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Post Office Card Account

Volume 496: debated on Tuesday 1 September 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what progress has been made in the discussions between Xafinity Paymaster and the Post Office on the payment of armed forces pensions into the Post Office Card Account. (284813)

I have been asked to reply.

I will write to the right hon. Member with the information requested shortly.

Substantive answer from Kevan Jones to Frank Field:

I undertook to write to you in answer to your Parliamentary Question on 13 July (Official Report, column 506W), asking for a progress update about discussions between Xafinity Paymaster and the Post Office concerning the payment of armed forces pensions into the Post Office Card Account.

In order for the MOD or Xafinity Paymaster to introduce a POCA facility for Armed Forces Pension Scheme (AFPS) payments a new contractual agreement between MOD and the Post Office for this provision would be required. This would incur significant set up costs, as well as higher ongoing costs, especially as the MOD volumes would be significantly lower than those which enabled DWP to negotiate the current rate. The Service Personnel Veterans Agency (SPVA) will continue, as always, to work closely with Xafinity Paymaster to ensure that we provide our customers with services that are both convenient and represent value for money.