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UK Border Agency

Volume 503: debated on Thursday 7 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the budget is of the UK Border Agency Abu Dhabi hub for 2009-10. (301241)

Abu Dhabi is the regional operations centre for the Gulf and Pakistan, dealing with visa applications from Iran, Pakistan, Bahrain, Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Abu Dhabi will be the largest UK Border Agency operation overseas by application volume. There are 142 staff.

Abu Dhabi carries out the full range of tasks associated with visa processing, including the administration, pre-assessment and assessment of visa applications, document verification, post-decision work, including appeals, administrative reviews, correspondence and complaints handling, risk and airline liaison, integrity management, and regional management.

Under the finance model agreed with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, upon whose platform the Abu Dhabi hub operates, the budget is not constructed in a way that accounts for particular posts.

The costs passed to the UK Border Agency from the FCO are a combination of variable costs, such as those related to headcount, and fixed charges such as management support and depreciation. The variable costs paid by the UK Border Agency for 2009-10 are around £6.5 million. The fixed element for the Abu Dhabi hub cannot easily be disaggregated from the global total and to do so would incur disproportionate costs.