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Departmental Redundancy

Volume 470: debated on Thursday 24 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the cost was of redundancies in his Department in the 12 months preceding (a) 30 June 2004, (b) 30 June 2005 and (c) 30 June 2006. (175336)

It is the policy of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to do all we can to avoid compulsory redundancies. But, following the 2004 spending review, we have carried out a restructuring exercise to realise efficiency savings. This early retirement programme will enable us to reduce the size of the senior management structure in the FCO by 18 per cent. by 31 March 2008. The following totals also include compensatory early retirement packages for staff in the delegated grades involved in restructuring exercises:

Total (£)

12 months preceding 30 June 2004

3,217,003

12 months preceding 30 June 2005

10,901,738

12 months preceding 30 June 2006

16,189,129

The amounts quoted include FCO costs to the Cabinet Office to cover the additional years included in compensatory packages, compensatory lump sums under the Principle Civil Service Pension Scheme and annual pension payments until the officer reaches 60.

All payments to early retirees have been calculated and paid in strict accordance with the terms of the standard Civil Service Compensation Schemes.