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Research Councils: Finance

Volume 458: debated on Thursday 29 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what assessment he has made of the impact on the research councils' budgets of not authorising them to utilise end-of-year flexibility in 2007-08; (130432)

(2) what steps he plans to take to elicit the necessary authorisation from HM Treasury to allow the research councils to utilise end of year flexibility during 2007-08.

[holding answers 28 March 2007]: The Department of Trade and Industry continues to have access to End Year Flexibility in the normal way and this will continue to be available to cascade down to Research Councils. My officials are in discussion with Treasury officials about drawdown of End Year Flexibility in 2007-08. An early consultation by DTI officials with the Research Councils has provided robust and realistic forecast spending requirements for 2007-08.