Lord Hain Portrait

Lord Hain

Labour - Life peer

Became Member: 22nd October 2015


4 APPG memberships (as of 24 Jan 2024)
Formula One, Motorsport, South Africa, Zimbabwe
4 Former APPG memberships
Football Club, International Mining, Motor, Post Offices
COVID-19 Committee
11th Jun 2020 - 28th Apr 2022
Shadow Secretary of State for Wales
12th May 2010 - 14th May 2012
Secretary of State for Wales
6th Jun 2009 - 6th May 2010
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
28th Jun 2007 - 24th Jan 2008
Secretary of State for Wales
24th Oct 2002 - 24th Jan 2008
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
6th May 2005 - 28th Jun 2007
Leader of the House of Commons and Lord Privy Seal
12th Jun 2003 - 6th May 2005
Minister of State (Europe)
11th Jun 2001 - 24th Oct 2002
Minister of State (Energy and Competitiveness in Europe)
25th Jan 2001 - 7th Jun 2001
Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)
29th Jul 1999 - 24th Jan 2000
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Welsh Office)
6th May 1997 - 29th Jul 1999
Shadow Spokesperson (Work and Pensions)
1st Jun 1996 - 1st Jun 1997
Opposition Whip (Commons)
1st Jun 1995 - 1st Jun 1996


Scheduled Event
Thursday 29th February 2024
Oral questions - Main Chamber
Prime Minister of Israel's ruling out a two-state solution with the Palestinians
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Select Committee Meeting
Wednesday 6th March 2024
15:00
Select Committee Meeting
Wednesday 13th March 2024
14:45
Windsor Framework Sub-Committee - Oral evidence
Subject: Veterinary medicines and the Windsor Framework
13 Mar 2024, 2:45 p.m.
At 3:00pm: Oral evidence
Rt Hon. Steve Baker MP - Minister of State at Cabinet Office
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Select Committee Meeting
Wednesday 20th March 2024
15:00
Division Votes
Tuesday 6th February 2024
Automated Vehicles Bill [HL]
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 112 Labour Aye votes vs 0 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 200 Noes - 204
Speeches
Tuesday 20th February 2024
Economic Activity of Public Bodies (Overseas Matters) Bill
My Lords, this is another pernicious piece of legislation attacking the freedom to protest against injustice and oppression except when …
Written Answers
Tuesday 13th February 2024
Terrorism: Northern Ireland
To ask His Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the number of inquests into deaths to the legacy …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available
EDM signed
Wednesday 25th March 2015
FUNDING OF FURTHER EDUCATION COLLEGES
That this House believes that further education colleges are central to improving the nation's skills; shares the concerns of those …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Lord Hain has voted in 302 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Lord Hain Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (Conservative)
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
(26 debate interactions)
Lord Caine (Conservative)
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
(23 debate interactions)
Lord True (Conservative)
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
(19 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Cabinet Office
(51 debate contributions)
Northern Ireland Office
(48 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
Legislation Debates
United Kingdom Internal Market Act 2020
(8,992 words contributed)
Trade Bill 2019-21
(7,067 words contributed)
Agriculture Act 2020
(5,070 words contributed)
View All Legislation Debates
View all Lord Hain's debates

Lords initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Lord Hain, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.


Lord Hain has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Lord Hain has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


64 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
2 Other Department Questions
26th Jan 2022
To ask the Leader of the House, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Evans of Bowes Park on 26 January (HL5538), what assessment they have made of (1) whether, and (2) how, the Written Answers by Lord True on 10 January (HL5119) and 18 January (HL5234, HL5235, HL5236 and HL5360) conform to the criteria set out in the Written Answer.

I have noted the questions referenced, as well as the Noble Lord’s three further questions submitted to the department in question (HL5696, HL5697, HL5698). I would refer the Noble Lord to the recently issued answers to these from the department.

19th Jan 2022
To ask the Leader of the House, further to the Written Answers by Lord True on 10 January (HL5119) and 18 January (HL5234, HL5235, HL5236 and HL5360), what assessment she has made of the extent to which Ministers answer written questions from Members of the House comprehensively; and what steps she is taking to support the requirement of the Ministerial Code that “Ministers should be as open as possible with Parliament and the public” in respect of answers to written questions.

As Leader of the House I take very seriously the responsibility incumbent on all Ministers to provide full, timely and comprehensive answers to Questions for Written Answers.

Ministers are reminded regularly of the importance of their obligations to the House and under the ministerial code. My office works closely with all departmental Parliamentary teams and Private Offices to help provide advice on what is expected of them in providing such answers.



16th Oct 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government how many deaths occurred in each of the last 12 months where the cause of death was listed as COVID-19.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

Please see the letter attached from the National Statistician and Chief Executive of the UK Statistics Authority.

The Rt Hon. the Lord Hain

House of Lords

London

SW1A 0PW

20 October 2023

Dear Lord Hain,

As National Statistician and Chief Executive of the UK Statistics Authority, I am responding to your Parliamentary Question asking how many deaths occurred in each of the last 12 months where the cause of death was listed as COVID-19 (HL10538).

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is responsible for publishing statistics on deaths registered in England and Wales [1]. Figures for Scotland [2] and Northern Ireland [3] are the responsibility of National Records for Scotland and Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency, respectively.

Causes mentioned on the death certificate are converted to International Classification of Diseases 10th edition (ICD-10) codes, with the underlying cause of death defined as the disease or injury that initiated the events that directly lead to the death. The ICD-10 codes for COVID-19 are U07.1, U07.2, U10.9, U09.9.

Table 1 shows the number of deaths due to COVID-19 registered in England and Wales by month registered between October 2022 and September 2023.

Yours sincerely,

Professor Sir Ian Diamond

Table 1: Deaths due to COVID-19 by month and year of registration, England and Wales, registered October 2022 and September 2023 [4,5,6,7,8].

Month of registration

Deaths due to COVID-19

October 2022

1,648

November 2022

1,355

December 2022

1,204

January 2023

2,321

February 2023

1,240

March 2023

1,836

April 2023

1,351

May 2023

868

June 2023

516

July 2023

222

August 2023

438

September 2023

674

Source: Office for National Statistics

[1] https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/

[2] https://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/statistics-and-data/statistics/statistics-by-theme/vital-events/deaths

[3] https://www.nisra.gov.uk/statistics/births-deaths-and-marriages/deaths

[4] Figures are for deaths registered, rather than deaths occurring in each period.

[5] Figures are based on provisional data.

[6] Figures include the deaths of usual residents of England and Wales as well as those of nonresidents.

[7] Figures are based on deaths where COVID-19 (ICD-10 codes U07.1, U07.2, U10.9, U09.9) was the underlying cause of death.

[8] Deaths due to COVID-19 refers to deaths where COVID-19 was the underlying cause of death. The underlying cause of death is defined by WHO as the disease or injury that initiated the train of events directly leading to death.

Baroness Neville-Rolfe
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord True on 25 January (HL5539), in respect of the Cabinet Office’s contract with Bain & Company, reference CCCC20A01-04, (1) what was the procurement process, (2) what work was delivered, and (3) what evaluation of the (a) quality, and (b) value for money, of that work they undertook at the completion of the contract.

This question relates to two contracts with BAIN and Company (BAIN): CCCC18A29 and CCCC20A01. These contracts formed part of a portfolio of contracts managed by Cabinet Office in order to support Brexit and Transition Period work across government. The former contract was varied to include COVID-19 response work and was part of the cross-government response. Both contracts are now closed.

The below information is publicly available.

CCCC18A29 was a call-off contract, awarded following a further competition via a framework agreement. The contract was awarded for a total value of £20m and commenced in April 2018; this included a one year £10m extension option, which was exercised. Additionally, the contract was varied for an additional £5m in March 2019. In March 2020, this contract was extended for four additional months and varied to include COVID-19 response work. The contract ended in August 2019, with a total spend of £12.9m.

This contract was used to provide strategic advisory and analytical services to Departments, in regards to the planning and development of policies and programmes. The scope was limited to Brexit and Covid-19 response work.

Work was evaluated on a project by project basis at the business unit level to assess quality of outcomes. This fed into the Cabinet Office’s regular supplier performance reviews.

CCCC20A01 was a call-off contract, awarded following a further competition via a framework agreement. The contract was awarded for a total value of £30m and commenced in September 2020. This included a one year £10m extension option, which was not exercised. The contract was closed in August 2021, with a total spend of £1m.

This contract was used to provide strategic advisory and analytical services to Departments, in regards to the planning and development of policies and programmes. The scope was limited to Transition Period work.

Work was evaluated on a project by project basis at the business unit level to assess quality of outcomes. This fed into the Cabinet Office’s regular supplier performance reviews.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord True on 25 January (HL5539), in respect of the Cabinet Office’s contract with Bain & Company, reference CCCC18A29 L1 PSP2, (1) what was the procurement process, (2) what work was delivered, and (3) what evaluation of the (a) quality, and (b) value for money, of that work they undertook at the completion of the contract.

This question relates to two contracts with BAIN and Company (BAIN): CCCC18A29 and CCCC20A01. These contracts formed part of a portfolio of contracts managed by Cabinet Office in order to support Brexit and Transition Period work across government. The former contract was varied to include COVID-19 response work and was part of the cross-government response. Both contracts are now closed.

The below information is publicly available.

CCCC18A29 was a call-off contract, awarded following a further competition via a framework agreement. The contract was awarded for a total value of £20m and commenced in April 2018; this included a one year £10m extension option, which was exercised. Additionally, the contract was varied for an additional £5m in March 2019. In March 2020, this contract was extended for four additional months and varied to include COVID-19 response work. The contract ended in August 2019, with a total spend of £12.9m.

This contract was used to provide strategic advisory and analytical services to Departments, in regards to the planning and development of policies and programmes. The scope was limited to Brexit and Covid-19 response work.

Work was evaluated on a project by project basis at the business unit level to assess quality of outcomes. This fed into the Cabinet Office’s regular supplier performance reviews.

CCCC20A01 was a call-off contract, awarded following a further competition via a framework agreement. The contract was awarded for a total value of £30m and commenced in September 2020. This included a one year £10m extension option, which was not exercised. The contract was closed in August 2021, with a total spend of £1m.

This contract was used to provide strategic advisory and analytical services to Departments, in regards to the planning and development of policies and programmes. The scope was limited to Transition Period work.

Work was evaluated on a project by project basis at the business unit level to assess quality of outcomes. This fed into the Cabinet Office’s regular supplier performance reviews.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord True on 25 January (HL5539), in respect of the Cabinet Office’s contract with Bain & Company, reference CCCC18A29-01, (1) what was the procurement process, (2) what work was delivered, and (3) what evaluation of the (a) quality, and (b) value for money, of that work they undertook at the completion of the contract.

This question relates to two contracts with BAIN and Company (BAIN): CCCC18A29 and CCCC20A01. These contracts formed part of a portfolio of contracts managed by Cabinet Office in order to support Brexit and Transition Period work across government. The former contract was varied to include COVID-19 response work and was part of the cross-government response. Both contracts are now closed.

The below information is publicly available.

CCCC18A29 was a call-off contract, awarded following a further competition via a framework agreement. The contract was awarded for a total value of £20m and commenced in April 2018; this included a one year £10m extension option, which was exercised. Additionally, the contract was varied for an additional £5m in March 2019. In March 2020, this contract was extended for four additional months and varied to include COVID-19 response work. The contract ended in August 2019, with a total spend of £12.9m.

This contract was used to provide strategic advisory and analytical services to Departments, in regards to the planning and development of policies and programmes. The scope was limited to Brexit and Covid-19 response work.

Work was evaluated on a project by project basis at the business unit level to assess quality of outcomes. This fed into the Cabinet Office’s regular supplier performance reviews.

CCCC20A01 was a call-off contract, awarded following a further competition via a framework agreement. The contract was awarded for a total value of £30m and commenced in September 2020. This included a one year £10m extension option, which was not exercised. The contract was closed in August 2021, with a total spend of £1m.

This contract was used to provide strategic advisory and analytical services to Departments, in regards to the planning and development of policies and programmes. The scope was limited to Transition Period work.

Work was evaluated on a project by project basis at the business unit level to assess quality of outcomes. This fed into the Cabinet Office’s regular supplier performance reviews.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
19th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answers by Lord True on 10 January (HL5119) and 18 January (HL5234, HL5235, HL5236 and HL5360), whether they will now answer the questions fully by (1) listing in the text of their answer the contracts they have entered into with Bain & Company since June 2010 and the lead department for each contract, and (2) setting out what assessment they have made, if any, of the report of the South African Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture: Part 1, published on 5 January.

Cabinet Office does not hold a central record of contracts awarded by departments.

Details of Government contracts above £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder (https://www.gov.uk/contracts-finder). Accounting records are required to be kept for six years.

Cabinet Office is considering the report of the South African Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture: Part 1.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
10th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord True on 10 January (HL5119), what contracts were entered into since June 2010 with Bain & Company by (1) the Cabinet Office, and (2) other government departments.

Details of Government contracts above £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.

Individual contracts will contain clauses covering the conditions under which a contract may be terminated. It is for the contracting authority to determine what those conditions may be.

The grounds for the exclusion of bidders from public procurement procedures are set out in the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. These rules set out the circumstances in which bidders must, or may, be excluded from a public procurement process. Individual contracting authorities are responsible for their own decisions on these matters.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
10th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord True on 10 January (HL5119), what assessment they have made of the report Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture: Part 1, published 5 on January, in particular the finding that Bain & Company acted "unlawfully"; and what plans they have to ensure that no government departments will enter into fresh contracts with Bain & Company.

Details of Government contracts above £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.

Individual contracts will contain clauses covering the conditions under which a contract may be terminated. It is for the contracting authority to determine what those conditions may be.

The grounds for the exclusion of bidders from public procurement procedures are set out in the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. These rules set out the circumstances in which bidders must, or may, be excluded from a public procurement process. Individual contracting authorities are responsible for their own decisions on these matters.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
10th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord True on 10 January (HL5119), what assessment they have made of the report Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture: Part 1, published on 5 January, in particular the finding that Bain & Company acted "unlawfully" and that legal proceedings should be taken against them.

Details of Government contracts above £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.

Individual contracts will contain clauses covering the conditions under which a contract may be terminated. It is for the contracting authority to determine what those conditions may be.

The grounds for the exclusion of bidders from public procurement procedures are set out in the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. These rules set out the circumstances in which bidders must, or may, be excluded from a public procurement process. Individual contracting authorities are responsible for their own decisions on these matters.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
5th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the report by the South African Judicial Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, published on 5 January, in particular its finding that Bain & Company acted "unlawfully"; and what plans they have to suspend the contracts of Bain & Company with government departments in light of this finding.

Individual contracts will contain clauses covering the conditions under which a contract may be terminated. It is for the contracting authority to determine what those conditions may be.

The grounds for the exclusion of bidders from public procurement procedures are set out in the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. These rules set out the circumstances in which bidders must, or may, be excluded from a public procurement process. Individual contracting authorities are responsible for their own decisions on these matters.

Lord True
Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal
4th Sep 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they made before announcing the decision to continue recognition of the EU's CE mark for many UK companies, replacing plans for the mandatory introduction of the UK Conformity Assessment in 2024.

The Government’s engagement with businesses and organisations in the UK and internationally informed the decision to continue CE recognition of goods on the UK market for regulations owned by the Department for Business and Trade.

The government continues to engage with industry, both domestically and internationally. Businesses and trade associations repeatedly expressed significant concerns with the duplicative costs for placing goods on EU and UK markets, and the lack of business-readiness for compliance with mandatory UK Conformity Assessment, which potentially may have resulted in product shortages in GB or increased costs to GB consumers. Extending CE recognition will help in mitigating these challenges.

Lord Offord of Garvel
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
4th Sep 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government whether post-Brexit arrangements include recognition by the EU of UK testing facilities for conformity assessment of products; and why some UK firms now need to seek approval from the EU for goods destined only for the UK market.

For most products being placed on the market in Great Britain (GB), products can comply with either GB or EU product regulations. UK Conformity Assessment Bodies can continue to certify goods for the UK market.

The EU does not recognise UK testing facilities for conformity assessment of products. Nevertheless, the UK is committed to exploring available avenues that could facilitate acceptance of EU-UK conformity assessment results and support British businesses.

Lord Offord of Garvel
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
26th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking, if any, to ensure that neither (1) the winning bid for Chelsea Football Club, nor (2) the process for identifying the winning bidder, involves the use of management consultancy services by Bain & Co.

The sale process continues to be run by Chelsea Football Club and it will be for them to decide the precise terms of a proposed sale. The Government will consider the merits of a licence application on its own terms and we expect any application to set out the proposed approach and specific transactions which need licensing in order to come to a decision.

The Government can only impose conditions on a licence which authorises the sale of the club if they are linked to the sanctions policy.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
6th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have made to international sporting organisations about the adoption of human rights principles for nations chosen to host international sporting events.

Participation in international sports events is a matter for the relevant international sports federations, and the national representatives to those federations. These bodies operate independently of government, and enshrine this political freedom in their rules and regulations.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
6th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what criteria they have proposed to sports administrators for the assessment of applications for the acquisition by foreign investors of (1) total, or (2) majority, ownership of sporting assets in the UK.

Acquisitions of sporting assets in the UK by foreign investors are a matter for the sports businesses themselves. The Government does not stipulate assessment criteria to sports bodies on acquisitions.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
4th Sep 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government why post-Brexit import checks on food and fresh produce from the EU have been delayed for the fifth time.

The Border Target Operating Model (BTOM) has been developed following extensive engagement with the border industry and businesses across the UK. It incorporates feedback from the Draft BTOM which was published in April 2023. In response to this feedback, the Government has agreed a small delay of 3 months to the introduction of remaining sanitary and phytosanitary controls, which will now be introduced in January 2024. This has the benefit of giving stakeholders additional requested time to prepare for the model.

The Government remains committed to delivering the most effective border, and the BTOM is key to achieving this.

Lord Benyon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Sugg on 15 May (HL4054), what provision they have made for additional aid to combat COVID-19 in Africa.

We are tackling COVID-19’s direct and wide-ranging secondary impacts, and to date have committed up to £764 million of UK aid to support the global response to COVID-19. This includes UK support for the implementation of the African Union’s COVID-19 Continental Strategy. UK aid funding of £20 million will help strengthen healthcare systems and save lives in the African Union’s 55 member states by providing training for healthcare workers, supporting the deployment of African experts, and helping to tackle misinformation around COVID-19.

The UK has provided public health experts to support Africa Centres for Disease Control through the Department of Health and Social Care International Health Regulations Strengthening Project and the UK Public Health Rapid Support Team. DFID is rapidly adapting its bilateral programmes across Africa to help counter the health, humanitarian, and economic impacts of COVID-19, in support of the poorest people.

We are seeking to ensure that the significant amounts of finance made available by International Financial Institutions targets the most vulnerable, especially women and girls, flexes to meet the short-term needs of governments, and is coordinated with the UN and other parts of the international response.

4th Sep 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government why the use of both the UK Conformity Assessment mark and the EU’s CE mark will be allowed indefinitely for UK companies in the electronic, industrial, consumer and other sectors, but not for medical products produced in the UK.

Medical devices are regulated by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and are considered high-risk goods. The Government has put in place legislation to extend the acceptance of CE marked medical devices on the Great Britain market up to 2028 or 2030, depending on the type of CE certificate held.

In addition, the MHRA are currently developing proposals for an international recognition framework. This would reduce, where safe to do so, barriers to medical devices entering the Great Britain market where they have already demonstrated to other trusted regulators that they meet our essential requirements.

Lord Markham
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
7th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports that more than a million health and care staff will be needed in order to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Department will support the National Health Service to address the impacts of the pandemic by supporting and increasing the workforce. The monthly workforce statistics for January 2022 show that there are more than 1.2 million full time equivalent staff working in the NHS. Since January 2021, there are over 20,700 more professionally qualified clinical staff working in NHS trusts and clinical commissioning groups, including over 4,200 additional doctors and 12,100 nurses. We are currently on schedule to deliver 50,000 more nurses and provide a sustainable long-term supply in future. We have established a programme to improve retention and support return to practice, invest in and diversify the training pipeline and ethically recruit internationally.

We have offered non-repayable grants of at least £5,000 per academic year to eligible students studying pre-registration programmes in nursing and midwifery and allied health professions. A further £3,000 is available to students with child dependents and those studying specialist subjects. At the end of the 2021 recruitment cycle, there are over 57,000 applications for nursing and midwifery courses – an increase of 21% compared to 2020. Over 30,000 nurses and midwives accepted places to study nursing and midwifery in 2021 and there are currently more than 72,000 people training to be nurses, approximately 9,000 midwifery trainees and 30,000 trainees for the allied health professions.

We have also funded an additional 1,500 undergraduate medical school places each year for domestic students and opened five new medical schools. In response to the pandemic, the Government temporarily lifted the cap on medical and dental school places for students who had completed A levels in 2020 and 2021. We are also investing in workforce skills, wellbeing and career development to help address the barriers to people taking up work in adult social care and make adult social care a more attractive offer. We have committed at least £500 million to develop and support the adult social care workforce, including training places and initiatives to improve wellbeing.

19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what daily rate they pay to senior executives from Boston Consulting Group to work on the COVID-19 testing system.

We are unable to provide the information requested as it is commercially sensitive. However, the payment rates are as per the Crown Commercial Service Framework rate card with discounts attained depending on value and length of role.

18th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the answer by Lord Bethell on 14 May (HL Deb, col 807), what is the average time in England between a test taking place in a care home and the results being delivered to its management. [T]

The care home tests are processed via the existing programme lab infrastructure, the lighthouse labs and Randox in Northern Ireland. Test turnaround times are consistent with the rest of the programme with over 97% of tests being returned within 48 hours. We continue to make progress on being able to return all results within 24 hours.

7th Nov 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what plans they have to meet with US Judge Mark Wolf in London during the week of 13 November to discuss progress on proposals for an International Anti-Corruption Court.

I [Lord Ahmad] do not have plans to meet with Judge Wolf during his visit due to prior commitments. As far as we are aware, there are no plans for Ministers from elsewhere in Government to meet with Judge Wolf either. The government outlined its position on this subject matter on 6 July 2023 in the House of Lords [https://hansard.parliament.uk/Lords/2023-07-06/debates/DB0613A7-1D77-482D-A180-20745447DD92/InternationalAnti-CorruptionCourt#contribution-A203485E-C9F6-4E51-BFF6-25D39DBA3826].

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what steps, if any, they are taking to prevent British companies from providing insurance services to vessels delivering aviation fuel to the government of Myanmar.

On 28 February 2022, the UK updated its Overseas Business Risk Guidance https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/overseas-business-risk-myanmar-burma/overseas-business-risk-myanmar-burma to make it clear UK businesses should conduct thorough supply chain due diligence to ensure that commodities, such as aviation fuel do not reach the Myanmar military. Amnesty International's thorough report on the aviation fuel supply chain in Myanmar indicates that no British companies are involved in supplying aviation fuel to the armed forces. The UK has been clear that we oppose the provision of jet fuel, arms, military equipment, and dual use items to Myanmar which are used to facilitate human rights violations. We cannot speculate on future sanctions designations but we are looking at a range of further targets and other measures.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to investigate British companies involved in supplying aviation fuel to the armed forces of the government of Myanmar; and what sanctions, if any, they are considering for such companies.

On 28 February 2022, the UK updated its Overseas Business Risk Guidance https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/overseas-business-risk-myanmar-burma/overseas-business-risk-myanmar-burma to make it clear UK businesses should conduct thorough supply chain due diligence to ensure that commodities, such as aviation fuel do not reach the Myanmar military. Amnesty International's thorough report on the aviation fuel supply chain in Myanmar indicates that no British companies are involved in supplying aviation fuel to the armed forces. The UK has been clear that we oppose the provision of jet fuel, arms, military equipment, and dual use items to Myanmar which are used to facilitate human rights violations. We cannot speculate on future sanctions designations but we are looking at a range of further targets and other measures.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government whether they have had any discussions with the governments of (1) the US, (2) Germany, (3) Japan, and (4) other relevant countries, about companies in those countries supplying arms materials to the government of Myanmar for the construction of its weapons.

Since the coup in Myanmar, the UK has led global efforts to reduce the flow of weapons to Myanmar through coordinating multilateral statements. The UK has kept the Myanmar issue on the G7 agenda, securing strong public commitments from G7 member states to tackle the flow of arms and equipment to Myanmar. We have also spearheaded efforts to impose sanctions on arms dealers and the military's own domestic production, in close coordination with the US, EU and Canada. We will continue to engage with our partners on how we can target the military's access to arms and to take coordinated action where appropriate.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether any British companies are supplying arms materials to the government of Myanmar for the construction of its weapons.

The UK has had a comprehensive arms embargo on Myanmar since 2013, which prohibits the supply of dual-use items, including technology and manufacturing equipment, to the Myanmar military. We take a rigorous approach to due diligence in relation to our arms embargo, including enhanced military end-use controls for items destined for the military and security forces. We have also established the Myanmar Witness programme, which monitors weapons exports to Myanmar using open-source intelligence. We have found no evidence of British companies selling weapons or dual use goods to Myanmar. We will continue to take coordinated action to halt the military's access to arms and lobby countries who sell weapons to the military.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have for (1) Her Majesty’s High Commissioner in Pretoria, and (2) the Prime Minister, to meet former President of Botswana Ian Khama to discuss why he was forced to flee to South Africa.

There have not been, nor are there any planned discussions between former President Khama and representatives of the UK Government on these issues. We are aware of the correspondence between the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings and the Government of Botswana regarding former President Khama. These communications form part of the range of direct interactions between the United Nations and a sovereign State, and other States do not tend to intervene in this process. It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the Government of Botswana's choice of legal representation, or its bilateral relationship with the South African institutions referred to. Former President Khama has not sought the assistance of the UK Government.

18th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assistance they will offer to the former President of Botswana, Ian Khama, in response to the treatment he has received from his successor.

There have not been, nor are there any planned discussions between former President Khama and representatives of the UK Government on these issues. We are aware of the correspondence between the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings and the Government of Botswana regarding former President Khama. These communications form part of the range of direct interactions between the United Nations and a sovereign State, and other States do not tend to intervene in this process. It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the Government of Botswana's choice of legal representation, or its bilateral relationship with the South African institutions referred to. Former President Khama has not sought the assistance of the UK Government.

18th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the Government of Botswana’s use of AfriForum.

There have not been, nor are there any planned discussions between former President Khama and representatives of the UK Government on these issues. We are aware of the correspondence between the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings and the Government of Botswana regarding former President Khama. These communications form part of the range of direct interactions between the United Nations and a sovereign State, and other States do not tend to intervene in this process. It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the Government of Botswana's choice of legal representation, or its bilateral relationship with the South African institutions referred to. Former President Khama has not sought the assistance of the UK Government.

18th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Minister for Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean, during her visit to Pretoria on 11 and 12 July, discussed with the government of South Africa former President of Botswana Ian Khama taking refuge in South Africa.

There have not been, nor are there any planned discussions between former President Khama and representatives of the UK Government on these issues. We are aware of the correspondence between the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings and the Government of Botswana regarding former President Khama. These communications form part of the range of direct interactions between the United Nations and a sovereign State, and other States do not tend to intervene in this process. It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the Government of Botswana's choice of legal representation, or its bilateral relationship with the South African institutions referred to. Former President Khama has not sought the assistance of the UK Government.

18th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the reported attacks by the government of Botswana on the South African Reserve Bank and the South African banking system, including RBS/NatWest and Ambassador Bridgette Motsepe.

There have not been, nor are there any planned discussions between former President Khama and representatives of the UK Government on these issues. We are aware of the correspondence between the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings and the Government of Botswana regarding former President Khama. These communications form part of the range of direct interactions between the United Nations and a sovereign State, and other States do not tend to intervene in this process. It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the Government of Botswana's choice of legal representation, or its bilateral relationship with the South African institutions referred to. Former President Khama has not sought the assistance of the UK Government.

18th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Her Majesty’s Global Ambassador for Human Rights and Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva will engage with Botswana’s Permanent Mission in Geneva on how the government of Botswana intends to comply with UN Special Rapporteurs’ recommendations regarding the threat to former President of Botswana Ian Khama’s life.

There have not been, nor are there any planned discussions between former President Khama and representatives of the UK Government on these issues. We are aware of the correspondence between the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings and the Government of Botswana regarding former President Khama. These communications form part of the range of direct interactions between the United Nations and a sovereign State, and other States do not tend to intervene in this process. It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the Government of Botswana's choice of legal representation, or its bilateral relationship with the South African institutions referred to. Former President Khama has not sought the assistance of the UK Government.

8th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they expect to respond to the letter sent by Lord Hain to the Secretary of State for the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office sent on 1 December 2021 and 3 December 2021.

Officials have subsequently responded to the emails from the Noble Lord dated 1 and 3 December.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the report by Maverick Citizen Cartel Power Dynamics in Zimbabwe, published on 9 February, what plans they have to impose further sanctions on ministers and officials in the government of Zimbabwe.

We are aware of the report on 'Cartel Power Dynamics in Zimbabwe', published on 9 February by South Africa's Maverick Citizen. The UK is deeply worried about the state of the Zimbabwean economy, which continues to face unprecedented challenges largely due to corruption, and poor fiscal policies and economic mismanagement by the Government. The UK remains committed to reducing poverty and helping the people of Zimbabwe secure their constitutional freedoms.

On 1 February, we announced sanctions against four Zimbabwean security sector chiefs responsible for serious human rights violations under President Mnangagwa. These measures will be maintained as long as the situation on the ground justifies them. We will continue to look at how all the tools available to the UK, including the full range of sanctions regimes, can be used to encourage accountability and reform in Zimbabwe. It is longstanding practice not to speculate on future sanctions designations as to do so could reduce the impact of the designations.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what action has been taken by HM Ambassador in Harare in relation to the arrest, abduction and torture of Netsai Marova and Cecilia Chimbiri on 13 May.

The UK is seriously concerned about the challenging human rights situation in Zimbabwe. It remains one of the UK's 30 Human Rights Priority Countries globally. The Minister for Africa spoke to the Zimbabwean Foreign Minister on 8 June and expressed his [Minister Duddridge] deep concern regarding recent reports of the abduction and torture of three female opposition activists, including a Member of Parliament. He [Minister Duddridge] urged the Foreign Minister to ensure the Government of Zimbabwe makes concrete progress on human rights, including investigations into violations.

It is vital that the Zimbabwean authorities adhere to their international human rights obligations and respect their Constitution, which prohibits enforced disappearances and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. This was reiterated in a joint local statement issued on 20 May by the UK alongside other partners, including the European Union, France, Germany and the United States of America. The UK will continue to monitor developments closely and urge the Government of Zimbabwe to uphold the rule of law and respect human rights.

2nd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have made to the government of Zimbabwe about the arrest, abduction and torture of Netsai Marova and Cecilia Chimbiri on 13 May.

The UK is seriously concerned about the challenging human rights situation in Zimbabwe. It remains one of the UK's 30 Human Rights Priority Countries globally. The Minister for Africa spoke to the Zimbabwean Foreign Minister on 8 June and expressed his [Minister Duddridge] deep concern regarding recent reports of the abduction and torture of three female opposition activists, including a Member of Parliament. He [Minister Duddridge] urged the Foreign Minister to ensure the Government of Zimbabwe makes concrete progress on human rights, including investigations into violations.

It is vital that the Zimbabwean authorities adhere to their international human rights obligations and respect their Constitution, which prohibits enforced disappearances and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. This was reiterated in a joint local statement issued on 20 May by the UK alongside other partners, including the European Union, France, Germany and the United States of America. The UK will continue to monitor developments closely and urge the Government of Zimbabwe to uphold the rule of law and respect human rights.

2nd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that the application by the government of Zimbabwe to re-join the Commonwealth is suspended until any violations of human rights cease and are addressed, including the reported arrest, abduction and torture of Joana Mamombe, Netsai Marova and Cecilia Chimbiri on 13 May.

The decision regarding Zimbabwe's readmission would be for all Commonwealth members. However, the UK will only support readmission when Zimbabwe meets the admission requirements, complying with the values and principles set out in the Commonwealth Charter. These principles include respect for human rights and the rule of law. Disproportionate use of force by Zimbabwe's security forces, as seen in January 2019 and August 2019, and recent reports regarding the abduction and torture of three opposition activists, are clearly inconsistent with the Commonwealth Charter. The Minister for Africa made this clear when he spoke to the Zimbabwean Foreign Minister on 8 June.

2nd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what action has been taken by the HM Ambassador in Harare and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in relation to the reported attack, abduction and torture by security forces in Zimbabwe of Joana Mamombe and two of her colleagues from the Movement for Democratic Change Alliance.

The UK is seriously concerned about the challenging human rights situation in Zimbabwe. It remains one of the UK's 30 Human Rights Priority Countries globally. The Minister for Africa spoke to the Zimbabwean Foreign Minister on 8 June and expressed his [Minister Duddridge] deep concern regarding recent reports of the abduction and torture of three female opposition activists, including a Member of Parliament. He [Minister Duddridge] urged the Foreign Minister to ensure the Government of Zimbabwe makes concrete progress on human rights, including investigations into violations.

It is vital that the Zimbabwean authorities adhere to their international human rights obligations and respect their Constitution, which prohibits enforced disappearances and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. This was reiterated in a joint local statement issued on 20 May by the UK alongside other partners, including the European Union, France, Germany and the United States of America. The UK will continue to monitor developments closely and urge the Government of Zimbabwe to uphold the rule of law and respect human rights.

6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with overseas counterparts on a coherent international response to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic leading to further instability in Syria.

The UK recognises the significant threat posed by COVID-19 in Syria. We are therefore speaking regularly to other countries and donors engaged in Syria as well as to the UN regarding the need to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Syria. In bilateral discussions we have also expressed our support for an immediate, nationwide ceasefire to enable complete focus on countering COVID-19. The Minister for the Middle East and North Africa discussed this with Geir Pedersen, UN Special Envoy for Syria, on 1 April; President of the Syrian Negotiation Commission, Nasr al Hariri, on 14 April; the US Envoy for Syria, Ambassador Jeffrey, on 17 April; and the Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister on 27 April. We have also raised the risks posed by COVID-19 in Syria at the UN Security Council on 30 March and 29 April.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assistance they are providing to British nationals with urgent medical needs that cannot be met in the countries in which they are located.

British travellers with urgent medical needs should get in touch with their insurer as soon as possible and call the relevant Embassy, High Commission or Consulate before they run out of medication if they have not been able to replace it using our published advice.

Since 23 March we have advised British travellers to return home. Where commercial options are not available, we have organised charter flights, prioritising the most vulnerable. For any British travellers still abroad, our consular teams are available to assist those with medication needs.

Our Embassies, High Commissions and Consulates continue to support individual consular cases as they arise, prioritizing the most vulnerable.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on peace and security in Africa.

COVID-19, and it's economic consequences, will disproportionately adversely affect countries with existing humanitarian crises and high risk of instability, including countries in conflict and those at risk of seasonal climatic shocks. Supporting countries in Africa to mitigate the impacts of COVID 19 on peace and security is important and in the UK interest. The UK is considering this in our political engagement and international response.

Disrupted markets and trade, as well as the effects of lockdown measures will affect countries and regions with existing high levels of food insecurity and malnutrition, increasing the need for support, while global supply chains to deliver humanitarian support continue to be significantly disrupted. Humanitarian access is also more difficult, including for essential international medical personnel.

Increased pressure on state institutions and stringent lockdown conditions may exacerbate existing tensions on access to resources and, with security forces more stretched than usual, could have implications for stability.

6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to provide additional financial support to the British Council during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) remains committed to the British Council, who are a key driver of our soft power overseas and a precious part of the FCO family. In order to help stabilise their immediate financial position following the impact of Covid-19 on their ability to operate, we agreed to provide the British Council with £26m of additional funding for the 2019-20 financial year. We have also provided some of their 2020-21 Grant-in-Aid funding upfront this month to further alleviate pressures.

The FCO have also supported the British Council in accessing wider government relief available through the COVID-19 Job Retention Scheme and similar schemes in other countries. This will help them support many of their workforce, and those employed through its partners, funded through the commercial side of their business. We will continue to work closely with the British Council in the coming days and weeks to seek to address the impact of COVID-19 on their ability to operate.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government on which dates they discussed ways in which to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic with overseas counterparts.

The UK is playing a major role in the global response to Coronavirus. Ministers and senior officials across government have carried out regular and extensive bilateral and multilateral engagement, as well as work with international companies to tackle the crisis.

Since the beginning of March, the Foreign Secretary has carried out over 66 conversations and virtual meetings, including G7 Foreign Ministers meeting on 25 March, NATO Foreign Ministers on 2 April and the G7 Leaders on 16 April. This intensive engagement will continue as we galvanise international support for our Four-Point Plan.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what recent discussions the Foreign Secretary has had with his counterpart in the government of Iran about the permanent release of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe.

We are relieved that Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe was temporarily released on March 17. While her further extension is a welcome step, we continue to urge the Iranian Government to immediately release her - and all UK dual nationals arbitrarily detained in Iran - to enable them to return to their families in the UK. The Foreign Secretary raised this with Foreign Minister Zarif on 16 March and Minister of State for the Middle East with the Iranian Ambassador on 26 March. Our Ambassador in Tehran consistently raises all of our dual national detainees with the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have made to the government of China about the recent arrests of political opponents by the Hong Kong police.

We are concerned by the arrests of a number of political figures in Hong Kong, and are following these cases closely. We expect any arrests and judicial processes to be conducted in a fair and transparent manner. The right to peaceful protest is fundamental to Hong Kong's way of life and as such is protected in both the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law. It is essential that any protests are conducted peacefully, and that the authorities avoid actions that inflame tensions. The authorities should focus on rebuilding trust through a process of meaningful political dialogue. Officials have raised our concerns with the Hong Kong and Chinese authorities.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what recent diplomatic steps they have taken with overseas counterparts to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.

The UK is playing a leading role internationally with partners and allies to: support an effective and co-ordinated global health response, reinforcing the resilience of vulnerable countries; pursue a vaccine, better testing and treatments; support the global economy, including keeping trade and supply chains open; and enable travelling nationals to return home where necessary. The Prime Minister, Chancellor, and Secretaries of State for Foreign Affairs, Health and International Development have all been actively engaged in dialogue with other world leaders through meetings with their G7 and G20 counterparts, the UN and other multilateral institutions and member states, in order to galvanise a stronger global effort. On 4 May we co-hosted the launch event of the Coronavirus Global Response Initiative, which generated $8bn for research and development, and on 4 June the Prime Minister will host the Global Vaccine Summit, aiming to galvanise worldwide support for equitable access to a vaccine and for Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the effect of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic by governments overseas on human rights standards in those countries.

We are concerned by reports that some governments are using the current crisis to fail to comply with their human rights obligations. On 9 April, the UK participated in the UN Human Rights Council's first ever virtual conversation with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Discussion focused on the human rights implications of the COVID-19 crisis; both the immediate impact of the response on human rights around the world, and the social and economic consequences, including the prospect of greater inequality. In his statement to the Council, our Ambassador to the UN in Geneva stressed the importance of ensuring that parliaments, media and civil society all play their role to scrutinise the actions of governments and international agencies, and that we make use of the international human rights frameworks. The British Government remains committed to standing up for human rights and the rule of law in all circumstances.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what recent steps they have taken to repatriate (1) British citizens, and (2) UK residents, overseas during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The UK Government is working with the airline industry and host governments across the world to help bring back British travellers to the UK as part of the plan announced by the Foreign Secretary on 30 March - with up to £75 million available for special charter flights from priority countries, focused on helping the most vulnerable travellers. We have now brought home nearly 31,000 people on 144 flights organised by the Foreign Office from 27 countries and territories

To get as many people back as quickly as possible, we have encouraged and facilitated the use of commercial transport options where these exist. Since the outbreak in Wuhan, we estimate that over 1.3 million people have returned to the UK via commercial routes - the majority supported by our work with airlines and foreign governments to keep vital routes open. Our effort is now focused on supporting the return as quickly and safely as possible of the tens of thousands British nationals remaining overseas and wishing to return.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what recent discussions they have had with the government of Israel about its planned annexation of parts of the West Bank.

We made clear our deep concerns about reports that the new Israeli Government coalition has reached an agreement which may pave the way for annexation of parts of the West Bank at the UN Security Council remote meeting on the Middle East Peace Process on 23 April. The UK position is clear: any unilateral moves towards annexation of parts of the West Bank by Israel would be damaging to efforts to restart peace negotiations and contrary to international law. The Prime Minister reiterated our opposition to the unilateral annexation of territory during a call with Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, on 6 February.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether UK GDP was lower at the end of 2021 than at the end of December 2019.

The independent Office for National Statistics (ONS) is responsible for measuring UK GDP. In the three months to December 2021 UK real GDP was 0.4% below its level in the three months to December 2019, where the economy was affected by restrictions necessitated by the Omicron wave at the end of the year. The ONS also produce monthly GDP figures, which show that in January 2022 real GDP was 0.8% above the level prior to the pandemic in February 2020.

Baroness Penn
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
9th Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the change in UK GDP since December 2019; and what assessment they have made of how this compares to (1) the US, (2) France, and (3) Canada, in the same period.

According to data from the independent Office for National Statistics (ONS), the change in real GDP from the three months to December 2019 to the three months to December 2021 (the latest available quarterly data) was -0.4%. This leaves the UK in the middle of the pack compared to other G7. The below table depicts this using publicly available data in the same period for real GDP in the rest of the G7.

3m to Dec 2021 relative to 3m to Dec 2019

Real GDP change (%)

US

3.2

France

0.9

Canada

0.1

Italy

-0.3

UK

-0.4

Japan

-0.4

Germany

-1.1

However, the ONS has also advised that it is difficult to compare real GDP during the pandemic, due to differences in measurement of output in health and education. The ONS has noted that estimates of nominal GDP are more comparable. In nominal GDP terms, for the same period the UK is ranked 3rd compared to others in the G7 (see the below table).

3m to Dec 2021 relative to 3m to Dec 2019

Nominal GDP change (%)

US

10.7

Canada

10.7

UK

4.9

France

4.3

Germany

4.3

Italy

0.9

Japan

-1.7

Baroness Penn
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the UK's total GDP in December 2021 compared to February 2020, relative to the other G7 nations.

Her Majesty’s government regularly looks at UK economic growth in the context of growth in other advanced economies, including those in the G7. The Office for National Statistics publishes UK figures monthly, quarterly, and annually.

There are different metrics by which international GDP growth rates can be compared, varying by the time and reference period used. In the case of our G7 peers, as well as the UK, only Canada produces monthly GDP data. Monthly comparisons are therefore not possible for all members of the G7. International comparisons of economic growth are possible for all G7 members at both quarterly and yearly frequencies. This information is presented below.

Real GDP growth

Monthly

Quarterly

Quarterly

Quarterly

Annually

Country

February 2020 to November 2021

Q3 2021 Quarter on Year % growth

Q4 2021 Quarter on Year % growth

Q4 2019 to Q4 2021

2021

Canada

0.2%

4.0%

3.4%

0.2%

4.7%

France

N/A

3.5%

5.4%

0.9%

7.0%

Germany

N/A

2.9%

1.4%

-1.5%

2.8%

Italy

N/A

4.0%

6.4%

-0.5%

6.4%

Japan

N/A

1.2%

0.7%

-1.9%

1.7%

UK

0.2%

7.0%

6.5%

-0.5%

7.5%

US

N/A

4.9%

5.5%

3.1%

5.7%

Source: Refinitv DataStream, HMT Calculations

Comparing monthly to the latest data available in both countries, November, the ratio of monthly real (seasonally adjusted) GDP between February 2020 and December 2021 was 0.2, in both the UK and Canada. Canada is yet to release December monthly data.

The UK’s 2021 Q3 quarter-on-year growth rate was 7.0%, compared to the US (4.9%), Italy and Canada (both 4%), France (3.5%), Germany (2.9%) and Japan (1.1%).

The ratio of real GDP from Q4 2019 to Q4 2021 in the UK was -0.5%, compared to the US (3.1%), France (0.9%), Canada (0.2%), Italy (-0.5%), Germany (-1.5%) and Japan (-1.9%).

Annually, the UK’s growth rate in 2021 was 7.5%, compared to France (7.0%), Italy (6.4%), the US (5.7%), Canada (4.7%), Germany (2.8%) and Japan (1.7%).

Baroness Penn
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
3rd Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the report by Sky News on 8 November 2021 that found an increase in the sale of super yachts between 2019 and 2021; and what assessment they have made of the link, if any, between the purchase of such yachts and the payment of furlough money.

We have not made any such assessment. The objective of the CJRS was to support businesses to preserve employer-employee matches by providing a mechanism to pay the wages of furloughed employees. Through easing the financial burden, the CJRS aimed to support jobs, reduce the risk of permanent business closures, and reduce the risk of large losses in incomes, through wage support to furloughed employees.

The scheme succeeded in supporting 11.7 million jobs across the UK, and the Office for National Statistics has found that of all workers who had ever been furloughed, more than nine in ten were still in work in the three months up to June 2021. As per Government guidance, the employer must have paid the full amount they claimed for their employee’s wages to their employee. They also had to pay the associated employee tax, pension, and National Insurance Contributions to HMRC. If they were not able to do that, the employer had to repay the money to HMRC.

The Government put robust measures in place to control error and fraud in our key pandemic support schemes, such as investing over £100 million in a Taxpayer Protection Taskforce at the Spring Budget 2021.

Baroness Penn
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
3rd Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made, if any, of the increase in billionaires resident in the UK by (1) number, and (2) percentage, between (a) 2019–20, and (b) 2020–21; and what assessment have they made of the link, if any, between this increase and the payment of furlough money.

The Government has made no such assessment. The Office for National Statistics publishes statistics on the wealth of British households where individuals have a tax obligation and report to HMRC: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/personalandhouseholdfinances/incomeandwealth/bulletins/totalwealthingreatbritain/april2018tomarch2020

HMRC also publishes statistics on personal incomes: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/personal-incomes-tables-312-to-315a-for-the-tax-year-2018-to-2019

The Wealthy unit, which is part of Customer Compliance in HMRC, does not hold the number of billionaires resident in the UK. Additionally, the 2020-21 income details have been filed in January 2022, and so it is too early to complete a comparison to 2019-20 for 2020-21.

Baroness Penn
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
4th Sep 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government why the use of both the UK Conformity Assessment mark and the EU’s CE mark will be allowed indefinitely for UK companies in the electronic, industrial, consumer and other sectors, but not for construction products produced in the UK.

As my Rt. Honourable friend the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities set out in his statement of 20 April 2023, the Government is developing proposals for reform of the UK's construction product regime to ensure it is effective in promoting safety and inspires public and market confidence.

Our reforms, which we will set out in due course, will set out the future approach to product marking for construction products. In the meantime, recognition of CE marking will continue until the end of June 2025.

Baroness Scott of Bybrook
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
6th Feb 2024
To ask His Majesty's Government how many inquests into deaths to the legacy of the Troubles in Northern Ireland are still to be completed.

At this time, 37 Troubles-related inquests have not been completed:

  • 18 cases have commenced hearing of evidence;
  • A further two cases have been listed for hearing;
  • Another 17 cases have not been listed for hearing.

Lord Caine
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
6th Feb 2024
To ask His Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the number of inquests into deaths to the legacy of the Troubles in Northern Ireland that will not have been completed by 1 May.

The Northern Ireland Troubles (Legacy and Reconciliation) Act 2023 requires Troubles-related inquests to conclude by 1 May 2024. The legislation provides a limited carve out for any Troubles-related inquests where the hearing of all evidence has finished and where the only matter still to come is the delivery of the inquest’s findings.

The Act contains provisions allowing a coroner to request a review of a death by the ICRIR, led by Sir Declan Morgan as Chief Commissioner, if the inquest has not been concluded via the coronial process by 1 May 2024. Close family members, as well as the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the Attorney General for Northern Ireland and the Advocate General for Northern Ireland, can also request a review of a death by the ICRIR.

The case management of inquests is a matter for coroners.

Lord Caine
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they are having with the Northern Ireland Executive to ensure that Part 5(23)(2) of the Victims' Payments Regulations 2020 is implemented, and victims' payments are made as soon as reasonably practicable from May 2020.

The Northern Ireland Executive are responsible for the successful delivery of the Victims’ Payment Scheme, including the timely provision of victims’ payments to eligible applicants once the scheme is up and running.

Following the establishment of the legal framework for the scheme in January, NIO officials have continued to be available to provide support to the Northern Ireland Civil Service when needed in their delivery of the scheme.

Details about the scheme and how to apply will be clearly communicated in advance of the scheme opening for applications.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they are having with the Northern Ireland Executive to ensure that the payment scheme set up under the Victims' Payments Regulations 2020 will be implemented in line with the statutory commitments passed by Parliament for compensatory payments to those severely injured through no fault of their own.

Responsibility for delivering the Victims’ Payment Scheme rests with the Northern Ireland Executive. NIO officials have been and continue to be available to provide appropriate support, including through a range of detailed discussions which have taken place to date.

The UK Government is fully committed to supporting the Northern Ireland Civil Service in delivering this important piece of work.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether (1) people living in Northern Ireland will be able to access blood transfusions, health treatment and educational provision in the Republic of Ireland, and (2) people living in the Republic of Ireland will be able to access blood transfusions, health treatment and educational provision in Northern Ireland, after December 2020.

The Government has been clear in its commitment to uphold the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement in all its parts, including formal North-South cooperation. Health and education are two of the areas of cooperation.

In accordance with the 8 May 2019 Memorandum of Understanding between the UK and Irish Governments, the reciprocal rights for British and Irish citizens associated with the Common Travel Area will continue after December 2020. These arrangements include access to healthcare services and education.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)