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Share Gains

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the capital gains tax and corporation tax yields from gains in quoted shares and gains in unquoted shares (a) in 2000–01 and (b) expected in 2001–02. [26224]

Dawn Primarolo: Information on the asset distribution of gains of capital gains tax payers and of non-life companies for 1998–99, the latest year for which figures are available, is in tables 14.4 and 14.7 respectively on the online edition of "Inland Revenue Statistics" which can be accessed on the Inland Revenue website

It is not possible to measure directly the tax yield due to separate asset classes as some reliefs (including annual exempt amount) are given against aggregate gains.

Age Allowance

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many people (a) eligible for and (b) in receipt of age allowances (i) are on high marginal tax rates, (ii) are on basic rate tax and (iii) pay no income tax. [26280]

Dawn Primarolo: People should get their age allowance if they tell the Inland Revenue of their date of birth. The number getting age related allowances, in 2001–02, for each of the categories requested is given in the table:


Top rate (40 per cent.) taxpayers0
Basic rate (22 per cent.) taxpayers2.2
Non taxpayers2.3

These estimates are based on the survey of personal incomes and are consistent with the November 2001 pre-Budget report.

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Revenue Losses (Farm Incomes)

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has made of the revenue lost to the Inland Revenue as a result of the reduction in farm incomes in the last four years. [27928]

Dawn Primarolo: PAYE tax by sector and income from self-employment by sector are available in tables 2.10 and 3.9 of Inland Revenue Statistics. The latest version can be accessed on the Inland Revenue website: it_t10_1.htm and income_distribution/pi_t09_1. htm.

Child Poverty (London)

Harry Cohen: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will put in place measures to enhance the impact of the working families tax credit on reducing child poverty in London; and if he will make a statement. [28262]

Dawn Primarolo: The working families tax credit, combined with other tax and benefit reforms since 1997, means that there are now 1.2 million fewer children in relative poverty than there would otherwise have been.

In August 2001, 95,000 families with children were receiving the working families tax credit in London, compared with 58,900 London families who received its predecessor family credit in August 1999. This represents a 61 per cent. increase in London which is greater than the increase across the United Kingdom as a whole over the same period.

The Government keep under constant review the effectiveness of the working families tax credit across all areas of the United Kingdom. They continue to put in place measures to encourage those who are eligible to take up the tax credits to which they are entitled.


Mr. Bercow: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list the regulations which entail a cost to public funds and estimate the cost in each case. [28030]

Mr. Andrew Smith: The information requested is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

The cost to 'public funds' (exchequer costs) is considered at the policy development stage of any new regulatory proposal, and a Regulatory Impact Assessment is completed unless there are no or negligible costs.

Where Ministers choose a regulatory option, they must be satisfied that the benefits justify the costs.

Married Couples Allowance

David Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many pensioner couples in 2000–01 in north-west Leicestershire did not receive the married couples allowance available until 5 April 2000 because neither was 65 before 6 April 2000; [28704]

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Dawn Primarolo: There were some 100,000 couples where at least one partner was aged 65 in 2000–01 not receiving the married couples allowance because neither was 65 before 5 April 2000. This estimate is based on the Survey of Personal Incomes and is consistent with the November 2001 pre-Budget report.

I regret that because of small sample sizes, it is not possible to provide a reliable estimate for the numbers in North-West Leicestershire.

Child Tax Credit

Mr. Reed: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the number of families in receipt of (a) the child tax credit and (b) the child care tax credit in the Loughborough constituency. [28517]

Dawn Primarolo: Information about the children's tax credit is not available by constituency. However, the number of families who are eligible for CTC in the east midlands is estimated to be 400,000.

Analyses of the numbers of recipients of child care support within working families tax credits and disabled person's tax credits by parliamentary constituency were published in "Working Families' and Disabled Person's Tax Credit Statistics: Geographical Analyses August 2001" on 8 January 2002 by the Inland Revenue.

Mr. Webb: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what end of year reconciliation information about incomes will have to be supplied by recipients of the proposed child tax credit; which group of recipients will have to supply such information; by what mechanism this information will be collected; and if he will make a statement. [28841]

Dawn Primarolo: Clause 17 of the Tax Credits Bill requires that a person who has received a tax credit award to be given the opportunity, after the end of the year, to provide details of their income and circumstances so that the Inland Revenue is able to finalise their award on the correct basis.

The Inland Revenue will issue a notice to those people. The notice will set out the circumstances and income on which the award is based. It will then be for claimants to respond, making clear any respects in which the information held needs to be updated.


Miss McIntosh: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what implications Railtrack's successor's (a) spending and (b) borrowing requirements will have for the PSBR. [28825]

Mr. Andrew Smith: Railtrack's successor is expected to be in the private sector. Its spending and borrowing will have no impact on public sector net borrowing.

Government subsidies and investment grants paid to the rail industry add to public sector net borrowing. This will be the same when Railtrack's successor is established.

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Scottish Transport Group Pension Fund

Mr. David Marshall: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the distribution of moneys to the members of the Scottish Transport Group pension fund; when he expects these payments to be made; and what rate of tax will be applied to such payments. [28973]

Mr. Andrew Smith: The Scottish Executive are taking forward matters regarding the distribution of moneys to members of the Scottish Transport Group pension fund, following its announcement in November 2001 on the pension fund surplus. The tax payable on payments to pensioners will depend on the nature of the payment and the personal tax circumstances of the individual.

International Aid

Tony Baldry: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how the Government proposes to fulfil the commitment at the 2000 G8 Summit in Okinawa that no countries seriously committed to education for all will be thwarted in their achievements of this goal by lack of resources; what information he has collated on the actions of the other G8 countries to meet this commitment; and if he will make a statement. [27862]

Clare Short: I have been asked to reply.

The international response to the resource commitment made at the World Education Forum in Dakar (and endorsed by the G8 at Okinawa) has been slow and has lacked effective co-ordination. At the Education for All High-Level Group meeting in Paris in October, I called for international action to be stepped up in a coherent, well-organised and supportive way.

Achieving universal primary education (UPE) can happen only through reform and action at the country level. More attention needs to be given to determining whether a country is "seriously committed" to education for all. Key indicators of commitment are the development of sound national education policies, closely linked to the country's poverty reduction strategies; the rapid abolition of user fees and other direct cost barriers to education; the resources allocated to education, and specifically to primary education; and concrete evidence of efforts to promote gender equality. Being serious about UPE means clear commitments in all of these areas.

Where countries are making these commitments, the international community must deliver the additional resources they require. We believe that delivering this Dakar resource commitment is best analysed and acted upon at the country level. It should be incorporated into all country level negotiations on poverty reduction strategies. It will also require a step-change in the level of international financing to support and sustain UPE, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Development agencies and the multilateral development banks, including the World bank, must increase the resources committed to helping reforming Governments deliver UPE. We also need much greater co-ordination between development agencies, working together in support of a country's own development strategy.

DFID's "Children out of school" paper sets out these proposals and urges much greater international energy and co-operation in taking them forward. It also calls for the

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response of the developed world to the Dakar resource commitment to be monitored and reported at the World bank annual meeting, and in the report on progress towards the millennium development goals provided by the multilateral developments banks for the G8.

The Government give high priority to the UPE goal and DFID has committed over £600 million to support the development of good quality, sustainable primary education systems in developing countries since 1997. We will do more. Canada shares our strong commitment to UPE and now chairs the G8 Education Task Force, where DFID represents the UK. Information submitted to the task force indicates clearly that the priority given to primary education within other G8 members' development programmes varies significantly. We would like the task force's report to this year's summit in Canada to indicate how the G8 can deliver effectively on its Okinawa commitment, and complement other international action to accelerate progress toward the UPE goal.

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