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Usa (Visits)

Volume 114: debated on Thursday 9 April 1987

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asked the Paymaster General if he will list all visits to the United States of America by Ministers or civil servants in his Department since June 1983; and if he will explain the purpose of each visit.

Visits by Ministers in their departmental capacity to the United States from June 1983 to date were as follows. We do not hold records centrally of visits by officials only.payments scheme a benefit known as "unemployment benefit equivalent", which is accepted as a qualifying benefit for the enterprise allowance scheme. Redundant mineworkers under 50 do not secure "unemployment benefit equivalent" but will qualify for the enterprise allowance scheme so long as they are in receipt of unemployment or supplementary benefit. I have no plans to amend the rules of the enterprise allowance scheme as the hon. Member suggests.

asked the Paymaster General if he will make it his policy to allow those who arc unemployed and have savings above £3,000 as a result of redundancy payments to qualify for the enterprise allowance scheme; and if he will make a statement.

The enterprise allowance scheme is specifically designed to provide an incentive for unemployed people in receipt of unemployment or supplementary benefit who would otherwise be deterred from going ahead with their business plans because they would lose their entitlement to benefit. People in receipt of unemployment benefit, whatever their savings, will be eligible for the scheme. However, people with over £3,000 in savings from whatever source who have exhausted their entitlement to unemployment benefit are not normally eligible for supplementary benefit and are therefore ineligible to join the enterprise allowance scheme.