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Departmental Coordination

Volume 508: debated on Monday 29 March 2010

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what progress has been made on identifying ways in which HM Revenue and Customs, the Department for Work and Pensions and other Government Departments can better maintain a core database of business identities referred to in the report on service transformation by Sir David Varney. (313939)

The initial focus for business taken from Sir David Varney's report on service transformation was to bring together in one place on the

website all the information and transactions businesses need in dealing with central Government. That work is due to complete by March 2011.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is now developing a common business identifier for use within the Department that will link business tax records held on different HMRC databases. This work will enable delivery of the enhanced online services for small and medium enterprises set out in paragraph 4.20, page 53 of Budget 2010, including providing businesses with a single view of their current financial relationship with HMRC.

The Government will consider the potential for extending HMRC's approach to other Departments.