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Identity Cards: Expenditure

Volume 496: debated on Monday 20 July 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much has been spent on the National Identity Card Scheme; and what proportion of this expenditure has been on identity cards alone. (279615)

The Identity Cards are paid for by customer fees.

Between the financial years 2003-04 and 2005-06, £41.1 million was spent by the Home Office Identity Cards Programme in total in development. Since the merger of the Home Office Identity Cards Programme and the UK Passport Service to create the Identity and Passport Service on 1 April 2006, projects to deliver passports including facial images and fingerprints, identity cards and other improvements have been necessarily combined. As much of the technology and operational processes needed to implement identity cards are also required for the implementation of these new passports, this is the most cost-effective way to deliver these initiatives.

Much of the work conducted by Identity and Passport Service cannot be categorised, both financially and operationally, as contributing towards either the introduction of passports with facial images and fingerprints or identity cards alone. The work is accounted for as future development projects which in the 2006-07 financial year amounted to £30.9 million, in 2007-08 £61.7 million and 2008-9 £81.5 million (subject to finalisation of the 2008-09 accounts process).