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Entry Clearance

Volume 405: debated on Monday 12 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the total cost was of providing the UK visas entry clearance service worldwide in the financial year (a) 2000–01 and (b) 2001–02. [111083]

The cost of providing the entry clearance service world-wide in 2000–01 and 2001–02 was £84,144,386 and £81,385,364 respectively.As a result of changes in the way in which costs are attributed to the entry clearance operation by the FCO, a net loss of £3.3 million was incurred for 2000–01 when costs were netted off against income. Following on from this £3.3 million loss in 2000–01, there was a further loss of £0.4 million in 2001–02 taking the cumulative loss to £3.7 million.The operation appears to be on course to break even in 2002–03 with forecast income of £91.5 million and costs of £87.1 million.

The cumulative position is forecast to deliver a marginal surplus of around £0.7 million. Figures for 2002–03 are provisional and subject to change.