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Volume 464: debated on Wednesday 17 October 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps the Financial Services Authority is taking to assess the effectiveness of the contingency plans of the UK's financial institutions for a potential influenza pandemic. (158470)

In October/November 2006, the Financial Services Authority, on behalf of the Tripartite Authorities (HM Treasury, the Bank of England and the Financial Services Authority (FSA)), led a six week market wide exercise on pandemic flu. Around 70 market participants took part and a report on lessons learned is available on the Tripartite Financial Sector Continuity website (

The Tripartite Authorities have held a series of follow up events to discuss key issues arising from the exercise and the FSA continues to work with retail banks, insurance firms, recovery site providers and telecommunications firms to produce statements about how they would respond in a pandemic.

In addition, the FSA has conducted benchmarking to establish the preparedness of firms to deal with a range of threats or hazards, including pandemic influenza.