Government does not comment on the content of these conversations.

The Government does not comment on the detail of commercial transactions or of national security assessments.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last discussed the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab with Cabinet colleagues.

Ministers engage regularly with their colleagues on a range of issues, such as the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab. The Government does not comment on the content of these conversations.

The Government does not comment on the detail of commercial transactions or of national security assessments.

15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last discussed the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab with the Welsh Government.

Ministers engage regularly with their colleagues on a range of issues, such as the takeover of Newport Wafer Fab. The Government does not comment on the content of these conversations.

The Government does not comment on the detail of commercial transactions or of national security assessments.

5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had discussions with the Northern Ireland Executive on the potential merits of setting a target for marine energy ahead of COP26.

The Department regularly meets with the Northern Ireland Executive to discuss a range of issues.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had discussions with the Scottish Government on the potential merits of setting a target for marine energy ahead of COP26.

The Department regularly meets with the Scottish Government to discuss a range of issues.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has had discussions with the Welsh Government on the potential merits of setting a target for marine energy ahead of COP26.

The Department regularly meets with the Welsh Government to discuss a range of issues.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
1st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his policy is on his Department's rates of recycling of plastic, paper, metal and other products; and if he will make a statement.

BEIS is committed to reducing our waste and increasing recycling, and has a zero waste to landfill policy. Between 2009/10 and 2019/20 we reduced waste by 30% and increased recycling by 44% at the Department’s headquarters building at 1 Victoria Street, London. Our departmental target is to reduce our overall waste by a further 25% and increase recycling to 70% of total waste by 2024/25.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
30th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of his Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The table below shows the cost of energy usage at the Department’s headquarters building at 1 Victoria Street, London.

2019

2020

2021a

Gas

£89,678b

£104,480

£84,688

Electricity

£808,418

£623,631

£220,292

The increase in the cost of gas in 2020 reflects a requirement to increase the flow of fresh air into the building as part of our COVID measures.

The increase in fresh air circulation lowered temperatures in the building, which had to be balanced by increased heating.

a 2021 includes energy costs from January to May inclusive

b 2019 gas cost includes an estimate for February

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
29th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to phase out unabated natural gas from the power sector.

As we transition to net zero emissions by 2050, our record levels of investment in renewables will meet a large part of the energy demand. Unabated natural gas will continue to provide a reliable and flexible source of energy, ensuring security of supply whilst we develop and deploy low carbon alternatives that can replicate its role in the electricity system.

In order to meet our ambitious decarbonisation targets for the electricity system, we are taking steps to bring forward alternative low carbon technologies which will help us to reduce the reliance on unabated gas-powered electricity generation steadily. For example, in the Energy White Paper (published last year), government announced that it will support the deployment of at least one power plant with carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS) to be operational by 2030, and that it will also consult in 2021 on its Carbon Capture and Readiness requirements to ensure that new thermal plants can convert to low-carbon alternatives. Government is developing business models to incentivise the deployment of CCUS in the UK.

Additionally, we are exploring policy frameworks to support the deployment of low carbon hydrogen, as well flexibility tools such as demand reduction, demand side response, and storage, which likewise have the potential to reduce reliance on unabated natural gas in the power sector.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Wales on the potential merits of a new industrial strategy.

We are keen to ensure we build back better in a way that supports the whole economy and delivers for all parts of the UK. Our Plan for Growth sets out the opportunities we will seize across the UK to drive economic growth, create jobs and support British industry as we level-up and build back better out of this pandemic – succeeding the Industrial Strategy published over four years ago.

We want to understand the ideas and priorities of the Devolved Administrations in relation to driving long-term growth and recovery. The Plan for Growth will support our efforts to unite and level up the country: tackling geographic disparities; supporting struggling towns to regenerate; ensuring every region and nation of the UK has at least one globally competitive city; and strengthening the Union.

Over the next 12 months BEIS will follow up the plan for growth with an Innovation Strategy, as well as strategies for net zero, hydrogen and space. We will also develop a vision for high-growth sectors and technologies, putting the UK at the forefront of opportunities and giving businesses the confidence to invest, boost productivity across the UK and enable our transition to net zero.

We are working across government and with our Innovation Expert Group to develop the Innovation Strategy. It will outline our ambitions in innovation and where we want to focus our efforts over the next decade; and the importance of research and innovation to levelling up and the Government’s commitment to ensuring that R&D benefits the economy and society in nations, regions and local areas across the UK. Following the publication of the Strategy, the government will continue engaging in detail with businesses of all types to build our ambitious innovation agenda.

We are working to strengthen the Union to ensure that the institutions and the power of the United Kingdom are used in a way that benefits people in every part of our country. Levelling up represents an important part of the government’s ambitions for R&D and innovation, building on the approach set out in the R&D Roadmap.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
22nd Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to support the steel industry in Wales.

The Government is committed to a UK steel industry and a decarbonised future, supporting local economic growth and our levelling-up agenda. That is why the Government has provided over £500 million to the sector in recent years to help with the costs of electricity as well as announced a £250m Clean Steel Fund to support the sector’s transition to lower carbon iron and steel production. Moreover, our unprecedented package of COVID-19 support remains available to protect jobs and ensure that the industry has the right support during this challenging time.

The Government fully recognises the importance of steelmaking in Wales. In July 2020, the Government provided Celsa with a commercial loan, which secured over 1000 jobs, including more than 800 positions at the company’s main sites in South Wales. We also continue to work closely with Tata as it shapes its business strategy to support the future of high-quality steelmaking in Port Talbot.

18th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last discussed the climate emergency with Ministers in the Welsh Government.

The UK Government and the devolved administrations have established an Inter-ministerial Group that covers Net Zero, Energy and Climate Change. This meets at least bi-monthly and brings together Ministers from the four administrations to discuss emission reduction efforts across the UK. The most recent meeting of the Group was in April.

This intergovernmental engagement on net zero will continue to facilitate collaboration and coordination across devolved and reserved competence, ensuring we are delivering effectively for all parts of the UK.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last discussed the climate emergency with Ministers in the Scottish Government.

The UK Government and the devolved administrations have established an Inter-ministerial Group that covers Net Zero, Energy and Climate Change. This meets at least bi-monthly and brings together Ministers from the four administrations to discuss emission reduction efforts across the UK. The most recent meeting of the Group was in April.

This intergovernmental engagement on net zero will continue to facilitate collaboration and coordination across devolved and reserved competence, ensuring we are delivering effectively for all parts of the UK.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he last discussed the climate emergency with Ministers in the Northern Ireland Executive.

The UK Government and the devolved administrations have established an Inter-ministerial Group that covers Net Zero, Energy and Climate Change. This meets at least bi-monthly and brings together Ministers from the four administrations to discuss emission reduction efforts across the UK. The most recent meeting of the Group in April.

This intergovernmental engagement on net zero will continue to facilitate collaboration and coordination across devolved and reserved competence, ensuring we are delivering effectively for all parts of the UK.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to achieve the net zero emissions target.

The UK has achieved record clean growth - between 1990 and 2019, our economy grew by 78% while our emissions decreased by 44%, this is the fastest rate in the G7. We have built on this, setting out concrete steps to reach net zero by 2050, for instance through my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan which brought together £12 billion of government investment, our Energy White Paper and Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy.

The Government has also laid legislation for the UK’s sixth carbon budget, proposing a target which would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990 levels, marking a decisive step towards net zero by 2050.

Ahead of COP26, we will bring forward further bold proposals, including a Net Zero Strategy, to cut emissions and create new jobs and industries across the whole country – going further and faster towards building a stronger, more resilient future and protecting our planet for this generation and those to come.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
21st Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will ringfence levies paid by the steel sector into the EU Research Fund for Coal and Steel and returned from the EU to the public purse for the establishment of a steel innovation fund.

At last year’s Spending Review, we set out plans for Government spending for 2021/22, to prioritise the Government’s response to Covid-19, and our focus on supporting jobs.

The Government recognises the importance of research and innovation in helping to transform the steel sector so that it can play a vital role in developing the UK’s economy. Our on-going support to the sector includes announcing £22m to the Materials Processing Institute in Teesside to deliver a R&D programme of transformative manufacturing, announcing a £250m Clean Steel Fund that to support the transition of the steel sector to new low carbon technologies, providing up to £66m through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund to help steel and other foundation industries develop radical new technologies and establish innovation centres of excellence in these sectors, and the £315m  Industrial Energy Transformation Fund which supports the development and deployment of technologies to transition to a low carbon future.

1st Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the need to support UK manufacturing capacity for vehicle batteries to avoid future tariffs on electric vehicles under the rules of the UK-EU free trade agreement.

The Trade and Cooperation Agreement provides for zero tariff zero quota trade, with modern rules of origin for the automotive sector that reflect UK manufacturing and are designed to support the industry through its transition to electrification. The phased approach to rules of origin for batteries gives industry time to localise supply chains for electrified vehicles.

The Government has prioritised securing investment in battery cell gigafactories, which is key for anchoring the mass manufacture of electric vehicles, safeguarding and creating high quality jobs across the UK, and driving emissions to net zero by 2050.

As part of my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister’s 10 Point Plan for a green industrial revolution, nearly £500m of funding for the Automotive Transformation Fund will be made available in the next four years to build an internationally competitive electric vehicle supply chain. This is a UK-wide programme, and we are welcoming applications for support from businesses and investors across the country.

We continue to work closely with investors to progress plans for manufacturing the batteries that we will need for the next generation of electric vehicles here in the UK.

The Government is also investing £318m, through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund in the Faraday Battery Challenge, to put the UK at the global forefront of the design, development, manufacturing, and recycling of electric batteries.

24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to meet the Government's net zero carbon emissions target by 2050.

The UK has decarbonised its economy at the fastest rate amongst G20 countries since 2000. My Rt hon Friend the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan for a green industrial revolution will build on this success and accelerate our path to net zero. Spanning clean energy, buildings, transport, nature and innovative technologies, the Plan will mobilise £12 billion of government investment to unlock three times as much private sector investment by 2030, level up regions across the UK, and support up to 250,000 highly-skilled green jobs.

Ahead of COP26, we will set out ambitious plans across key sectors of the economy to meet our carbon budgets and net zero. We have recently published the Energy White Paper and the first phase of our Transport Decarbonisation Plan, and will publish the Heat and Building Strategy in due course. We will also publish a comprehensive Net Zero Strategy setting out the government’s vision for transitioning to a net zero economy.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps the Government is taking to support businesses that have become heavily indebted during the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government has provided an unprecedented business support package totalling over £280 billion. This includes billions in loans, grants, and business rates relief. As of 21 February 2021, businesses across the UK have benefitted from over 1.5 million Government-guaranteed loans worth over £72 billion to support their cashflow through the pandemic.

We recognise that some borrowers will benefit from repayment flexibility, that is why we announced the Pay As You Grow measures, which give Bounce Back Loan borrowers more time and greater flexibility to repay their loans.

We have also enabled lenders to extend the repayment period for Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) facilities beyond 6 years (up to a maximum of 10 years), where this is needed in connection with the provision of forbearance. CBILS term extensions are offered at the discretion of lenders. This measure is designed to help businesses that would struggle to repay their CBILS facility on their existing terms, by reducing monthly repayments.

Grant funding has also been made available via Local Authorities to help businesses forced to close due to national and localised restrictions, and for businesses severely impacted by restrictions even if not required to close. This includes the Closed Businesses Lockdown Payment (CBLP), the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG), and the Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG) schemes.

Businesses can also access tailored advice through the Business Support Helpline, online via the Business Support website or through local Growth Hubs in England.

24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on UK Government support for businesses that have become heavily indebted during the covid-19 outbreak.

The UK Government is committed to supporting people, businesses and individuals across the devolved administrations. This includes a total of £19 billion in funding for the devolved administrations since the start of the pandemic, meaning at least £5.9 billion for the Welsh Government. Following discussions with the devolved administrations, additional funding totalling £729m has been provided to allow each of the devolved administrations to provide further support to businesses on a discretionary basis.

The devolved administrations have also benefitted from UK-wide support programmes, including through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, Self-Employed Income Support Scheme and business lending schemes.

As of 21 February 2021, the Government’s UK-wide lending schemes have approved over 1.5 million Government-guaranteed loans worth over £72 billion to support cashflow for businesses across the UK affected by COVID-19.

We recognise that some borrowers will benefit from repayment flexibility, and that is why we announced the Pay As You Grow measures, which give Bounce Back Loan borrowers more time and greater flexibility to repay their loans.

We have also enabled lenders to extend the repayment period for Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) facilities beyond 6 years (up to a maximum of 10 years) where this is needed in connection with the provision of forbearance. CBILS term extensions are offered at the discretion of lenders. This measure is designed to help businesses that would struggle to repay their CBILS facility on their existing terms, by reducing monthly repayments.

9th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of the resources available to vaccine manufacturers seeking to keep up with emerging variants of covid-19.

The Government is undertaking laboratory work as a priority to better understand the impact of the new Covid-19 variants on the vaccines currently in deployment, in particular the risk of vaccine resistance. We maintain close contact with vaccine developers to understand their efficacy studies of their vaccines on variants and the impact on current supply chain arrangements for their manufacture.

We continue to take a portfolio-based approach that monitors the landscape of Covid-19 vaccine development and we remain confident that the three vaccines (Pfizer/BioNTech, Oxford University/AstraZeneca, and Moderna) that we have purchased, which have been authorised by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, will continue to be effective against the virus.

The Government has also established a new partnership with the vaccine manufacturer, CureVac, to rapidly develop new vaccines in response to new Covid-19 variants, should this be needed. The new agreement will utilise UK expertise on genomics and virus sequencing to allow new varieties of vaccines based on messenger RNA technology to be developed quickly against new strains of Covid-19 if they are needed. An initial order has been made for 50 million doses.

8th Jan 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last spoke to An Taoiseach; and if he will make a statement.

This information is available on the gov.uk website.

6th Jan 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions she has had with the devolved Administrations on the effectiveness of unconscious bias training.

The Government recognises that it is important to tackle bias in workplaces and in wider society. The Government Equalities Office commissioned a review of the evidence on unconscious bias and diversity training. The review showed that there is currently no evidence that this training changes behaviour in the long term or improves workplace equality. In 2018 GEO published evidence-based advice for employers on actions they could take to reduce bias within their organisations. The issue has not recently been discussed with the Devolved Administrations.

An internal review decided in January 2020 that unconscious bias training would be phased out in Civil Service departments. The Civil Service will instead integrate principles for inclusion and diversity into mainstream core training and leadership modules in a manner which facilitates positive behaviour change.

The government is making progress in understanding what works to support diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The Commission for Race and Ethnic Disparities demonstrates this government’s commitment to level up opportunity for everyone, to better understand disparities and their causes, and will be making evidence-based recommendations to address them. Employment and Enterprise is one of the four priority areas for the Commission. Further, our recent work with the large insurer, Zurich, demonstrated a 16% rise in female applicants for all jobs when advertising all jobs available as flexible. This is one of many trials in our Gender and Behavioural Insights Programme that is at the heart of our commitment to build workplace equality through insights and evidence.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on the effect of the collapse of the Arcadia Group on employees of that company in Newport West constituency.

We understand this will be deeply worrying news for Arcadia’s employees and their families in the Newport West constituency, and the Government stands ready to support them. BEIS officials met with their counterparts from the Welsh Government on 4th December when the situation at Arcadia was discussed. I want to pay particular tribute to the hard-working staff across the country who have kept these well recognised brands going in difficult times for so long.

Whilst no redundancies were announced as a result of the appointment of administrators and stores will continue to trade, we stand ready to support anyone affected by redundancies. If people need financial support quickly, they may be able to claim Universal Credit, New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance or New Style Employment and Support Allowance. We are also doubling the number of frontline Work Coaches across our network of jobcentres to ensure people have access to bespoke support and have launched the £2bn Kickstart scheme to create opportunities for young people.

25th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether her Department plans to issue guidance to employers on the rights of disabled workers during the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government has published extensive guidance on employment and safer working throughout the Covid-19 outbreak. This can be found on GOV.UK and through the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Further guidance on employment rights and aspects of good practice has been published by other bodies such as ACAS and the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC). Government has also produced guidance around some new situations which have arisen from the Covid-19 outbreak, for example for those identified as clinically extremely vulnerable and on self-isolation. This suite of guidance covers the employment rights of disabled people alongside other groups in the workforce.

The Government continues to support disabled employees to access assistive technology and other forms of support they need to remain in work, including during the Covid-19 outbreak. Through the Disability Confident scheme, we are engaging employers and providing them with the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to attract, recruit, retain and develop disabled people in the workplace.? Our new Employer Help site provides advice on recruitment and employment of disabled people, explaining how Disability Confident and Access to Work can help businesses to ensure their practices are fair and inclusive.

25th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will meet with (a) disabled people and (b) representatives of disability organisations to co-produce information for employers on the rights of disabled employees during the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government has published extensive guidance on employment and safer working throughout the Covid-19 outbreak. This can be found on GOV.UK and through the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Further guidance on employment rights and aspects of good practice has been published by other bodies such as ACAS and the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC). Government has also produced guidance around some new situations which have arisen from the Covid-19 outbreak, for example for those identified as clinically extremely vulnerable and on self-isolation. This suite of guidance covers the employment rights of disabled people alongside other groups in the workforce.

The Government continues to support disabled employees to access assistive technology and other forms of support they need to remain in work, including during the Covid-19 outbreak. Through the Disability Confident scheme, we are engaging employers and providing them with the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to attract, recruit, retain and develop disabled people in the workplace.? Our new Employer Help site provides advice on recruitment and employment of disabled people, explaining how Disability Confident and Access to Work can help businesses to ensure their practices are fair and inclusive.

24th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to support UK-based manufacturing of (a) renewable and (b) low carbon technologies.

As set out in my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution, the government will unlock private sector investment to accelerate the deployment of existing technology, such as retrofitting the UK’s building stock and electrification of vehicles, while advancing newer technologies such as carbon capture and low-carbon hydrogen.

Key measures include making significant investment in offshore wind and modern ports and manufacturing infrastructure to expand the share of generation from renewables; providing up to £525 million to bring forward both large-scale nuclear and invest in the development of advanced nuclear technologies; £1 billion to support the establishment of carbon capture and storage in four industrial clusters; and investing £1.3 billion in charging infrastructure to accelerate the mass adoption of electric vehicles ahead of ending the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030.

24th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps he has taken to support the automotive sector.

The Government is determined to ensure that the UK continues to be one of the most competitive locations in the world for the automotive sector.

We have provided comprehensive support during the pandemic, including the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the trade credit insurance guarantee, and tax deferrals. In total, we have provided almost £2.5 billion in COVID Corporate Financing Facility support to the automotive sector.

The Government has invested around £1.5 billon to support the research, development, and manufacture of zero and low-emission vehicles to date. This investment has created thousands of jobs in the sector and its supply chain, saved millions of tonnes of CO2, and has helped the UK to lead the charge towards a low carbon automotive future.

My Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister recently announced in his 10 Point Plan nearly £500 million through the Automotive Transformation Fund over the next four years in order to develop and embed the next generation of cutting-edge automotive technologies in the UK.

We are also investing around £2.5 billion? to support the roll-out of ultra-low and zero emission vehicles through grants for plug-in cars, vans, HGVs, taxis, and motorcycles. In addition, we are investing in schemes to support the delivery of chargepoint infrastructure to homes, workplaces, on residential streets, and across the wider roads network.

24th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the level of compliance of businesses with payment of the National Living Wage.

The Government is committed to cracking down on employers who fail to pay the minimum wage. We are clear that anyone entitled to be paid the minimum wage should receive it.

We set out our assessment of non-compliance with the National Living Wage (NLW) and National Minimum Wage (NMW) in BEIS’ NMW Enforcement and Compliance Report. In 2019, approximately 1.5% of all UK employee jobs were paid below the relevant minimum wage rate. Updated estimates for 2020 will be provided in our next iteration of the report, which will be published in due course.

The Government remains committed to enforcing the minimum wage. We have more than doubled the budget for the minimum wage enforcement and compliance (rising to £27.5 million for 2020/21, up from £13.2 million in 2015/16), and continue to demonstrate good progress in enforcing workers’ entitlement to the minimum wage.

2nd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with business representative organisations on the effect on businesses of the covid-19 pandemic.

Ministerial colleagues and I have engaged closely with business representative organisations throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and we continue to do so.

Ministers hold regular sector calls with all the industries that BEIS covers, including but not limited to manufacturing, energy, construction, life sciences, professional services, retail and hospitality. Attendees include business representative organisations, trade associations and trade unions. We use these on-going engagements to collect direct intelligence on the impact of Covid-19 on industries and sectors that informs the response from BEIS and other Government departments and ensures the effectiveness of the Government’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak.

2nd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress has been made on preparations for COP26 in November 2021.

Planning for COP26 is ongoing and we are continuing to work closely with the venues and our delivery partners to ensure that we deliver the facilities and logistics needed for the event, in line with the requirements outlined by the UNFCCC.


Alongside summit preparations, the COP26 President, ministers and senior officials have been engaging with a wide range of UK and international partners.


The UK, UN and France will co-host a Climate Ambition Summit alongside our partners Italy and Chile, on 12th December 2020 on the fifth anniversary of the landmark Paris Agreement. This will be an opportunity for countries to announce ambitious Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and net zero, finance and adaptation commitments.


The recent net zero commitments from China, Japan and South Korea have provided welcome momentum, and we hope that the Ambition Summit provides impetus for further commitments by the end of the year.

17th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans the Government has to help ensure that investment in economic recovery supports meeting the target of net zero emissions by 2050.

My Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister has made clear our intention to build back greener. We are taking action in every sector of the economy: we announced over £3 billion for decarbonising the UK’s buildings and delivering green jobs; £1 billion for charging infrastructure and extending Plug in-Grants to 2023 for ultra-low emission vehicles; £800 million to capture carbon from power stations and industry; £640 million Nature for Climate Fund; and £100 million R&D into Direct Air Capture.

In March, we published the first phase of our transport decarbonisation plan and will be setting our further plans on energy, heat and buildings and the natural environment later this year and early next year, in the run up to COP26.

We will continue to build on these steps and deliver a stronger, greener, more sustainable economy after this pandemic.

16th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps the Government is taking to ensure that funding allocated to the economic recovery supports meeting the target of net zero emissions by 2050.

My Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister has made clear our intention to build back greener. We are taking action in every sector of the economy: we announced over £3 billion for decarbonising the UK’s buildings and delivering green jobs; £1 billion for charging infrastructure and extending Plug in-Grants to 2023 for ultra-low emission vehicles; £800 million to capture carbon from power stations and industry; £640 million Nature for Climate Fund; and £100 million R&D into Direct Air Capture.

In March, we published the first phase of our transport decarbonisation plan and will be setting our further plans on energy, heat and buildings and the natural environment later this year and early next year, in the run up to COP26.

We will continue to build on these steps and deliver a stronger, greener, more sustainable economy after this pandemic.

9th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans the Government has for the UK’s future association with the Horizon Europe programme.

It is our ambition to fully associate to Horizon Europe if we can agree a fair and balanced deal, but we will make a final decision once it is clear whether such terms can be reached. The Horizon Europe Programme is currently being negotiated in the EU institutions and has not yet been finalised. The Programme must be adopted by the EU before arrangements for potential UK participation could be finalised.

In tandem with our negotiations, as a responsible government, we are also developing alternative schemes to support international research and innovation collaboration.

If we do not formally associate to Horizon Europe, we will implement ambitious alternatives as quickly as possible from January 2021 and address the funding gap. This includes making funding available to allow UK partners to participate in European schemes open to third countries.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
9th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to support research on the long-term health consequences of covid-19.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) have announced an £8.4 million project that will investigate the physical and mental health impacts of hospitalised patients. The Post-HOSPitalisation COVID-19 (PHOSP-COVID) study, led by Professor Chris Brightling from the University of Leicester, aims to recruit 10,000 patients from across the UK. This will make it one of the world’s largest studies into the long-term health consequences of COVID-19. Results from the study will inform the development of new and better measures to treat and rehabilitate patients hospitalised with COVID-19.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions his Department has had with representatives of Post Office Ltd on the operation of post offices as covid-19 lockdown measures are eased.

BEIS Ministers and Officials have regular discussions with Post Office Ltd to discuss a range of issues, including the impact of Covid-19 on the operation of the Post Office.

The Government announcement on 23 March made it clear that the Government views the services provided by the Post Office as essential and, subject to social distancing guidelines, post offices have been allowed to remain open throughout lockdown. However, for those post offices co-located in a non-essential retailer which therefore had to close for a period, the easing of lockdown measures mean that they can re-start trading. Postmasters, as self-employed businesspeople, will need to consider how best to maintain social distancing at their workplace in line with the latest Government guidance which can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/shops-and-branches.

This may include restricting the number of customers in a shop at any one time and making this clear to customers and other visitors. Post Office workers who cannot work from home should go to work as soon as it is practical if their workplace is open and follows the safer working guidelines.

18th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department plans to take to support people on zero hour contracts in (a) Newport West, (b) Wales and (c) the UK as a result of the outbreak of covid-19.

The Chancellor has outlined an unprecedented package of measures to protect millions of people’s jobs and incomes as part of the national effort in response to coronavirus.

If infected, many people who are on Zero-Hour Contracts will be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay. Those who are not eligible to receive sick pay are able to claim Universal Credit (UC) and/or new style Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), where they qualify.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is being set up to help pay people’s wages. Employers will be able to contact HMRC for a grant to cover 80% of the wages, up to a monthly cap of £2,500, for their workforce who remain on payroll but are temporarily not working during the coronavirus outbreak. This scheme aims to support all those employed through the PAYE system regardless of their employment contract, including those on zero-hour contracts.

Businesses and Employees can get advice on individual employment issues by visiting the Acas website.

20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has taken recent steps to help encourage older people to (a) get an email address and (b) start using the internet in (i) Newport West constituency and (ii) Wales.

Digital inclusion is a devolved policy area, and as such most relevant initiatives are undertaken by the Welsh Government. However the government is focused on building a world-leading digital economy that works for everyone.

DCMS liaises with the Welsh Government on matters relating to digital inclusion as a part of the British-Irish Council format. This includes regular sharing of best practice, evidence and updates on progress on digital inclusion, as well as working together to organise regular digital inclusion ministerial summits.

We understand that access to broadband, mobile and landline services can be a challenge for low income households, particularly at the current time. DCMS has negotiated a range of high-quality, low-cost social tariffs for households in receipt of Universal Credit and other means tested benefits, including Pension Credit. These are available in 99% of the UK.

We also recognise that some older people are hesitant to access online services because they fear that they may become victims of fraud, or that it is an unsafe environment for their personal data. For this reason, we are taking a number of steps to improve the safety and trustworthiness of the online space, including:

  • Increasing online safety by introducing the Online Safety Bill to Parliament, which sets new rules for firms which host user-generated content, and focuses on protecting people from online scams.

  • Enabling the widespread use of secure and accessible digital identity solutions that meet the needs of all those who wish to use them, by setting standards, establishing governance, removing legislative blockers, and engaging with industry and civil society groups.

Charities such as AgeUK and AbilityNet also play an important role in providing support with technology and the internet through guides, training courses and volunteers to help people make the most of the internet.

20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has had recent discussions with the Welsh Government on taking steps to tackle digital poverty amongst pensioners in Newport West constituency.

Digital inclusion is a devolved policy area, and as such most relevant initiatives are undertaken by the Welsh Government. However the government is focused on building a world-leading digital economy that works for everyone.

DCMS liaises with the Welsh Government on matters relating to digital inclusion as a part of the British-Irish Council format. This includes regular sharing of best practice, evidence and updates on progress on digital inclusion, as well as working together to organise regular digital inclusion ministerial summits.

We understand that access to broadband, mobile and landline services can be a challenge for low income households, particularly at the current time. DCMS has negotiated a range of high-quality, low-cost social tariffs for households in receipt of Universal Credit and other means tested benefits, including Pension Credit. These are available in 99% of the UK.

We also recognise that some older people are hesitant to access online services because they fear that they may become victims of fraud, or that it is an unsafe environment for their personal data. For this reason, we are taking a number of steps to improve the safety and trustworthiness of the online space, including:

  • Increasing online safety by introducing the Online Safety Bill to Parliament, which sets new rules for firms which host user-generated content, and focuses on protecting people from online scams.

  • Enabling the widespread use of secure and accessible digital identity solutions that meet the needs of all those who wish to use them, by setting standards, establishing governance, removing legislative blockers, and engaging with industry and civil society groups.

Charities such as AgeUK and AbilityNet also play an important role in providing support with technology and the internet through guides, training courses and volunteers to help people make the most of the internet.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps she is taking to help ensure that the 2022 Commonwealth Games delivers a legacy for people in (a) Newport West constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the United Kingdom.

Ensuring that the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games leaves a lasting legacy for the host city and region, and the whole of the UK, has been our top priority in delivering the Games. Birmingham 2022 has played a crucial role in our levelling up agenda, creating opportunities for individuals, communities and businesses all over the UK, from contracts let to businesses, to participation in the Commonwealth Collective of volunteers, to the world-class facilities, opportunities and inspiration for athletes from all the home nations. The Games have been an important means of bringing the nation together this summer in a landmark year for major cultural and sporting events in the UK.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many members of staff have left her Department since 12 December 2019.

1506 members of staff (permanent, FTA and contractors) have left the Department since 12 December 2019.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how much her Department spent on energy in each of the last three years.

The Department has spent the following on energy in the London building in the last three years.

Year

Gas

Electricity

Total energy costs

Further information

2020

£60,803.01

£109,578.71

£170,381.72

Charges when building was managed by HMRC

2021

£192,783.08

£192,783.08

Building started being managed by the GPA

2022

£54,084

£54,082.56

Charges as of March 2022

Total

£417,247.36

We opened our North West Headquarters in November 2021 where energy forms parts of an all-inclusive rental charge and costs incurred are therefore unavailable for this building.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
14th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many times she has met the senior management at Channel 4 since her appointment.

During the consultation period, the Government worked closely with Channel 4’s management to understand the challenges and opportunities the changing market presents and different models and plans that might support Channel 4’s future.

DCMS ministers and officials continue to meet regularly with Channel 4.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
14th Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions she has had with the Welsh government on proposals to privatise Channel 4.

The Government consulted extensively on a change of ownership of Channel 4, and the views and evidence gathered from a wide range of stakeholders – including from stakeholders in Wales – has informed the government’s assessment and wider policy-making.

Following this consultation, the Secretary of State has come to a decision that, although Channel 4 as a business is currently performing well, public ownership is holding it back in the face of a rapidly-changing and competitive media landscape. The Secretary of State has consulted with Cabinet colleagues on that decision.

The Government will set out its plan for Channel 4 in a White Paper shortly. The Government will also publish a rationale for its decision regarding Channel 4’s ownership model.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
14th Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the implications for her policies of the risk of damage to historic wooden churches near conflict zones in Ukraine, including those moved to the National Museum of Folk Architecture and Life of Ukraine in Pyrohiv on the southern outskirts of Kyiv.

The UK is working with UNESCO, Blue Shield International, the British Council, and other partners to monitor whether Russia is meeting its obligations under the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict. This requires Russia to avoid damaging significant heritage sites, monuments, or other cultural property in Ukraine, including historic wooden churches.

Through the Cultural Protection Fund – a partnership between DCMS and the British Council – Her Majesty’s Government is also directly supporting the Cultural Emergency Response for Ukraine, an international effort co-ordinated by the Prince Claus Fund working directly with affected cultural heritage organisations and individuals on the ground in Ukraine to monitor the risks, document damage, and share information on threats to Ukrainian cultural heritage.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
9th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether the rollout of the mobile phone Shared Rural Network will be fully delivered by 2025.

The Shared Rural Network (SRN) is on track and both the government and the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) remain confident that their combined coverage is expected to be delivered to 95% of the UK by the end of 2025.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
2nd Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on tackling online scams and fraud in Newport West constituency.

Ministers have regular meetings and discussions with their ministerial colleagues on a range of issues, including tackling online scams and fraud. Details of Ministerial meetings are published quarterly on the GOV.UK website.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she discussed her proposals to freeze the BBC licence fee until April 2024 with the Welsh Government.

In the course of setting the licence fee for the next six years, discussions were held with a number of stakeholders.

Broadcasting remains a reserved matter, and the UK Government has a strong record of demonstrating its commitment to minority language broadcasting to ensure that our broadcasting sector services all audiences of the UK nations and regions.

The licence fee offers a strong settlement for S4C, providing £88.8 million per annum for the first two years, then rising in line with inflation thereafter. This includes a new commitment of £7.5 million per annum to support S4C’s digital development, ensuring S4C’s offering remains sustainable in the digital age. As the only Welsh language broadcaster, S4C is vital to the people of Wales, and this settlement will enable S4C to continue to support the Welsh economy, culture and society, reach more Welsh language speakers including younger audiences, and the UK Government’s commitment to support the ambition of 1 million Welsh speakers by 2050.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
11th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has had recent discussions with the Welsh Government on tackling racism within sport.

Please refer to the answer for PQ 98428.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has made representations to the Vice President of the European Commission for Interinstitutional Relations and Foresight, Maroš Šefčovič, on the reintroduction of roaming charges for UK travellers in the EU.

Ministers and officials have regular discussions with our European partners. Mobile roaming is a commercial decision for mobile operators as to whether they impose a surcharge on their consumers travelling abroad to the EU for their mobile phone usage.

I welcome the recent decision by VirginMedia and O2 to keep roaming free, meaning UK citizens can still use their mobile data, calls and texts across Europe with no extra charges.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
10th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans she has to mitigate the financial impact of the reintroduction of roaming charges for UK travellers in the EU.

As per Ofcom regulations, providers must make sure their contract terms are fair and transparent. They must also tell customers about changes to their contracts. Where those changes will particularly disadvantage customers, providers must give them at least a month’s notice and the right to exit their contracts without being penalised. Further requirements to prevent roaming bill-shock include providers publishing roaming charges on their website and sending alerts with pricing information when customers start roaming. They must also apply a default £45-a-month (exc VAT) cut-off limit on data roaming unless customers choose to extend this. Our advice is that consumers check with their operators before travelling abroad.

I welcome the recent decision by VirginMedia and O2 to keep roaming free, meaning UK citizens can still use their mobile data, calls and texts across Europe with no extra charges.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
10th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with representatives of Virgin Mobile on their proposal to not reintroduce roaming charges for UK residents travelling in the EU.

Ministers and officials have regular discussions with senior representatives of mobile operators on a range of issues, including on the issue of mobile roaming, and the government will continue to promote a competitive marketplace that serves the interests of consumers.

I welcome the recent decision by VirginMedia and O2 to keep roaming free, meaning UK citizens can still use their mobile data, calls and texts across Europe with no extra charges.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
10th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with representatives of O2 on their proposal to not reintroduce roaming charges for UK residents travelling in the EU.

Ministers and officials have regular discussions with senior representatives of mobile operators on a range of issues, including on the issue of mobile roaming, and the government will continue to promote a competitive marketplace that serves the interests of consumers.

I welcome the recent decision by VirginMedia and O2 to keep roaming free, meaning UK citizens can still use their mobile data, calls and texts across Europe with no extra charges.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
7th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether the Government plans to bid to host the 2028 UEFA European Football Championships.

A partnership of the football associations and the Governments of the UK and Ireland have been undertaking feasibility activity to determine the viability of a bid to host the FIFA World Cup 2030, which is the government’s focus. This feasibility assessment includes a number of key work streams to identify the winnability, likely costs, and the benefits of hosting the tournament. To ensure we can make an informed decision we will contrast these findings against other potential hosting opportunities.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
6th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the impact of the delayed reintroduction of roaming charges in Europe on people travelling to European countries from Newport West constituency.

Since the end of the Transition Period on 31 December 2020, the UK has no longer been part of the EU Roaming Regulation known as ‘Roam Like at Home’. This means it is a commercial decision for mobile operators as to whether they impose a surcharge on their consumers travelling abroad to the EU for their mobile phone usage.

As per Ofcom regulations, providers must make sure their contract terms are fair and transparent. They must also tell customers about changes to their contracts. Where those changes will particularly disadvantage customers, providers must give them at least a month’s notice and the right to exit their contracts without being penalised. Further requirements to prevent roaming bill-shock include providers publishing roaming charges on their website and sending alerts with pricing information when customers start roaming. They must also apply a default £45-a-month (exc VAT) cut-off limit on data roaming unless customers choose to extend this. Our advice is that consumers check with their operators before travelling abroad.

I welcome the recent decision by VirginMedia and O2 to keep roaming free, meaning UK citizens can still use their mobile data, calls and texts across Europe with no extra charges.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
6th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the impact of the delayed reintroduction of roaming charges in Europe on mobile phone users in Newport West constituency.

Since the end of the Transition Period on 31 December 2020, the UK has no longer been part of the EU Roaming Regulation known as ‘Roam Like at Home’. This means it is a commercial decision for mobile operators as to whether they impose a surcharge on their consumers travelling abroad to the EU for their mobile phone usage.

As per Ofcom regulations, providers must make sure their contract terms are fair and transparent. They must also tell customers about changes to their contracts. Where those changes will particularly disadvantage customers, providers must give them at least a month’s notice and the right to exit their contracts without being penalised. Further requirements to prevent roaming bill-shock include providers publishing roaming charges on their website and sending alerts with pricing information when customers start roaming. They must also apply a default £45-a-month (exc VAT) cut-off limit on data roaming unless customers choose to extend this. Our advice is that consumers check with their operators before travelling abroad.

I welcome the recent decision by VirginMedia and O2 to keep roaming free, meaning UK citizens can still use their mobile data, calls and texts across Europe with no extra charges.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
5th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions she has had with the Welsh Government on tackling racism within sport.

Racism has no place in sport, or in wider society. The Government is committed to ensuring sport does all it can to tackle racism and all forms of discrimination both domestically and internationally.

Grassroots sport is devolved, however I meet with my counterparts in the devolved authorities, including the Welsh Minister for Sport, at least twice a year to discuss shared areas of interest in sport.

Our respective sports councils are also collaborating on work to tackle racism in sport. In June 2021, Sport England, UK Sport and the other home nations’ sports councils published the results of a detailed, independent review into tackling racism and racial inequality in sport. The review agreed on some initial overarching commitments that all five organisations will work on together, relating to people; representation; investment, systems and insights. In December 2021, the five Sports Councils released a joint update outlining the current actions being taken to address the commitments.

There is still more to do, and we will continue to work with the sports councils to combat racism.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when she last met the General Secretary of the Musician’s Union.

I regularly meet with a wide range of representatives of the music industry, including the Musicians' Union. I met the General Secretary of the Musicians’ Union earlier this month.

4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on securing British musicians the right to work visa free in other European nations.

This government is working hard to help touring musicians work in Europe. That is why we have spoken to every EU Member State about the importance of touring. From these discussions, 21 out of 27 Member States have now confirmed they offer visa and work permit free routes for musicians and creative professionals. This includes Spain, which introduced a new visa exemption after extensive lobbying from the sector and this government, which included engagement involving the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), the Department for International Trade (DIT), and the Cabinet Office.

The Government, led by DCMS and involving a number of departments, is working extremely hard with the remaining 6 EU Member States that have not confirmed that they allow any visa or permit free touring, to encourage them to make touring easier. We want all our European colleagues to be able to enjoy the economic and cultural benefits that UK touring artists bring, as we do from EU creative performers who can tour here easily.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many European nations have signed agreements to allow British musicians to tour, work and operate visa free.

This government is working hard to help touring musicians work in Europe. That is why we have spoken to every EU Member State about the importance of touring. From these discussions, 21 out of 27 Member States have now confirmed they offer visa and work permit free routes for musicians and creative professionals. This includes Spain, which introduced a new visa exemption after extensive lobbying from the sector and this government, which included engagement involving the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), the Department for International Trade (DIT), and the Cabinet Office.

The Government, led by DCMS and involving a number of departments, is working extremely hard with the remaining 6 EU Member States that have not confirmed that they allow any visa or permit free touring, to encourage them to make touring easier. We want all our European colleagues to be able to enjoy the economic and cultural benefits that UK touring artists bring, as we do from EU creative performers who can tour here easily.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
16th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the support required by the arts sector following the rise in the number of positive omicron covid-19 cases.

DCMS is committed to supporting arts and culture across the country. This commitment is evident in the Government’s recent Spending Round, where it was announced that Arts Council England will be receiving over £375 million of government funding in 2021/22.

In November 2021 we also announced that 925 arts, heritage and cultural organisations would benefit from the third round of the Culture Recovery Fund (CRF). In total, over £1.5 billion has now been allocated from the CRF which has helped to save around 5,000 individual organisations and sites, including funding allocated to the DCMS sponsored national cultural institutions. This constitutes the largest ever public investment in the arts in UK history.

The third round of CRF is still open for applications, providing vital ongoing support for the cultural, heritage and creative sectors. £30 million from the Culture Recovery Fund is being made newly available for organisations as part of the Chancellor's £1 billion support package, and this funding will be used to double the budget for the Emergency Resource Support strand of CRF which has been extended in order to meet the demand from across the cultural sector.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent progress she has made on supporting touring musicians to continue to work in Europe.

This government is working hard to help touring musicians work in Europe. That is why we have spoken to every EU Member State about the importance of touring. From these discussions, 21 out of 27 Member States have now confirmed they offer visa and work permit free routes for musicians and creative professionals, including Spain which introduced a new visa exemption after extensive lobbying from the sector and this government.

We are working with the remaining 6 Member States that do not allow any visa or permit free touring, to encourage them to make touring easier. We want all our European colleagues to be able to enjoy the economic and cultural benefits that UK touring artists bring, as we do from EU creative performers who can tour here easily.

We have also helped to provide clarity on many other issues, and arrangements in some areas are much more workable than previously reported. For example, accompanied portable musical instruments may not require a carnet, and ‘splitter vans’ are not subject to EU cabotage rules. We recognise challenges remain around touring, and we are continuing to work closely with the industry to help musicians and performers resume touring with confidence.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
14th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with the Welsh Government on her plans to publish a white paper on the Gambling Review.

DCMS officials have met Welsh Government officials to discuss the Gambling Act Review and ministers have exchanged letters. Submissions to our call for evidence which were particularly pertinent to Wales have been shared on request, with the permission of the respondent. The Government plans to publish a white paper setting out next steps in the coming months and will continue to engage with the Welsh Government.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent steps she has taken to help protect children in Newport West constituency from online harms.

Protecting children online is a priority for the government. In May 2021, we published the draft Online Safety Bill, which places duties on platforms to protect their users from harmful content and activity. The strongest protections in the legislation are for children. Services which are likely to be accessed by children will have to protect children from inappropriate and harmful content like pornography, and behaviour such as bullying. The regulator, Ofcom, will be able to take enforcement action against companies that fail to comply.

Ahead of online safety legislation, the UK’s regulatory regime for video sharing platforms requires UK-established platforms to take appropriate measures to protect children from harmful material. In addition, the Information Commissioner’s Age Appropriate Design Code, which came into force in September 2021, provides stronger protections for children’s personal data.

The government also recognises that it is important that children and parents are supported to stay safe online. In July 2021, we published the Online Media Literacy Strategy. This supports the empowerment of users, including young people, with the skills and knowledge they need to make safe and informed decisions online, whilst making the most of all the internet has to offer. In June 2021, we also published Safety by Design guidance and a “One Stop Shop” on child online safety. These provide voluntary guidance on steps that platforms can take to design safer services and protect children.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of Ofcom’s proposed enforcement powers in the Online Safety Bill.

Ofcom will enforce the new online safety regime with tough powers to take action against companies breaching their duties, including substantial fines, requiring companies to take action and even blocking services in the most serious cases.

The Bill will also provide for Ofcom to pursue criminal action where a senior manager fails to ensure that their company complies with its information requirements.

We are confident these robust enforcement powers will push strong compliance, hold the tech sector to account and incentivise companies to go further in protecting people online.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she plans to include provisions in the Online Safety Bill to extend to (a) WhatsApp and (b) one-to-one voice messages shared on social media platforms.

The Online Safety Bill will apply to companies that allow users to post content online or to interact with each other, as well as search services. The new laws will apply to online instant messaging services, including WhatsApp and one-to-one voice messages on social media platforms.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what level of funding her Department plans to allocate to Ofcom to support the duties proposed for that organisation in the Online Safety Bill.

Through Spending Review 2021, over £110m has been allocated to the implementation of the online safety regime over the next three financial years (2022/23 - 2024/25). This will enable my Department to deliver the Online Safety Bill and will enable an independent regulator (Ofcom) to be established for the new regulatory framework which the Bill will put in place. It will also deliver a package of innovative online safety implementation measures which are required to implement the legislation and create the conditions for the legislation to be effective.

This outcome will ensure that Ofcom has the resources it needs to establish its online safety functions for the successful implementation of the online safety legislation.

Once the online safety regime is operational, Ofcom will be industry funded and therefore cost neutral to the government. Ofcom will be given powers to charge an annual fee to providers of a regulated service whose qualifying worldwide revenue meets a financial threshold. The fees charged to providers whose revenue is at or above the threshold will be differentiated and will be levied proportionately in order to recoup Ofcom’s annual operating costs.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
25th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has discussed the recommendations contained in the Report of the Independent Fan Led Review of Football Governance with the Welsh Government.

My officials are in regular contact with their counterparts in the Welsh Government.

The Government welcomes the work of the Fan Led Review and will now consider its detailed recommendations ahead of providing a full Government response in Spring 2022. This will include discussion with the Devolved Administrations.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
23rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 23 November 2021 to Question 75126 on UN Climate Conference 2021: Government, how many Ministers in her Department travelled to COP26 by airplane.

No DCMS Ministers travelled to COP26 by aeroplane.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
12th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the implications for her policies of the allegations of racism affecting Yorkshire County Cricket club on Black and minority ethnic people.

There is no place for racism in sport or anywhere in society. I am extremely concerned by the recent reports of racism at Yorkshire County Cricket Club and welcome the steps taken by the ECB to launch an investigation into the matter. This must be transparent and swift, for the benefit of cricket. The ECB must carry out their investigation unhindered, but the Government will be monitoring the situation at Yorkshire County Cricket Club and the ECB closely, and will take further action if needed.

The government is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion, which is at the heart of our strategy ‘Sporting Future’. In June 2021 Sport England, UK Sport and the other home nations’ sports councils published the results of a detailed, independent review into tackling racism and racial inequality in sport.The findings make clear that racism and racial inequalities still exist within sport in the UK and that there are long standing issues, which have resulted in ethnically diverse communities being consistently disadvantaged. Each council is now working at pace to develop their own specific action plans to further deliver on these commitments and address the recommendations from the review.

In addition, the forthcoming update of UK Sport and Sport England’s Code for Sports Governance will place an increased focus on diversity in decision making and ensuring that sports organisations reflect the community they serve. Sports receiving the most funding will be required to agree a diversity and inclusion action plan with Sport England and UK Sport, which will be published and updated annually.

There is still more to do though, and we will continue to work with all sports to combat racism both in person and online.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what progress has been made on securing the right for musicians to legally work and tour in Europe.

This government has spoken to every EU Member State about the importance of touring. From these discussions, 20 out of 27 Member States have confirmed they offer visa and work permit free routes for musicians and creative professionals.

We are working with the remaining Member States that do not allow any visa or permit free touring, to encourage them to more closely align requirements with the UK’s generous rules, which allow creative professionals to tour easily here. Discussions are ongoing at ministerial and official level across these target countries, and we are working with the sector to amplify each other’s lobbying efforts.

We have also helped to provide clarity on many other issues, including that portable musical instruments do not require a carnet, and that splitter vans are not subject to the market access rules around cross-trade and cabotage.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
21st Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when she last discussed the impact on consumers of the reintroduction of roaming charges in the EU with Ministers in the Welsh Government.

Having recently been appointed Minister of State for Media, Data and Digital Infrastructure I look forward to meeting with Ministers in the Welsh Government in due course to discuss the impact on consumers of the reintroduction of roaming charges in the EU.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
21st Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how her Department has marked Black History Month 2021.

DCMS marked Black History Month 2021 by hosting a variety of events for staff with the cross Civil Service Race Forum and key representatives from DCMS' sectors and ALBs which were advertised via the DCMS intranet.

Black History Month was also marked with a range of internal communications articles from the DCMS BAME network.

Online, we shone a spotlight on people in our sectors, including those working in Formula 1, Tech and Civil Society.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
9th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with the Information Commissioner's Office on the provision of clear statutory guidance for businesses on algorithmic systems operating in the workplace.

The Secretary of State and the Information Commissioner have regular discussions to help ensure the data protection legal framework is functioning effectively and identify areas of concern.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) publishes a range of information to help organisations comply with their data protection obligations, including guidance for employers at: https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisations/documents/1064/the_employment_practices_code.pdf.

The ICO has also published guidance for organisations on on data protection and artificial intelligence (including algorithms), at: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-data-protection/key-data-protection-themes/guidance-on-artificial-intelligence-and-data-protection/.

Employees who have concerns about the way employers are using their data can contact the ICO’s helpline on 0303 123 1113 or their livechat at https://ico.org.uk/global/contact-us/live-chat/ for further advice, from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
9th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the governance of the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation.

The CDEI is an expert government body within the Department for Digital, Media, Culture and Sport. The CDEI is a team of civil servants supported by an expert advisory board which includes globally recognised practitioners from industry, civil society and academia.

The CDEI’s current remit, as announced publicly and in Parliament on 10 September 2021, focuses on enabling trustworthy innovation in data and AI in the real-world by developing, testing and refining approaches to data and AI governance. Given this role, and after conducting a consultation on the CDEI’s future functions and statutory status as part of the National Data Strategy, the CDEI’s current governance framework as a team of civil servants supported by an expert advisory board is effective.

The CDEI is already working on some of the most pressing issues in the field, from helping the Ministry of Defence to develop ethical principles for the use of AI, to partnering with the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles to embed ethical due diligence in the future regulatory framework for self-driving vehicles.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
7th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he has taken to support touring musicians in Newport West to continue to work in Europe.

This government recognises the importance of the UK’s creative and cultural industries, not only to the economy and international reputation of the United Kingdom, but also to the wellbeing and enrichment of its people. We want musicians and performers to be able to tour abroad easily.

In order to support this, our focus is now on bilateral engagement with Member States, who are principally responsible for deciding the rules governing what work UK visitors can undertake in the EU. This is why we have spoken to every Member State. From those extensive discussions,19 out of 27 Member States have confirmed that UK musicians and performers do not require visas or work permits for some short term touring. Travellers should always check what requirements they need to fulfil with the EU Member State they are travelling to, and that is why we are working closely with Member States to ensure their guidance is clear and accessible.

We have also developed sector specific ‘landing pages’ for GOV.UK, aimed at the creative sectors, which will allow cultural and creative professionals to easily locate and access guidance that is relevant to them. From these pages, general business traveller summaries can be accessed, which provide enhanced guidance on EU Member State immigration systems for GOV.UK, and include sector-specific rules that feature on Member State websites.

We are now actively engaging with those remaining EU Member States that do not allow visas or work permit free touring, and calling on them to align their arrangements with the UK’s generous rules, which allow creative professionals to tour here easily. Formal approaches have been made, DCMS ministers will be actively involved, and we are working closely with the sector to amplify each other’s lobbying efforts.

We recognise challenges remain around touring, and we are continuing to work closely with the industry. We want to ensure that as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, touring can resume and our world-leading creative and cultural artists can continue to travel widely, learning their craft, growing their audiences and showing the best of British creativity to the world.

7th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent steps he has taken to support charities in Newport West to help them recover from the covid-19 outbreak.

Government recognises the dedicated charities and volunteers who have played a huge role in the national effort against coronavirus. From supporting the NHS, delivering food, tackling loneliness and social isolation and much more, they have delivered vital work throughout this pandemic.

That is why we provided an unprecedented multi-billion-pound package of support for charities and other civil society organisations and secured an exemption from the Covid-19 restrictions for essential volunteering.

Examples of DCMS funding awarded to registered charities in Newport West include:

  • £1,900 to St David’s Foundation Hospice Care

  • £2,934 to Sparkle (South Wales) Limited

  • £2,000 to Pillgwenlly Millennium Trust Limited

  • £20,000 to Faith Christian Center UK

For more information on grants awarded, please see the COVID-19 Grants Tracker published by 360 Giving.

7th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent steps he has taken to support tourism businesses experiencing labour shortages in (a) Newport West and (b) Wales.

The government understands that the tourism sector is currently facing significant skills gaps in some of England's most popular destinations. As stated in the Tourism Recovery Plan, we recognise the importance of building back better post-Covid with a more resilient tourism industry, employing more UK nationals in year-round quality jobs.

There is a significant amount of activity being undertaken by the government on skills which benefits the tourism industry. For example, the National Skills Fund represents a £2.5 billion investment in helping adults to gain the skills they need to improve their job prospects, while the Kickstart Scheme is providing funding to create hundreds of thousands of new job opportunities for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit.

We will continue to work closely with the industry-led Hospitality and Tourism Skills Board on a coordinated approach towards recruitment, retention and upskilling of the workforce.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
6th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when he last met Ministers in the Welsh Government.

Having only just been appointed Secretary of State at DCMS I look forward to meeting with Ministers in the Welsh Government in due course, and hope to develop an excellent working relationship with devolved administrations.

22nd Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the effect of Australia and New Zealand withdrawing from the Rugby League World Cup.

The Government was extremely disappointed by the decision to postpone this year’s Rugby League World Cup, but recognises that this was the inevitable result of a number of factors outside of the organisers’ control, including the decision of the Australian and New Zealand teams not to participate. DCMS continues to work closely with the Rugby League World Cup organisers, as they now work towards the rescheduled tournament which will be held between Saturday 15 October – Saturday 19 November 2022.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
21st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent estimate he has made of the number of Black and ethnic minority staff employed in his Department.

As of 01/08/2021 367 of 1917 employed Civil Servants in the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport identify as black or another ethnic minority (19.1%). The percentage of staff who declare their ethnicity in the organisation is 91.2% so the actual number may be higher.

2nd Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what his policy is on his Department's rates of recycling of plastic, paper, metal and other products; and if he will make a statement.

We continually review the waste generated on our estate and work with our commercial colleagues on circular economy principles to reduce the amount of waste that arrives on our sites. Where we can’t avoid this we work with our suppliers to move any waste we generate up the waste hierarchy.

Further information on Greening Government Commitments can be found at https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/883779/ggc-annual-report-2018-2019.pdf

1st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of his Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The Department’s energy is supplied by HMRC, from whom DCMS leases office space. The department has no buildings of its own.

28th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on the steps he is taking to protect people from online harms and misinformation in (a) Newport West constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK.

The government has now published the draft Online Safety Bill. The new regulatory framework will hold platforms to account for tackling harmful content and behaviours online. Platforms will need to remove and limit the spread of illegal content, and do more to protect children from being exposed to harmful content. The biggest social media companies will need to set out in clear terms and conditions what is acceptable on their services and enforce those terms and conditions consistently and transparently.

The Bill will also require companies to prevent the proliferation of illegal disinformation and misinformation online, and the biggest tech companies will have duties on legal disinformation and misinformation content that may cause significant physical or psychological harm to adults, such as anti-vaccination content and falsehoods about COVID-19.

Internet law and regulation is a reserved policy area, and we intend for this law to apply across the UK. My officials have been working closely with officials in the Devolved Administrations, including in the Welsh Government, throughout the development of our proposals, and will continue to engage throughout the legislative process.

24th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the impact of the re-introduction of roaming charges when travelling to the EU on Newport West constituents.

As the UK is no longer a member of the EU, and therefore no longer part of the Roam Like At Home arrangement, UK mobile operators are able to reintroduce roaming surcharges for travel to the EU.

The Government will consider any announcements made by mobile operators where changes are being made to their current EU roaming charges and will consider all available steps to ensure British consumers are treated fairly when travelling. We advise that consumers check with their operators before travelling.

24th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with Mobile phone operators on the re-introduction of roaming charges for people in (a) Newport West constituency and (b) the UK travelling to the EU.

Ministers have regular discussions with senior representatives of mobile operators on a range of issues, including on the issue of mobile roaming.

10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has had with representatives of the devolved administrations on the effect on the UK's creative industries of the removal of work-permit free travel for musicians and performers to and from the EU.

This Government recognises the importance of touring for UK musicians, performers, other cultural and creative practitioners, and their support staff.

Leaving the EU has always meant that there would be changes to how touring musicians and performers operate in the EU. UK performers and artists are of course still able to tour and perform in the EU, and vice versa. However, they will be required to check domestic immigration rules for each Member State in which they intend to tour.

We understand the concerns about the new arrangements and we are committed to supporting the sectors as they get to grips with the changes to systems and processes. The DCMS-led Working Group on Creative and Cultural Touring brings together sector representatives, other key government departments, and representatives from each of the devolved administrations. The Group is working together to provide clarity regarding the practical steps that need to be taken by touring professionals when touring the EU, and it will explore how these sectors can be supported to work and tour in the EU with confidence when it is safe to do so.

We know that while leaving the EU will bring changes and new processes to touring and working in the EU, it will also bring new opportunities. In all circumstances, we expect our creative industries to continue to be as highly valued in the European Union as they are across the world.

10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment he has made of the effect of the removal of work-permit free travel for musicians and performers to and from the EU on the UK's creative industries.

This Government recognises the importance of touring for UK musicians, performers, other cultural and creative practitioners, and their support staff.

Leaving the EU has always meant that there would be changes to how touring musicians and performers operate in the EU. UK performers and artists are of course still able to tour and perform in the EU, and vice versa. However, they will be required to check domestic immigration rules for each Member State in which they intend to tour.

We understand the concerns about the new arrangements and we are committed to supporting the sectors as they get to grips with the changes to systems and processes. The DCMS-led Working Group on Creative and Cultural Touring brings together sector representatives, other key government departments, and representatives from each of the devolved administrations. The Group is working together to provide clarity regarding the practical steps that need to be taken by touring professionals when touring the EU, and it will explore how these sectors can be supported to work and tour in the EU with confidence when it is safe to do so.

We know that while leaving the EU will bring changes and new processes to touring and working in the EU, it will also bring new opportunities. In all circumstances, we expect our creative industries to continue to be as highly valued in the European Union as they are across the world.

23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment he has made of the (a) availability and (b) adequacy of funding for the UK Safer Internet Centre.

The UK Safer Internet Centre plays an important role in improving online safety in the UK, particularly for children. Officials engage regularly with the Centre on its funding position following the UK’s exit from the EU.

The Centre has applied for further funding from the European Commission’s Connecting Europe Facility programme for the calendar year of 2021, for which the government provided a letter of support. We understand the Centre has been successful in its bid for funding but we await formal confirmation from the Centre regarding its outcome.

1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment he has made of the effect of lockdowns on participation in arts and culture.

The DCMS Taking Part Web Panel COVID-19 Report, published in September 2020, asked adults about their participation in arts and creative activities in the home. In May 2020, 49% of respondents reported doing creative activities in the home in the previous four weeks, though this dropped to 42% of respondents by July.

Between May -July watching a pre-recorded music or dance performance online was the most popular activity.Watching a live music/dance performance online decreased in popularity from 15% in May to 10% in July.

Since 5 January, restrictions have been in force to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Professionals may continue to rehearse, train and perform for live streaming, broadcast and recording. Venues must close for any other purpose, no performances with an audience can go ahead either indoor or outdoor. Unfortunately non-professional activity, such as amateur choirs and orchestra, cannot take place at this time.

We are in regular dialogue with the relevant sectors and public health experts to agree a realistic return date for festivals and other large events. However, protecting the public is our first priority. We continue to explore all barriers to reopening, working closely with the industry to understand the challenges they face and support them in developing planning guidance to reopen in a safe way.

1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will publish correspondence between the (a) Government and the EU and (b) his Department and other Government departments on work-permit free travel for musicians and other performers.

This Government recognises the importance of the UK’s thriving cultural industries, and that is why it pushed for ambitious arrangements to make it easier for performers and artists to perform across Europe as part of the negotiations on our future relationship with the EU.

This Government proposed to the EU that UK cultural professionals, and their technical staff, be added to the list of permitted activities for short-term business visitors in the entry and temporary stay chapter of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement. This would have allowed UK cultural professionals and their staff to travel and perform in the EU more easily, without needing work-permits. These proposals were rejected by the EU.

Whilst both sides published their draft proposals for the future relationship, with the UK’s available here, neither side published their draft schedules for the services and investment title – which included the list of permitted activities for short-term business visitors – prior to the agreement’s conclusion. Publishing correspondence and details exchanged between parties related to the development of legal text for trade agreements during the course of the negotiation would not be appropriate, as both parties exchanged this information in confidence.

6th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment he has made of the (a) availability and (b) adequacy of funding for the UK Safer Internet Centre after the transition period.

The UK Safer Internet Centre plays an important role in improving online safety in the UK, particularly for children. We are very supportive of the work of the Centre and they are a valued member of the UK Council for Internet Safety, which provides guidance to the government on child safety online.

The Centre has applied for further funding from the European Commission’s Connecting Europe Facility programme for the calendar year of 2021 and we await formal confirmation from the Centre regarding its outcome.

30th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans he has to replace IPSO with an independent regulator not funded by member publications.

The Government is committed to the self-regulation of the press, independent of government. This is vital to protecting a free press, crucial to a strong and fully functioning democracy where the powerful can be held to account without fear.

There now exists two press regulators, IPSO and IMPRESS. Both regulators are independent of government and we do not intervene in the work of either regulator.

24th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent steps he has taken to tackle (a) misinformation and (b) disinformation on covid-19.

The Government takes the issue of misinformation and disinformation very seriously. During the COVID-19 pandemic, it continues to be vitally important that the public has accurate information about the virus, and DCMS is leading work across Government to tackle misinformation and disinformation.

That is why we stood up the Counter Disinformation Unit up on 5 March to bring together cross-Government monitoring and analysis capabilities. The Unit’s primary function is to provide a comprehensive picture of the extent, scope and impact of misinformation and disinformation regarding COVID-19 and to work with partners to ensure appropriate action is taken.

Throughout the pandemic, we have been working closely with social media platforms to quickly identify and help them respond to potentially harmful content on their platforms, including removing harmful content in line with their terms and conditions, and promoting authoritative sources of information.

DCMS Secretary of State and DHSC Secretary of State hosted a joint roundtable in November to ask social media platforms to reduce the spread of harmful and misleading narratives, particularly around the potential COVID-19 vaccine. Social media platforms agreed to continue to work with public health bodies to ensure that authoritative messages about vaccine safety reach as many people as possible; to commit to swifter responses to flagged content and to commit to the principle that no user or company should directly profit from COVID-19 vaccine misinformation or disinformation.

28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what additional resources the Government plans to allocate to the BBC to help the free TV licence for people aged over 75 in (a) Newport West constituency, (b) Wales and (c) the UK.

The government is deeply disappointed with the BBC’s decision to restrict the over 75 licence fee concession to only those in receipt of pension credit. We recognise the value of free TV licences for over-75s and believe they should be funded by the BBC.

In the 2015 funding settlement, the government agreed with the BBC that responsibility for the concession would transfer to the BBC in June 2020. This reform was subject to public discussion and debated extensively during the passage of the Digital Economy Act 2017 through Parliament. This legislation provides that the future of the concession is the responsibility of the BBC, not of the government.

The BBC must look urgently at how it can use its substantial licence fee income to support older people and deliver for UK audiences of all ages.

17th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will protect free tv licenses for over 75's in (a) Newport West, (b) Wales, and (c) the UK.

The government is deeply disappointed that the BBC has chosen not to extend the over 75 licence fee concession. We recognise the value of free TV licences for over-75s and believe they should be funded by the BBC.

However, the Digital Economy Act, 2017, provides the BBC is responsible for the concession, not the Government. The BBC must look urgently at how it can use its substantial licence fee income to support older people and deliver for UK audiences of all ages.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent steps his Department has taken to increase mobile and broadband coverage.

The Government is committed to delivering nationwide coverage of gigabit capable broadband as soon as possible. This will be done through promoting network competition and commercial investment wherever possible and by intervening with public subsidy where necessary.

To deliver this we are taking action to reduce barriers to commercial deployment including through the Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill currently before Parliament. This will make it easier to connect tenanted properties with an unresponsive landlord. At Budget 2020, we also committed to invest £5 billion to deliver gigabit capable deployment to the hardest to reach areas across the UK.

This investment is on top of our existing funding for gigabit broadband, including the £200 million Rural Gigabit Connectivity programme. In addition in March 2020 the Government’s broadband Universal Service Obligation went live. This provides everyone in the UK with the legal right to request an upgraded broadband connection that provides a minimum download speed of 10 Mbps and upload speed of 1 Mbps.

With regards to mobile connectivity, the Government announced in March 2020 that it had agreed a £1 billion deal with the mobile network operators to deliver the Shared Rural Network. This will see operators collectively increase mobile phone coverage throughout the UK to 95% by the end of 2025, underpinned by legally binding coverage commitments.

The Government is also committed to being a world leader in 5G technology and providing a 5G signal to a majority of the population by 2027. As a part of this, we have invested millions in a programme of 5G Testbeds and Trials, including the recent £30 million 5G Create competition.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to help increase diversity in the charity sector.

The Government recognises the importance of diversity within the charity sector at all levels, whether that be trustees, chief executives, staff members or volunteers, in order to meet the needs of the communities the sector serves and it is committed to working with our civil society partners to address this. We welcome the work that sector representative bodies are doing to improve diversity within the sector.

Appointing trustees is a matter for individual charities, but is something the Government takes very seriously. The Government has held a number of conversations with civil society partners to improve understanding of the opportunities and challenges around enabling people from different backgrounds to become involved in trusteeship. The Charity Commission has published resources for charities to encourage people from diverse backgrounds to get involved and make a difference. The Charity Commission also assisted in the creation of the Charity Governance Code, which sets out recommended practice for all charities registered in England and Wales. The Charity Governance Code makes clear the importance of diversity and resulting positive outcomes. We are fully committed to continue working with the charity sector to take action on this issue.

In responding to the Covid-19 pandemic, officials and Ministers have met with a wide range of groups, including women-led organisations and BAME-led civil society organisations to discuss how the Government can engage more with a variety of groups in the sector as we come out of the Covid-19 pandemic.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to help improve diversity in the media and telecommunications sector.

The government recognises that the media and telecommunications sectors play a vital role in British society and therefore have an important responsibility to reflect the reality of modern Britain.

Promoting greater diversity is a priority for the government and therefore we welcome the work Ofcom has undertaken - as the independent communications regulator - through their annual diversity reports on broadcasting; as well as the work of Project Diamond, an initiative supported by the broadcasters, which captures diversity data.

The government is committed to working together with industry to support greater diversity and to ensure that everyone regardless of their background should have the same opportunity to be successful and to go as far as their talents and hard work take them.

17th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to prevent the availability of harmful online material to children.

The Online Harms White Paper sets out our plans to establish in law a new duty of care on companies towards their users, overseen by an independent regulator. The regulator will have strong enforcement powers to deal with non-compliance. Our proposals assume a higher level of protection for children than for the typical adult user.

We expect companies to use a proportionate range of tools, including age assurance and age verification technologies, to prevent children accessing age-inappropriate content and to protect them from other harms.

21st Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on improving ventilation in classrooms in England.

The Department is not aware of any recent discussions between my right hon. Friends, the Secretary of State for Education and the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on improving ventilation in classrooms.

The Department’s policy is to support schools to improve ventilation to help avoid viruses and respiratory infections. Maintaining adequate ventilation ultimately remains the responsibility of individual schools.

Since Autumn 2021, the Department has delivered over 600,000 CO2 monitors to state-funded settings, including early years, schools and further education providers. Final deliveries are due to be made by March 2023.

In addition, the Department has provided over 8,400 air cleaning units so far for poorly ventilated teaching spaces in state-funded schools, where quick fixes to improve ventilation are not possible.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department has plans to evaluate the impact of the free period products scheme in schools and colleges on the availability of those products in those settings.

The period products scheme launched in January 2020 and has most recently been extended until July 2024. Take up of the scheme is monitored regularly by the department and our supplier, phs. Within the first two years of the scheme, 94% of secondary schools and 90% of post-16 organisations had ordered at least once. These organisations have older students and therefore are more likely to have a higher proportion of students in scope, compared to primary schools.

The department is considering opportunities to publish further management information in the future, as well as the need for further research into the scheme to evaluate its impact.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will make the free period products scheme permanent.

The period products scheme launched in January 2020, and has most recently been extended until July 2024.

The department will make information available about any extensions or changes to the scheme in due course.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if his Department will issue guidance to schools and colleges on consulting with students on period products in the context of the free period products scheme.

Guidance regarding the free period products scheme, including the new range of products available was updated on 8 September, the same day eligible organisations can order. This was developed in line with research from schools and colleges, and period product experts. The guidance states that schools and colleges know their learners best and, therefore, have the freedom to select the most suitable products for their learners considering cost and type of product. All eligible organisations were emailed in early September to remind them of their log in details and a link to the guidance will be provided.

2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to (a) monitor and (b) evaluate the free period products scheme.

The period products scheme launched in January 2020, and has most recently been extended until July 2024. Take up of the scheme is monitored regularly by the department and our supplier, phs. Within the first two years of the scheme, 94% of secondary schools and 90% of post-16 organisations had ordered at least once. These organisations have older students and therefore are more likely to have a higher proportion of students in scope, compared to primary schools.

The department publishes statistics regarding the scheme’s operation, which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/period-products-scheme-management-information.

The department is considering opportunities to publish further management information in the future, as well as the need for further research into the scheme to evaluate its impact.

11th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what fiscal steps he is taking to support Welsh students who are attending university in England with costs of renting student accommodation in England.

Devolution means that there are a range of policies and approaches to higher education (HE) which differ between the four administrations who deal with higher education policy in the United Kingdom. It is for each administration to decide how they deploy their resources and develop their HE system. Devolution allows for the different treatment of UK students in respect of student support within different parts of the UK.

The government plays no role in the provision of student residential accommodation. Universities and private accommodation providers are autonomous and are responsible for setting their own rent agreements. We encourage universities and private landlords to review their accommodation policies to ensure they are fair, clear and have the interests of students at heart.

If a student thinks their accommodation provider is treating them unfairly, they can raise a complaint under the accommodation codes of practice as long as the provider is a code member. The codes can be found at: https://www.thesac.org.uk/, https://www.unipol.org.uk/the-code/how-to-complain and https://www.nrla.org.uk/about-us/code-of-practice.

We recognise that in the exceptional circumstances of the COVID-19 outbreak, some students may face financial hardship. Our grant funding to the Office for Students (OfS) for the current financial year includes an allocation of £5 million to HE providers in England in order to provide additional support for student hardship. This is to mitigate hardship due to COVID-19 impacts on the labour market which particularly affect, for example, students relying on work to fund their studies. In our guidance to the OfS on funding for the 2021/22 financial year we made clear that the OfS should protect the £256 million allocation for the student premiums to support disadvantaged students and those that need additional help.

Many providers have hardship funds that students can apply to for assistance should the COVID-19 outbreak affect individuals’ finances in academic year 2021/22.

Michelle Donelan
Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology
11th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will take steps to support Welsh students who are attending university in England with the costs of renting student accommodation in England.

Devolution means that there are a range of policies and approaches to higher education (HE) which differ between the four administrations who deal with higher education policy in the United Kingdom. It is for each administration to decide how they deploy their resources and develop their HE system. Devolution allows for the different treatment of UK students in respect of student support within different parts of the UK.

The government plays no role in the provision of student residential accommodation. Universities and private accommodation providers are autonomous and are responsible for setting their own rent agreements. We encourage universities and private landlords to review their accommodation policies to ensure they are fair, clear and have the interests of students at heart.

If a student thinks their accommodation provider is treating them unfairly, they can raise a complaint under the accommodation codes of practice as long as the provider is a code member. The codes can be found at: https://www.thesac.org.uk/, https://www.unipol.org.uk/the-code/how-to-complain and https://www.nrla.org.uk/about-us/code-of-practice.

We recognise that in the exceptional circumstances of the COVID-19 outbreak, some students may face financial hardship. Our grant funding to the Office for Students (OfS) for the current financial year includes an allocation of £5 million to HE providers in England in order to provide additional support for student hardship. This is to mitigate hardship due to COVID-19 impacts on the labour market which particularly affect, for example, students relying on work to fund their studies. In our guidance to the OfS on funding for the 2021/22 financial year we made clear that the OfS should protect the £256 million allocation for the student premiums to support disadvantaged students and those that need additional help.

Many providers have hardship funds that students can apply to for assistance should the COVID-19 outbreak affect individuals’ finances in academic year 2021/22.

Michelle Donelan
Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology
23rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to WPQ 75126, pursuant to the Answer of 23 November 2021 to Question 75126 on UN Climate Conference 2021: Government, how many Ministers in his Department travelled to COP26 by airplane.

Four ministers attended COP26 including myself, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, my hon. Friend, the Minister for Skills, and my hon. Friend, the Minister for the School System. Ministers took the train to COP26 in Glasgow. Any unavoidable carbon emissions from COP26 will be offset, including those associated with travel.

Michelle Donelan
Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology
1st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what his policy is on his Department's rates of recycling of plastic, paper, metal and other products; and if he will make a statement.

The Department contributes to, and works within the parameters of, the Government Greening Commitments (GGC) on recycling rates. The last annual report publication, from April 2018 to March 2019, shows that 85% of waste was recycled by the Department.

The Department has committed to increasing the rate of recycled waste, whilst reducing the overall amount of waste generated in line with the next GGC which runs from 2021 to 2025.

Further information on Greening Government Commitments can be found at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/883779/ggc-annual-report-2018-2019.pdf.

30th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of his Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

Details of the Department’s energy usage for financial years 2018/19 and 2019/20 are available in the consolidated annual report and accounts publications, which are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/dfe-annual-reports.

The annual report for financial year 2020/21 will be published later in the year, which will include details on the cost of energy for that period.

21st Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate his Department has made of the number of schools that are located in areas with fine particulate matter over levels recommended by the World Health Organisation; and what steps he is taking to protect pupils from air pollution.

The Department has made no such specific estimate as local authorities are responsible for air quality in their area and must ensure that it meets the standards set in local air quality action plans.

If there was concern about the air quality in a school building, it would fall to the body responsible for the school to check and establish what measures needed to be taken to improve air quality. This would generally be the local authority, academy trust or governing body.

In 2018, the Department published Building Bulletin 101 (BB101), establishing guidance for school design on ventilation, thermal comfort, and indoor air quality. This guidance sets out the World Health Organisation’s air quality guidelines and Air Quality Standards Regulation 2010 for indoor air quality. BB101 requires the indoor environment of new or refurbished school buildings to be monitored by recording temperature and levels of carbon dioxide.

The Department is collaborating with other government departments and several academic institutions on air quality projects. The findings from these projects will, in due course, inform our guidance and standards for school buildings.

8th Jan 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last had discussions with the First Minister of Wales; and if he will make a statement.

My Rt Hon Friends the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, the Secretary of State for Wales and I have had multiple discussions with the First Minister about Covid-19 and other matters.

8th Jan 2021
To ask the Prime Minister, when he last had discussions with the First Minister of Northern Ireland; and if he will make a statement.

My Rt Hon Friends the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and I have had multiple discussions with the First and deputy First Minister about Covid-19 and other matters.

6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the implications for his Department's policies of the European Chemicals Agency's report entitled Investigation report to support the Commission on the preparation of a restriction proposal for the use and presence of CMR 1A or 1B substances in childcare articles based on REACH Article 68(2), published on 31 October 2023.

The UK has implemented its own independent chemicals regulatory framework, including UK REACH, from 1 January 2021.

UK REACH retains the same fundamental approach and key principles of EU REACH, ensuring a high level of protection for human health and the environment in the UK. Now that we have left the EU, we are responsible for introducing our own regulatory measures, and these reflect GB-specific circumstances and effectively address the risks which apply in GB. In so doing we remain aware of regulatory activity taking place within EU REACH.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what representations he has received opposing the proposed ban on the use of electronic training collars since 2018.

Both during and after process of consultation in 2018, we have heard a range of views from stakeholders and correspondents on the proposed ban on electronic shock collars. We recognise that some people do not support the Government’s decision to ban electronic training collars controlled by hand-held devices that deliver an electric shock to cats or dogs. However, we have to balance these views against the need to protect dogs and cats from avoidable harm and suffering.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what advice he has (a) commissioned and (b) received from the Animal Welfare Committee on the use of electronic training collars since 2018.

The Animal Welfare Committee (AWC) has not been commissioned to produce advice on the use of e-collars for cats and dogs. The AWC report ‘Opinion on the welfare implications of using virtual fencing systems to contain, move and monitor livestock’ was published in October 2022. This opinion was limited to the welfare effects of electronic collars used as part of virtual containment systems for cattle, sheep and goats.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the amount of notice owners will require ahead of the coming into force of the Animal Welfare (Electronic Collars) (England) Regulations 2023.

It is the Government’s intention that the ban on the use of electronic shock collars is introduced on a revised timeline and allows owners sufficient time to retrain their dogs.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has received representations from animal welfare organisations on the notice owners require ahead of the coming into force of the Animal Welfare (Electronic Collars) (England) Regulations 2023.

It is the Government’s intention that the ban on the use of electronic shock collars is introduced on a revised timeline and allows owners sufficient time to retrain their dogs.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what research he has (a) commissioned and (b) published on the use of electronic training collars since 2018.

Defra has not commissioned or published new research on this matter since 2018. The decision to ban electronic shock collars was reached after considering a broad range of factors. This includes academic research – including Defra-commissioned research (AW1402 and AW1402a), published in 2011. We also note the findings of the Scottish Animal Welfare Commission, published in April 2023, which recommended banning the devices on welfare grounds.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with international counterparts on the banning of electronic training collars.

Discussions on banning the use of electronic collars training collars have taken place with international counterparts at an official level.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what qualifications are required for (a) veterinarians and (b) other individuals to perform inspections under the Animal Welfare (Primate Licences) (England) Regulations 2023.

The Government will engage with relevant stakeholders to develop guidance to accompany the standards. This guidance will be provided to local authorities on how licence holders can demonstrate compliance with these standards and to supply additional information around conducting inspections.

Local authorities will be able to set and charge fees in respect of any application and inspection relating to a private primate keeper licence. These fees will enable local authorities to recover any costs they incur as a result of carrying out these activities and should not therefore present any additional financial burden on local authorities.

We will be working with local authorities and other relevant stakeholders during the implementation phase to understand how to effectively support them to meet potential future demand for their services.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will consult (a) independent primate experts and (b) animal welfare NGOs as part of the development of guidance to accompany the Animal Welfare (Primate Licences) (England) Regulations 2023; and when he plans to publish that guidance.

The Government will engage with relevant stakeholders to develop guidance to accompany the standards. This guidance will be provided to local authorities on how licence holders can demonstrate compliance with these standards and to supply additional information around conducting inspections.

Local authorities will be able to set and charge fees in respect of any application and inspection relating to a private primate keeper licence. These fees will enable local authorities to recover any costs they incur as a result of carrying out these activities and should not therefore present any additional financial burden on local authorities.

We will be working with local authorities and other relevant stakeholders during the implementation phase to understand how to effectively support them to meet potential future demand for their services.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has made a comparative assessment of the (a) revenue that will be collected from licence fees and (b) costs incurred by local authorities arising from the implementation of the Animal Welfare (Primate Licences) (England) Regulations 2023.

The Government will engage with relevant stakeholders to develop guidance to accompany the standards. This guidance will be provided to local authorities on how licence holders can demonstrate compliance with these standards and to supply additional information around conducting inspections.

Local authorities will be able to set and charge fees in respect of any application and inspection relating to a private primate keeper licence. These fees will enable local authorities to recover any costs they incur as a result of carrying out these activities and should not therefore present any additional financial burden on local authorities.

We will be working with local authorities and other relevant stakeholders during the implementation phase to understand how to effectively support them to meet potential future demand for their services.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has made an estimate of the additional workload that implementation of the Animal Welfare (Primate Licences) (England) Regulations 2023 will require of local councils.

The Government will engage with relevant stakeholders to develop guidance to accompany the standards. This guidance will be provided to local authorities on how licence holders can demonstrate compliance with these standards and to supply additional information around conducting inspections.

Local authorities will be able to set and charge fees in respect of any application and inspection relating to a private primate keeper licence. These fees will enable local authorities to recover any costs they incur as a result of carrying out these activities and should not therefore present any additional financial burden on local authorities.

We will be working with local authorities and other relevant stakeholders during the implementation phase to understand how to effectively support them to meet potential future demand for their services.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department plans to take to support local councils to implement the Animal Welfare (Primate Licences) (England) Regulations 2023.

The Government will engage with relevant stakeholders to develop guidance to accompany the standards. This guidance will be provided to local authorities on how licence holders can demonstrate compliance with these standards and to supply additional information around conducting inspections.

Local authorities will be able to set and charge fees in respect of any application and inspection relating to a private primate keeper licence. These fees will enable local authorities to recover any costs they incur as a result of carrying out these activities and should not therefore present any additional financial burden on local authorities.

We will be working with local authorities and other relevant stakeholders during the implementation phase to understand how to effectively support them to meet potential future demand for their services.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
6th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, for what reasons provisions to allow breeding are included in the Animal Welfare (Primate Licences) (England) Regulations 2023.

The Government opted to prioritise primate welfare by using secondary legislation. This approach means that these regulations will be in place earlier than would have been possible under primary legislation.

Over 98% of respondents to our 2020 consultation and 97% of respondents to our 2023 consultation expressed support for the introduction of a new prohibition on keeping primates privately in England without a relevant licence.

The regulations ban the keeping of primates without a relevant licence, ensuring that only those keeping primates to the highest welfare standards can do so.

We have thoroughly considered our 2019 call for evidence, consultations and wider stakeholder engagement to ensure the introduction of robust and proportionate measures. This includes activities on breeding, where primate keepers will be required to meet minimum welfare and licencing standards and subject to veterinary control and oversight.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
1st Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what his Department's timescales are for the publication of the results of the Veterinary Medicines Regulations consultation; and what plans his Department has to introduce changes to the Veterinary Medicines Regulation 2013.

The Government response to the consultation on the Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2013 was published on 2 February. We intend to lay the Statutory Instrument, which will amend the Regulations, before Parliament by the end of February.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
1st Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he plans to respond to the Fifth Report of Session 2023-24 of the Committee of Public Accounts entitled Government’s programme of waste reforms.

Based on a report by the National Audit Office, the Public Accounts Committee took evidence from Defra on 11 September 2023. The Committee published its report on 1 December 2023. The Fifth Report of Session 2023-24 of the Committee entitled 'Government's Programme of Waste Reforms' is the Government’s response to the recommendations in the Committee’s report. The Fifth Report of Session 2023-24 will be returned to Treasury Officers of Accounts on 7 February 2024 and published on 15 February 2024.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
26th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with his international counterparts on preparation for COP16.

Ministers and senior officials across Government, led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, are in close and ongoing contact with their global counterparts about preparation for COP16. In addition, the Environment Secretary and Lord Benyon spoke to a number of their international opposites at the COP28 meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
26th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which members of His Majesty's Government will attend COP16.

The UK’s delegation to COP15 of the Convention on Biological Diversity was led by the Environment Secretary, who attended along with Ministers from two other Departments. The details of the delegation for COP16, including Ministerial representation, will be determined closer to the time but will be led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
26th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress his Department has made on the agreements made at CBD COP15 in Montreal.

The UK played a leading role at COP15 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in securing agreement to a historic package of measures to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030. Our priority for COP16 and beyond is to drive global delivery of these agreements both at home and abroad, by working closely with our international partners.

We have a number of priorities for COP16. These include supporting a global review of those National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans which will have been published by the time of the COP, in order to assess the extent to which the world is on track to meet the commitments made at COP15; finalising the details of the global mechanism for the sharing of benefits arising from the use of Digital Sequence Information (DSI) on genetic resources; and increasing the mobilisation of resources from all sources to halt and reverse biodiversity loss globally, including through the newly-established Global Biodiversity Framework Fund, to which the UK has already made an initial contribution of £10million.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
26th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what his priorities for COP16 are.

The UK played a leading role at COP15 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in securing agreement to a historic package of measures to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030. Our priority for COP16 and beyond is to drive global delivery of these agreements both at home and abroad, by working closely with our international partners.

We have a number of priorities for COP16. These include supporting a global review of those National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans which will have been published by the time of the COP, in order to assess the extent to which the world is on track to meet the commitments made at COP15; finalising the details of the global mechanism for the sharing of benefits arising from the use of Digital Sequence Information (DSI) on genetic resources; and increasing the mobilisation of resources from all sources to halt and reverse biodiversity loss globally, including through the newly-established Global Biodiversity Framework Fund, to which the UK has already made an initial contribution of £10million.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what enforcement action the Environment Agency will take to prevent environmental contamination from Trenchard Scrapyard in Four Marks, Hampshire.

The Environment Agency does not take enforcement action to prevent contamination. The Environment Agency takes enforcement action in response to significant contamination where there is evidence it has occurred and who is responsible for it. The Environment Agency does not have evidence that the current activities at the site are causing significant contamination.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether Trenchard Scrapyard in Four Marks, Hampshire is compliant with the required Environment Agency permits and conditions; and what steps are being taken to ensure compliance.

The site does not currently benefit from an Environmental Permit. The Environment Agency is providing advice and guidance about what activities need to cease or be brought into compliance by applying for an environmental permit and/or registering appropriate exemptions.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what meetings have taken place between Hampshire County Council, East Hampshire District Council and the Environment Agency on Trenchard Scrapyard in Four Marks, Hampshire.

The Environment Agency met with Hampshire County Council on the site on Monday 27 November 2023.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when his Department will publish the consultation on fluorinated gas regulation.

We undertook a joint review of the GB F gas Regulation and published our assessment report in December 2022 (available online). We are now in the process of developing policy proposals for reform and intend to consult on these in due course. Both the assessment report and consultation consider the use and effectiveness of alternatives.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what his planned timetable is for industry to use alternatives to fluorinated gases.

We undertook a joint review of the GB F gas Regulation and published our assessment report in December 2022 (available online). We are now in the process of developing policy proposals for reform and intend to consult on these in due course. Both the assessment report and consultation consider the use and effectiveness of alternatives.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of alternatives to fluorinated gases.

We undertook a joint review of the GB F gas Regulation and published our assessment report in December 2022 (available online). We are now in the process of developing policy proposals for reform and intend to consult on these in due course. Both the assessment report and consultation consider the use and effectiveness of alternatives.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of including natural cork in the list of materials to attract higher modulated fees under the extended producer responsibility scheme.

Defra officials are currently collating the evidence received from an extended programme of stakeholder engagement on modulated fees which was carried out over the second half of 2023. This engagement has included consideration of natural cork. The Government intends to seek further stakeholder input in this area, including to further assess business impact, before finalising any proposals. The final decisions on packaging materials with increased fees will be agreed and announced by the Scheme Administrator for the UK Extended Producer Responsibility for Packaging.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 20 November 2023 to Question 1716 on Deposit Return Schemes: Drink, if he will publish a timeline for the release of the final impact assessment for the proposed deposit return scheme.

The final Impact Assessment will be published alongside the Statutory Instrument.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
9th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the Extended Producer Responsibility scheme, whether he has plans for (a) natural cork products and (b) products made from other natural materials to be moved to a lower fee level under that scheme when further criteria are introduced.

Defra officials are currently collating the evidence received from an extended programme of stakeholder engagement on modulated fees which was carried out over the second half of 2023. This engagement has included consideration of cork and other natural products. The Government intends to seek further stakeholder input in this area, including to further assess business impact, before finalising any proposals. The final decisions on packaging materials with increased fees will be agreed and announced by the Scheme Administrator for the UK Extended Producer Responsibility for Packaging.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
9th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the potential impact of higher modulated fees on the grounds of lower recyclability under the Extended Producer Responsibility scheme on businesses (a) using and (b) producing (i) natural cork products and (ii) other materials subject to higher fees.

Defra officials are currently collating the evidence received from an extended programme of stakeholder engagement on modulated fees which was carried out over the second half of 2023. This engagement has included consideration of cork and other natural products. The Government intends to seek further stakeholder input in this area, including to further assess business impact, before finalising any proposals. The final decisions on packaging materials with increased fees will be agreed and announced by the Scheme Administrator for the UK Extended Producer Responsibility for Packaging.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
9th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department plans to include natural cork in the list of materials to attract higher modulated fees under the Extended Producer Responsibility scheme.

Defra officials are currently collating the evidence received from an extended programme of stakeholder engagement on modulated fees which was carried out over the second half of 2023. This engagement has included consideration of cork and other natural products. The Government intends to seek further stakeholder input in this area, including to further assess business impact, before finalising any proposals. The final decisions on packaging materials with increased fees will be agreed and announced by the Scheme Administrator for the UK Extended Producer Responsibility for Packaging.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many substances have been (a) grandfathered and (b) notified to UK REACH and are subject to the extended data submission deadlines in the REACH (Amendment) Regulations 2023 in the (i) one-ten, (ii) 10-100, (iii) 100-1,000 and (iv) over 1,000 tonnes per year band.

The following table shows the number of substances by tonnage band notified as of 1 August 2023 to the Health and Safety Executive as (a) having a grandfathered registration and / or (b) being included in a Downstream User Import Notification (DUIN). Each distinct substance appears no more than once in each column; where the same substance was notified multiple times it is listed in the highest notified tonnage band. Where an individual substance has been notified as having both a grandfathered registration and being subject to a DUIN it will appear once in each column.

Grandfathered

DUIN

1-10tpy

1,093

7,765

10-100tpy

818

3,508

100-1000tpy

650

1,171

>1000tpy

665

715

Tonnage not reported

836

9,283

The tonnage band is not a legal requirement of notification but will be confirmed when notifications proceed to full registration.

The number of substances that are subject to full registration may be lower than the numbers set out above, as full registration is dependent on firms’ commercial decisions.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he plans to publish the Chemicals Strategy.

Our strategy for chemicals is under careful consideration and will be relayed this year.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with local authorities on the management of waste containing persistent organic pollutants; and whether he plans to provide support to local authorities for the management of such waste.

Local authority representatives form part of a long-established Defra working group on the management of waste containing persistent organic pollutants. We also meet with local authority representatives separately and provide advisory support and guidance together with the Environment Agency.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
18th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has made an estimate of the cost to local authorities of managing waste containing persistent organic pollutants.

We have been working to understand the impact on local authorities of managing waste containing persistent organic pollutants and will provide an update in due course.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
7th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2023 to Question 3959 on Dangerous Dogs, which organisations were part of the expert group convened by Defra to define the XL Bully breed type.

The organisations represented on the group included the police, local authorities, devolved administrations, and the Animal Welfare Committee, which advises the Government on animal welfare issues.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the Simpler Recycling policy takes into account the expectations of consumers about what happens to items they send for recycling.

In October 2020, we amended the Environmental (England and Wales) Permitting Regulations 2016 to include a permit condition for landfill and incineration operators, meaning they cannot accept separately collected paper, metal, glass or plastic for landfill or incineration unless it has gone through some form of treatment process first and is the best environmental outcome.

Under the Environment Act 2021, recyclable household waste must be collected separately from other household waste and must be collected for recycling or composting.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department plans to publish additional statutory guidance for local authorities on the sorting of materials collected from households.

We recently consulted on the content of the statutory guidance for Simpler Recycling. We will publish our final statutory guidance once the regulations relating to Simpler Recycling have been made.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the potential impact on recycling rates of mandating the sorting of co-mingled materials collected from households under the Simpler Recycling policy.

As part of Simpler Recycling, we have consulted on the provision of an exemption to allow local authorities and waste collectors in England to co-collect two or more dry recyclable waste streams in the same container, and to co-collect food and garden waste together in one container, without the need for written assessment. This consultation is now closed and we are analysing the responses and feedback from stakeholders gathered through this process. We will be communicating the outcome of the consultation in due course.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
4th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many and what proportion of the large businesses that responded to the consultation entitled Improving food waste reporting by large food businesses in England were in favour of mandatory waste reporting by large businesses.

46 respondents to the consultation on Improved food waste reporting were large businesses. 30 large businesses (65%) were in favour of introducing mandatory food waste reporting for large businesses.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
29th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to pages 6 and 12 of his Department's Action Plan for Animal Welfare, published on 12 May 2021, what his timeline is for examining the use of cages for laying hens and farrowing crates for pigs.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 15 November 2023 to the hon. Member for Chatham and Aylesford, PQ UIN 157.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
29th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions his Department has had with the British Fur Trade Association on the proposals on fur sales in UK in his Department's Action Plan for Animal Welfare, published on 12 May 2021.

We are continuing to build our evidence base on the fur sector, which will be used to inform any future action on the fur trade.  We have run the Call for Evidence on the fur market in Great Britain and continue to directly engage with stakeholders including the British Fur Trade Association.

We have also commissioned a report from our expert Animal Welfare Committee into the issue of what constitutes responsible sourcing in the fur industry. This report will help inform our next steps, and the Animal Welfare Committee will be in contact with the British Fur Trade Association as part of taking this forward.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
29th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent representations his Department has received from the British Fur Trade Association on the proposals on fur sales in UK in his Department's Action Plan for Animal Welfare, published on 12 May 2021.

We are continuing to build our evidence base on the fur sector, which will be used to inform any future action on the fur trade.  We have run the Call for Evidence on the fur market in Great Britain and continue to directly engage with stakeholders including the British Fur Trade Association.

We have also commissioned a report from our expert Animal Welfare Committee into the issue of what constitutes responsible sourcing in the fur industry. This report will help inform our next steps, and the Animal Welfare Committee will be in contact with the British Fur Trade Association as part of taking this forward.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions the Chief Veterinary Officer has had with representatives of countries where puppies are bred for illegal importation into the UK; and what commitments have been obtained from those countries.

The Chief Veterinary Officer regularly engages with her counterparts in other countries regarding animal welfare issues, including illegal puppy importation.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to help prevent the illegal importation of puppies from EU countries.

The Government is committed to delivering our manifesto commitment to crack down on puppy smuggling. We plan to take forward legislative measures to tackle puppy smuggling as soon as parliamentary time allows.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of canine brucellosis from dogs imported illegally from the EU on the UK dog population; and what steps he is taking to help mitigate that impact.

The Government takes biosecurity seriously and has taken steps to mitigate the risk of Brucella canis. We made detection of Brucella canis in dogs reportable in April 2021. We have also published information for veterinary professionals and pet owners and have worked with stakeholders to disseminate advice and recommended actions to veterinary surgeons, rescue and rehoming organisations and dog breeding associations.

We continue to gather information on the disease risk posed by Brucella canis and will consider any further actions as appropriate.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what data his Department holds on the number of hunting trophies imported in each of the past five years.

The UK records data on import permits for hunting trophies of certain species. An import permit is required for hunting trophies of all species listed on Annex A of the Wildlife Trade Regulations, and 6 species listed on Annex B.

Data on the international trade in endangered species, including information about UK imports of hunting trophies, is published in the CITES trade database (available online at trade.cites.org). The UK has submitted data for 2022 imports, which will be publicly available shortly.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what data his Department holds on the species from which the greatest proportion of hunting trophies was imported in each of the past five years.

The UK records data on import permits for hunting trophies of certain species. An import permit is required for hunting trophies of all species listed on Annex A of the Wildlife Trade Regulations, and 6 species listed on Annex B.

Data on the international trade in endangered species, including information about UK imports of hunting trophies, is published in the CITES trade database (available online at trade.cites.org). The UK has submitted data for 2022 imports, which will be publicly available shortly.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what data his Department holds on the number of individuals who have imported hunting trophies in each of the past five years.

The UK records data on import permits for hunting trophies of certain species. An import permit is required for hunting trophies of all species listed on Annex A of the Wildlife Trade Regulations, and 6 species listed on Annex B.

Data on the international trade in endangered species, including information about UK imports of hunting trophies, is published in the CITES trade database (available online at trade.cites.org). The UK has submitted data for 2022 imports, which will be publicly available shortly.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate he has made of the number of puppies that have been illegally smuggled into the UK for sale in each of the last five years.

Due to the nature of smuggling, the Animal and Plant Health Agency does not hold specific data on the total number of puppies illegally smuggled each year.

The total number of non-compliances detected on certificates accompanying commercially imported dogs, cats and ferrets from EU countries are:

Year

Number of non-compliances

2021

20,347

2022

17,833

2023 (up to September)

6,195

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the International Organisation of Vine and Wine.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs engages regularly with the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) through dedicated officials who attend the bi-annual Executive Committees and the annual General Assembly. Officials have held bi-laterals with member states as well as the new Director General. The most recent engagement took place 2 - 4 October 2023 in Dijon, France. The main topic of discussion centred around the OIV Budget.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department plans to take to help identify puppies born to dogs identified as American Bully XLs.

Defra advises that XL Bully breeders should now stop all breeding activity as it will be a criminal offence to breed from, sell, transfer, exchange, gift or advertise these dogs from 31 December 2023. Defra convened an expert group to define the XL Bully breed type and guidance on this definition is available on gov.uk. Owners who are unsure if their puppy or adolescent dog will grow to be an XL Bully type breed are advised to apply for a Certificate of Exemption by 31 January 2024. From 1 February 2024 it will be a criminal offence to own an XL Bully dog in England and Wales without a Certificate of Exemption.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he plans to (a) publish the results of the Veterinary Medicines Regulations consultation and (b) introduce revised Regulations.

Veterinary medicines play a vital role in protecting our animals’ health and welfare. Defra is updating the Veterinary Medicines Regulations in respect of Great Britain, to ensure the Regulations continue to be fit for purpose, and we consulted on these changes earlier this year. We are finalising the response to the consultation, where we will set out the changes we are taking forward. We are aware that there is significant interest in our proposed changes and we are taking our time to make sure we get it right. We will then seek to introduce the revised Regulations as soon as possible.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many dog legislation officers are employed by the police; and whether he has made an assessment of the adequacy of those numbers to successfully identify American Bully XLs.

We will be supporting the police to deliver additional training to Dog Legislation Officers to make sure the ban is effectively enforced. We are liaising with the Home Office about any additional resourcing needs that may be required once the ban is in force.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which professions have legal authority to (a) assess and (b) identify dogs suspected of being an American Bully XL.

During the transition period, it is up to owners to identify whether they think their dog may be in scope of the XL Bully ban and whether they wish to apply for a Certificate of Exemption.  We recommend taking a precautionary approach. If they are unsure if their dog is a XL Bully or whether any puppies may grow up to be of this dog type, owners should comply with the relevant requirements and restrictions as they come into force. From 1 February 2024 it will be a criminal offence to own an XL Bully dog in England and Wales without a Certificate of Exemption. Dog Legislation Officers are responsible for identifying prohibited breed types for the purposes of Section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 and enforcing the ban once it comes into force. If the police find an XL Bully dog after the transition period that does not have a Certificate of Exemption, the police can seize the dog, take the owner to court for a criminal prosecution, and the court may decide to euthanise the dog if the court decides that the risks the dog poses to public safety are not acceptable.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the potential cumulative impact on businesses and consumers of the planned implementation of (a) a deposit return scheme, (b) an extended producer responsibility scheme and (c) other changes to packaging recovery notes.

A cumulative assessment of the impact of the Collection and Packaging Reforms was published in 2021 at consultation stage: https://consult.defra.gov.uk/waste-and-recycling/consistency-in-household-and-business-recycling/supporting_documents/Collection%20and%20packaging%20reforms%20summary%20of%20impacts.pdf .

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of the introduction of the Deposit Return Scheme on costs for the drinks industry.

Defra has assessed costs and benefits of a Deposit Return Scheme for drinks containers (DRS) through the DRS impact assessment.

Defra published the first impact assessment on DRS in 2019 and a subsequent update to the consultation analysis with a further iteration to the consultation impact assessment was published in 2021. The 2021 consultation impact assessment can be found at: https://consult.defra.gov.uk/environment/consultation-on-introducing-a-drs/supporting_documents/Impact%20Assessment.pdf

A final Impact Assessment will be published in alignment with the next phase of the DRS work to allow us to update the analysis to accurately reflect what is set out in the January 2023 government response and the legislation drafting with the most recent data available.

We recognise that the introduction of a DRS is a new undertaking for industry, and with the continued pressures facing consumers and businesses every day, the impact of change is not to be underestimated. We are committed to continuing engagement and working collaboratively with industry to deliver a cost effective, well-functioning scheme.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of the introduction of the Deposit Return Scheme on costs for (a) businesses and (b) consumers.

Defra has assessed costs and benefits of a Deposit Return Scheme for drinks containers (DRS) through the DRS impact assessment.

Defra published the first impact assessment on DRS in 2019 and a subsequent update to the consultation analysis with a further iteration to the consultation impact assessment was published in 2021. The 2021 consultation impact assessment can be found at: https://consult.defra.gov.uk/environment/consultation-on-introducing-a-drs/supporting_documents/Impact%20Assessment.pdf

A final Impact Assessment will be published in alignment with the next phase of the DRS work to allow us to update the analysis to accurately reflect what is set out in the January 2023 government response and the legislation drafting with the most recent data available.

We recognise that the introduction of a DRS is a new undertaking for industry, and with the continued pressures facing consumers and businesses every day, the impact of change is not to be underestimated. We are committed to continuing engagement and working collaboratively with industry to deliver a cost effective, well-functioning scheme.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the potential impact of the planned implementation of (a) a deposit return scheme, (b) an extended producer responsibility scheme and (c) other changes to packaging recovery notes on food and drink businesses.

Defra has published regulatory impact assessments of the impact of the Collection and Packaging Reforms, including the impact on business and consumers.

For the DRS, the 2021 consultation stage impact assessment can be found at: https://consult.defra.gov.uk/environment/consultation-on-introducing-a-drs/supporting_documents/Impact%20Assessment.pdf. A final impact assessment will be published alongside the regulations.

For Packaging Extended Producer Responsibility, the most recent assessment can be found in the 2022 final stage impact assessment: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1063588/epr-final-impact-assessment.pdf. An updated impact assessment will be published alongside the regulations.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he plans to (a) commission and (b) publish research on the impact of the circular economy on business and consumers.

In July 2023 we published Maximising Resources, Minimising Waste which embeds our circular economy approach by setting out our priorities for action to manage resources and waste in accordance with the waste hierarchy across seven key sectors.

As with existing policies, any new policy proposed in this programme will be subject to public consultation and impact assessment which considers the individual and cumulative impacts on public expenditure, the cost to business including small and medium-sized enterprises, and consumer choice and affordability.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department has taken to prevent plastic contamination in (a) steel and (b) other metals exported for recycling.

Under UK legislation on shipments of waste most non-hazardous waste metals, including steel, can be exported for recycling under green list controls if they are clean and sorted, with minimal contamination, and only if the receiving country has indicated it is willing to receive such waste. Where contamination levels are greater than the minimal, the waste can only be exported if prior consent has been received from the relevant UK competent authority and the equivalent in the country of destination. Consent will only be provided if it is clear how the waste will be treated and recycled appropriately in the country of destination.

The UK Competent Authorities undertake intelligence led, risk-based checks on waste destined for export to ensure that they comply with our legislation. This includes checks to ensure that rules on contamination levels are being adhered to.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he plans to appoint an administrator for the deposit return scheme to be introduced in October 2025; and what funding will be made available to the administrator.

A scheme administrator referred to as the Deposit Management Organisation (DMO) will be responsible for managing the overall operation of a deposit return scheme for drinks containers (DRS). Secondary legislation will provide the Secretary of State with the powers to appoint the DMO and outline the criteria which will be taken into account in making the appointment. The appointment process will be launched once the regulations are in force.

The scheme will be funded through three income streams:

  • Material revenue obtained from collected DRS material sold to reprocessors for recycling.
  • Unredeemed deposits from drinks containers not returned into the scheme, for which a deposit was paid by a consumer on purchase of that container.
  • Remaining costs will be covered by producer fees for drinks producers.
Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of trends in the level of plastic contamination in (a) steel and (b) other metals exported for recycling.

This information is not held centrally.

Robbie Moore
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what her planned timescale is for publishing the Waste Infrastructure Roadmap; and if she will make an assessment of the level of existing waste infrastructure required to meet the Government's target to halve residual waste by 2042.

The first element of the Waste Infrastructure Roadmap will be published before the end of this year and will set out anticipated waste arisings to 2035, reflecting Defra’s Collection and Packaging Reforms (Simpler Recycling, Extended Producer Responsibility for packaging and a Deposit Return Scheme for drinks containers), mapping this modelling against known waste management infrastructure for various waste streams, including organic wastes, dry recyclables (paper/card, glass, textiles, metals, and plastics) and residual waste.

Once published, the intention of the first element of the Waste Infrastructure Roadmap is to provide a signal to investors as to where there is considered to be a likely over or under-provision of waste management capacity so as to target investment. The first element of the Waste Infrastructure Roadmap will not detail where or how investment should be made but is meant to be a tool to support investors and local authorities in decision making.

Those looking to invest in waste management infrastructure are encouraged to engage with the UK Infrastructure Bank.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
17th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information her Department holds on the enforcement actions undertaken by local authorities against the illegal sale of (a) plastic straws, (b) drink stirrers and (c) plastic-stemmed cotton buds since October 2020.

No information is held on the illegal sale of these items. The responsibility for enforcement lies with Trading Standards and Local Authorities.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether glass bottles will be included in her Department's proposed Deposit Return Scheme.

Glass drinks bottles will not be captured by the Deposit Return Scheme for drinks containers in England and Northern Ireland. The scheme will include polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles, steel and aluminium cans.

Instead, glass drinks bottles will be within the scope of the Extended Producer Responsibility for packaging (EPR) alongside other types of glass packaging. EPR will place recycling targets on producers in relation to glass packaging and require relevant obligated producers to cover the costs of collecting and managing glass packaging arising in household waste and discarded in street bins managed by local authorities.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, for what reason a refillable glass bottle scheme was not included in her Department’s Waste Prevention Programme for England published July 2023.

We want to encourage a shift away from hard to recycle and single-use products and packaging, and support research and innovation into more sustainable alternatives and systems, reducing litter and plastic pollution as well as conserving material resources.

The introduction of Extended Producer Responsibility for Packaging, as part of the Collection and Packaging reforms, will move the full cost of dealing with packaging waste generated by households from local taxpayers and councils to businesses that handle and use packaging (applying the ‘polluter-pays principle’). This will encourage businesses to think carefully about how much packaging they use, and to design and use packaging that is easily recyclable. It will also encourage use of refillable and reusable packaging.

Refill systems will have a significant role to play in driving down unnecessary waste, and we are working to identify measures that could be used to encourage greater use of refillable and reuseable packaging. We remain committed to introducing refill/reuse obligations and will bring forward our proposals with the intention of introducing these in 2025.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will report annually on recycling and recovery targets for England; and when she plans to publish the next such progress report.

We shortly will be updating our local authority collected and managed waste statistical notice, which is published annually; this presents recycling rates for England and local authorities. We will also be updating our UK Statistics on Waste statistical notice, which is published annually, in May/June 2024 (provisional date) which also presents data on recycling rates, biodegradable municipal waste to landfill, commercial and industrial waste arising, and a recovery rate for construction and demolition waste for England and the UK.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent estimate her Department has made of the annual mass of residual waste per head of population in England (a) sent to landfill, (b) put through incineration, and (c) used in energy recovery (i) in the UK and (ii) overseas.

We do not publish data relating to the mass of residual waste on a per head of population basis. However, as part of our ‘Local authority collected waste management - annual results’ we do publish data on ‘residual household waste per household’, on a kilogram per household figure and ‘waste from household’ on a kilogram per person figure: (https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/env18-local-authority-collected-waste-annual-results-tables-202122). Furthermore, in the Output Indicator framework for the 25 year Environment Plan (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/25-year-environment-plan-progress-reports), the J4 Indicator presents total tonnages of residual waste (excluding major mineral wastes) sent to landfill and put through incineration.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will list the quantities of waste exported in (a) 2020, (b) 2021 and (c) 2022, broken down by receiving country.

The top ten waste types exported from the UK in 2020, 2021 and 2022, alongside the top ten destinations for those waste types, are represented in the three tables below. The information requested is not held centrally and to obtain it in full would incur disproportionate costs.

This dataset has been obtained from information provided by exporters to His Majesty's Revenue and Customs. This data is publicly available at https://www.uktradeinfo.com/ .

2020

Rank

Waste type

Waste exported (KT)

Top destination country (in parentheses: quantity of waste exported in KT; proportion of total waste type exported from the UK as %)

1

Iron & steel waste and scrap

6,826

Turkey (2,394KT; 35.1%); Pakistan (997KT; 14.6%); Egypt (742KT; 10.9%); Bangladesh (205KT; 3.0%); Saudi Arabia (173KT; 2.5%)

2

Paper and paperboard waste

3,780

India (979KT; 22.8%); Thailand (561KT; 13.0%); Turkey (491KT; 11.4%); Netherlands (474KT; 11.0%); Malaysia (401KT; 9.3%)

3

Plastic waste and scrap

537

Turkey (210KT; 39.0%); Malaysia (65KT; 12.2%); Poland (38KT; 7.0%); Netherlands (38KT; 7.0%); Spain (31KT; 5.8%)

4

Aluminium waste and scrap

436

India (122KT;27.8%); China (76KT; 17.4%); Thailand (18KT; 4.1%); Republic of Korea (34KT; 7.8KT); Italy (30KT; 6.9%)

5

Glass cullet waste

298

Portugal (83KT; 27.2%); Belgium (83KT; 27.2%); Netherlands (16KT; 5.3%); Spain (15KT; 5.2%); confidential country (13KT; 4.2%)

6

Worn clothing and textiles

281

Ghana (57KT; 20.4%); Pakistan (42KT; 15.1%); United Arab Emirates (34KT; 12.1%); Ukraine (26KT; 9.2%); Poland (24KT; 8.5%)

7

Residual products of the chemical or allied industries

181

Norway (151KT; 83.5%); Netherlands (22KT; 12.0%); Germany (8KT; 4.4%); New Caledonia (0.04KT; 0.02%); Canada (0.02KT; 0.01%)

8

Rubber waste

138

India (113KT; 81.6%); Pakistan (11KT; 7.6%); Japan (8KT; 6.0%); Netherlands (2KT;1.6%); France (1KT; 0.6%)

9

Animal waste

108

Ireland (36KT; 33.5%); France (23KT; 21.0%); Netherlands (17KT; 15.4%); Germany (13KT; 11.7%); Bulgaria (9KT; 8.1%)

10

Residues of starch manufacture and similar

76

Ireland (62KT; 81.9%); Denmark (8KT; 10.8%); Spain (4KT; 4.7%); Netherlands (2KT; 2.1%); Philippines (0.3KT; 0.4%)

11

Residues from food industry (vegetable waste)

26

Ireland (26KT; 98.5%); Qatar (0.1KT; 0.3%); Netherlands (0.1KT; 0.3%); Norway (0.1KT; 0.2%); France (0.02KT; 0.1%)

2021

Rank

Waste type

Waste exported (KT)

Top destination country (in parentheses: quantity of waste exported in KT; proportion of total waste type exported from the UK as %)

1

Iron & steel waste and scrap

8,595

Turkey (2,345KT; 27.3%); Egypt (1,491KT; 17.3%); Bangladesh (675KT; 7.9%); Italy (496KT; 5.8%); United States of America (285KT; 3.3%)

2

Paper and paperboard waste

4,298

India (979KT; 22.8%); Thailand (561KT; 13.0%); Turkey (491KT; 11.4%); Netherlands (474KT; 11.0%); Malaysia (401KT; 9.3%)

3

Residual products of the chemical or allied industries

1,497

Sweden (617KT; 41.2%); Netherlands (346KT; 23.1%); Germany (106KT; 7.1%); Cyprus (104KT; 7.0%); Norway (99KT; 6.6%)

4

Aluminium waste and scrap

560

India (174KT; 31.2%); Hong Kong (43KT; 7.6%); Thailand (32KT; 5.8%); Republic of Korea (30KT; 5.4%); Switzerland (28KT; 5.0%)

5

Plastic scrap and waste

468

Turkey (123KT; 26.2%); Netherlands (101KT; 21.6%); Poland (52KT; 11.1%); Spain (37KT; 7.9%); Italy (18KT; 3.9%)

6

Glass cullet waste

367

Portugal (185KT; 50.4%); Belgium (72KT; 19.6%); Netherlands (48KT; 13.2%); Spain (33KT; 8.9%); Germany (11KT; 2.9%)

7

Worn clothing and textiles

358

Ghana (63KT; 17.7%); Pakistan (49KT; 13.7%); Ukraine (46KT; 12.9%); United Arab Emirates (42KT; 11.7%); Poland (41KT; 11.6%)

8

Rubber waste

296

India (194KT; 65.4%); Turkey (61KT; 20.4%); Portugal (13KT; 4.3%); Pakistan (10KT; 3.2%); Morocco (5KT; 1.7%)

9

Slag, ash and residues containing metals (excl. those from the manufacture of iron or steel)

99

Belgium (32KT; 32.1%); Norway (22KT; 22.1%); Netherlands (21KT; 21.4%); Germany (12KT; 12.2%); Canada (8KT; 8.0%)

10

Mineral fuels

86

Denmark (58KT; 67.6%); Greece (8KT; 9.2%); France (7KT; 8.3%); Belgium (6KT; 6.8%); Ireland (3KT; 3.4%)

2022

Rank

Waste type

Waste exported (KT)

Top destination country (in parentheses: quantity of waste exported in KT; proportion of total waste type exported from the UK as %)

1

Iron & steel waste and scrap

8,241

Turkey (1,840KT; 22.3%); Egypt (1,396KT; 16.9%); India (1,241KT; 15.1%); Bangladesh (730KT; 8.9%); Italy (290KT; 3.5%)

2

Paper and paperboard waste

4,087

India (1,124KT; 27.5%); Vietnam (525KT; 12.8%); Netherlands (454KT; 11.1%); Turkey (376KT; 9.2%); Malaysia (363KT; 8.9%)

3

Residual products of the chemical or allied industries

1,569

Sweden (709KT; 45.2%); Netherlands (365KT; 23.3%); Norway (101KT; 6.4%); Denmark (89KT; 5.7%); Cyprus (36KT; 2.3%)

4

Aluminium waste and scrap

632

India (213KT; 33.6%); Hong Kong (98KT; 15.5%); Germany (54KT; 8.5%); Thailand (41KT; 6.4%); Pakistan (20KT; 3.1%)

5

Plastic waste and scrap

483

Netherlands (120KT; 24.8KT); Turkey (88KT; 18.3%); Belgum (38KT; 7.9%); Poland (31KT; 6.4%); Spain (23KT; 4.7%)

6

Glass cullet waste

418

Portugal (222KT; 53%); Netherlands (67KT; 15.9%); Belgium (59KT; 14.0%); Spain (25KT; 5.9%); Italy (19KT; 4.5%)

7

Worn clothing and textiles

418

United Arab Emirates (75KT; 18.1%); Ghana (53KT; 12.6%); Pakistan (52KT; 12.4%); Poland (51KT; 12.3%); Ukraine (37KT; 8.8%)

8

Rubber waste

395

India (297KT; 75.2%); Turkey (43KT; 10.9%); Pakistan (10KT; 2.6%); Portugal (8KT; 1.9%); Denmark (6KT; 1.4%)

9

Copper waste and scrap

253

China (62KT; 24.5%); India (38KT; 14.9%); Germany (35KT; 13.9%); Japan (11KT; 4.2%); France (11KT; 4.2%)

10

Mineral fuels

118

Denmark (94KT; 79.6%); Finland (7KT; 5.6%); France (7KT; 5.6%); Ireland (4KT; 3.4%); Ireland (4KT; 3.4%); Belgium (4KT; 3.0%)

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the Answer of 5 February 2021 to Question 144990 on Plastics: Waste, whether it remains her Department's policy to issue a consultation on the ban on the export of plastic waste to non-OECD countries.

Yes. Defra officials are working to publish a consultation on delivering a ban on the export of plastic waste to non-OECD countries this year.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the waste hierarchy set out in section 12 of the Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2011, what recent estimate her Department has made of the volume of waste material which are capable of being (a) kept in use for longer, (b) reused, (c) repaired and reused, (d) recycled into a new product or use, (e) used to produce fuel, heat or power, (f) incinerated without energy recovery and (g) sent to landfill in the last 12 months.

Defra does not hold estimates or collect this data at a whole economy level, nor does it have data relating to the last 12 months.

Some research has been conducted on specific sectors. For instance, the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) estimated in 2012 that 32% of bulky waste taken to household waste recycling centres could be suitable for reuse. WRAP also estimated that up to 25% of electricals which are discarded by householders could be either repaired or reused.

In relation to (d) recycled into a new product or use, the resources and waste strategy monitoring progress report contains an estimate based on 2017 data from WRAP that 53% of residual waste from household sources consisted of readily recyclable materials, with only 8% being completely unavoidable. Furthermore, of residual plastic waste from household sources, 25% consisted of readily recyclable plastics and a further 31% could be potentially recyclable with technologies in development.

With regard to residual waste (e) to (g), we have not made an assessment of capable use within the last 12 months. However, we publish annual statistics on local authority collected waste management as well as UK statistics on waste.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment her Department made of (a) residual waste excluding major mineral waste, (b) municipal residual waste, (c) residual municipal food waste per capita, (d) residual municipal plastic waste per capita, (e) municipal paper and card waste per capita, (f) residual municipal metal waste per capita and (g) residual municipal glass waste per capita in the latest year for which data is available.

The total mass of residual waste within scope of the interim targets announced in the Environmental Improvement Plan 2023 was a) 574 kg per person or 32.3 million tonnes, b) 468 kg per person, c) 127 kg per person, d) 75 kg per person, e) 99 kg per person, f) 16 kg per person, and g) 12 kg per person for the 2019 baseline year. Progress against these targets has not yet been reported.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will list the enforcement actions undertaken by the Environment Agency against illegal waste exports in each year since 2010.

Environment Agency (EA) officers carry out pro-active, intelligence led inspections to stop suspected illegal waste shipments. This can be done at site or before the shipment leaves port. The EA prioritises shipments that have the greatest potential for environmental impact. Its intelligence led approach considers various factors such as destination country, waste type, operator history and risks associated with each shipment. In 2022-23 the EA prevented over 17,000 tonnes of waste being illegally exported, this was through stopping containers at port, but also through upstream interventions at waste sites and preventing waste from being loaded for export.

The EA provides advice and guidance to operators on how to export waste lawfully, and only considers enforcement action where this advice and guidance has not been heeded. Any decision on enforcement action is taken in accordance with the EA’s Enforcement and Sanctions Policy, which can be found here Environment Agency enforcement and sanctions policy - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

Prosecutions can be complex and generally involve engagement with international partners given the nature of illegal waste exports, but they are vital in appropriate cases. Other interventions such as Notices requiring action are quicker and can be more effective. Since 2018 the EA has regularly served over 100 notices per year on suspected illegal waste shipment.

Data on enforcement actions undertaken by the EA since 2017 are presented in the table below. Data on enforcement actions undertaken prior to 2017 are not held centrally and therefore cannot be provided in the current timeframe.

Breakdown of Environment Agency enforcement actions since 2017:

Year

2017

2018

2019

2020

2021

2022

2023

Grand Total

Caution

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

Civil Sanctions

1

0

0

0

0

3

0

4

Fixed Penalty Notice

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Notice

88

180

180

112

211

157

122

1050

Prosecution

1

0

0

1

1

1

1

5

Prosecution (Withdrawn at Court)

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

Warning Letter

4

3

0

1

3

7

10

28

95

183

180

114

215

169

133

1089

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many disposable vaping products were sold in England in each year since 2010.

Defra does not collect or hold data on the number of disposable vapes sold in England.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate her Department has made of the comparative lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions per litre of container from (a) virgin glass bottles, (b) recycled glass bottles, (c) refillable glass bottles, (d) plastic, (e) recycled plastic, (f) refillable plastic, (g) virgin aluminium cans, (h) recycled aluminium cans (i) cartons and (j) other packaging.

The Department has not estimated nor undertaken a comparative analysis of the greenhouse gas emissions of the different packaging types mentioned over their lifecycles.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will take steps with her counterparts in the devolved Administrations to agree a UK-wide approach to glass bottles in deposit return schemes.

UK Government believe it is essential that all Deposit Return Schemes for drinks containers across the UK are interoperable.

This includes having aligned materials in scope across the UK. The UK Government oppose inclusion of glass in DRS. The inclusion of glass would add cost and complexity to the schemes, particularly to hospitality and retail sectors, as well as adding consumer inconvenience. We received strong representations from relevant businesses, including distillers and the hospitality sector, about the impact on trade and in particular consumer choice created by permanently different arrangements on glass within the UK internal market.

We want to ensure that the schemes operate seamlessly for businesses and consumers across the UK and do not create unnecessary barriers to trade. Defra is working closely with devolved administrations at pace on the next steps.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will make an estimate of the number of non-plastic (a) disposable cups, (b) plates, (c) cutlery, (d) take-away containers and (e) balloon sticks that were sold in England in each year since 2010.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will make an estimate of the number of non-plastic (a) single use straws, (b) drink stirrers and (c) cotton buds that were sold in England in each year since 2010.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will make an estimate of the number of (a) disposable plastic plates and cutlery, (b) polystyrene containers, and (c) balloon sticks that were sold in England in each year since 2010.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information her Department holds on the number of (a) plastic straws, (b) plastic drink stirrers and (c) plastic-stemmed cotton buds sold in England in each year since 2010.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many (a) wet wipes, (b) tampon applicators, (c) tobacco filters, (d) sachets and (e) single-use cups containing plastic were sold in England in each year since 2010.

(a) Research by Valpak to inform the Government consultation on the proposed ban of wet wipes containing plastic estimated that 24-32bn wet wipes were sold in the UK each year over the last 10 years. The research was not able to identify the exact proportion of wet wipes sold that contain plastic. However, it found that only 16% of wet wipes were explicitly labelled as plastic free in 2021. The consultation launched on 14 October 2023 and aims to gather more information on this.

(b) Defra does not collect information on the sale of tampons, including those with applicators containing plastic.

(c) Defra does not collect information on the sale of tobacco filters, including those containing plastic.

(d) Defra does not collect information on the sale of sachets, including those containing plastic.

(e) Research by the Waste and Resources Action Programme estimated that approximately 3.2 billion (+/- 9%) fibre-based composite cups and 1.0 billion (+/- 9%) plastic cups were placed onto the UK market in 2019.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
19th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she plans to restrict the use of perfluoroalkyl and plyfluoroalkyl substances.

On 4 April 2023, we welcomed the Health and Safety Executive’s publication of the Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Regulatory Management Options Analysis (RMOA), which represents a significant milestone in the UK’s efforts to protect people and the environment. One of the RMOA’s recommendations, which Defra ministers have accepted, was that work be progressed to reduce PFAS emissions by developing UK REACH restrictions, beginning with a restriction on PFAS in fire-fighting foams, and by exploring further restrictions covering a wide range of industrial and consumer uses. These actions form part of the commitments made within the Plan for Water published earlier this year.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
19th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 21 July to Question 194204 on Air Pollution: Monitoring, what the locations are each of the additional monitors which (a) have been installed since December 2021 and (b) are planned to be installed by March 2025.

Information about monitoring sites as they become operational is made available on UK Air: Home - Defra, UK.

19th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what was the cost to the public purse of her Department (a) installing and (b) maintaining air quality monitors in each year since 2010; and what her Department plans to spend on (i) installing and (ii) maintaining air quality monitors in (A) 2023-24 and (B) 2024-25.

Since 2010, the number of networks that monitor air quality have expanded from 11 to 16. This has included the number of sites increasing from 179 to 538. (There were 284 in 2016)

In 2016 the Environment Agency took over the responsibility to manage the UK national air quality monitoring networks on behalf of DEFRA and the government. The following was allocated for buying and maintaining air pollution equipment since then:

Figures for the UK Networks

Year

Capital

Resource

2016/17

0.87M

6.19M

2017/18

1.50M

5.65M

2018/19

1.47 M

5.68 M

2019/20

1.44 M

6.52 M

2020/21

1.5M

6.7M

2021/22

2.0 M

7.5 M

2022/23

2.98 M

9.03 M

Figures for the UK Urban Nitrogen Dioxide Network (UUNN)

2019-20

0.41 M

2020-21

0.56 M

2021-22

0.6 M

2022-23

0.62 M

NB we do not have figures before 2019 as the network did not start until 2020.

The following is the current predicted allocated funding for buying and maintaining air pollution equipment for 2023-24 and 2024-25:

Figures for the UK Networks

Year

Capital

Resource

2023-24

4.804 M (estimate)

9.23M (estimate)

2024-25

6.25m (estimate)

10.87m (estimate)

Figures for the UK Urban Nitrogen Dioxide Network (UUNN)

Year

Estimated Allocated spend

2023-2024

0.62M

2024-2025

0.69M