We provide information which helps customers choose the account which best meets their needs and circumstances, including making the Post Office card account easily available to those who need it. And more than 10,000 new Post Office card accounts are opened on average each month.
We have already made changes to the booklet being sent to existing cheque customers so that it explicitly refers to the Post Office card account. We have also updated the messages that staff use when speaking to customers to reflect the fact that the Post Office card account will now continue until at least 2015. Other communications material will be kept under review.
We are currently discussing with the other bidders who were still in the competition at the point at which it was halted the details of their reasonable bid costs to be reimbursed. The precise amounts payable are still to be decided and will be subject to commercial confidentiality.
[holding answer 8 December 2008]: The decisions to put the contract out to tender, and the decision to end the tender process, were taken in accordance with domestic and European Union law, including the Public Contracts Regulations 2006 and EU Directive 2004/18/EC.
[holding answer 9 December 2008]: The decision to end the tender process was taken in accordance with European Union law (EU Directive 2004/18/EC—enacted through the Public Contracts Regulations 2006), so the need for specific agreement from the Commission did not arise.