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Volume 571: debated on Thursday 28 November 2013

Earlier this year we consulted on our motoring services strategy which set out our intention to put the customer at the heart of what we do.

One of our objectives was to identify ways in which to give customers a better service and reduce costs. As a result of that, we announced in July that the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) and the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) would merge to form a single motoring agency. The creation of a single agency is intended to deliver the following strategic objectives:

Motorists and businesses will benefit from more convenient and cost-effective motoring services—such as driving tests and goods vehicle testing;

Delivery of the same high-quality testing and standards services to motorists and businesses, but with greater efficiency;

Delivering testing in a way which is more flexible and convenient for customers; this merger offers opportunities to explore and extend this in the future;

Create opportunities to identify synergies between the two organisations and service improvements that could potentially enable a reduction in fees.

I have considered a range of options for the name of the new agency, and have decided that it will be known as the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), to reflect the work of both its predecessors and the crucial contribution they make to road safety.

In keeping with Government practices, the cost of the rebranding of the agency will be kept to a minimum, and a number of changes will be made to legislation—giving powers to the agency to conduct its work.

I am therefore announcing the new name today, to enable these changes to be made and to allow the Agency to plan its rebranding in a cost effective manner. The agency will therefore begin to use its new name immediately with formal and full integration taking place over the coming months. Until the merger is complete on 1 April 2014, references to DVSA will also include a statement “incorporating DSA and VOSA”.