|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) if she will list the official visits to (a) Paris and (b) Brussels made by each Minister in her Department in 2001 and the mode of travel used; and what guidance is provided to Ministers in her Department on the choice of mode of travel for such visits; 
25 Mar 2002 : Column 683W
Ms Hewitt: Since 1999 this Government have published an annual list of all visits overseas undertaken by Cabinet Ministers costing £500 or more during each financial year. The Government have also published on an annual basis the cost of all Ministers' visits overseas. Details of travel undertaken since 1 March 2001 will be published as soon as possible after the end of the current financial year. Copies of the lists are available in the Libraries of the House.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what arrangements her Department has made to celebrate (a) St. Patrick's Day, (b) St. George's Day, (c) St. Andrew's Day and (d) Her Majesty the Queen's Golden Jubilee; and how her Department celebrated St. David's Day. 
Ms Hewitt [holding answer 11 March 2002: I refer the hon. Member to the reply which my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport gave to the hon. Member for South Suffolk (Mr. Yeo) in response to his round robin question of 30 January, 11 February 2002, Official Report, columns 5859W.
The DTI, along with other Government Departments, flies the Union flag from its buildings on certain days of the year known as 'named days' when the Union flag must be flown from Government buildings. The days include St. David's Day and St. George's Day, but not St. Patrick's Day.
An additional bank holiday will take place on Monday 3 June 2002 to mark the Queen's Golden Jubilee and, to create a two-day holiday period, the spring bank holiday, which would normally take place on 27 May, has been moved to Tuesday 4 June.
Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list the projected underspend by EEDA for the year to 31 March, indicating the reason for the underspend in each case. 
Mrs. Shephard: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the total annual budget is of the East of England Development Agency in 200102; and what sum within that total is allocated to publicity and marketing. 
25 Mar 2002 : Column 684W
Miss Melanie Johnson: Plans for the Insolvency Service are published in the Government's Expenditure Plans for the DTI, a copy of which can be found in the Libraries of the House. Insolvency Service expenditure is reported in the service's annual accounts which are laid before Parliament and placed in the Libraries of the House.
Miss Melanie Johnson: In August and September 1998 the National Audit Office undertook a follow up review of directors disqualification, including the hotline, and contacted a sample of complainants, 78 per cent. of whom stated that they would use the service again. The NAO's recommendations as regards the hotline were fully implemented, and included a simplified complaints questionnaire which is also available on the service's website and by link from Companies House.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps her Department is taking to make insolvency laws more (a) efficient, (b) user friendly and (c) effective in obtaining prosecutions. 
Miss Melanie Johnson: The Insolvency Act 2000 introduced an optional moratorium into voluntary arrangement proceedings to make procedures more responsive to the needs of those facing financial difficulties.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the average cost in (a) sterling and (b) man hours has been to prosecute a rogue director, by the undertaking of an investigation and prosecution by the Insolvency Service, over the last year. 
25 Mar 2002 : Column 685W
Miss Melanie Johnson: The Insolvency Service is not a prosecuting authority. In cases where the Insolvency Service considers that there is prima facie evidence of a prosecutable offence the official receiver refers the results of his/her investigation to the Legal Services Directorate of the Department of Trade and Industry for further investigation and prosecution where appropriate.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment she has made of the effect of the Insolvency (Amendment) Regulations 2000 on the Insolvency Service, including (a) cost savings, (b) efficiency savings and (c) changes in service levels between the Service and its customers. 
Miss Melanie Johnson: The Insolvency (Amendment) regulations 2000, which came into force on 31 March 2000 make provision for payments into and out of the Insolvency Services Account to be transmitted by electronic means. This has had the following effect on the Insolvency Service and its customers:
|1 January 1997 to 31 December 1997||406|
|1 January 1998 to 31 December 1998||394|
|1 January 1999 to 31 December 1999||334|
|1 January 2000 to 31 December 2000||339|
|1 January 2001 to 31 December 2001||373|
25 Mar 2002 : Column 686W
Insolvency Service to track the progress of individual cases being investigated; and what plans she has to review this procedure. 
Miss Melanie Johnson: Official receivers have worked to a centrally defined investigation process since 1999. The progress of the investigation is recorded on case files and on a computerised case management system. Performance is monitored at an office level, at regional level and at national level. The investigation process was reviewed and reissued in 2001 and will be subject to further review in 2003.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what targets her Department has set the Insolvency Service in each of the years since 1997; and how successful the agency was in achieving these targets. 
All recommendation are being actioned by INSS under the supervision of its steering board. Action includes steps to build on its existing performance, to provide a basis to respond to fluctuations in work loads and to modernise existing delivery frameworks. All action is aimed at enhancing service delivery.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what (a) representations she has received and (b) research she has commissioned into the effectiveness of the Insolvency Act 2000; and if she will make a statement. 
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|