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Volume 407: debated on Monday 23 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the total expenditure on advertising by the Department was in (a) 2001–02 and (b) 2002–03; and what the level of planned expenditure is for (i) 2003–04 and (ii) 2004–05. [114439]

The Department for Work and Pensions has spent the following sums on advertising to inform the public on its rights, entitlements and responsibilities: £11.3 million in 2001–02 and £8 million in 2002–03.For 2003–04 the figure for major advertising campaigns is likely to rise. This is because a number of key welfare reforms will start to impact directly on the public during this year and campaigns are needed to ensure that the public are aware of their rights and responsibilities. These are expected to include: Pension Credit, Direct Payment, New Deal targeting benefit fraud.However media schedules are currently being finalised so it is not possible to give figures at this stage.We are currently planning advertising for 2004–05 and are as yet unable to give indicative costs.