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Child Trust Fund

Volume 485: debated on Monday 15 December 2008

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps he is taking to encourage parents to increase payments to child trust fund accounts. (243101)

The Child Trust Fund (CTF) provides every child with £250 at birth (£500 for children in lower-income families) and again at the age of seven. The policy is designed to strengthen the saving habit of future generations, promote financial education and ensure that at age 18 every child will have access to a financial asset. Payments at age seven will begin in September 2009.

HMRC runs a year round marketing campaign to raise awareness of CTF among parents and to help them engage with the product. This includes helping them to understand how they can make a contribution if they wish to do so. The CTF marketing campaign consists of targeted advertising on radio, in parenting press, online, promotional activity in ante-natal clinics and through working with third party organisations including the voluntary sector and commercial organisations.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what average payment has been made by parents into existing child trust fund accounts in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the North East and (d) England in each year since the scheme's inception; (243102)

(2) how many children were eligible to receive a child trust fund voucher in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the North East and (d) England in each year since the scheme's inception;

(3) how many child trust fund vouchers have been used by parents to open an account in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the North East and (d) England in each year since the scheme's inception;

(4) how many child trust fund vouchers have been issued in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the North East and (d) England in each year since the scheme's inception.

The Detailed Distributional Analysis, including details of average contributions made by parents and others was published on 6 November 2008. Geographically these data are only available at Government office region level and can be viewed on the HM Revenue and Customs' website at:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/stats/child_trust_funds/dda-oct08.pdf.

Constituency level data, including the number of vouchers issued and parental account opening figures, on Child Trust Fund accounts were published on 6 November 2008 and can be viewed on the HM Revenue and Customs' website at:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/ctf/cons-stats-oct08.pdf.