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UK Border Agency

Volume 502: debated on Monday 14 December 2009

13. What mechanisms are in place at the UK Border Agency to ensure compliance with agreed internal processes and procedures for handling cases and contracts. (306227)

Processes for handling commercial contracts are ensured by contract approvals. The mechanisms are: up to £1 million, financial and procurement delegations; £1 million to £40 million, joint approval committee, which is a UKBA internal mechanism; and above £40 million, the group investment board of the Home Office. The level of governance is commensurate with the level of investment required.

I am grateful for the Minister’s answer. The reputation of the UKBA is very important to Croydon, where it is a major employer. How well do these procedures also apply to those who will investigate performance, and therefore might abrogate a contract, and to outside consultants who are assisting the UKBA?

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman; I recognise the work that he does on behalf of the UKBA, which is an important part of his constituency. Contract compliance is ensured by the monitoring of the contract at a local level by the operational unit and the commercial team within the area, and of course all those contracts are subject to Treasury guidelines. On his point about the awarding of contracts, that is subject to the normal rules, and I am satisfied that we are compliant within the Croydon operation.