Comparative figures for the months January to June 2009 to 2011 for the number of dogs euthanised are 21, 49 and 46 respectively, as detailed in the following tables:

 MonthNumber of dogsReason(s)Number

2009

January

6

Aged—Welfare

2

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

   

Osteoarthritis

1

   

Abdominal Catastrophe

1

   

Renal Disease

1

     
 

February

4

Osteoarthritis

1

   

Gastrointestinal disease

1

   

Post-op complications

1

   

Neurological

1

     
 

March

1

Prostatic disease

1

     
 

April

3

Osteoarthritis

1

3 Sep 2012 : Column 51W

   

Aged—Welfare

1

   

Malignancy

1

     
 

May

2

Neurological

1

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

     
 

June

5

Unspecified

1

   

Aged—Welfare

2

   

Neurological

1

   

Osteoarthritis

1

 MonthNumber of dogsReason(s)Number

2010

January

2

Osteoarthritis

1

   

Aged—Welfare

1

     
 

February

8

Aged—Welfare

5

   

Spinal Injury

1

   

Abdominal Catastrophe

1

   

Neurological

1

     
 

March

12

Aged—Welfare

8

   

Dangerous Temperament

2

   

Neurological

1

   

Cardiac Disease

1

     
 

April

9

Neurological

2

   

Aged—Welfare

4

   

Gracilis contracture

1

   

Dangerous Temperament

2

     
 

May

11

Dangerous Temperament

4

   

Aged—Welfare

5

   

Cardiac disease

2

     
 

June

7

Unspecified

1

   

Aged—Welfare

2

   

Anal furunculosis

1

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

   

Neurological

1

   

Osteoarthritis

1

 MonthNumber of dogsReason(s)Number

2011

January

2

Abdominal Catastrophe

1

3 Sep 2012 : Column 52W

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

     
 

February

11

Osteoarthritis

4

   

Neurological

1

   

Aged—Welfare

2

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

   

Catastrophic fracture(s)

1

   

Neurological

2

     
 

March

13

Abdominal Catastrophe

1

   

Osteoarthritis

2

   

Dangerous Temperament

2

   

Malignancy

2

   

Aged—Welfare

5

   

Neurological

1

     
 

April

4

Neurological

2

   

Coagulopathy

1

   

Peritonitis

1

     
 

May

4

Neurological

2

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

   

Severe injuries

1

     
 

June

12

Malignancy

2

   

Aged—Welfare

5

   

Neurological

2

   

Dangerous Temperament

1

   

Unspecified

1

   

Osteoarthritis

1

Iraq-Kuwait Conflict

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to his Department's mortality statistics on the causes of death among Gulf War Veterans and Gulf War Era Veterans for the period of 1 April 1991 to 31 December 2011, how many veterans from each group (a) died of each cause of death, (b) served in each branch of the services and (c) had been diagnosed with (i) primary lateral sclerosis, (ii) amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, (iii) neurological condition of unknown aetiology, (iv) post traumatic stress syndrome and (v) spastic paraparesis. [116123]

Mr Robathan: The following table provides a breakdown by Service and cohort for the Gulf 1 Veterans mortality National Statistic.

Service at time of GulfGulfEra Comparison Group

All

53,409

53,143

Naval Service

5,964

5,958

3 Sep 2012 : Column 53W

Army

37,390

37,126

Royal Air Force

10,055

10,059

Information on causes of death, and diagnosis of illness, beyond the breakdown already provided in the 1990-1991 Gulf Conflict—UK Gulf Veterans Mortality Data: Causes of Death, would require a search of individual medical records and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Joint Strike Fighter Aircraft

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of US Congressional reports suggesting the cancellation of the F-35B variant; and what assessment he has made of the effect of such reports on his plans to purchase that aircraft type. [118404]

Peter Luff: The US Government are currently reviewing all its defence spending plans for the next decade. Our assessment is that the F35-B variant will not be cancelled and that the US is committed to all three variants of the F35, and this was confirmed most recently by the US Secretary for Defence, Leon Panetta, when he met the Secretary of State for Defence, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), in the US. The UK remains committed to the F35-B programme.

Manchester Declaration

Stephen McPartland: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent contribution his Department and its non-departmental public bodies and agencies have made to implementation of the 2005 Manchester Declaration. [115126]

Mr Robathan: Since the Ministry of Defence (MOD) is not predominantly a citizen-facing Department, work

3 Sep 2012 : Column 54W

under the banner of implementation of the Manchester Declaration has not been collated centrally. However, the MOD has and continues to deliver a range of outputs and initiatives consistent with its aims and intent.

As part of the Cabinet Office-led work on the single domain for Government, gov.uk, the MOD website is due to close by the end of 2012 with all content migrating into gov.uk. The MOD is one of five trail-blazing Departments taking part in this early stage of populating gov.uk.

Increasingly, social media is used to communicate messages about Defence and its outputs and to engage and encourage interaction with the public. There is an official MOD presence on YouTube, Twitter, Flickr and Facebook.

Within the MOD there is an ongoing programme of roll-out and continuous improvement of electronic services to deliver business processes more effectively and efficiently in areas including procurement, travel, logistics, human resources and finance.

Mercian Regiment

Joan Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the oral question from the hon. Member for Stoke-on-Trent North of 5 July 2012, Official Report, column 1097, what the annual recruitment to the 3rd Battalion the Mercian Regiment (the Staffords) has been since 2007; and what modelling was undertaken by the army with regard to the proposed disbanding of that battalion. [117690]

Nick Harvey [holding answer 17 July 2012]: The Army sets recruitment targets at regimental level. Recruits are then allocated to the battalion within their chosen regiment where the demand is greatest. Priority is given to battalions preparing for operations.

The following table shows the overall manning position at April of each year of The Mercian Regiment—including establishment and recruiting performance since 2007 (figures for 2007 are not available centrally):

Mercian Regiment
 20082009201020112012

Establishment

1,667

1,647

1,676

1,671

1,664

Strength

1,384

1,453

1,552

1,498

1,440

+/-

-283

-194

-124

-173

-224

Recruiting Tgt

483

513

395

270

432

Actual

386

456

381

266

439

+/-

-97

-57

-14

-4

7

The recruitment target figures for 2010-11 are artificially low due to a nine-month pause in infantry training. This affected regiments differently depending on where their training slots were on the Infantry Training Centre programme during that year.

The following table shows the manning levels of the 3rd Battalion The Mercian Regiment, complete with establishment and strength as at April of each year.

3rd Btn Mercian Regt
 2003200420052006200720082009201020112012

Establishment

545

545

586

608

608

576

576

605

605

604

Strength

516

538

527

458

470

501

511

555

560

507

+/-

-29

-7

-59

-150

-138

-75

-65

-50

-45

-97

3 Sep 2012 : Column 55W

To determine which five battalions to remove from the infantry order of battle as part of the wider Army 2020 structure, the Army applied a number of criteria, which were:

maintaining a regimental system which is largely regionally aligned; demographic sustainability of regiments according to projected regional supply of recruits;

proportionality of outcome, with no cap badge deletions and no regiment losing more than one battalion in a re-organisation;

balancing the whole infantry structure to maintain variety of roles and parity of opportunity of experience for officers and soldiers;

taking account of previous decisions on mergers and deletions;

historical manning performance; and

ensuring a solution that the Army would see as fair and equitable.

Based on demographic data available from the Office of National Statistics for the age cohort across the UK from which infantry recruits are drawn—and historical trends in terms of the percentage of that cohort likely to join the Army—an assessment was made of which regiments were likely to be the least sustainable in the future if they retained their current structure. This work also included a comparison of each regiment's historical outflow so the likely recruiting requirement could be determined. This showed that the Mercian Regiment were one of the regiments from whom a battalion would need to be removed if it were to be sustainable in manning terms by 2020. Selection of which battalion should be withdrawn was based largely on the fact that while the 1st and 2nd Battalions are already based in the UK, the 3rd Battalion would need to be returned from Germany incurring the cost of new barracks, which we are attempting to minimise where possible.

Military Aircraft

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what estimate he has made of the value of maintenance contracts for (a) Tornado, (b) Typhoon and (c) Sea King aircraft in each of the last three years; [117576]

(2) how much was spent on maintenance work on (a) Tornado, (b) Typhoon and (c) Sea King aircraft in each location where each is permanently based in each of the last three years. [117577]

Peter Luff: Information on the expenditure against the principal support and maintenance contracts for each type of aircraft in each of the last three financial years is contained in following table:

£ million (approximate)
 Financial year
Aircraft type2009-102010-112011-12

Tornado

334

328

378

Typhoon

457

476

506

Sea King

116

121

126

It is not possible to disaggregate expenditure for each aircraft type by location as the contracts are not let on this basis.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what type of maintenance is carried out on the Tornado aircraft at (a) RAF Lossiemouth and (b) RAF Marham; [117578]

3 Sep 2012 : Column 56W

(2) what type of maintenance is carried out on the Typhoon aircraft at (a) RAF Leuchars and (b) RAF Coningsby. [117579]

Peter Luff: Tornado aircraft undergo forward maintenance at RAF Lossiemouth and both forward and depth maintenance at RAF Marham. Typhoon aircraft undergo forward maintenance at RAF Leuchars and both forward and depth maintenance at RAF Coningsby.

Forward maintenance is concerned with preparing aircraft for use and keeping them in day-to-day working order. Depth maintenance involves the scheduled maintenance of aircraft and aircraft components, including the substantial disassembly of aircraft. Depth maintenance can also involve unplanned major maintenance due to faults or damage, and major conversion, modification and overhaul work.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) flight simulators, (b) ground instructional aircraft and (c) inertial guidance systems trainers are permanently based in Scotland; what type of equipment each such unit is; and where each such unit is based. [117587]

Peter Luff: The number, type and location of flight simulators, ground instructional aircraft and inertial guidance systems trainers permanently based in Scotland are shown in the following table:

 Type of equipmentLocationTotal

Flight Simulators

Tornado GR4

RAF Lossiemouth

(1)2

Ground Instructional Aircraft

Tornado GR4

RAF Lossiemouth

1

Ground Instructional Aircraft

Tornado GR1

RAF Lossiemouth

1

Inertial Guidance Systems Trainers

Tornado Navigation Attack and Systems Trainer

RAF Lossiemouth

(1)1

(1) Owned and operated by Thales UK.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many units of Merlin helicopter training equipment are permanently based in Scotland; and where each such equipment is kept. [117588]

Peter Luff: No Merlin helicopter training equipment is permanently based in Scotland. Merlins are based at RNAS Culdrose for the Royal Navy and at RAF Benson for the RAF. The UK's Defence footprint is organised, resourced and managed on a UK-wide basis to meet operational needs.

Military Bases

Mr Darling: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects to make a decision on the future of Dreghorn and Redford barracks; and if he will make a statement. [118278]

Mr Robathan: Following the Army 2020 statement by the Secretary of State for Defence, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), on 5 July 2012, Official Report, columns 1085-88, detailed planning work is now being undertaken

3 Sep 2012 : Column 57W

by the Army and the Defence Infrastructure Organisation to determine the future basing of Army units as part of the overall footprint strategy. It is expected that plans will be announced by the end of 2012.

Military Exercises

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many soldiers from 5 SCOTS took part in Exercise Gaulish Hackle; and at what estimated cost to the public purse. [116875]

Nick Harvey: Exercise Gaulish Hackle involved two companies from 5 SCOTS in an urban training exercise at facilities in France. The exercise took place in two phases. Each phase involved 148 personnel, making a total of 296 and was part of the planned training required by the companies in their current role as part of the lead battle group for the Airborne Task Force within 16 Air Assault Brigade.

The exercise is part of a reciprocal exchange activity with the French. The estimated cost to the public purse was approximately £17,900 overall, expended on the transport of 5 SCOTS to and from France. The cost of the services provided by the French is unknown, but included items such as accommodation and food.

Ministry of Defence Police and Guarding Agency

Dr Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment he has made of the specialist skills of the Ministry of Defence police's criminal investigation department; what assessment he has made of the potential for those skills to be put to wider use; if he will assess the potential for such an enlarged role to improve value for money; and if he will make a statement. [118112]

3 Sep 2012 : Column 58W

Mr Robathan: I refer my hon. Friend to the statement I made on 27 March 2012, Official Report, columns 116-19WS. We recognise the specialist skills of the Ministry of Defence Police Criminal Investigation Department (MDP CID) and intend to reprioritise and rationalise the MDP CID to focus on the crimes that most significantly affect the Defence interest to form part of a co-ordinated pan-departmental strategy to combat fraud and other acquisitive crime against Defence.

Nuclear Weapons

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost was of the nuclear deterrent programme in the last year. [115683]

Mr Philip Hammond: As stated in the White Paper, The Future of the United Kingdom's Nuclear Deterrent (Cm 6994) published in December 2006, the in-service costs of the UK's nuclear deterrent are around 5% of the defence budget. This is expected to remain the case during the current spending review period, which covers the financial years 2011-12 to 2014-15.

Official Visits

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many times (a) he and (b) each other Minister in his Department has visited (i) Scotland, (ii) Wales and (iii) each English region (A) between May 2010 and October 2011 and (B) since October 2011. [114624]

Mr Robathan: The information requested is provided in the following tables:

Between May 2010 and 31 October 2011:

 Secretary of StateMinister for the Armed ForcesMinister for International Security StrategyMinister for Defence Equipment, Support and TechnologyMinister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and VeteransUnder Secretary of State

Scotland

7

3

1

5

2

0

Wales

1

0

1

2

0

0

North-east

4

0

3

0

0

0

Yorkshire and the Humber

2

0

0

1

0

0

North-west

1

0

3

2

2

0

East midlands

0

3

4

0

3

1

West midlands

0

3

1

1

3

1

South-east

9

5

13

8

6

6

South-west

8

15

10

18

5

6

London

32

6

6

2

8

1

Eastern England

0

7

2

3

3

0

Since 1 November 2011 to 30 June 2012:

 Secretary of StateMinister for the Armed ForcesMinister for International Security StrategyMinister for Defence Equipment, Support and TechnologyMinister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and VeteransUnder Secretary of State

Scotland

0

2

1

0

2

1

Wales

0

1

0

0

0

0

North-east

0

0

0

0

0

0

3 Sep 2012 : Column 59W

3 Sep 2012 : Column 60W

Yorkshire and the Humber

0

0

0

1

0

0

North-west

0

0

1

1

0

0

East midlands

2

0

0

1

1

0

West midlands

2

0

0

1

3

1

South-east

9

3

2

8

0

6

South-west

6

5

3

7

4

4

London

17

1

2

1

6

3

Eastern England

1

0

3

3

1

0

The figures in the tables include formal visits only. Attendance at receptions, dinners or speeches have not been included.

Olympic Games 2012: Security

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what duties the additional armed forces personnel to be covering London 2012 Olympics security will undertake; [117554]

(2) where the additional armed forces to be covering London 2012 Olympics security will be accommodated during the Games; [117555]

(3) from what deployments the additional armed forces personnel to be covering London 2012 Olympics security will be removed; [117556]

(4) which department requested the use of additional armed forces personnel to cover London 2012 Olympics security; [117557]

(5) which Minister in his Department took the decision to use additional armed forces personnel to cover London 2012 Olympics security; [117558]

(6) from which units the additional armed forces personnel being deployed to cover Olympic security will be drawn; [117565]

(7) what the cost to the public purse of deploying the additional armed forces personnel to cover Olympic security will be; [117566]

(8) from which budget the costs of the recent deployment of additional armed forces personnel to cover Olympic security will be met. [117567]

Nick Harvey [holding answer 16 July 2012]: As the Secretary of State for Defence, the right hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), confirmed in his written statement of 12 July 2012, Official Report, column 43WS, he agreed with the Secretary of State for the Home Department, the right hon. Member for Maidenhead (Mrs May), and the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, the right hon. Member for South West Surrey (Mr Hunt), to deploy a further 3,500 military personnel to support venue security operations. On 24 July 2012 it was also agreed that a further 1,200 troops were to be deployed to provide resilience and flexibility in this capacity.

These personnel are conducting a number of important roles helping to secure the world's largest sporting event. These tasks include vehicle screening, pedestrian screening and perimeter security tasks which sit alongside niche military capabilities being provided by other personnel provided to the wider Olympic security effort. The precise costs of this additional deployment are currently being scoped—the House will be informed in due course. These costs will not be drawn from the Ministry of Defence (MOD)'s budget. In due course the MOD will provide the Home Office with details of the costs for reimbursement.

I can confirm that none of the units used for this task, announced on the 12 and 24 July 2012 respectively, were removed from deployments on military operations. Personnel were drawn from the following units:

The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland)

3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment

7th Regiment Royal Horse Artillery

13 Air Assault Support Regiment

23 Royal Regiment Engineers

Composite Units to include: 13 Medical Regiment, 216 Signals Squadron and 156 Provost Company RMP

1 The Princess of Wales Royal Regiment

5th Battalion The Rifles

35 Regiment Royal Engineer

28 Engineer regiment

1 (UK) Armoured Division Signal Regiment

Queen Dragoon Guards

Queens Royal Hussars

26th Regiment Royal Artillery

1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

4th Battalion The Rifles

Household Cavalry Regiment

1st Battalion The Rifles

30 Commando Royal Marines

42 Commando Royal Marines

45 Commando Royal Marines

Commando Logistic Regiment

24 Commando Engineer Regiment

3 Force Protection Wing RAF Regiment

Queens Colour Squadron RAF Regiment

Military personnel supporting Olympic safety and security are accommodated in a range of Defence and commercial sites. Since the announcement on 12 July 2012 additional accommodation was secured at Tobacco Dock (Wapping) to accommodate the majority of these additional personnel.

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) whether service personnel providing security at the London 2012 Olympic games will be paid a bonus; [117881]

3 Sep 2012 : Column 61W

(2) what estimate he has made of the cost of providing additional service personnel to provide security at the London 2012 Olympic games; [117882]

(3) whether leave has been cancelled for service personnel as a result of the need to provide additional service personnel at the London 2012 Olympic games; [117883]

(4) how much his Department expects to spend on bus hire for the transportation of service personnel providing security at the London 2012 Olympic games; [117884]

(5) which army units will provide security at the London 2012 Olympic games; and what role they will have; [117885]

(6) whether any tours of duty and handovers will be affected by the deployment of additional service personnel to provide security at the London 2012 Olympic games; [117886]

(7) on what date he was advised that additional service personnel would be required to provide security at the London 2012 Olympic games; [117887]

(8) what type and how many of his Department's vehicles will be used to transport service personnel providing security during the London 2012 Olympic games; [117888]

(9) what accommodation will be provided for service personnel of each rank expected to provide security at the London 2012 Olympic games. [117889]

Nick Harvey: The normal package of allowances will be payable to recognise living conditions and separation, the most significant of which is Longer Separation Allowance, ranging between around £7 and £28 per day, depending on total length of separated service. Those entitled to claim this will continue to do so.

The costs of this additional deployment are currently being scoped—the House will be informed in due course.

No members of the armed forces have had their post-operational tour leave cancelled. As the Secretary of State for Defence, the right hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond) confirmed to the House on 12 July 2012, Official Report, columns 1085-88, we will ensure that all those taking part receive their full leave entitlement, even if it has to be rescheduled.

The costs of bus hire for the transportation of service personnel providing security is currently being scoped in light of the additional deployment of military personnel, and is not yet available.

Military personnel supporting venue security operations will conduct a number of roles including vehicle screening, pedestrian screening and perimeter security tasks. The following units will be on standby for this task:

The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland)

3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment

7th Regiment Royal Horse Artillery

13 Air Assault Support Regiment

23 Royal Regiment Engineers

Composite Units to include: 13 Medical Regiment, 216 Signals Squadron and 156 Provost Company RMP

1 The Princess of Wales Royal Regiment

5th Battalion The Rifles

35 Regiment Royal Engineers

Queen Dragoon Guards

3 Sep 2012 : Column 62W

Queens Royal Hussars

26th Regiment Royal Artillery

1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

4th Battalion The Rifles

Household Cavalry Regiment

1st Battalion The Rifles

42 Commando Royal Marines

3 Force Protection Wing RAF Regiment

Queens Colour Squadron RAF Regiment.

There will be no impact on operational output, including tours of duty and handovers, by this deployment.

G4S indicated to the Government in the last week of June 2012 that they were experiencing specific problems with their scheduling system. At that point we started making contingency plans involving the use of 3,500 troops above and beyond those whom we had already planned to use. On 11 July 2012 G4S told the Government they could no longer provide the number of security personnel to which they were contractually committed and the Secretary of State for Defence, the right hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), the Secretary of State for the Home Department, the right hon. Member for Maidenhead (Mrs May) and the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, the right hon. Member for South West Surrey (Mr Hunt) took the decision to commit extra troops.

In addition to minibuses and cars operated by individual units, 52 Army-owned civilian coaches will be used.

Surplus bed-spaces in the existing accommodation plan for military support to the Olympics will be used where possible for these personnel. These include spaces within existing barracks, Territorial Army centres, other areas on the Defence estate, and in temporary accommodation at Hainault Park. Commercial properties near the Olympic venues suitable for temporary accommodation have been identified, and contracts and relevant permissions are being sought. All costs will be recovered from across government via the Olympic security budget, G4S and LOCOG. MOD will not incur extra costs as a result.

Susan Elan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the oral answer of 12 July 2012, Official Report, column 451, on Olympics: security, whether armed forces personnel will be able to opt out of serving as security for the London 2012 Olympics. [118099]

Nick Harvey: Service personnel will not be able to opt out of serving as security for the London 2012 Olympics.

However, as the Secretary of State for Defence, the right hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), stated to the House on 12 July 2012, Official Report, columns 42-43WS, all those taking part in security for the Olympics will receive their full leave entitlement even if it has to be rescheduled, that no one is out of pocket due to cancelled personal arrangements and that all deployed personnel are appropriately supported.

Susan Elan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the oral answer of 12 July 2012, Official Report, column 451, on Olympics: security, whether any compensation will be given to the families of armed forces personnel for the cancellation of the service member's post-operational tour leave. [118100]

3 Sep 2012 : Column 63W

Nick Harvey: There is no requirement for members of the armed forces to have their post operational tour leave (POTL) cancelled because of the requirement for additional service personnel to provide security at the Olympics. As an example, the additional 3,500 troops employed for venue security force are coming from formed units that returned from operations in April 2012—so POTL should have already been taken.

Parliamentary Private Secretaries: Visits Abroad

Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the occasions since May 2010 on which his Parliamentary Private Secretary has travelled overseas with him or on his behalf. [115464]

Mr Philip Hammond [holding answer 6 July 2012]: None.

Pay

Rachel Reeves: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the lowest hourly rate is paid to staff by his Department; how many members of staff based outside London are paid less than £7.20 per hour; and how many members of staff based in London are paid less than £8.30 per hour. [116381]

Mr Robathan: As of 19 July 2012, the lowest hourly rate paid to an employee in the Ministry of Defence was £6.79.

At the same date, when including location based allowances, there were 1,755 employees earning less than £7.20 per hour outside London. There are no employees earning less than £8.30 per hour in London.

Public Expenditure

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has spent on (a) his private office and (b) staff costs of each Minister in his Department under each category of expenditure in the last 12 months. [114577]

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost to the public purse was of (a) the private office and (b) staff of each Minister in his Department in the last 12 months. [109799]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 2 July 2012]: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 18 January 2012, Official Report, column 825W, to the hon. Member for North Durham (Mr Jones).

The estimated cost of staff employed in six ministerial private offices in financial year 2011-12 is £1.66 million, this is a mixture of civilian and military staff. This figure does not include costs for some support staffs which are provided from other teams.

The Ministry of Defence employs two speechwriters who work for Ministers. The estimated cost of the staff is £120,000 per annum.

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether he expects his Department to underspend its budget for 2012-13; and what estimate he has made of any such underspend. [116466]

3 Sep 2012 : Column 64W

Mr Philip Hammond: The Office of Budget Responsibility forecasts underspends in departmental expenditure limits as part of its Economic and Fiscal Outlook in the autumn.

As part of the transparency agenda, the Government publish the full detail of plans and outturn for all Departments after the end of the financial year, usually in September. HM Treasury publish outturn data for all Departments which is available on the Treasury website on a quarterly basis. Forecasts for 2012-13 outturn by Department will be published at the time of the 2013 budget.

Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the results were, and what changes in policy have been made as a consequence, of the three-month exercise carried out by his Department jointly with the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury in respect of planning round 11. [117864]

Mr Philip Hammond [holding answer 17 July 2012]: Changes in Ministry of Defence policy as a result of the three-month exercise were set out by my predecessor, my right hon. Friend the Member for North Somerset (Dr Fox), in his statement of 18 July 2011, Official Report, column 643.

Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost was of the three-month exercise carried out by his Department jointly with the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury in respect of planning round 11. [117865]

Mr Philip Hammond: The three-month exercise was conducted by Ministry of Defence, Cabinet Office and HM Treasury staff as part of their normal duties. It incurred no additional costs.

Publications

Jonathan Ashworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answers of 3 July 2012, Official Report, column 627W and 12 June 2012, Official Report, column 457W, on publications, how much his Department has spent on (a) publications, (b) circulars and (c) consultation documents since May 2010. [117825]

Mr Robathan: Identifying the expenditure on these publications would require line by line examination of departmental records. The large volume of orders placed through the Corporate Document Services (CDS) central printing contract since May 2010 means that this could be provided only at disproportionate cost. The total cost of the CDS contract between May 2010 and July 2012 was £17.19 million. This will cover a wide range of products for the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and across the armed forces.

On 31 May 2010, the Prime Minister wrote to all Government Departments with plans to open up Government data, with a specific commitment to publish Government expenditure over £25,000. This published information includes payments made to CDS for any such services. For the MOD this can be found at:

http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/AboutDefence/CorporatePublications/FinancialReports/ModSpend/ModSpendOver25000DataFiles.htm

3 Sep 2012 : Column 65W

Radar

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the annual cost is of renting the Scanter 4100 air search radar from BAE systems. [117580]

Peter Luff: The information requested is not held. The Scanter 4100 air search radar is one of the systems on board HMS Clyde, a River Class Offshore Patrol Vessel, which is chartered by the Ministry of Defence from BAE Systems Maritime—Naval Ships (BAES MNS), who supply the vessel as a complete capability to meet the Ministry of Defence's requirement.

The ship is equipped with a number of on board systems, including the Scanter 4100 radar, to allow it to fulfil its role but the contractual agreement with BAES MNS does not separately identify the cost of each of the on board systems.

Railways

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what railway equipment his Department possesses; and where such equipment is located. [117586]

Mr Gerald Howarth: The Ministry of Defence (MOD) uses its railway infrastructure for the movement of equipment, including munitions and armoured vehicles. MOD “railway equipment” includes a wide range of assets, such as standard gauge and narrow gauge locomotives, rolling stock, tooling and infrastructure. Some of this equipment is operated on behalf of the MOD by contractors. Sites include Defence Munitions Kineton, the Logistic Services site at Bicester, and the Marchwood Military Port.

Regulation

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what regulations his Department introduced between 1 February and 31 May 2012; and at what cost to the public purse. [114094]

Nick Harvey [holding answer 28 June 2012]:Between 1 February 2012 and 31 May 2012, the Ministry of Defence introduced three new items of secondary legislation:

The Personal Injuries (Civilians) Scheme (Amendment) Order 2012 (SI 2012/670)

The Ministry of Defence Police (Performance) Regulations 2012 (SI 2012/808)

The Otmoor Range Byelaws 2012 (SI 2012/1478)

These new instruments have come as the result of the regular updating and consolidation of departmental secondary legislation have been prepared within existing departmental resources.

Reserve Forces

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the number of reservists required to make up (a) an enduring intervention, (b) a non-enduring complex intervention, (c) a non-enduring simple intervention and (d) a one-off intervention of up to three brigades with maritime and air support. [116726]

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Mr Robathan [holding answer 12 July 2012]:Force elements, in both the regular and reserve components will be held at varying levels of readiness dependent on role and training. The exact numbers of reserves required for an operation will depend on its nature and scale.

Best effort operations, non-enduring interventions and the early roules of an enduring intervention are planned to be conducted by the reaction force. On these types of operation it is likely that there will be fewer reserves deployed. This is because a smaller number of reservists will be held at very high readiness and those that are, will likely be individual augmentees supporting regular force elements.

For the stages of an operation provided by the adaptive force, which will be held at an appropriate level of readiness to provide a brigade-sized stabilisation commitment, we expect that reservists will contribute a more significant part of the force structure.

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will publish his Department's risk assessment concerning plans to increase the number of reservists up to 2018. [116937]

Mr Robathan: Risk assessments and registers are useful as business tools provided they can be used internally. In this instance they are part of the formulation of the Department's future reserves policy. There is a risk that, if they become public documents, they would be open to misinterpretation and misuse. Consequently, officials may be reticent to engage, confidentially, in full and frank discussions or record all risks, leading to a likelihood that potential risks develop without formal assessment or opportunity for mitigation. This would be particularly damaging to this project in its early stages of development. As a result I do not intend to publish the Future Reserves 2020 risk assessments.

With a commitment of £1.8 billion to be spent on training and equipping our reserves, we are confident that the increase in the size of the reserves is achievable by 2020.

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what frontline tasks he envisages reservists performing that they currently do not perform. [116940]

Mr Robathan: Under the Future Reserve 2020 and Army 2020 changes, Army reservists will be trained and able routinely to deploy at up to sub-unit level, at times at unit level. This provides sustainable command and development opportunities for officers and other ranks alike and reinforces unit ethos and identity.

The roles of the Royal Navy's Maritime Reserves and the Royal Auxiliary Air Force (RAuxAF) will not change materially but will expand to deliver a greater range and depth of capability within well established and integrated models.

Reserve forces are also well placed to contribute to UK Resilience tasks, providing a Reserve of organised manpower to respond to domestic emergencies.

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the £1.8 billion identified for reserve forces will be spent on; and over what timeframe such expenditure will be made. [116982]

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Bridget Phillipson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence under what budget headings the £1.8 billion budget for his Department's plans to reform the reserve forces by 2020 over the next 10 years will be spent. [117130]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 13 July 2012]: The additional £1.8 billion being invested over the next 10 years in reserves will be used to increase and develop the trained strength of the reserves and to enhance their capability. It will be spent to increase recruiting and improve retention, to enhance training at all levels, and to provide more and better equipment. This investment has already begun and will enable reserve forces of all three armed forces to play greater roles as integral elements of the whole force.

Alison Seabeck: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many reservists serve in each Government department. [117546]

Mr Robathan: The information is not held in the format requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence from which trades and sectors his Department plans to recruit reservists. [117984]

Mr Robathan: Historically, the Ministry of Defence has and will continue to recruit reservists from a wide range of employment skills and sectors. There will continue to be recruitment of niche specialists such as medical professionals, and reservists' roles are expected to expand to include other specialist tasks such as cyber.

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent discussions he has had with employers on reservists' employment rights. [117987]

Mr Robathan: The Ministry of Defence engages regularly and at many levels with employers on reservist issues, including employment rights.

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether he has discussed with employers measures to incentivise recruitment and employment of reservists. [118074]

Mr Robathan: Many different types of incentives exist to encourage employers to support and promote their employees' membership of the reserve forces. Most relevant and enduring are the transferable skills, gained through reserve service, that contribute to staff development in any business. There is also an effective scheme in place that enables employers to apply for financial assistance to cover certain costs incurred when replacing a reservist employee if they are mobilised.

The Ministry of Defence has remained engaged with employers before and since the announcement of the publication of the Future Reserves 2020 study in July 2011. However, with this step change in size and role of the reserves we need a new framework of partnership, with public and private sector employers that gives us more confidence that trained reservist manpower will be available when needed. This is being examined through,

3 Sep 2012 : Column 68W

for example, the ‘Partnering for Talent’ programme, which seeks to identify clear business benefits for employers who support the reserves. I intend to publish a consultation paper in the autumn following which we will be able to make informed decisions early next year on further employer engagement.

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to the oral statement of 5 July 2012, Official Report, column 1087, on Army 2020, whether reservists will form stand-alone units on the frontline. [118289]

Mr Robathan: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 17 July 2012, Official Report, column 766W, to the hon. Member for North Durham (Mr Jones).

Under the Army 2020 concept, reservists will be ready and able to deploy routinely at sub-unit level and in some cases as formed units on an enduring stabilisation operation as part of both reaction and adaptable forces.

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 16 July 2012, Official Report, column 516W, on reserve forces, when the specific parameters for the consultation on the effect of his reform of the reserve forces will be published. [118402]

Mr Robathan: The Future Reserves 2020 consultation will engage with reservists, employers and wider society in order to enable informed decisions to be made on terms and conditions of service, employer engagement, the Government's own commitments as an employer, and on any legislation necessary to underpin and support our vision for the Reserves. The parameters of the consultation will be published in a Green Paper in the autumn.

Reserve Forces: Scotland

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many armed forces reservists are ordinarily resident in (a) Kilmarnock and Loudoun constituency and (b) Scotland. [117487]

Mr Robathan [holding answer 17 July 2012]: The information requested could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

Mr Nuttall: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how many serving members of the Second Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers reside in (a) Bury North constituency, (b) Greater Manchester and (c) Lancashire; [118103]

(2) how many serving members of the Second Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers were recruited from (a) Bury North constituency, (b) Greater Manchester and (c) Lancashire. [118104]

Mr Gerald Howarth: Information relating to where serving members of the Army reside and how many were recruited in any given constituency are not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

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Saudi Arabia

Stephen Pound: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what procedures his Department has put in place to detect bribery and other impropriety in contracts supervised by the Saudi Armed Forces Project Office. [116593]

Mr Gerald Howarth: The Ministry of Defence is committed to the prevention, deterrence and detection of bribery. Contracts supervised by the Saudi Armed Forces Project Office are therefore subject to the same procedures and processes as all other Ministry of Defence (MOD) contracts.

Additionally, as part of the verification of supplier processes and prices, and with the support of the Saudi Arabian Government, senior officials within the Project Office seek assurances from the project prime contractor that procedures are in place for the prevention of bribery, in accordance with the detailed guidance published by the Ministry of Justice.

The MOD has well-established procedures through which staff can report concerns about bribery or any other forms of financial irregularity.

Stephen Pound: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) whether his Department's due diligence process in respect of the Saudi Arabian National Guard Communications project recorded any payments made to Simec International and Duranton International; and whether his Department took action in respect of any such payments; [116594]

(2) what due diligence his Department undertook in respect of contracts placed as part of the Saudi Arabian National Guard Communications project. [116595]

Mr Gerald Howarth: Allegations have been made about GPT (Special Project Management Ltd), linked to the Saudi Arabian National Guard Communications Project. These are being considered by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO). It would not be appropriate to respond to these questions until such time as the SFO consideration is complete.

Science and Technology

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much funding he has allocated under each budget heading to his Department's science and technology budget for 2012-13. [118331]

Peter Luff: The Government's White Paper, ‘National Security through Technology’, stated that the Ministry of Defence investment in science and technology will focus on achieving six critical outcomes. The planned investment during 2012-13 against the outcomes is shown in the following table:

Critical S&T outcome£ million (nearest £5 million)

Support to current defence and security operations

50

Plan for future capabilities that will be needed in the longer term

165

Cost reduction and more future proof systems

65

Support to Critical Science and Technology capabilities/facilities

50

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Timely and effective advice to Ministers and Government

55

Human and Sociological aspects of capability

35

Total

420

Snow Removal Units

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many self-propelled snow removal units are permanently based in Scotland; what type of equipment each unit is; and where it is kept. [117585]

Mr Gerald Howarth: The UK's Defence footprint is organised, resourced and managed on a UK-wide basis to meet operational needs.

The number, type and location of self-propelled snow removal units permanently based in Scotland are shown in the following table:

Equipment typeLocationQuantity

Schmidt CJS Mercedes Actros 2032A (ASCV)

RAF Leuchars

3

Snow removal unit—5T Rolba R400SA

RAF Leuchars

1

Airfield De-icer Sprayer—LADS Schmidt Mercedes

RAF Leuchars

1

Schmidt CJS Mercedes Actros 2032A (ASCV)

RAF Lossiemouth

2

Snow removal unit—5T Rolba R400SA

RAF Lossiemouth

1

Airfield De-icer Sprayer—LADS Schmidt Mercedes

RAF Lossiemouth

1

Medium Aircraft Towing Tractors Schmidt

HMS Gannet

2

Strategic Defence and Security Review

Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the effect of implementation of the proposals contained in the Strategic Defence and Security Review on the (a) size, (b) capability and (c) deployability of the Armed Forces. [118228]

Mr Philip Hammond: The decisions we made during the Strategic Defence and Security Review and since will provide us with the battle-winning armed forces called for in the Defence Vision, smaller than before but better equipped and able to reach across the world and operate across the spectrum from high-intensity combat to enduring stabilisation activity. They will work with each other and with allies, equipped and trained for their task, their families well supported, trusted to shape their own future and manage their own resources within Defence.

By 2020:

The Royal Navy and Royal Marines, with some 30,000 trained regulars and 3,100 trained reserves, will have carrier strike capability with the Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter, a high readiness amphibious capability, a new fleet of Type 45 destroyers and Astute class submarines, new Wildcat helicopters, and will be ready to accept the new Global Combat Ship;

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The Army, with some 82,000 trained regulars and 30,000 trained reserves, will remain the most capable Army of its class in the world. At its heart will be a reaction force of three large, well equipped and trained armoured infantry brigades and 16 air assault brigade, able to succeed in complex confrontations and an adaptable force of seven further infantry brigades, with the reserve forces as a core component, providing overseas capacity building to help prevent future conflict, military aid to homeland resilience, and follow-on forces for future enduring operations. Both the reaction and adaptable force will be supported by force troops, such as artillery, engineers and medics;

The Royal Air Force, with some 32,000 trained regulars and 1,800 trained reserves, will be built around the hi-tech multi-role Typhoon and Lightning II combat aircraft, surveillance and intelligence platforms such as Airseeker, and a new fleet of strategic and tactical transport aircraft including C17, Atlas (A400M) and Voyager.

With this we will remain one of the very few countries who can deploy and sustain a brigade sized force together with its air and maritime enablers, capable of both intervention and stabilisation operations almost anywhere in the world.

Tony Gallagher

Mr Jim Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how many times each Minister in his Department has met Tony Gallagher since May 2010; [114558]

(2) how many meetings Tony Gallagher has had at his Department since May 2010; and with whom on each occasion. [114559]

Mr Philip Hammond: I assume this question refers to meetings with Tony Gallagher, editor of The Daily Telegraph. Since July 2011, details of meetings of Ministers with newspaper editors and proprietors are published quarterly. We have no records of any meetings between Tony Gallagher and Ministers in the Ministry of Defence between May 2010 and July 2011.

Type 26 Frigates

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the likely range of unit costs for the Type 26 frigate. [117581]

Mr Gerald Howarth: The Type 26 Global Combat Ship programme is in its Assessment Phase. The range of unit costs will be determined at the main investment decision, which is currently scheduled for the middle of the decade.

Unmanned Air Vehicles

Jonathan Edwards: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on testing of Reaper and Predator drones at West Wales Airport Aberporth and the testing flyzone to Epynt military range; [118345]

(2) what consultation his Department has undertaken with the local population on the use of Predator and Reaper drones at West Wales Airport Aberporth and the testing flyzone to Epynt military range; [118346]

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(3) whether Predator and Reaper drones tested at West Wales Airport Aberporth will be allowed to target lock buildings, moving cars and individuals within the designated drone land corridor. [118347]

Peter Luff: There are no plans to test Reaper (otherwise known as Predator B) unmanned air systems at West Wales Airport or at the Sennybridge Training Area and no discussions have taken place with the Welsh Government or the local population on this subject.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will estimate the likely cost of operating the Unmanned Aerial Systems Capability Development Centre in each of the next five years. [118361]

Peter Luff: We do not yet know the likely cost of operating the Unmanned Air Systems Capability Development Centre (UAS CDC) over the next five years.

The pilot UAS CDC is based around existing facilities with a small management team at Ministry of Defence (MOD) Boscombe Down. The cost of operating these elements is subject to ongoing negotiation with industry. There will also be contributions in kind from MOD, industry and academia that have not yet been defined.

Veterans: Suicide

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to the answer of 13 March 2012, Official Report, column 542W, on veterans: suicide, during what time period data on mental disorders were collected; and for how long after service personnel had left the armed forces the data were collected. [118198]

Mr Robathan: The study referred to in my answer of 13 March 2012, Official Report, column 542W, was commissioned by the Ministry of Defence in 2003 into the health and social consequences of deployment on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The study has had over 20,000 participants, both serving and former personnel, and monitors the effects of operational service against a cohort group that did

not deploy. It does not concentrate on suicide but collects data on a range of issues, including mental health. Data collection began in 2003 and the study is still ongoing, with further results expected to be published in 2013. The early findings referred to in my previous answer captured data up until 2010. Given that operations in Iraq began in 2003, the longest time period the data covered was seven years. It is not possible to provide specific examples of how long after departing service these data were collected as this would vary between individuals.

Veterinary Services

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has spent on veterinary bills for (a) horses and (b) dogs in each year since 2010. [116925]

Mr Robathan: Military working animals play an important role working alongside our armed forces.

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Horses are used for ceremonial purposes throughout the year on the daily changing the guard and at annual events such as trooping the colour and the state opening of Parliament. This forms an important part of our national heritage and helps to raise the profile of our armed forces. Military working dogs play a crucial part in maintaining security of installations and provide invaluable support to Counter IED operations.

The cost of veterinary bills and other health services, such as physiotherapy and dentistry, for horses for each financial year since 2010 are as follows:

 Total cost (£)

April 2010-March 2011

54,812

April 2011-March 2012

72,078

April 2012-June 2012

19,309

The cost of veterinary bills for military working dogs are as follows:

 Total cost (£)

2011

134,227

2012 (to May 2012)

53,483

The payment of these services was not centralised until 2011 and it is not, therefore, possible to provide figures prior to this date.

Work Experience

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many interns work in his Department's press office. [117680]

Mr Robathan: Annually the Civil Service Fast Stream runs a central internship programme, the ‘Summer Diversity Internship Programme’. The programme is designed to provide high calibre undergraduates and graduates from ethnic minority and under-represented socio-economic backgrounds with work placements in Government Departments of between six and nine weeks.

The central Ministry of Defence (MOD) Press Office is within the Director of Media and Communications (DMC), located in MOD Main Building, Whitehall. There are currently no interns working in the central Press Office under the ‘Summer Diversity Internship Programme’. However one intern from this programme is working in the Business Management area of DMC from 25 June 2012 until 10 August 2012 and will be paid a training allowance for this period.

In addition, DMC also hosts young people from year 10 secondary school (15-year-olds) to gain work experience from time to time during long vacation periods. They usually remain with us for one week and are not paid.

Written Questions: Government Responses

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he plans to answer question 109631, tabled on 22 May 2012, for answer on 24 May 2012, on Royal Navy contracts. [R] [116198]

Mr Gerald Howarth: I have replied to the hon. Member today.

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Treasury

Aggregates Levy

Angus Robertson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he has considered (a) reinstating the Aggregates Levy Credit Scheme in Northern Ireland and (b) expanding the scheme to other nations within the UK. [118441]

Miss Chloe Smith: The Government remain fully committed to reinstating an Aggregates Levy Credit Scheme in Northern Ireland. Following the European General Court ruling of 2010 which annulled state aid approval for the scheme that ran between 2004 and 2010, the Commission opened a formal investigation in order to take a new decision on whether the scheme was an approvable state aid. Officials are working closely with the authorities in Northern Ireland and representatives of the quarrying industry to provide the Commission with the evidence they have requested.

The Aggregates Levy Credit Scheme was developed in response to the specific economic and market circumstances in Northern Ireland. The Government have no plans to extend such a scheme to other nations in the UK. The UK Government have, however, committed to devolve the Aggregates Levy to the Scottish Parliament when the outstanding legal proceedings have been fully resolved.

Banks

Jim Shannon: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps his Department is taking to maintain confidence in the banking system. [118178]

Mr Hoban: The Government believe that tougher, smarter and more effective financial regulation is needed to maintain confidence in the banking system. The Government's Financial Services Bill will abolish the FSA and establish a new system of specialised and focused financial services regulators. These reforms will ensure that financial firms are responsibly managed and regulated. The greater stability and resilience of the financial services industry will not only benefit the sector itself, but also the wider economy. The reforms will also ensure that the conduct of firms, and with it the interests of consumers and participants in our financial markets, are placed at the heart of the regulatory system and given the priority they deserve.

The Government are also implementing the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking. The reforms will ensure that British banks will be more resilient, stable and competitive. The Government published their White Paper detailing their proposals on 14 June 2012, and have committed to have all legislation in place by the end of this Parliament.

The Government have established an Independent Review into the structure and governance of LIBOR and the corresponding criminal sanctions regime. This is being headed by Martin Wheatley (CEO designate of the Financial Conduct Authority) and will report by the end of summer. Any necessary legislative changes will be considered for inclusion in the Financial Services Bill currently before Parliament or the proposed Banking Reform Bill.

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The Government also recognise that there are more in-depth issues to be tackled, including the culture and professional standards in the banking system. This will be within the remit of the Commission on Banking Standards, comprising representatives from both the Commons and the Lords, and established by a Joint Resolution of both Houses.

The Commission has the power to interview witnesses under oath, including the Members of both Houses, and send for necessary people and papers. The Commission shall report, no later than 18 December 2012, on recommendations for legislative changes, which can be included in the Banking Reform Bill next year, and on other matters as soon as possible thereafter. It is essential that swift action is taken to fix the problems within the banking sector, rather than delaying solutions to the detriment of the public.

Banks: Regulation

Teresa Pearce: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will bring forward implementation of the (a) ring-fencing of retail banks and (b) recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking. [117170]

Mr Hoban: The timeline for implementing the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB) is detailed in the White Paper published 14 June 2012. The Government have committed to have all primary and secondary legislation in place by the end of this Parliament and, as the ICB recommended, banks will be expected to have implemented reforms by 2019.

Banks: Scotland

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) when he was first informed that the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service was conducting investigations relating to banking conduct in Scotland; [117158]

(2) what discussions he and his officials have had with (a) the Cabinet Secretary for Finance, (b) the First Minister and (c) other members of the Scottish Government on investigations by Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service into banking conduct in Scotland; [117159]

(3) whether his Department has been asked to provide information and material to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in relation to its investigations into banking conduct in Scotland. [117160]

Mr Hoban: Treasury Ministers and officials have meetings and discussions with a wide variety of authorities as part of the process of policy development and delivery. As was the case with previous Administrations, it is not the Government's practice to provide details of all such meetings and discussions.

The Crown Office is conducting an ongoing investigation into the Scottish banking sector. As a result of developments in financial markets, and the degree of public concern about recently reported issues in the financial sector, it recently confirmed that an investigation has been under way for some time, and that the scope has been extended to take account of these developments.

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Banks: Standards

John Mann: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the his contribution of 5 July 2012, Official Report, column 1128, on professional standards in the banking industry, what questions he considers remain unanswered. [117124]

Mr Hoban [holding answer 13 July 2012]: The Government consider that there are many questions which remain unanswered, including those regarding the culture and professional standards in the banking system. This will be within the remit of the Commission on Banking Standards, comprising representatives from both the Commons and the Lords, and established by a Joint Resolution of both Houses.

The Commission has the power to interview witnesses under oath, including the Members of both Houses, and send for necessary people and papers. The Commission shall report, no later than 18 December 2012, on recommendations for legislative changes, which can be included in the Banking Reform Bill next year, and on other matters as soon as possible thereafter. It is essential that swift action is taken to fix the problems within the banking sector, rather than delaying solutions to the detriment of the public.

Child Tax Credit: Birmingham

Shabana Mahmood: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many families in (a) Birmingham, Ladywood constituency and (b) the Birmingham city council area received the child element of child tax credit in (i) 2009, (ii) 2010 and (iii) 2011. [117994]

Mr Gauke: For Birmingham, Ladywood constituency, the average number of families benefiting from the child element was approximately 14,900 for 2009-10 and 13,500 for 2010-11.

For Birmingham local authority area, the average number of families benefiting from the child element was approximately 97,700 for 2009-10 and 99,200 for 2010-11.

The number of families benefiting from the child element of child tax credit is available in the HMRC publications, “Child and Working Tax Credits Statistics Finalised Annual Awards 2009-10 Geographical Analysis” and “Child and Working Tax Credits Statistics Finalised Annual Awards 2010-11 Geographical Analysis” which are available here:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/stats/personal-tax-credits/cwtc-geog-final-awards-may11.pdf

and here:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/stats/personal-tax-credits/child-wtc-geo-may12.pdf

2010-11 is the latest year for which information is currently available. 2011-12 data will be published in May 2013.

Corporation Tax: Scotland

Ms Ritchie: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what discussions he has held with the Scottish Government on devolving the rate of corporation tax to Scotland; and if he will make a statement. [118324]

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Danny Alexander: Treasury Ministers and officials have discussions with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors as part of the process of policy development and delivery.

The Treasury publishes a list of ministerial meetings with external organisations, available at:

http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/minister_hospitality.htm

Equitable Life Assurance Society: Compensation

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many policyholders will not receive compensation from the Equitable Life payment scheme because they have experienced a relative gain. [118443]

Mr Hoban: Appendix F of the report of the Independent Commission on Equitable Life Payments details the numbers who are eligible but not due a payment from the scheme.

http://equitablelifepaymentscheme.independent.gov.uk/docs/pdfs/final_icelp.pdf

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many individual policyholders are yet to receive compensation payments from the Equitable Life payment scheme; [118444]

(2) how many policyholders are yet to receive communication from the Equitable Life payment scheme because the administrators have been unable to verify their address. [118445]

Mr Hoban: The scheme published a detailed progress report on its website earlier this month:

http://equitablelifepaymentscheme.independent.gov.uk/pressfaq/news.htm

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer on whose advice he decided to exclude policyholders who purchased with-profits annuities before 1 September 1992 from the Equitable Life payment scheme. [118446]

Mr Hoban: Following a period of consultation, the Government announced the details of the Equitable Life Payment Scheme as part of the 2010 spending review. These were- debated in the House in November 2010, including the position of the pre-1992 with-profits annuitants. Subsequently the final, detailed, scheme rules, were laid in the House in May 2011.

Fiscal Policy

Mr Hain: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of fiscal tightening through any change in the general government cyclically-adjusted primary balance as a proportion of potential gross domestic product; and what comparative assessment he has made of (a) such domestic fiscal tightening and (b) such fiscal tightening in the European Union. [118149]

Miss Chloe Smith: The Government do not estimate the general Government cyclically-adjusted primary balance, nor do the independent Office for Budget Responsibility forecast this measure of the deficit. Instead, the

3 Sep 2012 : Column 78W

Government's fiscal mandate focuses on the cyclically-adjusted current balance, which excludes capital spending to protect the most productive public investment expenditure.

The IMF and the European Commission forecast this measure of the deficit with latest forecasts available in the April Fiscal Monitor available here:

http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fm/2012/01/fmindex.htm

and European Economic Forecast—Spring 2012 available here:

http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/publications/european_economy/2012/ee1upd_en.htm

The IMF forecast shows that the general government cyclically-adjusted primary balance is forecast to improve from a peak deficit of 7.3% of GDP in 2009 to balance in 2014, subsequently reaching a surplus of 2.1% of GDP by 2017. In comparison, they forecast the Euro Area's average deficit on this measure to peak at 2.2% of GDP in 2010, highlighting the scale of the fiscal challenge the UK faces. The Euro Area is expected by the IMF to reach a surplus of 2.1% of GDP in 2017.

The European Commission forecast the UK's general government cyclically-adjusted primary balance to have improved by 6.0 percentage points in 2013 from a peak deficit of 7.6% of GDP in 2009. The European Union average balance is forecast to have improved by 3.4 percentage points over the same period.

Green Investment Bank

Esther McVey: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps he is taking to work with established green investors on green investment before the Green Investment Bank is operational. [117726]

Miss Chloe Smith: In advance of the UK Green Investment Bank becoming fully operational BIS is making direct investments in green sectors through the Bank's pathfinder: UK Green Investments.