25 Feb 2013 : Column 1WS

Written Ministerial Statements

Monday 25 February 2013

Business, Innovation and Skills

Children and Families Bill

The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (Vince Cable): Today the Government have launched a consultation on the detailed administration of shared parental leave and pay. Shared parental leave and pay will enable working parents to choose how to share leave and pay between them to create the best outcomes for them as a family. This is a radical change in the provision of leave and pay for parents around the birth of the child. We are keen to ensure that the new system works for employers as well as for employees.

This consultation will deliver the detail that business and families are waiting for on how these new proposals will work. This consultation is about getting the detail right so we can deliver a workable system of shared parental leave and pay.

The Government are consulting on the details of:

Whether it would be beneficial to align the notice periods to inform employers of the intention to take paternity leave and pay;

Eligibility criteria for shared parental leave;

Notice to bring to an end maternity leave and maternity pay, or allowance, if accompanied by a notification of intention to access the shared parental system;

Whether parents should have one year from the start of maternity leave or one year from the child’s birth date to use the shared parental leave and pay;

How employment protections on the right to return to the same job, should work for shared parental leave;

How notification to employers will work with the new “fostering for adoption” arrangements.

In addition ACAS is also today launching a consultation on a code of practice for the right to request flexible working. Under proposals included in the Children and Families Bill, the right to request flexible working will be extended to all employees who have worked for their employer for 26 weeks or more. Employers are obliged to consider all requests in a reasonable manner.

The current statutory procedure will be repealed and the Government have asked ACAS to produce a code of practice to help businesses manage this new extended right. ACAS will also produce non statutory good practice guide with practical examples of managing this in the workplace. This will be published alongside the code. Taken together, these measures will deliver on several important commitments in the coalition agreement.

Copies of the consultation document will be placed in the House Libraries.

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Treasury

ECOFIN

The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Mr George Osborne): A meeting of the Economic and Financial Affairs Council was held in Brussels on 12 February 2013. Ministers discussed the following items:

Current legislative proposals

The presidency updated Ministers on the single supervisory mechanism (SSM); capital requirements directive IV (CRD IV); bank recovery and resolution; market abuse directive (MAD)/market abuse regulation (MAR); and revised rules for markets in financial instruments directive (MiFID).

Discharge to be given to the Commission in respect of the implementation of the budget for 2011

Council adopted a recommendation to the European Parliament on the discharge to be given to the Commission for implementation of the EU’s general budget for 2011. This recommendation was based on an annual report by the European Court of Auditors (ECA). The UK, along with the Netherlands and Sweden, voted against the recommendation and submitted a joint statement expressing disappointment that for the 18th year in succession, the ECA has been unable to grant a positive statement of assurance on the EU budget as a whole, and furthermore that the overall error rate in recent years has increased.

Council guidelines for the budget for 2014

ECOFIN agreed a set of Council conclusions on guidelines for the 2014 budget of the EU, which will serve as its overall reference for the subsequent budgetary procedure.

Preparation of G20 Meeting of Finance Ministers and Governors (Moscow, Russia, 15-16 February 2013)

Council endorsed EU terms of reference in preparation for a meeting of G20 Finance Ministers and central bank governors to be held in Moscow on 15 and 16 February.

Annual Growth Survey 2013

ECOFIN agreed a set of Council conclusions on the Commission’s annual growth survey 2013. The conclusions, which highlight the importance of EU growth and structural reform, will feed into the March European Council.

Alert Mechanism Report 2013

Council agreed a set of Council conclusions on the Commission’s alert mechanism report 2013.

Fiscal Sustainability Report 2012

ECOFIN agreed a set of Council conclusions on the fiscal sustainability report 2012.

Communities and Local Government

DCLG (February Recess Work)

The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Mr Eric Pickles): I would like to update hon. Members on the main items of business undertaken by my Department since the House rose on 14 February 2013.

25 Feb 2013 : Column 3WS

Delivering local pay transparency

The Department is continuing its commitment to deliver transparent and open government to drive out waste, protect front-line services and ensure value for money to the taxpayer. We want to make it easier for local people to see how their money is being spent.

Councils have a responsibility to the public and transparency is at the heart of that. On 20 February, my Department published supplementary guidance on pay policy statements in order to strengthen the transparency and democratic accountability measures over senior pay practices. This recommends that in addition to a full council vote for hiring senior officer earning more than £100,000 six figure severance pay-offs should also be democratically approved so elected councillors have the opportunity to vote and give their democratic consent.

We also announced our intention to change regulations on the dismissal of senior officers, to tackle the culture of large “parachute payments” being made to senior officers. My Department will following an informal consultation reform the existing Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) Regulations 2001 to remove the requirement for the appointment of an expensive designated independent person. These changes will mean each council can decide the best disciplinary process that delivers value for money without the need for an independent investigation.

Both measures are designed to offer maximum value for money for the taxpayer.

Keeping Council Tax down for a third year

This Government are committed to helping people struggling with the cost of living. We have set aside £450 million for local government in England to freeze council tax in 2013 to 2014.

On 22 February, my Department published an updated list of the 219 councils so far adopting a “can-do” attitude by opting to take our freeze grant and support their residents. Those that freeze bills are making a real difference to families and those on fixed incomes, such as pensioners. We expect this figure to increase further as local authorities finalise their budgets.

To ensure that councils do not by pass the taxpaying public when setting their council tax increases, we have introduced through the Localism Act 2011 a new local democratic process that triggers a council tax referendum giving residents the means to protect against excessive rises. This year a local authority will have to go to the polls if they decline the freeze offer worth an equivalent of a 1% rise and raise council tax above a 2% increase.

This is the third successive year in which a freeze scheme has been applied. In total the three freeze deals are worth potentially over £200 to a typical Band D resident.

Driving economic growth and Enterprise Zone delivery

Economic growth is this Government’s biggest priority and enterprise zones are the engine room of that strategy. We are determined to help ensure that Britain is the best place in the world to start and grow business and we believe the economy needs to be rebalanced so this can begin at the local level. It is local business and commerce that drive the private sector growth, jobs and wealth that this country needs.

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This morning, 25 February, I invited local enterprise partnerships to bid for £59 million worth of investment to help deliver the infrastructure that enterprise zones need to become economic engine rooms and drive local growth across the country.

This fund will help zones with real growth potential to put in place the infrastructure required to unlock sites so businesses can set up. This could mean links to local road networks or reconfiguring site layouts; upgrading or installing utilities like electricity and water; or land remediation to reclaim contaminated land.

There are 24 enterprise zones across the country made up of 142 sites. Since they opened for business last April, they have already created around 1,700 jobs and attracted £155 million of private sector investment. In the coming months more jobs and investment are expected to come forward.

This fund is part of the local infrastructure fund announced at autumn statement which provides £474 million to for infrastructure investment and other site preparation works that will support local economic growth, jobs and homes. The fund will operate for England only. The local infrastructure fund prospectus also invites locally-led large housing sites to come forward.

A copy of the associated documents and press notices have been placed in the Library of the House.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Horsemeat Fraud (Update)

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Mr Owen Paterson): I would like to update the House on developments since my written ministerial statement on 14 February 2013, Official Report, column 60WS.

Consumers have been the Government’s priority throughout this incident. No misrepresentation of horse meat as beef is acceptable. Food industry tests of the most vulnerable processed beef products have now been reported to the Food Standards Agency (FSA) covering approximately 90% of retailers’ products, and 80% of those from manufacturers, caterers and wholesalers. It is of some reassurance to consumers that over 99% of 3,599 tests contained no horse DNA at or above the level of 1 %.

On Friday 15 February, the FSA published the first set of results from the programme of product testing being carried out by food businesses across the supply chain. Out of 2,501 tests, 99% were completely clear of horse DNA. The 29 samples that were positive for horse DNA involved products which the FSA had already been informed about and which had already been taken off the shelves and the recall publicised.

I followed the publication of this first tranche of results with a meeting on 18 February with businesses and organisations from throughout the UK food industry. Ministers from the devolved Administrations were also present. This was a constructive meeting, at which everyone committed to work together to rebuild the certainty and trust that consumers deserve, both for the products that they buy and the food that they are served. At that meeting food businesses throughout the

25 Feb 2013 : Column 5WS

supply chain agreed to do their best to report back as many testing results as possible to the FSA by Friday 22 February.

On Friday 22 February, the FSA published the second set of test results from the programme of product testing being carried out by food businesses. A further 1,133 new results were reported, of which six products tested positive for the presence of horse DNA. The message to consumers remains that the overwhelming majority of products tested, 3,599 out of 3,631 (over 99%) were completely clear of horse DNA. A further update of industry testing results will be published by the FSA this Friday.

There have been no positive tests to date for the presence of bute in any of the UK food samples found to contain horse. Food adulterated with horsemeat remains a fraud issue and one of consumer confidence, not one of food safety.

On Friday 22 February the British Retail Consortium issued a press release stating that they had completed over 90% of their tests on processed meat products. Caterers and wholesalers also indicated that they had now completed around 80% of their tests.

The FSA will publish the results of the remaining tests on Friday 1 March. After that, food businesses will update the FSA on their test results every three months. I have also agreed with food businesses that we should meet regularly to discuss ways to strengthen the food industry.

Public sector food is very much within scope of the current testing regime. The major suppliers and caterers to public institutions are part of the extensive food industry testing which is being reported and published through the FSA. In addition the food served in schools, hospitals and prisons is included in the FSA commissioned UK-wide authenticity survey of processed beef products and ready meals being carried out by local authorities. As with all parts of the industry any positive test results will lead to the immediate withdrawal of products, notification to the FSA and information being provided immediately to consumers.

The FSA has made it clear that all public bodies where food is served are expected to have rigorous procurement procedures in place, and use reputable suppliers. The FSA has reminded public bodies of their responsibility for their own food contracts. Since the FSA issued advice to public institutions on Sunday 11 February lead Government Departments have been in contact with their public bodies to highlight the advice. All public bodies are aware of the extensive testing regime the FSA has established with the food industry and the UK-wide survey which have been put in place to reinforce the integrity and confidence in processed beef supplies in Britain.

At the meeting of the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health on 15 February agreement was reached on a Europe-wide programme of testing of beef products for presence of horse DNA and testing of horsemeat intended for the food chain for “bute”. This is an important step in establishing where the problem of food fraud is occurring across Europe and seeking the commitment from all member states to not only put an end to it but to prevent it happening again. The apparent French source of the recalled Findus product and the announcements last week by Nestle and Birdseye of product withdrawals in Italy, Spain and Belgium demonstrate that this is a Europe-wide issue.

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Results from the first phase of the UK-wide authenticity survey being carried out by local authorities of minced beef products for the presence of horse and pig DNA will be available in the week beginning 4 March. In the meantime the survey has been extended. A second phase will survey a wider range of beef products including ready meals. Sampling for this phase has been completed and testing is starting this week. A third phase to include sampling under the EU co-ordinated control plan is also now under way. The FSA will report the UK’s contribution to the Europe-wide programme to the EU by mid-April.

While the issues surrounding falsified horse passports are unrelated to the fact that horsemeat has been fraudulently passed off as beef in a number of products I would like to update the House on this issue. I met representatives from across the equine sector on 21 February to look at ways in which we can work together to tighten and improve the current horse passport system. DEFRA officials will continue to work with interested parties but in the meantime the FSA has already taken robust action to ensure that no horse carcass from the UK can now enter the human food chain unless it has tested negative for bute.

Consumers need to be confident in the food that they buy. I welcome the significant effort put into testing products by businesses across the food industry to tackle horsemeat fraud. This unprecedented level of testing, combined with the FSA led local authority and EU programmes over the coming weeks, will give us a clear picture of the extent of the problem. Investigations into specific incidents are ongoing in the UK and across Europe and where appropriate the police and other enforcement authorities are involved.

This has been a Europe-wide scandal. I will be discussing the mislabelling of beef products with other Ministers at the EU Agriculture Council meeting today, and will report further to the House after the meeting.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Foreign Affairs Council

The Minister for Europe (Mr David Lidington): My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs attended the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) on 18 February. The Foreign Affairs Council was chaired by the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Baroness Ashton of Upholland. Commissioners Piebalgs (Development), and Füle (Enlargement) were in attendance for some of the discussions.

Foreign Affairs Council (FAC)

A provisional report of the meeting and conclusions adopted can be found at:

http://www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_data/docs/pressdata/EN/foraff/135544.pdf.

Mali

Ministers formally launched the EU training mission to Mali, and discussed the adoption of the road map. There was general support for ensuring that elections were held in line with the road map, and that they took into account the legitimate needs of the north. Ministers also stressed the need to ensure that the Malian Government

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were engaged on the political track, as well as the security one. There was widespread support for the role of France in this crisis and the leadership they had demonstrated. The discussion also included a focus on what development opportunities could be reinstated in the light of the improving security situation. Conclusions were agreed, which described ongoing efforts in Mali to achieve security and stability.

Eastern Partnership

There was a wide-ranging discussion, with a view to establishing the EU’s priorities ahead of the eastern partnership summit, scheduled to take place in Vilnius in November. Conclusions were agreed outlining this. Ministers discussed how to engage partner countries in the debate, how to encourage them to continue economic and political reforms, and on the need for a differentiated approach to for each country. Several member states stressed the need for the EU to offer a clear European perspective for the eastern partners.

Iraq

The current political tensions in Iraq were touched on briefly, with a more substantial discussion planned for a later date.

Syria

The FAC agreed conclusions which outlined the EU’s strong concern on the ongoing situation in Syria especially the humanitarian crisis, and highlighted its support for the al-Khatib initiative, the opposition, civil society and planning for transition. There was broad agreement that further assistance to people in Syria, particularly the protection of civilians, could be enhanced. The Council conclusions also set out the EU’s decision to amend the EU’s arms embargo to allow the provision of non-lethal support and technical assistance to the opposition, and to renew the restrictive measures for a further three months.

Middle East Peace Process

Ministers agreed that 2013 was a crucial year for the middle east peace process. They welcomed President Obama’s planned trip to the region and agreed that it was important to engage with the US on the increasingly urgent need to make progress on the two-state solution. There was broad agreement that the EU had an important role to play in supporting US efforts.

Zimbabwe

Council conclusions were adopted that repeated the EU’s readiness to suspend the majority of the restrictive measures following a peaceful and credible constitutional referendum. Ministers agreed an amendment to the existing measures that delisted 21 individuals and suspended the travel ban on six Ministers. The restrictive measures were extended for a further 12 months. The EU position supports the reforms that have been achieved so far and encourages further progress.

Other business

Northern Dimension

After the FAC, there was also a meeting of the Northern Dimension, where Iceland, Norway and Russia joined member states in a discussion on practical co-operation in the region, highlighting the opportunities in the High North and the challenge of developing those opportunities in a sustainable manner.

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Bourgas

Under any other business, Bulgaria outlined the findings of its investigation into the Bourgas terrorist attack which took place in July 2012.

Other business

Ministers agreed without discussion a number of others measures, including:

EU assistance to Kosovo related to the rule of law.

Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK); The measures that had been agreed previously at the January FAC were strengthened in light of the recent nuclear test on 12 February. The package will implement UN Security Council Resolution 2087, which imposed new criteria allowing the EU to sanction individuals involved in the supply of conventional arms and dual-use goods and banned the export to DPRK of certain materials for ballistic missiles. In addition, a limited range of financial restrictions were agreed in response to the nuclear test, including bans on the sale or purchase of gold, diamonds, precious metals and Government bonds. The EU reiterated its call on the Government of DPRK to urgently improve the human rights situation in their country. Together with Japan, the EU will propose, at the Human Rights Council, the creation of an independent inquiry mechanism in support of the special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the DPRK.

EU priorities in UN human rights forum: Council conclusions were agreed on the EU’s approach to UN human rights forum in 2013. Among the priorities for strong action at UN-level are the human rights situations in Syria, DPRK, Burma, Belarus, Sri Lanka, Mali and Iran, and the right to freedom of religion or belief.

Special Tribunal for Lebanon and Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia

The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (Mr William Hague): I am pleased to announce that the UK intends to make a voluntary contribution of £1 million to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL), and a voluntary contribution of £1.4 million to the international component of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC). This is in order to support international justice, strengthen accountability in the international system, and bring to justice those responsible for the most serious international crimes.

The UK is committed to supporting security and stability for the people of Lebanon. That was my message during my visit to Beirut last week. This new contribution to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon is a signal of our steadfast support for its work to end the climate of impunity for political assassination in Lebanon.

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia is securing long awaited justice for millions of Cambodians through the trials of the most senior and responsible surviving members of the Pol Pot regime. The scale of the crimes committed and the number of victims makes it one of the most significant tribunals of its kind since Nuremberg. Both the international and national sides of the Court are facing severe financial shortfalls. The UK is committed to supporting the Court and our planned contribution will provide a measure of stability in this difficult period. We will continue to call on international partners, including states in the region, to contribute to the Court.

International justice is central to foreign policy. It is essential for securing the rights of individuals and states, and for securing peace and reconciliation. Through the

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International Criminal Court, and the separate international tribunals, we are working to make clear that those responsible for the most serious crimes will be held to account and that political leaders will not enjoy impunity. Our support to the institutions of international justice is an important part of our efforts to reduce conflict and promote stability worldwide.

Health

Health Committee's Report on the General Medical Council (Government Response)

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health (Dr Daniel Poulter): We have today laid before Parliament the “Government response to the House of Commons Health Select Committee’s report of Session 2012-13: 2012 accountability hearing with the General Medical Council” (Cm 8520).

This Government welcome the Health Select Committee recommendations contained in this report, and would like to thank the Committee for its work.

The Government’s Command Paper, “Enabling Excellence” (Cm 8008), published in February 2011, sets out a comprehensive strategy for ensuring that professional regulation systems are robust and made it clear that the Government would like to see more effective accountability for the health professions regulatory bodies. We have taken forward the recommendations made in this report and its predecessor and the changes to the Responsible Officer regulations, subject to parliamentary approval, will be introduced in April 2013. The Government plan to consult on giving new powers to the General Medical Council to check the language skills of all doctors, through amendment to the Medical Act.

It is right that the independent bodies responsible for ensuring public protection through the regulation of healthcare professionals are held to account effectively by Parliament.


Copies of the Government’s response are available to hon. Members from the Vote Office and to noble Lords from the Printed Paper Office. The report is also available at: www.dh.gov.uk/health/2013/02/hsc-response/.

Home Department

Charging for Immigration and Nationality Services 2013-14

The Minister for Immigration (Mr Mark Harper): I am announcing proposals to change the fees for

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immigration and nationality applications made to the UK Border Agency and services provided by the agency. The Government review these fees on a regular basis and make appropriate changes as necessary.

In developing these proposals, the UK Border Agency has sought to limit most increases to 3%, which is in line with recent measures of inflation. There are further targeted increases for applications made within the UK, where the value of the entitlements provided to successful applicants is greater, and new fees for European residence documents.

The UK Border Agency has given careful consideration to its fee levels, to ensure they provide the funding necessary to operate effective immigration controls and invest in improving service levels to customers. This is balanced against the need to ensure that the UK continues to attract and welcome the “brightest and best” migrants from around the world and those that make a valued contribution to British society. Given the ongoing need to reduce public spending, we believe it is right that we continue to reduce the contribution made by UK taxpayers towards delivering the immigration system by asking those who use and benefit directly from the system to make a greater contribution.

For certain application categories, we will continue to set fees higher than the administrative cost to reflect their value to successful applicants. This helps to provide resources to run the UK immigration system and enables the agency to set lower fees elsewhere in support of wider Government objectives to attract those businesses, workers, students and visitors who most benefit the UK.

I have laid regulations for fees set higher than cost. In addition, I will shortly lay another set of regulations in Parliament for fees set at or below cost. Further details explaining all fees changes are provided in the explanatory memoranda for both sets of regulations. Subject to parliamentary approval the Government intend to bring new fees into force from 6 April 2013.

The attached table, setting out all the proposed fees, includes indicative unit costs for financial year 2013-14. The unit cost is the estimated average cost to the UK Border Agency of processing each application. Unit costs are published so it is clear which fees we set over cost and by how much.

Full details on how to apply for all of the agency’s products and services will be provided on the UK Border Agency’s website: www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk.

Out of Country
Visas – non PBSUnit Costs April 2013Current FeesNew Fees6th April 2013

Visit visa - short

£136

£78

£80

Visit visa - long 2 year

£136

£270

£278

Visit visa - long 5 year

£136

£496

£511

Visit visa - long 10 year

£136

£716

£737

Extended Student Visit visa (between 6 & 11 months)

£136

£140

£144

Settlement

£407

£826

£851

Settlement Armed Forces - dependants

£407

£810

£810

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Settlement - dependant relative

£407

£1,850

£1,906

Settlement (refugee dependant relative)

£407

£458

£407

Certificate of Entitlement

£407

£270

£278

Other visa

£207

£270

£278

Transit visa

£99

£52

£54

Media Representatives

£207

£480

£494

Vignette transfer fee

£207

£102

£105

Call out/out of hours fee

£134 h/r

£130/hr

£130 h/r

Single entry visa to replace Biometric Residence Permit overseas

£136

£70

£72

Forwarding documents to Commonwealth countries/Overseas Territories (additional fee).

n/a

£70

£70

Handling applications on behalf of Commonwealth countries/ Overseas Territories.

n/a

£50

£50

Visa – PBS(new products are shown in italics)Unit Costs April 2013Current FeesNew Fees6th April 2013

Tier 1 (Entrepreneur, Investor, Exceptional Talent(1)) - main apps

£295

£816

£840

Tier 1 (Entrepreneur, Investor, Exceptional Talent) - all dependants

£295

£816

£840

Tier 1 CESC - main apps

£295

£734

£756

Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur - main apps

£295

n/a

£298

Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur - all dependants

£295

n/a

£298

Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur CESC - main apps

£295

n/a

£268

Tier 1 Post Study Work - dependants

£295

£483

£498

Tier 2 General, ICT - Long term staff. Sport & MOR - main apps

£207

£480

£494

Tier 2 General, ICT - Long term staff. Sport & MOR - dependants

£207

£480

£494

Tier 2 General, ICT - Long term staff. Sport & MOR (CESC) - main apps

£207

£432

£445

Tier 2 ICT Short term staff, Graduate Trainee or Skills Transfer -main apps & dependants

£207

£400

£412

Tier 2 ICT Short term staff. Graduate Trainee or Skills Transfer (CESC) - main apps

£207

£360

£371

Tier 4 - main apps

£244

£289

£298

Tier 4 - dependants

£244

£289

£298

Tier 5 Temp Work & Youth Mobility - main apps

£158

£194

£200

Tier 5 - all dependants

£158

£194

£200

Tier 5 CESC - main apps

£158

£175

£180

(1)The Exceptional Talent application fee will be payable in 2 parts.
CESC = Council of Europe Social Charter reduction
ICT = Intra Company Transfer
MOR = Minister of Religion
For applications to the Channel islands under Employment and Study routes Tier 2 & Tier 4 fees and costs apply respectively.
In Country
Nationality(new products are shown in italics)Unit CostsApril 2013CurrentFeesNew Fees6th April 2013

Naturalisation (UK Citizenship) single(1)

£187

£851

£874

Naturalisation (UK Citizenship) joint(1)

£281

£1,317

£1,550

Naturalisation (UK Citizenship) spouse(1)

£187

£851

£874

Nationality Registration adult/ other(1)

£187

£631

£753

Nationality Registration minor(2)

£187

£551

£673

Nationality Registration British Subject/British Overseas Territories Citizen

£187

£551

£568

Nationality Registration multiple minor main(2)

£281

£827

£1,178

Nationality Registration multiple minor dependant(2)

£187

£276

£505

Renunciation of Nationality

£187

£229

£187

Nationality Reissued Certificate

£94

£88

£94

Nationality Right of Abode

£187

£165

£170

Nationality Reconsiderations

£187

£80

£80

Status Letter (Nationality)

£94

£88

£94

Non-Acquisition Letter (Nationality)

£94

£88

£94

Nationality Correction to Certificate

£94

£88

£94

European Residence Document— (Residence Certificate)(3)

£82

n/a

£55

European Residence Document - (Document certifying permanent residence)(3)

£82

n/a

£55

European Residence Document- (Residence Card and Derivative Residence card)(3)

£82

n/a

£55

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European Residence Document - (Permanent Residence Card)3

£82

n/a

£55

(1)Additional £80 per applicant is included to cover the ceremony fee.
(2)Additional £80 per applicant is required to cover the ceremony fee should the minor turn 18 during the application process. This will be requested at point of decision.
(3)Residence Documents issued under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations are not mandatory. These fees will be introduced later in 2013 when the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006 have been amended. Full information will be provided on the UKBA website.
In Country
In UK - non PBS(new fees are shown in italics)Unit CostsApril 2013Current FeesNew Fees6th April 2013

ILR Standard – main

£403

£991

£1,051

ILR Standard - all dependants

£403

£496

£788

ILR Standard CESC – main

£403

£893

£946

ILR Standard CESC – dependant

£403

£496

£788

LTR Other Standard – main

£281

£561

£578

LTR Other Standard – dependant

£281

£281

£433

Transfer of Conditions / NTL Standard - main

£147

£220

£147

Transfer of Conditions / NTL Standard - dependant

£147

£110

£147

Travel Documents adult (CoT)

£257

£238

£257

Travel Documents adult CTD

£164

£72.50

£72.50

Travel Documents child (CoT)

£164

£149

£164

Travel Documents child CTD

£117

£46

£46

BRP/ replacement Biometric Residence Permit

£38

£37

£38

Work Permit technical changes

£123

£22

£22

Residual FLR lED Standard – main

£281

£561

£578

Residual FLR lED Standard – dependants

£281

£281

£433

Residual FLR BUS Standard – main

£281

£1,020

£1,051

Residual FLR BUS Standard - dependants

£281

£510

£788

Employment LTR outside PBS Standard

£281

£561

£578

Employment LTR outside PBS Standard Dependant

£281

£281

£433

Application in Person (AIP) — main and dependants(1)

n/a

n/a

£375

Appointment booking fee(1)

n/a

n/a

£100

Super Premium service (mobile case working)

£2,211

£6,000 + premium fee

£6,000 + Standard + AIP fee

Call Out/Out of Hours Fee

£134

£130/hr

£130/hr

(1)For applications made in person (e.g. at a public enquiry office) the total fee is the relevant standard fee plus £375 per person (this includes the £100 appointment fee, which may be retained should the applicant fail to attend their appointment without good reason).
ILR = Indefinite Leave to Remain CESC = Council of Europe Social Charter reduction
LTR = Leave to Remain FLR = Further Leave to Remain
IED = Immigration Employment Document  
Standard = Postal or online applications where online application is available  
In Country
In UK - PBS(new fees are shown in italics)Unit CostsApril 2013Current FeesNew Fees6th April 2013

Tier 1 (General) Standard – main

£336

£1,500

£1,545

Tier 1 (General) Standard - all dependants

£336

£750

£1,159

Tier 1 (General) Standard CESC - main Tier 1

£330

£1,350

£1,391

Tier 1 - Standard (Entrepreneur, Investor, Exceptional Talent(1)) - main

£351

£1,020

£1,051

Tier 1 - Standard (Entrepreneur, Investor, Exceptional Talent) - all dependants

£351

£510

£788

Tier 1 - Standard (Entrepreneur, Exceptional Talent) CESC -main

£351

£918

£946

Tier 1 - Graduate Entrepreneur Standard – main

£482

£700

£406

Tier 1 - Graduate Entrepreneur Standard CESC – main

£482

£630

£365

Tier 1 - Graduate Entrepreneur Standard – all dependants

£482

£350

£305

Tier 2 - General, ICT - Long term staff. Sport & MOR -Standard - main

£225

£561

£578

Tier 2 - General, ICT - Long term staff. Sport & MOR -Standard - all dependants

£225

£281

£434

Tier 2 - General, ICT - Long term staff. Sport & MOR -Standard CESC - main

£225

£505

£520

Tier 2 ICT - Short term staff, Graduate Trainee or Skills Transfer - Standard - main

£187

£400

£412

Tier 2 ICT - Short term staff, Graduate Trainee or Skills Transfer - Standard - all dependants

£187

£200

£309

25 Feb 2013 : Column 15WS

25 Feb 2013 : Column 16WS

Tier 2 - ICT - Short term staff. Graduate Trainee or Skills Transfer - Standard CESC – main

£187

£360

£371

Tier 4 - Standard – main

£238

£394

£406

Tier 4 - Standard - all dependants

£238

£197

£305

Tier 5 - Standard – main

£222

£194

£200

Tier 5 - Standard - all dependants

£222

£97

£150

Tier 5 - Standard CESC – main

£222

£175

£180

Tier 4 - Permission to Change Sponsor(2)

£160

£160

£160

Application in Person (AIP) - main and dependants(3)

n/a

n/a

£375

Priority service - main and dependants(4)

n/a

n/a

£275

Appointment booking fee(3)

n/a

n/a

£100

Super Premium service (mobile case working)

£2,211

£6,000 +

premium

fee

£6,000 +

Standard +

AIP fee

(1)The Exceptional Talent application fee is payable in 2 parts
(2)Only for migrants that applied to the UK Border Agency for permission to study from 31 March 2009 to 4 October 2009.
(3)For applications made in person (e.g. at a public enquiry office) the total fee is the relevant standard fee plus £375 per person (this includes the £100 appointment fee, which may be retained should the applicant fail to attend their appointment without good reason).
(4)To use the priority service, the total fee is the relevant Standard fee plus £275 per person. Initially offered for Tier 2 applications only.
Dependants' fees are for applications made at the same time as the main applicant. For PBS dependants applying individually the relevant main applicant fee is payable.
Standard = Postal or online applications where online application is available
CESC = Council of Europe Social Charter reduction
ICT = Intra Company Transfer MOR = Minister of Religion
In Country
PBS Sponsorship(new products are shown in italics)Unit CostsApril 2013Current FeesNew Fees6th April 2013

Premium Sponsor Scheme Tier 2 & 5 - large sponsors

n/a

£25,000

£25,000

Premium Sponsor Scheme Tier 2 & 5 - small sponsors

n/a

£8,000

£8,000

Premium Scheme Tier 4 Sponsors(1)

n/a

n/a

£8,000

Tier 2 Large Sponsor Licence

£1,545

£1,500

£1,545

Tier 2 Small Sponsor Licence

£1,545

£500

£515

Tier 4 Sponsor Licence

£1,545

£500

£515

Tier 5 Sponsor Licence

£1,545

£500

£515

Tier 2, Tier 4 &/or Tier 5 Licence (where sponsor currently holds Tier 4 or Tier 5 licence)

£1,545

£1,000

£1,030

Highly Trusted Sponsor Licence

£1,545

£500

£515

Sponsor Action Plan

£1,545

£1,500

£1,545

Tier 2 Certificate Of Sponsorship (COS)

£154

£179

£184

Tier 5 COS

£14

£13

£14

Tier 4 Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS)

£14

£13

£14

(1)New fees will take effect after 1 July 2013. Full information will be provided on the UKBA website.

Equality (Language Analysis - Palestinian, Syrian and Kuwaiti Testing) Authorisation (No.2) 2013

The Minister for Immigration (Mr Mark Harper): On 20 February 2013, I made a ministerial authorisation under schedule 3, part 4, paragraph 17 (4) (a) of the Equality Act 2010. This authorisation may be cited as the Equality (Language Analysis—Palestinian, Syrian and Kuwaiti Testing) Authorisation (No. 2) 2013.

The purpose of language analysis (LA) testing in the UK Border Agency is to assist in identifying an asylum applicant’s true place of origin where it is in doubt, and to deter claims made in a false nationality or national origin because of an actual or perceived benefit to an asylum claim. Where the United Kingdom is responsible for deciding a case, LA testing may be carried out on an informed consent basis, and presently, only if it is strongly suspected the applicant has provided false information regarding their place of origin. A refusal to submit to testing may be taken into account when determining whether an applicant has assisted in establishing the facts of his case or her case.

UK Border Agency data on language analysis testing between October 2011 and May 2012 show that although 20 different claimed nationalities or national origins were tested, on a case-by-case basis, abuse was particularly apparent for three claimed nationalities or national origins. Where tested, those claiming to be of Kuwaiti national origin were shown in 26 out of 33 cases (79%) not to be from Kuwait; none of the 12 claiming to be Palestinian (100%) were found to be from Palestine; and (to July 2012), 12 of the 15 applicants (80%) claiming to be Syrian nationals were assessed to not be from Syria.

I therefore consider the ministerial authorisation to be reasonable, rational, proportionate and necessary for maintaining the integrity of the immigration system.

25 Feb 2013 : Column 17WS

The authorisation gives approval for the UK Border Agency to use linguistic analysis to analyse the language of persons making an asylum claim where they claim to be of Palestinian national origin or Kuwaiti national origin or Syrian nationality, to assist in determining whether those asylum seekers are of the national origin or nationality respectively as claimed.

The authorisation came into operation on 20 February 2013, and will remain in force until revoked.

Further to my written ministerial statement of 14 February 2013—Official Report, column 66WS, Vol. 558—I can now confirm that the Equality (Language Analysis—Palestinian, Syrian and Kuwaiti Testing) Authorisation 2013 was on 20 February revoked. It referred to an intention to test those of Kuwaiti nationality. My intention is in fact to test those claiming to be of Kuwaiti national origin where their national origin is in doubt. It is for this reason and to ensure clarity that I have issued this authorisation in its place.

I am placing copies of the authorisation in the House Library.

Justice

Youth Detention

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice (Jeremy Wright): Today the Ministry of Justice and the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales are publishing a joint response to a consultation paper issued last year entitled “The new remand framework for children: Allocation of new burdens funding to local authorities”.

The aim of the consultation paper was to seek views from local authorities and other interested parties on

25 Feb 2013 : Column 18WS

our proposals in relation to the funding to be allocated to local authorities following the implementation of the new remand framework for children as provided for by the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012.

The consultation, which ran from 21 September to 16 November 2012, received 107 responses, mainly from local authorities and youth offending teams. In addition, feedback was obtained from over 400 practitioners who attended a series of engagement events linked to the consultation.

The joint response explains how the indicative budget of £20.2 million has been calculated; provides a summary of responses to the consultation exercise and addresses the equality impacts raised during the consultation process. It has been made available on the Justice website. Local authorities will be notified of individual allocations today.

Devolving greater financial responsibility to local authorities for children remanded to youth detention accommodation will create stronger incentives for local authorities to reduce unnecessary remands, develop effective community alternatives and improve outcomes for young people. To improve further the outcomes for young people in custody, the Ministry of Justice published on 14 February a consultation paper. “Transforming Youth Custody: Putting education at the heart of detention”, setting out plans to reduce reoffending, improve education and reduce the costs of youth custody. The consultation period closes on 30 April.

Copies of the response have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses. The document is also available online, at: www.justice.gov.uk.