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Official Visits

Volume 689: debated on Tuesday 20 February 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How much revenue they collect from facilitating meetings and arranging private drivers for visiting United Kingdom parliamentarians in overseas countries. [HL1982]

Our posts overseas are not generally responsible for arranging the programmes of visiting parliamentarians. Where posts have the resources to facilitate meetings for visiting parliamentarians, no charge is made.

Where resources allow the use of official transport by parliamentarians, our posts recover the full economic cost. Information on receipts is not held centrally and could not be obtained without incurring disproportionate cost.

Visiting parliamentarians meet the costs of the hire of private drivers.

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How much revenue has been raised by the High Commission in Darfur from facilitating meetings and arranging private drivers for visiting United Kingdom parliamentarians. [HL1983]

We do not have a separate diplomatic mission in Darfur.

When parliamentarians have visited Sudan, they have been responsible for their own expenditure and no revenue has been raised by our embassy in Khartoum.

Where resources allow the private use of official transport by parliamentarians, our posts recover the full economic cost. Visiting parliamentarians meet the costs of the hire of private drivers. No charges are made for facilitating meetings.

In the past year, the embassy has arranged meetings and provided transport for parliamentarians on two occasions, but no charges have been made as embassy officials have accompanied the parliamentarians.

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Which of their high commissions and embassies most frequently charge visiting United Kingdom parliamentarians for facilitating meetings and arranging private drivers. [HL1984]

Our posts overseas are not generally responsible for arranging the programmes of visiting parliamentarians. Where posts have the resources to facilitate meetings for visiting parliamentarians, no charge is made.

Where resources allow the use of official transport by parliamentarians, our posts recover the full economic cost. Information on receipts is not held centrally and could not be obtained without incurring disproportionate cost.

Visiting parliamentarians meet the costs of the hire of private drivers.

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they have proposals to enable the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to provide visiting United Kingdom parliamentarians with services to facilitate meetings and arrange private drivers without a charge. [HL1985]

We have no plans to introduce a free programme-arranging service, or to arrange transport at no cost to visiting parliamentarians.

In many cases our posts provide appropriate contact details and in some cases are able to facilitate meetings. There is no charge for this, but they do not have the resources to arrange programmes.

Posts make no charge for providing the details of local private car hire companies. The cost of private cars and private drivers falls to the visiting parliamentarian.