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Written Answers

Volume 497: debated on Wednesday 14 October 2009

Written Answers to Questions

Monday 12 October 2009

Church Commissioners

Eco-Towns

To ask the hon. Member for Middlesbrough, representing the Church Commissioners whether the Church Commissioners have made an assessment of the merits of allowing their land to be used for eco-town developments. (289357)

With the assistance of their professional advisers, the Church Commissioners keep their property holdings under constant review to ensure that development potential is identified, thoroughly assessed and taken forward in the most appropriate way.

When the Government originally announced the eco-town idea, the Commissioners liaised with their advisers to determine whether any potential sites already identified in their portfolio might meet the eco-town criteria or whether any other land might be suitable to accommodate an eco-town. No suitable opportunities emerged and therefore this initiative was not taken forward in relation to the Commissioners' landholdings.

Business, Innovation and Skills

Apprentices

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many apprenticeships have been undertaken by (a) men and (b) women in each (i) region and (ii) industrial sector; and how many were completed in each case. (290221)

Table 1 shows the number of apprenticeship starts by Government Office Region and Gender in 2007-08, the latest year for which full-year figures are available. Table 2 shows the number of apprenticeship achievements by Government Office Region and Gender in 2007-08. This gives the total number of achievements in 2007-08, regardless of the academic year the apprenticeship started.

Tables 3 and 4 show the number of apprenticeship starts and achievements by Government Office Region and Sector Subject Area in 2007-08. Information is not available by 'industrial sector'.

Table 1: Number of apprenticeship starts by Government Office region and gender, 2007-08

Region

Male

Female

Total

North East

8,600

8,000

16,700

North West

18,200

17,200

35,500

Yorkshire and the Humber

16,200

13,100

29,300

East Midlands

10,800

10,900

21,700

West Midlands

11,600

13,800

25,400

East of England

10,800

10,200

21,000

London

7,200

7,300

14,500

South East

18,400

13,800

32,200

South West

14,600

10,700

25,300

Other

1,800

1,500

3,200

Total

118,200

106,600

224,800

Table 2: Number of apprenticeship achievements by Government Office region and gender, 2007-08

Region

Male

Female

Total

North East

4,300

3,300

7,600

North West

9,700

9,300

19,000

Yorkshire and the Humber

9,000

6,300

15,400

East Midlands

5,400

5,300

10,700

West Midlands

6,900

6,700

13,600

East of England

5,400

4,600

10,000

London

3,100

3,100

6,200

South East

9,700

6,600

16,300

South West

7,500

5,000

12,500

Other

700

500

1,300

Total

61,700

50,800

112,600

Notes:

1. Region is based on home postcode of the learner.

2. Where the postcode is outside of England, or not known, learners are shown in the 'Other' category.

3. Figures have been rounded to the nearest hundred and may therefore not sum to the totals.

Source:

Work-based Learning Individualised Learning Record

Table 3: Number of apprenticeship starts by sector subject area and gender, 2007-08

Sector Subject Area

Male

Female

Total

Agriculture, Horticulture and Animal Care

2,200

2,300

4,500

Arts, Media and Publishing

100

1

100

Business, Administration and Law

14,700

36,100

50,700

Construction, Planning and the Built Environment

27,300

500

27,800

Education and Training

1

300

300

Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies

41,800

1,300

43,100

Health, Public Services and Care

3,900

27,200

31,100

Information and Communication Technology

5,900

2,100

8,000

Languages, Literature and Culture

1

1

1

Leisure, Travel and Tourism

3,400

2,800

6,300

Preparation for Life and Work

1

1

1

Retail and Commercial Enterprise

16,700

32,600

49,300

Science and Mathematics

1

1

1

Unknown

2,200

1,300

3,500

Total

118,200

106,600

224,800

Table 4: Number of apprenticeship achievements by sector subject area and gender, 2007-08

Sector Subject Area

Male

Female

Total

Agriculture, Horticulture and Animal Care

1,200

1,300

2,500

Arts, Media and Publishing

100

1

200

Business, Administration and Law

6,300

17,200

23,600

Construction, Planning and the Built Environment

17,600

200

17,800

Education and Training

1

1

1

Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies

20,200

500

20,800

Health, Public Services and Care

1,800

12,000

13,800

Information and Communication Technology

4,400

1,200

5,500

Languages, Literature and Culture

1

1

1

Leisure, Travel and Tourism

2,100

1,500

3,600

Preparation for Life and Work

1

1

1

Retail and Commercial Enterprise

7,800

16,700

24,400

Science and Mathematics

1

1

1

Unknown

200

200

400

Total

61,700

50,800

112,600

1 Indicates a value of less than 50.

Note:

1. Figures have been rounded to the nearest hundred and may therefore not sum to the totals.

Source:

Work-based Learning Individualised Learning Record

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many Government-funded apprenticeship places were available to young people in (a) England and (b) North East Cambridgeshire in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. (291285)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: Table 1 shows the number of Learning and Skills Council funded apprenticeship starts by learners aged under 19 in North East Cambridgeshire parliamentary constituency and England from 2003-04 to 2007-08, the latest year for which full-year figures are available.

Table 1: Number of apprenticeship starts for learners aged under 19, 2003-04 to 2007-08

Area

2003-04

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

North East Cambridgeshire parliamentary constituency

230

210

180

230

240

England

108,300

113,500

99,500

105,600

107,600

Notes:

1. Parliamentary constituency is based on home postcode of the learner.

2. The figures provided for England includes learners undertaking apprenticeships in England. It includes those resident in England, a small number of learners which are resident outside of England e.g. in Scotland or Wales, and those where their postcode is not known.

3. Figures for parliamentary constituency have been rounded to the nearest ten and figures for England have been rounded to the nearest hundred.

4. Age Source: Work-based Learning Individualised Learner Record (WBL ILR) is calculated based on age at start of programme.

The Government are committed to rebuilding apprenticeships. Since 1997 we have witnessed a renaissance in apprenticeships from a low point of 65,000 to a record 225,000 apprenticeship starts in 2007-08, of which 107,600 were by young people (aged under 19). Completion rates are also at a record high with 64 per cent. successfully completing an apprenticeship—up from 37 per cent. in 2004-05. The Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Bill now before Parliament will ensure that an apprenticeship place is available for all suitably qualified young people by 2013.

Apprentices: Financial Institutions

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many apprenticeships in financial institutions in the City of London there are. (290272)

We do not hold data centrally that can be used to accurately estimate the total number of apprentices within financial institutions in the City of London.

The London Apprenticeships Taskforce is working to expand apprenticeships in all sectors in London, including financial services. Activity to develop apprenticeships in this sector is being supported by the National Skills Academy for Financial Services. Eskills (the sector skills council for business and information technology) is also developing an IT London Action Plan, which aims to expand apprenticeships in London, including in the financial services sector.

Bankruptcy

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many individuals with debts of less than £15,000 filed for bankruptcy in each of the 12 months from April 2008. (289485)

The number of individuals with debts of less than £15,000 who filed for bankruptcy in each of the 12 months from April 2008 are as follows:

Number

April 2008

902

May 2008

768

June 2008

873

July 2008

1,033

August 2008

737

September 2008

867

October 2008

944

November 2008

888

December 20087

41

January 2009

845

February 2009

903

March 2009

977

Total

10,478

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many bankruptcies there were in (a) England, (b) Greater Manchester and (c) Stockport of individuals in each age group in each year since 1997. (291309)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: The available information on the number of bankruptcies in England, Greater Manchester and Stockport, by age group, can be seen in the following tables. Information prior to 2000 is not available on this basis.

Bankrupts by age, England

Age group1

Under 25

25-34

35-44

45-54

55-64

65 and over

Unknown

2000

829

5,510

6,017

3,948

1,565

378

1,933

2001

1,001

5,956

5,691

4,182

1,801

396

2,227

2002

1,191

6,003

6,834

4,175

2,019

559

2,038

2003

1,655

6,915

7,882

4,888

2,491

679

2,117

2004

2,530

8,937

9,949

5,957

3,240

922

2,678

2005

3,338

11,369

13,058

8,103

4,500

1,418

3,584

2006

3,810

14,844

17,751

11,137

6,368

2,152

4,090

2007

2,938

14,797

18,371

12,023

6,727

2,400

4,240

2008

2,769

15,121

19,388

13,260

6,892

2,455

4,256

Bankrupts by age, Greater Manchester

Age group1

Under 25

25-34

35-44

45-54

55-64

65 and over

Unknown

2000

20

196

237

163

62

17

72

2001

31

247

273

187

76

13

125

2002

40

225

289

167

85

22

135

2003

44

255

313

195

91

26

118

2004

74

326

364

266

134

45

87

2005

96

378

508

337

206

66

167

2006

131

604

751

491

295

122

154

2007

121

599

830

578

334

128

147

2008

106

679

887

661

366

118

143

Bankrupts by age, Stockport

Age group1

Under 25

25-34

35-44

45-54

55-64

65 and over

Unknown

2000

1

12

30

24

4

3

9

2001

0

23

29

12

9

0

13

2002

2

11

21

17

10

1

12

2003

5

13

40

25

14

4

7

2004

3

30

31

38

12

6

10

2005

9

40

50

37

17

8

7

2006

13

66

65

41

27

9

8

2007

13

50

77

74

18

13

13

2008

6

62

95

67

40

7

9

1 Where the bankrupt has provided a valid postcode (increasing from 88 per cent. of cases in 2000 to 97 per cent. in 2008).

Banks: Loans

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many banks (a) received information on and (b) are operating the Working Capital Guarantee Scheme; how much capital has been loaned to businesses under the scheme to date; and how many businesses have received financial assistance under the scheme. (275879)

[holding answer 15 May 2009]: The Department sent a mini prospectus to the British Banking Association who circulated it to its members. The Working Capital Scheme is not directly available to businesses; however, £2 billion of guarantees have been provided to banks under the scheme to free up regulatory capital for new lending to UK companies. As a result of action by the Government and the regulatory authorities leading to improvements in the capital position of the UK banking system since the introduction of the WCS, the Government have been able to allocate resource provision for the WCS to other measures to support businesses, including as announced at the Budget 2009 a trade credit insurance ‘top-up’ scheme and a possible new letters of credit scheme in the Export Credit Guarantee Department.

Banks: Meetings

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills for what reasons no minutes were taken of the meetings between his Department’s officials and Ministers which took place on 13, 16, 20 and 31 October and 11 December 2008 at which the proposed merger between Lloyds TSB and HSBOS was discussed; and what his Department’s policy is on the minuting of meetings between (a) his Department’s officials and Ministers and (b) his Department’s Ministers or officials and private or public companies. (291361)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: The purpose of these meetings was to enable the relevant Ministers and officials to consider the substantive issues raised by this case and to ensure the Secretary of State was in a position to take properly informed final decisions in accordance with his statutory duties under the Enterprise Act 2002. No summary of outcomes from the meetings was required to ensure action was taken forward. Ministers had the appropriate material and relevant officials at the meetings. The conclusions reached are reflected either in the subsequent actions taken, advice to Ministers about the next steps, or are otherwise set out in public statements such as the final decision document which seeks to provide a clear summary of the reasons behind the decision. The Department does not have a specific policy on taking minutes of meetings though there is a general requirement to keep an appropriate record of all departmental business.

Broadband: Rural Areas

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what plans his Department has to increase the availability of cable broadband in the rural areas of (a) North Yorkshire and (b) England; and if he will make a statement. (291697)

The cable broadband network in the UK is owned and provided by Virgin Media. It is a commercial decision for them whether they should extend this network. However, the Government are working to implement the key broadband recommendations made in the Digital Britain Report to improve the UK's communications infrastructure, namely around the universal service commitment to broadband and Next Generation broadband.

The Universal Service Commitment will ensure the possibility of universal broadband access to virtually all UK homes and businesses at a speed of at least 2Mbps by 2012. The Network Design and Procurement Group will be responsible for the procurement and delivery of the universal service commitment, and will be established by the autumn. Those currently unable to receive a service will be given priority.

The Government are also working to set up the Next Generation Fund to help pay for upgrading the UK telecoms infrastructure, which will help to incentivise the delivery of next generation broadband to the home or business premises in the final third of the UK that the market will not deliver to.

Business Link

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many businesses have requested and been refused a Business Link health check. (291256)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: The RDAs have no record of any business that has requested a Business Link health check having had their request refused for the whole period since such health checks began.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many Business Link employees attended the Beijing Olympics in July 2008 in an official capacity. (291259)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: No Business Link employee who was directly employed in the provision of the Business Link service, by RDAs and their Business Link Providers, travelled to Beijing to attend the Beijing Olympics in July 2008 in their capacity as a Business Link employee.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many Business Link employees carry out business health checks. (291260)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: The number of Business Link employees who carry out health checks as part of their role is shown in the following table.

Name of RDA

Number of Business Link employees who currently carry out business health checks

AWM

63

EEDA

80

EM DA

94

LDA

49

NWDA

134

ONE

93

SEEDA

162

SWRDA

86

YF

133

Business Links: Finance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what the budget for Business Links is for (a) 2009-10, (b) 2010-11 and (c) 2011-12. (285068)

For the period 2007-08, an estimate of the budget for Business Link allocated by the regional development agencies was £190 million. No forward budget is agreed with the RDAs for this activity. Business Link services are funded from the Government’s single-pot to the regional development agencies to deliver agreed core services to businesses in each region. The exact budget for those contracted services is left for each RDA to determine based on what is appropriate for its region.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much (a) each regional development agency and (b) his Department allocated to Business Link in each of the last five years. (289830)

In 2005, responsibility for managing Business Link face-to-face services was transferred to the RDAs. The previous budget used to deliver Business Link services was added to the Department's contribution towards the RDA "Single-Pot". This allows the regions to draw down as much or as little funding as they see fit to deliver the service in their areas.

Over the last five years, the RDAs have allocated the following budgets to their Business Link providers:

BL funding over period 2005-10

£ million

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-10

NWRDA

17.8

17.8

14.1

16.5

22.1

ONENE

14.1

14.1

12.9

12.9

15.8

AWM

27.2

24.8

22.8

35.2

34.2

EMDA

20.3

14.4

13.0

13.7

18.6

EEDA

15.7

15.5

15.8

16.0

16.2

Y&H

£13.0

13.0

13.0

13.0

17.8

LDA

£23.7

23.8

19.4

26.7

26.6

SWRDA

24.6

24.6

19.6

19.9

25.8

SEEDA

24.0

24.0

24.0

24.0

30.1

Business Links: Manpower

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many business advisers have been employed by Business Link in each of the last 36 months. (289829)

In the context of the question posed, ‘business advisers’ have been defined as including face-to-face business (link) advisers delivering services under the Business Link brand; that may include functional/sector specialists but not those operating under other service brands e.g. MAS. Internal/telephone based support or partnership staff have not been included.

From 1 April, skills brokerage for Train to Gain was integrated with the Business Link service, accounting for the significant increase in Business Link adviser numbers this year.

Comprehensive national data can only be provided from April 2008 by which time all RDAs had re-contracted to the current network of Business Link providers. Some of the regional data for prior months was held by former Business Link providers and it would be disproportionate cost to collect this information.

Month

Number of Business Link advisers

April 2008

747

May 2008

748

June 2008

744

July 2008

776

August 2008

804

September 2008

829

October 2008

830

November 2008

835

December 2008

841

January 2009

854

February 2009

855

March 2009

854

April 2009

1021

May 2009

1030

June 2009

1038

July 2009

1051

August 2009

1160

September 2009

1166

Business: Government Assistance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much lending has been guaranteed under the Working Capital Scheme. (260555)

£2 billion of guarantees have been provided to banks under the Working Capital Scheme to free up regulatory capital for new lending to UK companies. As a result of action by the Government and the regulatory authorities, leading to improvements in the capital position of the UK banking system since the introduction of the WCS, the Government have been able to allocate resource provision for the WCS to other measures to support businesses, including as announced at the Budget 2009 a trade credit insurance top up scheme and a possible new letters of credit scheme in the Export Credit Guarantee Department.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many small businesses in England have received assistance from his Department in the last 12 months. (273299)

Business Link is the Department’s main channel of support businesses of all sizes. In the 12 months to end June 2009, advisers helped over 930,800 businesses, with over 76,000 receiving intensive one-to-one support. The businesslink.gov.uk website attracted around 11.2 million visitors in the same period.

Examples of other specific assistance received by small and medium sized enterprises from BIS and its predecessors include:

In 2008/09, UK Trade and Investment activities assisted 20,700 individual companies to exploit opportunities in overseas markets.

The Enterprise Finance Guarantee, which up to 21 August 2009 has offered loans totalling over £470 million to over 4,600 businesses.

The Technology Strategy Board has supported various collaborative R&D projects and knowledge transfer activities:

Nearly 1,000 SMEs have received grants for collaborative R&D projects worth over £25 million in the 12 month to June 2009.

Over 760 SMEs have received support for Knowledge Transfer Partnerships totalling over £18 million in the 12 months to July 2009.

In addition 57,000 are members of our Knowledge Transfer Networks of which a proportion are SMEs.

Skill support to SMEs through Train to Gain. Provisional information for 2008/09 shows that within the academic year 100,000 SMEs have had an employee start a Train to Gain course.

The annual reports for BERR and DIUS describe the other forms of business support provided more fully in 2008/09.

Business Link is the Department’s main channel of support businesses of all sizes. In the 12 months to end June 2009, advisers helped over 930,800 businesses, with over 76,000 receiving intensive one-to-one support. The businesslink.gov.uk website attracted around 11.2 million visitors in the same period.

Examples of other specific assistance received by small and medium sized enterprises from BIS and its predecessors include:

In 2008/09, UK Trade and Investment activities assisted 20,700 individual companies to exploit opportunities in overseas markets.

The Enterprise Finance Guarantee, which up to 21 August 2009 has offered loans totalling over £470 million to over 4,600 businesses.

The Technology Strategy Board has supported various collaborative R&D projects.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much funding his Department and its predecessors allocated for the development of small businesses in (a) Mid Bedfordshire constituency and (b) the East of England in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. (280099)

East of England Development Agency (EEDA) funds a range of services to support businesses in the East of England.

Since 2007 EEDA has invested over £30 million annually on a range of services to support businesses from all sectors across the region. This includes the regional Business Link service, specific business support schemes and business finance grants for eligible businesses.

The following information identifies funding for these services.

Note:

Not all of these schemes were in place 10 years ago, therefore funding will be provided as far back as possible. EEDA was not created until 1999; and has only been operating significant business support schemes since 2007.

Business Support Programmes

From 1 April 2007 EEDA has provided £32 million of funding to Business Link East to deliver the service across the region. From 2008/09 Business Link has interacted with 108,391 businesses in the East of England of which 1,416 have been in mid Bedfordshire. Since October 2008 around 8,000 free ‘health checks’ have been delivered in the region.

For the period of 2005-08 EEDA has funded the Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) East to the value of £3.4 million and has awarded a further £3.3 million between 2008-11. Bedfordshire businesses, during the period November 2005-October 2008, received £163,680 worth of business support. 104 companies received a basic one-day review through the MAS-east programme. Of these, nineteen companies also received a full implementation programme resulting in 32 projects which generated gross value added of £613,852.00.

EEDA’s Take ITon campaign assists businesses to improve use of IT, focused on helping SMEs save cost through IT. Since December 2007 the regional programme has totalled 347 grants, investing £1,105,508.01 to leverage a total of £3,227,784.06. Mid Bedfordshire Take ITon has funded a total of 11 grants, investing £32,440 and leveraging in a total of £99,166.50.

£2.2 million has funded a regional response to redundancy programme which has supported companies across the region and in Mid Bedfordshire.

Business Finance Schemes:

EEDA has operated a number of business finance schemes since 2003 such as Grant for Research and Development, Proof of Concept funds, Grants for Business Investment. The amounts funded to date for the former county of Bedfordshire are:

£

Grant for Research and Development

18,177,981

Proof of Concept funds

346,217

For the former county of Bedfordshire funding totalled £20,845,345 which has been matched against further investment of £134,067,981.

In May 2009 EEDA launched an Understanding Finance for Business Programme which provides coaching and mentoring to SMEs.

EEDA launched a £5 million Regional Loan Fund in May 2009, aimed at supporting innovative SMEs in early growth prior to attracting venture capital funding.

EEDA is also promoting Olympic opportunities to businesses through CompeteFor, a web based portal. So far 9612 businesses have registered in the region and of those 573 are in Bedfordshire.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much funding his Department and its predecessors allocated to the development of information technology businesses in (a) Mid Bedfordshire constituency and (b) the East of England in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. (280100)

East of England Development Agency funds a range of services to support businesses from all sectors across the region. This includes the regional Business Link service, specific business support schemes and business finance grants for eligible businesses.

Key examples of funding and support to IT businesses in the region, where possible, broken down by IT sector and location include:

Since December 2007 £76,561 has been provided through the TakeITon campaign for businesses to receive support for enhanced ICT. Of this, £9,980 in Bedfordshire and £1,980 in mid-Beds.

Since January 2001 EEDA has provided £4,305,127 in Business finance grants in the East of England and of this, £508,050 in Bedfordshire.1

1 Some of the above are grants to businesses under either the Grants for Business Investment (GBI) or Grant for Research and Development (GRaD) programmes. GBI, previously known as Selective Finance for Investment in England (SFIE), transferred to EEDA from the Small Business Service (SBS) in April 2002. GRaD transferred to EEDA from SBS in April 2005.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what support his Department is providing to UK companies which are developing low-carbon goods and services. (289850)

In July the Government published the Low Carbon Industrial Strategy which outlined the first investments from the £405 million for low carbon industries and advanced green manufacturing announced at Budget 2009. The strategy announced up to £60 million to capitalise on Britain’s wave and tidal sector strengths, up to £15 million capital investment in order to establish a Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, up to £10 million for the accelerated deployment of electric vehicle charging infrastructure, a £4 million expansion of the Manufacturing Advisory Service, up to £6 million to construct low carbon affordable homes and up to £120 million to support the development of a British based offshore wind industry. Copies of the strategy are available in the Libraries of the House.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many businesses have received money from the Capital for Enterprise Scheme; and how much money has been provided in total under the scheme to date. (291223)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: The Capital for Enterprise Fund (CFEF) provides a total commitment of £75 million, made up of £50 million in public funds and agreement in principle to an additional £25 million from the main banks (Lloyds, Barclays, HSBC and RBS).

As from 10 September 2009, CFEF has made 26 offers totalling almost £40 million to 26 businesses. Two of these deals have completed so far with a total value of £3 million.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what the criteria are for small and medium-sized enterprises to receive funding from the Capital for Enterprise Fund (CEF); when businesses were first able to apply for funding from the CEF; when the CEF made its first payment; what the (a) total and (b) average monetary value of payments from the CEF has been to date; how many businesses have received funding from the CEF; what steps his Department has taken to promote the CEF to small and medium-sized businesses; and what target time has been established for the CEF to determine applications. (291810)

The Capital for Enterprise Fund (CfEF) makes investments of between £200,000 and £2 million of equity and mezzanine finance. The investment is aimed at releasing and sustaining the growth potential of businesses that are over-geared, under-capitalised or both. To apply, all applicants must have their principal place of business within the UK or be able to demonstrate why an investment will be of tangible benefit to the UK. Additionally, all applications must meet the EU definition of an SME.

CfEF was announced as part of the Real Help Now programme on 14 January and businesses were able to register their applications for the fund immediately through a dedicated registration service. Following an appointment process the contracted Fund Managers were able to start processing these in March.

As at 22 September five businesses had received investment from the CfEF totalling £6.15 million at an average of £ 1.23 million per deal. The first investment was completed on 31 July.

The Department has marketed the CfEF to businesses as part of the wider programme of support through Real Help, in particular through Business Link and using national and regional promotional activity which includes sources of communications used by the main business representative bodies to their members. The CfEF Fund Managers have also produced a promotional flyer which is distributed to businesses through their network of professional bodies.

As a commercial fund the investment process for CfEF involves a period of due diligence and negotiation, which involves the fund manager and potential investee company and often existing investors and lenders to the business. The length of time required to complete this can vary significantly in each case and there is no formal target time between an application and investment, although the managers are working to progress investments as quickly as possible.

Business: Regulation

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent estimate his Department has made of the cost to UK businesses of the administrative burden of regulation. (290233)

In May 2005, the administrative cost of regulations was measured using the internationally recognised Standard Cost Model. The measurement exercise included 19 Government Departments, regulators and agencies. The burden was estimated at £13.2 billion annually. The Government have committed to reduce administrative burdens associated with complying with regulations by 25 per cent. net by May 2010. As at December 2008, an estimated £1.9 billion net annual savings had been delivered.

Calman Commission

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills whether he has received representations from (a) the CBI, (b) British Chambers of Commerce and (c) other business organisations on the potential effects of the implementation of the Calman Commission proposals on business costs. (289812)

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has not received any representations from the CBI, the British Chambers of Commerce or any other business organisations on the potential effects of the implementation of the Calman Commission proposals on business costs.

Companies House

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many customers of Companies House (a) were contacted for the purposes of and (b) responded to its customer satisfaction survey in each of the last four years. (289816)

The information is as follows:

(a) Prior to January 2008 Companies House issued paper customer surveys covering Companies House Direct, E-Filing, the Contact Centre and also a general survey (which was also available on the Companies House website). Approximately 25,000 were sent each year.

Since January 2008 the customer surveys have been completely electronic and the paper survey is no longer issued. Approximately 60,000 were sent out each year to our WebFiling, Software Filing, Companies House Direct and WebCHeck customers. A customer survey is also available to complete on our website and the Contact Centre survey is included as a link on every e-mail sent out by the Contact Centre.

(b) The number of Companies House customer survey responses are as follows. Unfortunately due to software changes there are no statistics available for the year 2005-06.

Responses

2006-07

8,798

2007-08

7,775

2008-09

9,975

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills at what times of the day the Companies House WebCHeck website is available. (289941)

Companies House: Correspondence

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many letters from hon. Members the Chief Executive of Companies House received in each of the last four years. (289815)

The number of letters received by the chief executive of Companies House from hon. Members in each of the last four years is as follows:

2005: 38 letters

2006: 55 letters

2007: 54 letters

2008: 60 letters.

Companies House: Manpower

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many employees of Companies House were absent from work for (a) no, (b) one to five, (c) six to 10, (d) 11 to 15 and (e) more than 15 days in each of the last four years. (289923)

The total absence figures of employees of Companies House from work from 2006 to 2008 are listed as follows and have been calculated by adding individual employees absence for each year. The figures for 2005 are not available due to a systems problem.

Number of employees

Number of days

2006

2007

2008

(a) 0

405

140

246

(b) 1-5

481

466

447

(c) 6-10

139

191

189

(d) 11-15

54

70

72

(e) 16+

155

190

160

Construction

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent assessment he has made of levels of productivity in the engineering construction sector. (289920)

Mark Gibson, now chief executive of the Whitehall and Business Group is currently leading a review of productivity and skills in the engineering construction sector.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what estimate he has made of the monetary value of engineering construction contracts lost to UK companies as a result of (a) low productivity levels and (b) industrial action in the last five years. (289950)

Information relating to the securing of individual contracts in a particular sector, including engineering construction, is not collected by Government. The award of engineering construction contracts is a business matter for the parties concerned, and the various award criteria are commercial issues for the private sector clients involved.

Construction Clearing House: Apprentices

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (1) pursuant to the answer of 13 July 2009, Official Report, column 191W, on the Construction Clearing House, what steps the Construction Clearing House has taken to ensure that construction apprenticeship places which are at risk of redundancy are not lost; and if he will make a statement; (289778)

(2) how many times the Construction Clearing House Committee has met since its establishment; and who the members are of that committee.

The service operated by Construction Skills provides a helpline offering advice and support for employers, apprentices and parents to help redundant apprentices find alternative employment and help support those whose job is at risk. Construction Skills also actively seek new employers for displaced apprentices to complete their Apprenticeship framework. This service is now available to all training providers delivering Apprenticeships in construction. Additional funding has recently been made available to Construction Skills to provide employers with a £1,000 grant to help with the costs of employing a displaced apprentice. These arrangements are in addition to the contractual requirement on all training providers to help apprentices find alternative employment if they lose their job. The National Apprenticeships Service (NAS) introduced new flexibilities earlier in the year to help ensure apprentices can continue in training to complete their Apprenticeship.

The clearing house arrangements are not directly overseen by a committee; they are managed as part of the operational responsibilities of Construction Skills and NAS.

Construction Task Force

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills pursuant to the answer of 13 July 2009, Official Report, column 191W, on Construction Task Force, (1) if he will list the membership of the Construction Task Force, and on how many occasions the Construction Task Force has met since its inception; (290219)

(2) what recent steps the Construction Task Force has taken to ensure the security of apprenticeship places in the construction industry; and if he will make a statement.

The Construction Apprenticeships Task Force membership comprised:

Construction apprenticeships task force

Member

Simon Waugh

National Apprenticeship Service

James Wates

Wates Group

Alan Ritchie

Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians

John Thompson

Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians

Tom Wilson

Trade Union Congress

Bob Blackman

Unite

Tom Kelly

GMB Union

Frank Horan

College of North West London

Ian Billyard

Leeds College of Building

Susan Forsyth

Chichester College

Keith Donnelly

Carillion Plc

Geoff Green

Greenwood services

George Fraser

ROK Group

Nicholas Fowler

Denne Construction

Geoff Lister

Federation of Master Builders

Mark Farrar

Construction Skills, Sector Skills Council

Representatives from the Department, the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Homes and Communities Agency also attended by invitation. The Task Force met four times between November 2008 and April 2009. The group considered the impact of the economic downturn and its effect on the Construction labour market and agreed actions on a number of issues affecting Apprenticeships in the industry. Key recommendations were on public sector procurement and support for displaced construction apprentices. On procurement we continue to work across Government and in the industry to implement the specific construction commitment set out in the pre-Budget report, 2008 and the task force provided structured input into this process. Progress includes commitments to create new apprenticeship places through the Department of Children’s Schools and Families’ Building Schools for the Future programme, from the Olympic Delivery Authority on the Olympic Park and Village site, and through the Homes and Communities Agency’s £5 billion annual investment budget. For displaced apprentices the Construction Matching Service has sought new jobs for apprentices, and offered advice and support for employers, apprentices and parents through a national helpline. The Task Force also looked at the role of trade unions and medium-to-long term strategies for expanding apprenticeships in the sector, these wider issues will be taken forward through the Cross-Industry Construction Apprenticeship Task Force which advises Government on Apprenticeship issues affecting the sector.

Construction: Apprentices

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent discussions he has had with (a) the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families and (b) representatives of the engineering construction industry on increasing the number of young people pursuing careers in that sector. (289924)

Like other engineering-related sectors, the engineering construction industry offers attractive career opportunities, but shares challenges in attracting employees for the future. In this regard, there are ongoing discussions at ministerial, and official levels on issues that directly impact on engineering construction. A programme of actions is being taken forward by Government, in conjunction with the sector skills councils and the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board, to address these matters. The Diploma in Construction and the Built Environment, and the Diploma in Engineering, were launched in September 2008, with the aim of introducing young people to the world of working in these industries. This Government are also committed to a significant growth in apprenticeships. That is why funding for apprentices has been increased by almost a quarter since 2007/08 to over £1 billion in 2009/10.

Construction: Industrial Disputes

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent assessment he has made of trends in industrial action in relation to the engineering construction sector. (289921)

The Department has not undertaken an assessment of trends in industrial action in the engineering construction sector.

Construction: Reviews

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what timetable he has set for completion of his Department’s review of productivity and skills in the engineering construction sector. (289922)

Corus: Loans

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills whether the £5 million loan to Corus announced on 25 June 2009 has been (a) partially or (b) fully drawn down by Corus; and whether any assurances relating to jobs in the UK have been received in return. (289832)

On 25 June, my noble Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills offered a £5 million training package to Corus. The offer was also discussed when the Prime Minister met with Kirby Adams, Chief Executive Officer of Corus on 16 July.

At present officials in BIS and the Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) are working with Corus to take forward the offer of assistance which will contribute to training the workforce, retain capacity in the UK and help the company through the downturn and to recover more strongly as economic conditions improve.

The training package will benefit Corus operations in the regions covered by Yorkshire Forward and ONE North East RDAs and will support apprenticeship and graduate training programmes and a range of training packages focused on Corus' shop floor workers.

Corus has provided assurances relating to the future of 3,000 employees and 1,000 contractors in the Yorkshire and Humber region and in excess of 1,200 employees and 500 contractors within the Tees Valley up to the end of 2010. It is planned that a significant proportion of the training support funding will be drawn down before the end of December 2009.

Departmental Advertising

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much his Department spent on newspaper advertising carried in each newspaper in the most recent year for which figures are available. (289515)

The former Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) spent £417,906 on press advertising via the Central Office of Information in 2008-09 as follows:

£

Agency Workers Campaign 2008-09

341,212

Employing People 2008-09

37,140

National Minimum Wage 2008-09

30,260

Dispute Resolution 2008-09

5,977

Trawlermen Compensation Scheme 2008-09

3,317

Total

417,906

In addition central financial records indicate that BERR spent £90,235 in 2008-09 through an advertising agency on advertising for external recruitment.

The former Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS) spent £208,137 on press advertising via the Central Office of Information in 2008-09 as below:

£

Higher Education Student Finance campaign 2008-09

58,560

Science Innovation Press Campaign 2008-09

149,577

Total

208,137

A breakdown of expenditure on newspaper advertising by title could be supplied only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much his Department has spent on advertising arising from its re-branding following machinery of Government changes in June 2009. (290081)

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has not done any advertising of the Department due to machinery of government changes.

Departmental Buildings

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills in which buildings in central London each of his Department’s units is located. (290264)

This Department has directorates based in the following buildings in central London:

1 Victoria Street, London SW1H OET

Kingsgate House, 66-74 Victoria Street, London SW1E 6SW

Departmental Dismissal

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many staff have (a) been dismissed and (b) had their contract terminated by his Department and its predecessors in each of the last five years; what the reason was in each case; and what the severance costs in relation to (i) dismissal and (ii) contract termination were in each such year. (290563)

Staff may be dismissed for poor performance, poor attendance, gross misconduct, repeated misconduct and the contract of employment terminated. Information for the Department and its predecessors in relation to dismissals is set out in the following table. Totals of less than five are suppressed on grounds of confidentiality.

Number of staff dismissed

2009-10 (to date)

Less than 5

2008-09

8

2007-08

14

2006-07

11

2005-06

15

Staff may also be dismissed in law when a fixed term contract terminates at the end of the contract period and is not renewed. These are not included.

Information about the costs of terminating contracts is not held in the format requested and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. Where the dismissal relates to either gross misconduct or repeated misconduct no severance cost payments are payable.

Departmental EC Law

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent estimate his Department has made of the annual cost to the economy arising from UK implementation of EU legislation. (290088)

It is very difficult to provide precise figures for the annual cost to the economy arising from UK implementation of legislation that stems from the European Union.

The administrative burdens measurement exercise carried out by the Government in 2006 put the proportion of administrative burdens stemming from the EU at approximately 1/3 of the annual total of 13.2 billion pounds.

Departmental Electronic Equipment

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many (a) mobile telephones, (b) Blackberries and (c) laptop computers were issued to staff of his Department and its predecessors in each of the last five years; and how many of these were issued to (i) new staff and (ii) existing staff following the (A) loss or (B) theft of a previous device. (290558)

The Department holds information only on the total number of Blackberry and laptop computers used by BIS staff during the requested period and the mobile telephone services held by ex BERR staff in 2008. The information available is presented in the following table.

Laptops in use

Laptops lost/stolen

Blackberries in use

Blackberries lost/stolen

Mobiles in use

Mobiles lost/stolen

2004

2,650

12

0

0

n/k

26

2005

2,500

14

60

3

n/k

11

2006

1,620

8

60

3

n/k

14

2007

2,163

8

539

14

n/k

2

2008

1,917

13

567

17

949

2

Departmental Flexible Working

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what flexi-time arrangements were available to staff of his Department and its predecessors in each of the last five years; and how many staff participated in such arrangements in each such year. (290565)

The information is as follows:

1. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills was created on 5 June, with the merger of BERR and DIUS.

2. Both staff on former BERR and DIUS terms and conditions have flexible working policies which enable staff to vary their conditioned hours, and support a work-life balance. The different ways to work flexibly include flexi-time, part-time, also compressed hours, term-times and home working. In addition staff can job share and have access to an internal job share register and the wider Civil Service Job Share Website.

3. The former Departments do not keep a central record of how many staff participate in such arrangements each year; flexible working is dealt with locally by line managers in accordance with the departmental policies. In the 2008 Staff Surveys, of the staff who responded to the survey 68 per cent. of former BERR and 66 per cent. of former DIUS staff said they worked flexibly.

Departmental ICT

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what IT systems have been in development for use within his Department in the last five years; what the reason for the development of each system was; how much has been spent on the development of each system; and which systems have been subsequently (i) implemented, (ii) terminated prior to implementation and (iii) terminated following implementation. (290559)

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills IT infrastructure systems are provided via long standing agreements with Fujitsu Services and cover desktop services, web infrastructure services and in some cases other business applications, which are charged for as part of the overall, bundled, service charge.

In the last five years the following systems have, however, been developed from scratch and the details requested are provided:

Flexible Computing

Reason for development: Provision of secure remote access services via Blackberries and mobile laptops

Development costs: £4.9 million

Lynx

Reason for development: Provision of a correspondence handling system

Development cost: £1.9 million

MATRIX 2

Reason for development: Upgrade to the Department's existing electronic document management system, (itself over five years old)

Development cost: £104,000

SPIRE

Reason for development: Provision of a range of electronic export control services

Development cost: £2.6 million

In all cases all systems were fully implemented and remain fully operational.

Departmental Industrial Accidents

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many workplace accidents have been reported in his Department in the last five months; and what the causes of each accident were. (290092)

Since its inception on 8 June, there have been eight workplace accidents recorded across the BIS estate related to departmental employees or contractors. The cause of each accident, all of which were relatively minor, was as follows:

1. Finger caught by spring loaded bin lid.

2. Bump on head following fall caused by an ongoing medical condition.

3. Bump on nose caused by front cover of a paper towel dispenser falling open.

4. Fall following standing on an office chair (two instances).

5. Contractor cut finger while replacing broken light fitting.

6. Injured back while moving a cabinet.

7. Struck knee while lifting an item of computer equipment into trolley bag.

Departmental Languages

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what proportion of members of his Department are recorded as having a second language. (290458)

This information is not held centrally and can be obtained only at disproportionate cost. However, based on business demand, there are 19 civil servants in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills currently receiving language training from our preferred supplier.

Departmental Manpower

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many members of staff in his Department have been required to move office in changes arising from the most recent departmental reorganisation; and how many of these had been required to move office in changes arising from the previous reorganisation. (290090)

Since the creation of BIS we have moved Ministers and their private office staff, plus Press Office staff. In total, we have moved 46 staff. We have also moved 170 policy officials within our two London buildings, although these were simply people moves rather than structural changes.

Moving ex DIUS staff into 1 Victoria Street was already planned before the merger between DIUS and BERR to create BIS. None of these moves were required at the previous MOG, when DECC was created and ex BERR staff moved from 1 Victoria Street to 3 Whitehall Place.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what proportion of staff in his Department joined his Department or its predecessors after working in the private sector. (290095)

We do not record this information nor hold it centrally. It could only be made available at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many members of his Department are suspended from their duties; and for what reasons. (290097)

We are unable to supply details of suspensions as authority to suspend staff is delegated to line managers throughout the Department and a central record is not maintained.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what estimate he has made of the average length of employment of staff of his Department and its predecessors at each Civil Service payband. (290561)

The average length of employment of ex-DIUS staff is shown in the following table as at 31 March.

Pay band

Years

EA

8.1

EO

8.8

HEO

7.9

SEO

9.1

G7

8.1

G6

6.8

Directors, directors general and above

3.4

The average length of employment of ex-BERR staff is shown in the following table as at 31 March.

Pay band

Years

AA

8.2

AO

19.2

EO

18.2

HEO

10.9

SEO

21.0

G6

12.7

G7.

17.9

Directors, directors general and above

11.6

Departmental Marketing

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills with reference to the answer of 26 November 2008, Official Report, column 1935W, on departmental marketing, how many staff in his Department have responsibility for branding activity; and what the cost of employing such staff was in 2008-09. (290215)

The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) had one member of staff responsible for managing the Department’s brand. This included the publication and dissemination of the brand guidelines and advising on their application. It is estimated that 25 per cent. of this person’s time was spent on branding-related activities. Based on the average pay costs for a member of staff at this grade, this represents a staff cost of approximately £11,653 in 2008/09.

The Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS) had one member of staff responsible for managing the Department’s brand. It is estimated that 25 per cent. of this person’s time was spent on branding-related activities. The total staff cost on branding was approximately £6,300 in 2008/09.

Departmental Meetings

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills whether (a) the Secretary of State, (b) Ministers in his Department and (c) officials have met representatives of (i) Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd, (ii) Eastern Petroleum Corporation Ltd, (iii) African Minerals Ltd, (iv) Landis+Gyr and (v) Energy Enterprises Ltd in the last three years. (289937)

Officials from UK Trade and Investment have met with representatives from Landis & Gyr in the last three years. Neither Ministers nor officials have met with Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd., Eastern Petroleum Corporation Ltd., African Minerals Ltd. or Energy Enterprises Ltd.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what stocktake meetings his Department has had with the Prime Minister's Delivery Unit in the last 12 months. (289942)

The Prime Minister’s delivery unit is in constant contact with Departments as part of its process of taking stock of delivery. It reports regularly to the PM, the Treasury and the Departments concerned.

Departmental Motor Vehicles

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much his Department spent on hire vehicles in each of the last five financial years. (291706)

The Department spent the following on hire vehicles (including leasing) in the last five financial years:

£

2004-05

709,714

2005-06

662,084

2006-07

574,068

2007-08

628,126

2008-09

673,781

Departmental Non-Domestic Rates

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many properties owned by the Department and its predecessors were liable for payment of (a) business rates and (b) empty property rates in each of the last five years; and what the bill for each was in each such year. (290566)

This Department owns only one building, situated in Edinburgh, which is fully occupied. This is a warehouse facility that is currently let to the British Geological Survey, part of the Natural Environment Research Council, and they are liable for the business rates bill. The building is let to them on a 10 year term which began in August 2005.

All other departmental buildings are leased.

Departmental Official Hospitality

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills with reference to the answer of 15 September 2008, Official Report, column 2111W, on departmental official hospitality, how much his Department spent on hospitality and entertainment in 2008-09. (290172)

Departmental Paternity Leave

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many staff took paternity leave from his Department and its predecessors in each of the last five years; and what the average length of such leave has been. (290564)

The information is as follows:

1. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills was created on 5 June 2009, with the merger of BERR and DIUS.

2. The former Departments did not keep a central record of how many staff took paternity leave. Paternity leave is dealt with locally by line managers in accordance with the departmental policies. The information can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

3. Paid paternity leave for former BERR staff is two weeks and for former DIUS staff is three weeks.

Departmental Pay

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what employee reward schemes are offered to staff of his Department and its predecessors; what the purpose of each scheme is; how many staff participate in each scheme; and what the cost of operating each scheme was in each of the last five years. (290567)

You will be aware that the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has only recently been created (6 June 2009) by merging the former Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) with the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS). BIS is still in the early stages of setting up its own systems and policies so I have provided you with the information you have requested based on the rewards paid by the former BERR and DIUS.

Ex-BERR and ex-DIUS has two common bonuses, while ex-BERR has three. Both Departments awards:

1. Non-consolidated performance pay and non-pay reward to recognise performance in particularly demanding tasks or situations. Staff in receipt of a special bonus may also receive an annual performance award. This award is open to all staff.

2. Annual Performance Awards paid to Highly Successful performance as part of the annual pay award.

3. In addition, BERR also awards Team Triumphs—Team Triumphs is an awards ceremony designed to recognise the achievements of teams in the Department. Any team can be nominated providing it has at least two members. Cost of this scheme comes out of non-consolidated performance pay and non-pay rewards pot.

The following tables show the number of staff receiving the awards, and the cost of the scheme.

Financial year1Non-consolidated performance pay2 (includes non-pay reward and Team Triumph)Performance awards

Number of staff receiving

Total value (£)

Number of staff receiving

Total value3 (£)

2008-09

1,218

586,631

2,930

2,240,592

2007-08

1,238

693,386

3,86

42,265,502

2006-07

919

491,669

1,286

2,532,180

2005-06

1,237

521,902

1,257

1,808,630

2004-05

1,261

498,592

1,274

1,563,180

1 Financial year running from 1 April to 31 March. 2 The non-consolidated performance pay and performance awards for non-SCS staff are paid on a non-consolidated, non-pensionable basis and do not increase the Department's paybill costs each year. For the SCS the Senior Salaries Review Body determines the level of expenditure to cover bonuses. 3 The total figure includes SCS staffs. 4 Includes staff who were transferred from DTI to DIUS as part of the June 2007 machinery of government changes as these staff received a DTI/BERR pay award in 2007. Does not include those staff transferred into BERR from Cabinet Office and the Department for Communities and Local Government as part of the June 2007 machinery of government changes as these staff received Cabinet Office and DCLG pay awards respectively in 2007. Note: In 2007-08 the total value of bonuses paid was approximately 1.5 per cent. of the total Department's paybill.

Table for DIUS

Financial year

Non-consolidated performance pay

Performance awards

Number of staff receiving

Total value (£)

Number of staff receiving

Total value (£)

2007-08

273

21,125

10

10

2008-09

201

13,855

216

459,615

1 The performance awards for 2007-08 was paid by both former Departments.

Departmental Recruitment

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what data his Department by his Department and its predecessor holds on the level of diversity in the recruitment of employees in each of the last three years. (290514)

The Department invites each candidate in individual recruitment exercises to complete a diversity monitoring questionnaire. The information from questionnaires is collated and monitored in order to assess the effectiveness of our advertising and recruitment processes and the workforce profile.

In line with the requirements in the public sector Employment Duties, the Department publishes annual reports covering our equality and diversity reporting responsibilities, including diversity data on applicants for employment. The annual reports for 2008 and 2009 are not yet available following machinery of Government changes and extracting the specified data alone at this stage would incur disproportionate cost.

Departmental Recycling

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what proportion of his Department’s waste was recycled in the latest period for which figures are available. (289660)

Since the inception of BIS on 8 June, the following amounts of waste have been recycled by this Department:

June—40,700 Kg (63.9 per cent. of total)

July—42,342 Kg (62.1 per cent. of total)

August—33,929 Kg (64.3 per cent. of total)

I would also refer the hon. Member to the previously published Sustainable Development in Government (SDiG) reports in which central Government Departments publicly reported on the data requested. The most recent report can be found at:

http://www.sd-commission.org.uk/sdiu2008/

Departmental Reorganisation

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills whether there have been any changes to the furnishings in offices of Ministers in his Department following the recent departmental reorganisation. (290226)

There have been no changes to the furnishings in offices occupied by Ministers in this Department following the recent departmental reorganisation. New Ministers have taken the furniture of departing Ministers.

Departmental Responsibilities

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills which Minister in his Department has been assigned responsibility for overseeing the delivery of value for money in his Department; whether his Department has established a public sector reform team to implement service reforms; and if he will make a statement. (289748)

In the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), I am the Minister responsible for overseeing the delivery of value for money. In addition, Lord Davies has responsibility for overseeing public service reform.

BIS is committed to ensuring that public services delivered to citizens and business are as efficient and effective as possible. There are specific staff leading a range of work on value for money, public service reform and public sector reform. They co-ordinate work across the Department and engage with partners and other Government Departments to drive change.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of assimilating Ministerial responsibility for skills into his Department. (290223)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Solihull (Lorely Burt) on 3 July 2009, Official Report, column 436W.

Departmental Secondment

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what proportion of staff in his Department have worked on attachment to the private sector. (290093)

We do not record this information nor hold it centrally. It could only be made available at disproportionate cost.

Departmental Training

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many external training courses were attended by staff of his Department and its predecessor in the last 12 months; and what the cost was of each course. (289677)

Training budgets are delegated to line managers to determine locally what external training will be funded. This information is not held centrally and can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what private sector training courses for Civil Service officials are available to staff in his Department with funding provided by his Department. (290096)

Training budgets are delegated to line managers to determine locally what private sector training is suitable and will be funded. This information is not held centrally and can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Departmental Travel

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much his Department and its predecessors spent on tickets for (a) air and (b) rail travel for (i) Ministers, (ii) special advisers and (iii) civil servants in his Department which were not used in each of the last three years. (280008)

In BIS the criteria for booking travel should be value for money, staff travelling on official business must take advantage of any cheap facilities which maybe available including restricted non refundable tickets wherever practical.

The Department does not separately record details of unused tickets by Ministers, special advisers and civil servants.

For the period April 2008 to March 2009 the total amount of tickets booked through our travel booking agents and refunded was:

£

Rail including Eurostar

146,325.71

Air

772,877.29

Details for previous years are not centrally recorded due to the number of Government changes to the Department to provide this information would entail disproportionate cost.

All expenditure is incurred in accordance with the principles of Managing Public Money and the Treasury handbook on Regularity and Propriety.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many journeys and at what cost the Secretary of State has made in a ministerial capacity by (a) airplane, (b) train, (c) helicopter and (d) car since October 2008; what class of travel was used for each airplane and train journey; and on what dates such journeys took place. (291678)

The Cabinet Office has published a list of all overseas visits undertaken by Ministers costing £500 or more during the period 1 April 2008 to 31 March 2009. The list provides details of the date, destination and purpose of all such visits and the cost of Ministers’ travel and accommodation where appropriate. Copies of the list have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

My right hon. and noble Friend the Secretary of State for Transport has published on 16 July 2009, Official Report, column 80WS, the number of and cost to Departments of the provision of allocated cars and drivers by the Government Car and Despatch Agency to Ministers during 2008-09.

All ministerial travel is undertaken in accordance with the Ministerial Code.

Draft Legislative Programme: Finance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on whether funding allocated to his Department is to be allocated to the Department for Communities and Local Government to help implement the housing policies announced in the Draft Legislative programme for 2009-10. (290484)

My noble Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills discussed the Department's £50 million contribution to the housing policies announced in the Draft Legislative programme with the chief secretary to the Treasury, as part of the process of publishing “Building Britain's Future.”

East of England Development Agency: Consultants

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills with reference to the answer of 1 May 2008, Official Report, column 574W, on the East of England Development Agency: Fishburn Hedges, what payments the East of England Development Agency has made to Fishburn Hedges since May 2008; and for what services each such payment was made. (289779)

Since May 2008, Fishburn Hedges have provided support to EEDA with specific public affairs services. This support includes legislative and policy updates, a parliamentary monitoring service, information and briefings, support on political visits and events, and parliamentary procedures. EEDA does not have sufficient capacity in house to manage all these areas of expertise.

Date

Total payment1

Service

May 2008

4,643.22

Public Affairs support

June 2008

4,555.00

Public Affairs support

July 2008

4,514.35

Public Affairs support

August 2008

4,565.95

Public Affairs support

September 2008

4,638.17

Public Affairs support

November 2008

15,384.07

Public Affairs support + support for business event

February 2009

18,629.25

Public Affairs support

March 2009

9,513.84

Public Affairs support

April 2009

9,471.47

Public Affairs support

May 2009

10,340.00

Public Affairs support

July 2009

5,421.35

Public Affairs support

August 2009

10,307.02

Public Affairs support

1 These figures are inclusive of VAT.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills pursuant to the answer of 10 June 2009, Official Report, column 924W, on the East of England Development Agency: public relations, and with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Tunbridge Wells of 1 May 2008, Official Report, columns 574W, on the East of England Development Agency: Fishburn Hedges, for what reason the payments made to Fishburn Hedges are not classified as payments for external advice on public relations. (289781)

The previous question asked how much EEDA has spent on ‘retaining external advice on public relations’.

By ‘retaining external advice on public relations’ EEDA interprets this as where a retainer contract is in place, with a monthly fee paid to an agency for public relations services. EEDA defines 'public relations services' as supporting EEDA's corporate communications. This is a function we manage in-house with a team of professionals. EEDA does not therefore 'retain' any agency to provide 'external advice on public relations’.

EEDA uses public relations agencies for specific projects where additional capacity is required.

Fishburn Hedges is a public affairs agency and EEDA uses them on a retainer basis to provide specific public affairs support services. This includes legislative and policy updates, a parliamentary monitoring service, information and briefings, support on political visits and events and support on parliamentary procedures. EEDA does not have sufficient capacity in house to provide all these areas of expertise.

Electrical Equipment: Waste Disposal

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills if he will take steps to reduce the administrative burden upon companies imposed by compliance with the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive; and if he will make a statement. (289404)

I am currently considering amendments to the waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) regulations with a view to reducing the administrative burdens on business. The Department issued a consultation paper in December 2008, outlining proposals to streamline the data reporting requirements, approval process for prospective producer compliance schemes and the introduction of a simplified system for recording evidence of the levels of WEEE collected and the recycling and recovery targets achieved.

I am hoping to introduce the amending regulations before Parliament later in the autumn with the new systems coming into effect from 1 January 2010.

Employment Tribunals Service

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many times his Department and its predecessors have been taken to an employment tribunal in each of the last five years; what the reason cited in each case was; and in how many cases the tribunal found in favour of the (a) the employee and (b) the Department. (290562)

The Department and its predecessors have defended 28 claims for the financial years 2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09, some of which were for multiple reasons.

The reasons cited in the claims filed were:

Age discrimination

Breach of contract

Constructive dismissal

Disability discrimination

Equal pay

Gender

Race discrimination

Unfair dismissal

Unfair selection for redundancy.

Of the 28 claims:

Two claims are still outstanding

14 claims were withdrawn

Eight claims were found in favour of the Department

Four claims were upheld by the tribunal.

Information for 2005-06 and 2006-07 financial years could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Further details on the above cases are suppressed on grounds of confidentiality.

EU Membership

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent estimate his Department has made of the annual regulatory cost to the economy arising from UK membership of the EU. (290089)

It is very difficult to provide precise figures for the annual regulatory cost to the economy arising from UK membership of the European Union.

The administrative burdens measurement exercise carried out by the Government in 2006 put the proportion of administrative burdens stemming from the EU at approximately one third of the annual total of £13.2 billion.

Export Credit Guarantees: Maldives

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what the debt owed to the Export Credits Guarantee Department by the Maldives was (a) in each of the last five years and (b) on the most recent date for which information is available; whether he plans to write off outstanding debt owed by the Maldives; what recent representations he has received on this matter; and if he will make a statement. (289609)

There are no outstanding debts to ECGD from the Malvides, and ECGD has not written off any Maldives debt.

I have not received any recent representations on this issue.

Exports: Government Assistance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what programmes to support exporters his Department has announced in the last year; and what further options to support exporters his Department is considering. (292122)

UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) is the Government organisation that helps UK-based companies to succeed in an increasingly global economy and maximise their international success.

UKTI’s trade development services for exporters aim to help develop their international trade potential and provide access to international markets. Further details on these services can be found on UKTI’s website at:

www.uktradeinvest.gov.uk

Specific examples of the help made available by UKTI in the last 12 months include the 12 March 2009 announcement of the “Gateway to Global Growth” programme to provide specialist, tailored advice and support for British companies to help them improve and extend their exporting experience, and the 2009 Budget announcement of £10 million of the Strategic Investment Fund being channelled into UKTI, to be spent on events to promote UK sector expertise both in the UK and abroad. The funds are available to help UK businesses better showcase their strengths to overseas customers and markets and form part of the Government's New Industry New Jobs strategy.

A raft of wider Government assistance for UK business has been made available through BIS in various initiatives over the past year and details can be found at:

www.businesslink.gov.uk

My noble Friend the Secretary of State for BIS announced the creation of the Advisory Panel on New Industry, New Jobs, Universities and Skills on 31 July. Looking forward, this panel will help generate ideas across the whole of the Government’s New Industry, New Jobs agenda, challenging conventional policy thinking in these areas.

Forgemasters: Sheffield

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps his Department is taking to assist Sheffield Forgemasters to invest in a new press for ultra-heavy forgings; when he expects the decision to invest to be announced; and if he will make a statement. (289347)

The Government have received an application for investment by Sheffield Forgemasters International Limited, for the development of a production facility for ultra heavy forgings. This is being considered under the Industrial Development Act. As yet no decision has been taken.

Further Education

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many of the 10,000 additional places on science, technology, engineering and mathematics courses announced by his Department on 20 July 2009 will be taken up at each higher education institution at the start of the academic year 2009-10. (291632)

On 23 July we announced that student support would be made available for 10,000 additional places on science, technology, engineering and mathematics courses.

The 10,000 places were allocated to institutions by HEFCE according to their share of full-time undergraduates that entered in 2007-08 to priority subjects identified by Government. Where institutions indicated to HEFCE that they were unable to take up their share of places they were redistributed pro-rata across the sector.

More details on the final allocation of the 10,000 additional places are available on the HEFCE website at the following link:

http://www.hefce.ac.uk/pubs/circlets/2009/c117_09/

Further Education: Government Assistance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent steps the Government has taken to provide financial assistance to those entering further education. (291296)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: There is a range of financial assistance to learners entering further education. Learners on priority provision, as well as those in receipt of income-related benefits, are not required to pay a fee for learning.

Adult learners (aged 19 plus) can apply for the Adult Learning Grant which pays up to £30 per week to those on low incomes undertaking full-time learning for their first full Level 2 or first full Level 3 qualification. Education maintenance allowance (EMA) of up to £30 per week is available to eligible l6-19 year olds participating in learning that meets the EMA eligibility criteria.

Colleges are allocated discretionary funding to help students aged 20 and over meet childcare costs. Learners under the age of 20 can apply for help with childcare costs through Care to Learn. Discretionary Learner Support Funds are also available for learners over the age of 16 experiencing financial hardship.

Learners can also apply for loans. Since July 2009, students have been able to apply for Professional and Career Development Loans (P and CDLs). These build on the successful Career Development Loans programme and offer more generous terms for students with loans up to £10,000 and lower interest rates.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how much Government funding was made available for further education in the academic year 2008-09. (291297)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: Expenditure by the former Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS) on adult further education (FE) and skills for 2008-09 was £4.852 billion. This is based on expected outturn data as reported in the 2009 departmental report (July 2009).

The majority of funding is routed through the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) and supports adult participation through the Adult Learner Responsive route, Employer Responsive route (Train to Gain and Apprenticeships), and Adult Safeguarded Learning.

Some of the resource expended by DIUS supported the wider FE sector including the pre 19 age group, in the role which DIUS had as sponsor of the FE service.

Haulage: Government Assistance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what support his Department has provided to the haulage industry during the economic downturn. (291682)

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills does not provide any specific support for the haulage sector. However, we have taken steps to help improve cash flow, to increase the availability of the credit businesses need, and to encourage investment so that businesses come through the recession ready to grow.

In particular, we obtained bank lending commitments from RBS and Lloyds to lend £27 billion additional lending to businesses this year. This includes lending guaranteed under the Working Capital Scheme.

In addition, we introduced a trade credit insurance top-up scheme which provides protections for firms suffering a reduction in cover.

We have also taken steps to assist small businesses to overcome short-term cash-flow problems—for example the enterprise finance guarantee and also measures to ensure prompt payment by both public and private sectors.

In October 2008, Business Link introduced a health check service from which 2,394 businesses in the transport, storage and communications sector have benefited.

Higher Education

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many additional student number places funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England there will be (a) in total and (b) for full-time, first year undergraduates in 2010-11. (291617)

In his letter of 6 May the then Secretary of State informed HEFCE that up to 10,000 additional student numbers (ASN) could be awarded in 2010-11, with that figure to be finally confirmed in the next annual grant letter. At this stage in the cycle of negotiations with institutions it is not possible to determine the breakdown of those places.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (1) what proportion of university students who started their course in each year since 1997 had parents in the (a) A, (b) B, (c) C1, (d) C2, (e) D and (f) E social grouping; (292127)

(2) what proportion of students from Cornwall who started a higher education course in each year since 1997 had parents in the (a) A, (b) B, (c) C1, (d) C2, (e) D and (f) E social grouping.

The latest information on socio-economic classification from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) is shown in the table. Parental socio-economic classification information is self-reported by entrants aged under 21, therefore figures are restricted to this group of entrants. This information should be regarded with caution due to the high proportion of students who fail to report their parents’ occupations, or who provide incomplete or imprecise information. Figures prior to 2002/03 are not comparable due to the change from social class to socio-economic classification.

Figures for the 2008/09 academic year will be available in January 2010.

Full-time undergraduate entrants by local authority and socio-economic classification, UK higher education institutions1, academic years 2002/03 to 2007/08

Academic year

Local authority

Higher managerial and professional occupations

Lower managerial and professional occupations

Intermediate occupations

Small employers and own account workers

Lower supervisory and technical occupations

2002/03

All entrants4

17

22

10

5

3

of which; Cornwall

14

24

9

8

4

2003/04

All entrants4

19

25

10

6

4

of which; Cornwall

15

24

11

9

5

2004/05

All entrants4

18

25

10

6

4

of which; Cornwall

14

24

9

8

5

2005/06

All entrants4

17

23

10

5

4

of which; Cornwall

13

23

9

8

5

2006/07

All entrants4

17

22

9

6

4

of which; Cornwall

12

25

10

9

5

2007/08

All entrants4

17

22

9

5

3

of which; Cornwall

14

24

9

10

5

Academic year

Local authority

Semi-routine occupations

Routine occupations

Never worked and long-term unemployed2

Missing/not classified

Total

2002/03

All entrants4

7

4

0

31

100

of which; Cornwall

7

4

0

30

100

2003/04

All entrants4

8

4

0

25

100

of which; Cornwall

9

3

0

24

100

2004/05

All entrants4

8

4

0

26

100

of which; Cornwall

8

4

0

28

100

2005/06

All entrants4

8

4

0

30

100

of which; Cornwall

8

4

0

30

100

2006/07

All entrants4

8

4

0

32

100

of which; Cornwall

9

4

0

26

100

2007/08

All entrants4

8

4

0

31

100

of which; Cornwall

9

4

0

24

100

1 Excludes the Open university due to inconsistencies in their coding of entrants across the time series.

2 Information is not comprehensively collected on the ‘never worked and long-term unemployed’ category for students: Students who fit this group are usually classed as having missing information.

3 Covers students whose socio-economic classification was missing or not classified: not classified includes occupations which were inadequately described, not classifiable or unstated.

4 Covers entrants of all domiciles.

Note:

Figures are based on a HESA standard registration population.

Source:

Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

Higher Education: Admissions

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what percentage of state school leavers entered Russell Group universities in 2008. (290373)

It is estimated that 6 per cent. of young people who were in English maintained schools and aged 15 at the start of academic year 2002/03, progressed to HE at a Russell group institution by the age of 19 (in 2006/07). Figures for 2007/08 will be available in 2010.

This figure has been calculated using matched data from the National Pupil Database, the Higher Education Statistics Agency student record and the Learning and Skills Council individualised learner record.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what estimate he has made of the number of university applicants who fail to secure a place for entry who will be unemployed and claiming benefits in 2009. (290482)

As of 27 August, one week after A-level results day, UCAS figures show that of those who applied for a university course this year, 151,280 UK domiciled students had not yet secured a place, though many more students will secure places before provisional acceptance figures are published on 21 October. Of these, 39,347 had a non-clearing outcome pending, 105,967 were eligible to enter clearing and 5,966 had withdrawn from the scheme completely.

For those who do not secure a place at university through the UCAS main scheme or in clearing there are several options available. For example, this year we expect there to be 250,000 young people starting an apprenticeship. We have recently announced an extra 47,000 youth jobs supported by the Future Jobs Fund for young people who are unable to find work or training within a year.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many young people entered (a) further and (b) higher education in the last 12 months. (291295)

[holding answer 16 September 2009]: Information on the number of young people participating in further education is given in a statistical first release, the last version being published on 25 June 2009:

http://www. thedataservice.org.uk/statistics/sfriun09

In 2007-08, the latest year for which full-year figures are available, 1,055,600 learners aged under 19 participated in further education (excluding school sixth forms). Provisional figures for the 2008-09 academic year will be available in October 2009. In 2007-08, the latest year for which figures are available, 301,055 students aged under 21 entered English Higher Education Institutions. Figures for the 2008-09 academic year will be available in January 2010.

Notes for further education figure:

1. Source: FE, WBL, UFI and ACL ILR data—coverage: England.

2. This figure has been rounded to the nearest hundred.

3. This figure is based on age as at 31 August of the academic year. The common definition used for “young people” in further education is Under 19.

4. This figure includes participation in FE (General Further Education Colleges including Tertiary, Sixth Form Colleges, Special College—Agricultural and Horticultural Colleges and Art and Design Colleges, Specialist Colleges and External Institutions), UFI, ACL and Work-based Learning. It includes a small element of FE provision delivered in HE organisations where the organisations have submitted ILR data. Data regarding school sixth forms is not included.

5. This figure is a count of the number of learners that participated at any point during the year. Learners undertaking more than one course will appear only once for each data collection. However, learners that are included in different data collections (e.g. participating in FE and undertaking an apprenticeship) will be counted more than once. Information on the number of learners entering/starting a course in published for apprenticeships but not FE provision.

Notes for higher education figure:

1. Source: Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

2. This figure is taken from the HESA student record which is collected annually, is based on a HESA standard registration population and has been rounded to the nearest five.

3. This figure covers students from all domiciles entering both full-time and part-time courses of all levels. This figure refers to students starting the first year of their course in the 2007-08 academic year and is based on age as at 31 August of the academic year. The common definition used for “young people” in higher education is Under 21.

Higher Education: Cornwall

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many and what percentage of students entering higher education for (a) full time and (b) part time first degrees have been from Cornwall in each year since 1997. (291715)

The latest information from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) is shown in the table. Figures for the 2008-09 academic year will be available in January 2010.

All first degree entrants1 and first degree entrants from Cornwall local authority2 by mode of study UK higher education institutions3, academic years 1997-98 to 2007-08

All entrants

Of which: from Cornwall

Academic year

Full-time

Part-time

Full-time

Part-time

Percentage full-time from Cornwall

Percentage part-time from Cornwall

1997-98

332,075

30,810

2,270

165

0.7

0.5

1998-99

320,730

34,275

2,240

310

0.7

0.9

1999-2000

318,340

33,630

2,245

290

0.7

0.9

2000-01

319,350

31,630

2,215

225

0.7

0.7

2001-02

334,235

34,080

2,130

265

0.6

0.8

2002-03

352,790

35,085

2,215

220

0.6

0.6

2003-04

361,525

35,920

2,255

310

0.6

0.9

2004-05

364,025

32,765

2,190

230

0.6

0.7

2005-06

384,775

33,625

2,435

385

0.6

1.1

2006-07

373,625

31,360

2,210

365

0.6

1.2

2007-08

390,180

30,305

2,330

295

0.6

1.0

1 Figures for all entrants covers students of all domiciles.

2 Local authority is defined by valid home postcodes.

3 Excludes the Open University due to inconsistencies in their coding of entrants across the time series.

Notes:

1. Figures are based on a snapshot basis as at 1 December and have been rounded to the nearest five.

2. Percentages are based on un-rounded figures.

Source:

Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what percentage of 18 to 21 year-olds from Cornwall started a university course in each year since 1997. (292126)

The Department does not hold information on the number of 18 to 21-year-olds resident in Cornwall, so cannot calculate the proportion who enter HE. The number of 18 to 21-year-old entrants from Cornwall has been provided as an alternative. Figures for the 2008/09 academic year will be available in January 2010.

Higher Education: Finance

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what effect (a) the freeze in maintenance loans and grants, (b) the abolition of the guaranteed maximum financial support for new students previously in receipt of the educational maintenance allowance, (c) the reduction in the student loan repayment holiday from five years to two years and (d) the reduction in support for students on initial teacher training courses will have on expenditure on student support in 2010-11; what proportion of originally planned expenditure will be saved in each case; and if he will make a statement. (291618)

This Government remain committed to ensuring that financial support should enable students to benefit from higher education, particularly for those who most need help to study, while at the same time being affordable overall.

Regulations for the academic year 2010-11 were laid on 1 July setting out the entitlements for students. Initial estimates indicate that the changes in the regulations, taken together, will reduce expenditure by some £60 million in grants and £130 million in loans1 in financial year 2010-11 compared to previous estimates.

1 Loans expenditure expressed in resource terms. These costs are made up of the interest rate subsidy of loans together with the costs that are never repaid, for example, loans that are written off after 25 years or death of the borrower.

In the current economic climate, we believe these tough decisions are in the interests of students, universities and taxpayers alike. The measures we have taken will help ensure the student support system is affordable and sustainable in the longer term but without damaging access to higher education.

Higher Education: Hertfordshire

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many people aged (a) 21 years and under and (b) over 21 years old in each socio-economic group resident in (i) Hemel Hempstead constituency, (ii) Dacorum and (iii) Hertfordshire attended university in each of the last five years. (289418)

The latest information from the Higher Education Statistics Agency is shown in the tables. Figures for 2008/09 will be available in January 2010.

Table 1: Full-time undergraduate enrolments1 from Hemel Hempstead parliamentary constituency by age and socio-economic classification2 UK higher education institutions academic years 2003/04 to 2007/08

2003/04

2004/05

2005/06

2006/07

2007/08

Socio-economic classification

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

Higher managerial and professional occupations

160

5

235

10

265

25

255

30

270

25

Lower managerial and professional occupations

205

20

295

25

335

30

330

35

350

35

Intermediate occupations

110

10

150

20

155

20

145

25

150

20

Small employers and own account workers

40

5

55

5

65

5

60

10

70

5

Lower supervisory and technical occupations

30

5

45

5

50

10

50

5

45

5

Semi-routine occupations

75

15

85

15

100

20

95

25

110

30

Routine occupations

30

0

35

0

40

5

35

10

35

10

Never worked and long-term unemployed3

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total known

650

55

900

80

1,000

125

970

145

1,035

130

Missing4

570

225

295

205

225

200

210

190

250

180

1 The table does not include enrolments where the parliamentary constituency of the student cannot be established due to missing or invalid home postcodes.

2 This field collects the socio-economic classification of students participating in HE if 21 or over at the start of their course or parental classification if under 21.

3 Information is not comprehensively collected on the “Never worked and long-term unemployed” category for students: Students who fit this group are usually classed as having missing information.

4 Covers students whose socio-economic classification was missing or not classified: not classified includes occupations which were inadequately described, not classifiable or unstated.

Note:

Figures are based on a HESA standard registration population and have been rounded up or down to the nearest five, therefore components may not sum to totals.

Source:

Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA)

Table 2: Full-time undergraduate enrolments1 from Dacorum census district by age and socio-economic classification2 UK higher education institutions academic years 2003/04 to 2007/08

2003/04

2004/05

2005/06

2006/07

2007/08

Socio-economic classification

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

Higher managerial and professional occupations

310

10

485

25

530

45

525

60

545 J

50

Lower managerial and professional occupations

335

30

485

45

550

50

560

55

605

55

Intermediate occupations

160

20

225

25

245

30

230

35

235

30

Small employers and own account workers

65

5

90

5

95

10

95

10

115

5

Lower supervisory and technical occupations

45

5

70

5

80

10

80

10

75

10

Semi-routine occupations

100

20

115

20

140

35

140

35

155

40

Routine occupations

40

5

50

5

55

15

50

15

50

15

Never worked and long-term unemployed3

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total known

1,050

85

1,520

130

1,695

195

1,685

225

1,780

210

Missing4

920

340

445

305

360

275

360

260

430

250

1 The table does not include enrolments where the Census district of the student cannot be established due to missing or invalid home postcodes.

2 This field collects the socio-economic classification of students participating in HE if 21 or over at the start of their course or parental classification if under 21.

3 Information is not comprehensively collected on the “Never worked and long-term unemployed” category for students: Students who fit this group are usually classed as having missing information.

4 Covers students whose socio-economic classification was missing or not classified: not classified includes occupations which were inadequately described, not classifiable or unstated.

Note:

Figures are based on a HESA standard registration population and have been rounded up or down to the nearest five, therefore components may not sum to totals.

Source:

Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA)

Table 3: Full-time undergraduate enrolments1 from Hertfordshire local authority by and socio-economic classification2 UK higher education institutions academic years 2003/04 to 2007/08

2003/04

2004/05

2005/06

2006/07

2007/08

Socio-economic classification

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

21 and under

Over 21

Higher managerial and professional occupations

2,955

85

4,015

175

4,360

300

4,405

405

4,440

415

Lower managerial and professional occupations

3,035

190

3,915

335

4,240

415

4,345

510

4,350

505

Intermediate occupations

1,380

175

1,735

250

1,925

305

2,010

315

2,015

320

Small employers and own account workers

650

25

785

60

840

90

840

120

870

100

Lower supervisory and technical occupations

410

15

510

25

560

50

575

70

550

65

Semi-routine occupations

870

165

960

195

1,100

270

1,130

275

1,175

285

Routine occupations

335

50

360

65

390

100

425

100

430

95

Never worked and long-term unemployed3

0

0

0

0

5

0

5

0

10

0

Total known

9,640

700

12,275

1,105

13,415

1,525

13,740

1,795

13,845

1,790

Missing4

7,270

3,060

3,565

2,635

2,890

2,455

2,900

2,165

3,155

2,135

1 The table does not include enrolments where the Local Authority of the student cannot be established due to missing or invalid home postcodes.

2 This field collects the socio-economic classification of students participating in HE if 21 or over at the start of their course or parental classification if under 21.

3 Information is not comprehensively collected on the “Never worked and long-term unemployed” category for students: Students who fit this group are usually classed as having missing information.

4 Covers students whose socio-economic classification was missing or not classified: not classified includes occupations which were inadequately described, not classifiable or unstated.

Notes:

Figures are based on a HESA standard registration population and have been rounded up or down to the nearest five, therefore components may not sum to totals.

Source:

Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA)

Higher Education: Maintenance Grants

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many students were receiving non-repayable maintenance grants from (a) Dacorum and (b) Hertfordshire County Council local education authority in the latest period for which figures are available; and what the average grant received by such students was in that period. (289414)

The information requested is as follows:

Students awarded grants in academic year 2008/09 (provisional)1

Local authority

Number of students awarded grants

Average (£)

Hertfordshire

8,530

2,090

1 Figures cover the Higher Education Grant, the Maintenance Grant and grants and allowances for children and dependents. Each of these grant types has a different maximum entitlement amount. Data at mid-November 2008. Figures may change as later applications are processed.

Source:

Student Loans Company

Reliable information is not available at district level.

Higher Education: Overseas Students

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many non-UK domiciled students of each nationality were offered and accepted places on veterinary science degree courses at universities in England in the last five academic years. (291535)

The information is in the following table. A further breakdown of each non-UK student's country of domicile or declared nationality is not available. Figures for academic year 2009-10 are not yet available.

Offers and acceptances for non-UK domiciled applicants for veterinary science degrees at institutions in England

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

Applicants receiving offers

21

37

58

47

66

Accepted applicants

12

14

35

28

35

Notes:

1. ‘Offers’ covers students who were offered a place which was dependent on obtaining satisfactory exam results or on non-academic conditions.

2. Accepted applicants cover students who obtained specified results and were accepted for study on their chosen course.

Source:

UCAS

Higher Education: Tamworth

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many pupils in Tamworth constituency entered higher education in each year since 1997; and what estimate he has made of the number of such pupils entering higher education in (a) 2009, (b) 2010 and (c) 2011. (291460)

The Government do not make forward estimates of the number of students entering higher education disaggregated at a constituency level.

The numbers of 18-year-old undergraduate entrants to UK higher education institutions from Tamworth constituency, in each year since 1997, are shown in the table. Figures for the 2008/09 academic year will be available from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) in January 2010.

18-year-old undergraduate entrants1 from Tamworth constituency2, UK higher education institutions3, academic years 1997/98 to 2007/08

Academic year

Number

1997/98

145

1998/99

210

1999/2000

220

2000/01

210

2001/02

215

2002/03

220

2003/04

240

2004/05

195

2005/06

215

2006/07

270

2007/08

235

1 Covers entrants to full-time and part-time courses. 2 The table does not include entrants where the parliamentary constituency of the student cannot be established due to missing or invalid home postcodes. 3 Excludes the Open university due inconsistencies in their coding of entrants across the time series. Source: Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

Industrial Sector: Ownership

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what percentage of each of the 30 main industrial sectors in the UK is foreign-owned. (292134)

The following information is as follows:

Percentage of output (gross value added (GVA)) generated by UK and foreign-owned companies, 2006

Sector

Foreign owned

UK owned

Manufacturing

35

65

Services1

18

82

Other1

25

75

Total1

22

78

1 The Annual Business Inquiry does not cover all parts of the services and other categories.

Source:

National Statistics (derived from Annual Business Inquiry regional data, published in Regional Economic Performance Indicators, 2009 (BERR))

Infrastructure UK

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what work Infrastructure UK plans to take in relation to (a) broadband communications and (b) the development of a smart grid electricity network. (289852)

We are in the process of establishing the future work plan for Infrastructure UK. As detailed in “Building Britain’s Future”, full details of the new body will be announced and it is intended that a chair appointed in time for the pre-Budget report.

Infrastructure UK: Meetings

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what discussions he has had with the Department for Energy and Climate Change on energy infrastructure in relation to the establishment of Infrastructure UK. (289774)

Infrastructure UK: Ofgem

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what work Infrastructure UK plans to take in collaboration with Ofgem. (289854)

We are in the process of establishing the future work plan for Infrastructure UK. As detailed in “Building Britain’s Future”, full details of the new body will be announced and it is intended that a chair appointed in time for the pre-Budget report.

Insolvency

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many reports reviewed as part of the recent Statement of Insolvency Practice 16 performance report did not provide sufficient information to creditors on valuation and marketing. (290055)

The disproportionate cost threshold for providing an answer to a parliamentary question is £750.

The area of the Department responsible for answering a parliamentary question assesses the costs involved, including staff and other resources, and whether this represents disproportionate cost.

To answer this question would involve examining some 202 separate reports. To determine which of those reports did not provide sufficient information regarding valuation and/or marketing would require significant staff resources, which would be in excess of the £750 disproportionate cost threshold.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many of the failed reports referred to in the recent Statement of Insolvency Practice 16 performance report related to insolvency practitioners under each of the authorising bodies in the UK. (290056)

The disproportionate cost threshold for providing an answer to a parliamentary question is £750.

The area of the Department responsible for answering a parliamentary question assesses the costs involved, including staff and other resources, and whether this represents disproportionate cost.

To answer this question would involve examining some 202 separate reports. Administration appointments are also often held by more than one insolvency practitioner acting on a joint and several basis.

To determine which insolvency practitioners provided information deemed non-compliant with SIP 16 by reference to their authorising body would therefore require significant staff resources, which would be in excess of the £750 disproportionate cost threshold.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills which insolvency practitioners persistently breached Statement of Insolvency Practice (SIP) 16 as referred to in the recent SIP 16 performance report. (290058)

The Insolvency Service considers that the information you have requested is exempt information under section 40 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA). Section 40 (2) applies where the information sought is not the personal data of the applicant and either of the conditions in subsections 3 or 4 of that section is satisfied.

The Insolvency Service considers that subsection 3 applies, and disclosure of the personal data of the insolvency practitioners reporting to The Insolvency Service under the SIP 16 provisions to you would contravene the first data protection principle. The first data protection principle is defined in part 1 of schedule 1 of the Data Protection Act (DPA) and requires that data be processed fairly and lawfully and only processed if at least one of the conditions in schedule 2 is met.

The disclosure of personal information about the insolvency practitioners to you would amount to data processing as defined by the DPA in contravention of this principle as none of the conditions in schedule 2 apply.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps he has taken to ensure that creditors have been provided with missing information in Statement of Insolvency Practice (SIP) 16 cases where compliance was lacking, as referred to in the recent SIP 16 performance report. (290059)

The issuing of a report under the requirements of SIP 16 is in addition to the requirements of the Insolvency Act 1986 whereby the administrator must issue a full report on his proposals for the administration within eight weeks of his appointment. In the circumstances we have not requested further missing information be published as it should be contained within the administration proposals and sent to creditors. It is always open to creditors to seek further information from the administrator if they wish to do so.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps he plans to take to incorporate the recommendations of the recent Statement of Insolvency Practice (SIP) 16 performance report in SIP 16 guidance. (290084)

The Insolvency Service will work with the Recognised Professional Bodies (which authorise the majority of insolvency practitioners) to strengthen SIP 16 where necessary and issue further guidance to practitioners to ensure that creditors are given a detailed explanation and justification of why a pre-packaged sale was undertaken, so that they can be satisfied that the administrator has acted with due regard for their interests.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps his Department takes to recover funds from disqualified directors after their companies have been declared insolvent; and if he will make a statement. (290404)

If an order for costs is made against a disqualified director as a result of an application by the Secretary of State or official receiver under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986, then the Insolvency Service uses contract solicitors to recover those costs or to negotiate an appropriate sum.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what responsibility his Department has for the (a) investigation and (b) bringing of legal proceedings against directors of insolvent companies in circumstances in which there is evidence of misfeasance during the winding up of the company in question; and if he will make a statement. (290405)

If the company has entered voluntary liquidation, receivership or administration, the responsibility for the investigation and the bringing of legal proceedings for misfeasance, in an asset recovery context, is a matter for the insolvency practitioner. In compulsory winding up cases, it is the responsibility of the official receiver if the official receiver remains liquidator. In practice if there is a misfeasance case to answer, in an asset recovery context, the official receiver will write to the creditors to ask whether they are prepared to fund legal proceedings. If sufficient creditors are prepared to do so, the official receiver will seek the appointment of an insolvency practitioner as liquidator to take the matter forward. Without funding from the creditors it is not possible to take recovery proceedings unless there are already substantial asset realisations in the estate and the creditors have agreed to there monies being used for this purpose.

If misfeasance is alleged as a matter of unfitted conduct in a disqualification context, then in a voluntary liquidation, receivership or administration, the insolvency practitioner has a statutory duty to report the matter to the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State then has discretion to decide whether it sufficiently serious to warrant further investigation and disqualification proceedings being taken in the public interest. In a compulsory liquidation, the official receiver must decide whether it is sufficiently serious to justify submitting a disqualification report to the Secretary of State and if a disqualification report is submitted, the Secretary of State must consider the report and decide whether to authorise disqualification proceedings.