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House of Commons Hansard
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15 June 2016
Volume 611
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1. What progress his Department is making on the creation of a more modern and efficient government estate. [905408]

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My hon. Friend will be pleased to know that since 2015 the Government estate strategy has ensured that running costs have fallen by £750 million. We have raised some £1.8 billion in council receipts and reduced the estate size by nearly a quarter. This is a huge achievement and in terms of space it makes the UK Government one of the most efficient organisations in the world.

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I thank the Minister for that reply and congratulate him and his team on the work they have done. Given that the estate has been reduced by nearly a quarter since 2010, is it not crucial that as much of this land as possible is used for new housing, especially given that quite a bit of it is going to be brownfield?

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My hon. Friend, as so often, hits the nail on the head. A huge Government programme has ensured that available public sector land is used to build more houses for our country.

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A 2010 report suggested that to end the London magnet we had to move more top civil servant jobs out of the capital and into the regions. How are the Government getting on with that aim?

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The Government are getting on very well with it: the number of civil servant buildings in central London has gone down hugely. We have created hundreds of thousands of jobs all over the country— 95,000 new jobs in the last year in the north of England alone—and what matters is what kinds of jobs we are creating and how many people are being employed.