Previous Section Index Home Page


Ministerial Statement

Mr. Syms: To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to the statement of the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions of 9 May 2002, Official Report, column 303, if (a) he, (b) his political and press advisers, (c) other Downing street staff and (d) Ministers discussed this recommendation with (i) the Cabinet secretary and (ii) his staff prior to the recommendation being made to the permanent secretary to the Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions that he should make such a statement. [57013]

The Prime Minister: The circumstances which led to the statement made by the permanent secretary of the Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions have been set out in evidence to the Public Administration Select Committee.


Mr. Gray: To ask the Prime Minister what further discussions he plans with the Prime Minister of Nepal about the Gurkhas. [56706]

The Prime Minister: I have no immediate plans for discussion with the Prime Minister of Nepal.

Mr. Gray: To ask the Prime Minister if he introduced Mrs. Blair to the Prime Minister of Nepal on his visit on 13 May. [56707]

The Prime Minister: No.

Lord-Lieutenant of Essex

Bob Russell: To ask the Prime Minister what the arrangements are for the appointment of the next lord-lieutenant of Essex; who is serving on the committee considering names; and who appointed them. [57115]

The Prime Minister: Lord-lieutenants are appointed by the Queen on my advice. The Prime Minister's secretary for appointments is responsible for carrying out a wide consultation process within the county on my behalf, as is the case with all lord-lieutenants in England. The consultation is now complete and I understand that included correspondence with the hon. Member. We hope to announce the successor to Lord Braybrooke shortly.

The secretary for appointments is a senior civil servant and was appointed following a competition within the civil service.



Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) pursuant to the answer of 23 November 2001, Official Report, column 534W, on non-state

16 May 2002 : Column 849W

pensions, how the figures for 2000 were calculated from the data contained in the ONS MQ5 Survey; [46485]

Mr. McCartney: The figures quoted in my answer of 23 November 2001, Official Report, column 534W, are updated in the table. It is necessary to update them because the Office for National Statistics reissued the figures on which they are based on 16 May 2002.

Table 1 shows the amount contributed to non-state pensions for all years from 1992 to 2001. The figures include contributions of both employers and employees to self-administered pension funds and the pensions business of insurance companies.

As before, the figures show that there has been sustained growth in contributions to non-state pensions. The figures suggest that the stable economy has created

16 May 2002 : Column 850W

the right conditions to save, and that our policies to encourage higher levels of private saving are having a positive effect.

The method used to calculate the figures is set out in the notes to the table.

Table 1: Contributions to non-state pensions
£ billion

Cash terms1997 prices


1. All figures rounded to nearest £ billion.

2. Figures are based on the ONS MQ5 publication. They have been recalculated in light of the reissue of the MQ5 publication on 16 May 2002. The MQ5 publication is subject to change because it is under constant review. Since the figures above are dependent on MQ5, they are similarly subject to change.

3. The figures shown in cash terms are the sum of the series RKDL and RKAF in the ONS MQ5 publication.

4. The figures shown in 1997 prices are the sum of the same series after adjustment for price changes using the RPI index.

5. There is a small discontinuity in the series between 1998 and 1999. For further information see ONS's pension fund surveys technical article of 16 May 2002, available at products/p502.asp.

6. The data in the above table may include some transfers from one insured pension provider to another. ONS, who produce the underlying data, look out for this possible problem and, where identified, correct for it. Information on the amount of these transfers is not available.

7. Investment of existing assets of self-administered pension funds in managed funds and annuity contracts operated by insurance companies have not been excluded.

The figures in 1997 price terms in the table represent an update to the DWP's indicator 'Amount contributed to non-state pensions—real terms (United Kingdom)'. This indicator is one of the set monitored in the Government's annual poverty and social exclusion report, "Opportunity for All". The latest report, "Opportunity for All—Making Progress" (Cm 5260) was published in September 2001.

The breakdown of these figures between different types of contributions is set out in table 2 in cash terms and then in 1997 price terms.

Table 2

Contributions to self-administered pension arrangementsRegular premiums to individual/personal insured pension arrangementsSingle premiums to individual/personal insured pension arrangementsRegular premiums to group insured pension arrangementsSingle premiums to group insured pension arrangementsTotal contributions to non-state pensions
Cash terms
1997 price terms
ONS data series on which


1. All notes to table 1 also apply to this table, except for notes 3 and 4, which do not apply.

2. The figures shows in cash terms are from the ONS MQ5 publication and are the series named in the last row of the table.

3. The figures shown in 1997 prices are the same series after adjustment for price changes using the RPI index.

4. Figures may not exactly add up to the totals due to rounding errors.

16 May 2002 : Column 851W

The source used to derive the above information does not enable an estimate to be made of the number of individuals for or by whom contributions to non-state pensions were made. However it is possible to estimate similar information using the Family Resources Survey. These figures are not directly comparable to those above because they are derived from a different source. Estimates are shown in the following table for the years available.

Table 3

Number of people who are members of a non-state pensionNumber of people currently contributing to a non-state pension


1. Figures are rounded to nearest 100,000.

2. Figures are for people aged 20 to state pension age.

3. Estimates are based on the Family Resources Survey. There are alternative estimates of similar information which produce slightly different results.

4. Estimates are subject to error inherent in survey-based data.

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to his answer of 2 May 2002, Official Report, column 978W, if he will provide information on male pensioners on the same basis. [55299]

Mr. McCartney: The information requested for different pensioner groups has been provided on the same basis. Figures have been provided where sample sizes and other factors dictate that they are sufficiently robust. In the case of the information requested for single pensioners, sample sizes for single men were too small to allow robust comparisons over short time periods to be carried out, whereas sample sizes for single women were larger as there are more of this group in the population.

16 May 2002 : Column 852W

Next Section Index Home Page