asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is to be the future of the joint insurance service operated by the Housing Corporation and the National Federation of Housing Associations.
This service, which arranges insurance cover for housing associations and provides advice, is at present managed within the Housing Corporation. The corporation and the National Federation of Housing Associations transfer the service on 1 April to a new company formed under the Companies Act. The Secretary of State has given his consent under section 6(1) of the Housing Act 1974 for the corporation to take a 40 per cent. shareholding in the company. The remaining shares will be held by the federation. The Comptroller and Auditor General will have access to the new company's accounts. The object of the transfer is to enable the insurance work for housing associations to be carried out on fully commercial lines by staff who will no longer be public sector employees.