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Ukeu Project

Volume 406: debated on Tuesday 10 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will make a statement on the monitoring arrangements for government expenditure via the UKEU project. [114137]

The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) have arranged for public investment in UK eUniversities Worldwide (UKeU) to be handled by a Holding Company (the eLearning Holding Company Ltd.), which is owned by the higher education institutions of the UK. HEFCE currently requires that the Holding Company maintains at least a 50 per cent. stake in UKeU so that it may oversee the value for money represented in the services provided, and to oversee quality and standards of a venture which carries a brand backed by UK higher education. The Holding Company appoints three Directors to the Board of UKeU who have rights of veto over decisions of the UKeU Board. The Holding Company has rights to receive any information it requests from UKeU. The Holding Company monitors the venture and reports annually and by exception on the progress of the business to HEFCE as well as to its members, UK higher education institutions. As with all public funds routed through HEFCE, HEFCE are accountable to the Department's accounting officer for their appropriate disbursement. In addition, HEFCE regularly reviews the progress of UKeU, and I meet routinely with both HEFCE and UKeU to keep abreast of developments.