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National Measurement Office

Volume 560: debated on Tuesday 26 March 2013

I have tasked the National Measurement Office to provide policy support to Ministers on measurement issues and a measurement infrastructure which enables innovation and growth, promotes trade and facilitates fair competition and the protection of consumers, health and the environment.

I have agreed with the NMO that its objectives for 2013-2016 will be to:

Increase economic growth, innovation and social impact through a world-class scientific measurement infrastructure.

Promote competition and fair trading both in the UK and at the global level through a modern weights and measures and hallmarking regime.

Provide good value-for-money metrology services.

Protect the interests of the public, business and the environment by enforcing relevant legislation.

The agency will also be expected to provide professional, value-for-money corporate services that contribute to agency objectives, align with cross-Government initiatives, promote good and informed decision making, ensure accountable governance and provide effective channels of communication.

In support of these objectives I have set as specific ministerial targets the following for 2013-14:

Improve performance of the NMS programmes over the corporate plan period 2011-12 to 2014-15 as measured by the value scorecard developed for this purpose.

Support business by ensuring a minimum of 95% of meter examiner appointments, manufacturer authorisations/consents and modifications to meter approval and decisions are made within five business days of receipt of all necessary documentation.

Achieve a satisfaction rating among certification service customers of at least 95% for customers scoring satisfied or above, with at least 60% scoring “very satisfied”.

Achieve an increase in income of at least 5% for certification services from the 2012-13 financial year.

Generate at least a positive 3:1 net contribution to consumers and the environment as well as the low-carbon economy through the activities of the enforcement authority.

Reduce non-ring-fenced administration costs by at least 14% in cash terms over the corporate plan period 2011-12 to 2014-15.

Ensure that reduced contributions from BIS towards overheads are absorbed without any increase in per capita overhead rate.

Reduce NPL energy consumption in 2013 calendar year by 5% from 2012 calendar year.

Agree by 31 March 2014 the partners who will work with Government on NPL and the model under which the partnership will operate post-March 2014.