Lord Sikka

Labour - Life peer

Lord Sikka is not a member of any APPGs
Lord Sikka has no previous appointments


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Division Votes
Thursday 21st October 2021
Skills and Post-16 Education Bill [HL]
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 82 Labour Aye votes vs 0 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 180 Noes - 130
Speeches
Thursday 21st October 2021
Private Equity Takeovers

My Lords, the typical business model of private equity includes high leverage, financial engineering, tax abuse, pension dumping, job losses …

Written Answers
Wednesday 26th May 2021
British Home Stores: Company Liquidations
To ask Her Majesty's Government what fees have been charged by the liquidators of BHS; and when the liquidation is …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
None available
Tweets
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Lord Sikka has voted in 109 divisions, and 1 time against the majority of their Party.

21 Jan 2021 - Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Sikka voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 11 Labour Aye votes vs 116 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 29 Noes - 440
View All Lord Sikka 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 Callanan (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
(16 debate interactions)
Lord Bethell (Conservative)
(10 debate interactions)
Baroness Barran (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
(10 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Leader of the House
(24 debate contributions)
Home Office
(10 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(10 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Lord Sikka's debates

Commons initiatives

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

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Lord Sikka has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Lord Sikka has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

Lord Sikka has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

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


80 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
2nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) commercial organisations, and (2) individuals, have been prosecuted each year under the Bribery Act 2010 for failure to prevent bribery; and what outcome was secured in each such case.

Section 7 of the Bribery Act 2010 provides that a commercial organisation is guilty of an offence of failing to prevent bribery if a person associated with the organisation bribes another person, intending to obtain or retain business or an advantage for the company. The offence can only be committed by a corporate body.

In respect of the two prosecuting agencies that the Attorney General superintends:

  • The Crown Prosecution Service has prosecuted one commercial organisation under Section 7, securing a conviction against Skansen Interiors Ltd in 2018.

  • The Serious Fraud Office (‘SFO’) has prosecuted one commercial organisation under Section 7, with Sweett Group plc pleading guilty in 2015. The SFO has also separately entered into six Deferred Prosecution Agreements (‘DPAs’) with companies for this offence:

Year

Number of DPAs

Company

2015

1

Standard Bank

2016

1

Sarclad

2017

1

Rolls-Royce

2018

0

2019

1

Guralp Systems ltd

2020

2

Airbus SE Airline Services ltd

Lord Stewart of Dirleton
Advocate General for Scotland
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, how many (1) bank directors, (2) insolvency practitioners, (3) estate agents, (4) lawyers, and (5) accountants, have been prosecuted since the publication of the report by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Fair Business Banking Project Lord Turnbull report, published on 22 June 2018.

The Crown Prosecution Service (‘CPS’) do not have a mechanism for recording the profession of defendants and so are unable to provide the data requested.

The CPS continue to play an important role in prosecuting professionals, whether they be professionals who have used their position to commit crimes or whether they have enabled others to commit crimes. This includes bank directors, insolvency practitioners, estate agents, lawyers, and accountants.

It is important that alongside prosecuting professional individuals, prosecutors should have the right tools to pursue and prosecute corporate bodies. In November last year, this government announced the Law Commission Project on Corporate Criminal Liability, which will be conducted over a 12-month period with a view to setting out potential options for reform.

The above answer represents the position for England and Wales only, and not for Scotland, for which the data, if available, would be held by the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service.

Lord Stewart of Dirleton
Advocate General for Scotland
28th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much money is spent by each (1) Government department, and (2) regulatory body, on advertising with (a) Google, (b) Facebook, (c) Twitter, and (d) other social media platforms.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Dissolution. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government which accountancy firms who currently hold contracts awarded by Government departments have been (1) formally criticised, or (2) fined, by any accounting regulatory body.

This information is not held centrally.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government who they have awarded contracts to as part of their response to COVID-19; and for each such entity, (1) how many contracts have been awarded, and (2) what is the value of those contracts.

Cabinet Office does not hold the information requested, as individual departments are responsible for their own procurements.


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

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
13th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is (1) the number, and (2) the value, of COVID-19-related contracts awarded to (a) KPMG, (b) PricewaterhouseCoopers, (c) Deloitte, (d) Ernst & Young, (e) G4S, and (f) Serco.

Central Government departments have drawn on the expertise and resources of a number of public and private sector partners to support the response to Covid-19. Details of central government contracts above £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder at https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what fees have been charged by the liquidators of BHS; and when the liquidation is likely to be finalised.

The most recent joint liquidators’ report for the period ending 1 December 2020, filed at Companies House in relation to SHB Realisations Limited (formerly BHS Limited), shows that fees were drawn in the sum of £4,858,117.

Anthony Wright and Geoffrey Rowley of FRP Advisory LLP are the joint liquidators. We have not yet been informed as to when they expect to conclude the liquidation.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the collapse of Greensill Capital on the recovery of loans relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Government and the British Business Bank (Bank) are closely monitoring the situation with respect to Greensill Capital.

Lenders offering finance via the Covid-19 loan schemes are expected to adhere to the terms of the guarantee agreement, and the Bank will take appropriate action in the event of non-compliance.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they have taken, if any, against the (1) designers, (2) sellers, and (3) implementers, of the Horizon software accounting system used by the Post Office.

The Government wants to be fully assured that the right lessons are learned for the future, that concrete changes have taken place at Post Office Limited and that this situation will never be repeated. That is why we launched the Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry. We will consider the outcomes of the Inquiry in due course and we will not speculate on individual responsibility before the Inquiry has reported.

While Post Office Limited is publicly owned, it operates as an independent, commercial business. Therefore, details regarding actions against Fujitsu is an operational matter for Post Office Limited.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what proportion of businesses subject to pre-pack administration survive longer than (1) five years, (2) 10 years, and (3) 15 years.

The Government does not hold or collect information on survival rates of businesses subject to a pre-pack administration.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government which (1) sections of the Companies Act 2006, or (2) regulations made under that Act, outline (a) the accounting treatment, and (b) the disclosure requirements, for finance secured through reverse factoring.

The Companies Act 2006 does not include specific requirements for finance secured through reverse factoring. However, section 393 places a requirement on directors that the accounts must provide a true and fair view of the assets, liabilities, financial position and profit or loss of a company or group. This places a responsibility to provide such information as is necessary to ensure that requirement is met, including where reverse factoring is used in supply chain arrangements.

The correct accounting treatment for reverse factoring is dependent on the terms and conditions of the factoring arrangement in place. The International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) Interpretations Committee and the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) have both issued guidance addressing the accounting standards requirements for reverse factoring, including guidance on additional disclosures. Copies of the guidance are attached below. The International Accounting Standards Board is also considering whether to add a project on reverse factoring to its agenda, as part of their responsibility for issuing International Financial Reporting Standards.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what proportion of workers are paid less than the statutory minimum wage.

The Government is committed to ensuring employers correctly pay the National Minimum Wage (NMW). We have more than doubled the budget for the NMW enforcement and compliance, rising to £27.5 million for 20/21, up from £13.2 million in 2015/16. In 2019/20, HM Revenue & Customs identified £20.8 million in arrears for over 263,000 workers and issued just under 1,000 penalties totalling £18.5 million to non-compliant employers.

The ONS’ Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) provides our primary estimate of the proportion of workers who are paid below the statutory minimum wage. The Low Pay Commission (LPC) published estimates in their 2020 report, which found that 347,000 workers (or 1.4% of all jobs) were underpaid the relevant minimum wage in April 2020. This excludes individuals who were furloughed, as they would not have been working at that time. The LPC figure follows our 2019 estimate, where underpayment was estimated to be approximately 408,000, equivalent to 1.4% of all jobs.

We will publish further information on minimum wage underpayment in due course, in our annual enforcement report.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what fees have been paid to PriceWaterhouseCoopers for acting as special managers assisting the official receiver in relation to the liquidation of Carillion.

The remuneration paid to PriceWaterhouseCoopers as special managers assisting the Official Receiver in the Carillion liquidations is £59,593,062 (net of VAT) for the period from 15 January 2018 to 21 January 2021.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have (1) to create databases setting out the number of (a) personal, and (b) corporate, bankruptcies caused by the impact of COVID-19; and (2) to publish these numbers at monthly intervals.

Whilst some of this information is already collected, such as the causes of personal insolvency and some corporate insolvencies that are dealt with by the Official Receiver, these only represent a small fraction of the total number of corporate and personal insolvency cases and would not therefore be representative.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much unsecured creditors have been unable to recover from the bankruptcy of their corporate customers in each of the last five years.

This information is not collated and held centrally. Information on individual corporate insolvencies at Companies House contains reports filed by the appointed insolvency office holder which will detail the amounts owed to different types of creditors, including unsecured creditors, and any payments made to those creditors from the realisation of assets during the course of the insolvency process.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many directors of Carillion plc have been disqualified as directors since the report by the House of Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Select Committee and Work and Pensions Select Committee Carillion (HC 769) was published on 16 May 2018.

The Insolvency Service’s enquiries into Carillion plc are ongoing. Once complete, a decision will be made on whether it is in the public interest to commence disqualification proceedings against any of the directors of the company.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government which body is responsible for monitoring payments of possible illegal dividends; and how many cases that body has examined in the last five years.

Several bodies have powers in certain circumstances to investigate and take action if illegal dividends have been paid, including the Insolvency Service, HM Revenue and Customs and some sector regulators.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the number of business liquidations which remain incomplete after (1) 5 years, (2) 10 years, and (3) 15 years or more, after their commencement.

These figures are made up of private limited, public limited and unlimited companies. Companies House does not register details of sole traders etc and cannot provide information about them.

The number of private limited, public limited and unlimited company liquidations which remain incomplete after (1) 5 years (2) 10 years, and 3 (15) years is as follows:

Between 5 and 9 Years

Between 10 and 14 Years

15 Years and More

7,962

3,642

14,328

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government who were the ultimate beneficial recipients of (1) the £15 million fine and £5,635,014 costs levied by the Financial Reporting Council on Deloitte on 17 September in respect of audit failures at Autonomy Corporation Plc, and (2) the £500,000 and £250,000 fines levied upon two Deloitte partners.

The three fines in the enforcement case relating to Autonomy Corporation plc were imposed under the Financial Reporting Council’s (FRC’s) Accountancy Scheme. Since 2016, a new Audit Enforcement Procedure has been implemented under the Statutory Auditors and Third Country Auditors Regulations 2016 for investigations of possible breaches of relevant requirements by statutory auditors under those Regulations.

The investigation into Autonomy Corporation plc started before those regulations came into force. Under the Accountancy Scheme the fines must be passed to the participating body which is required to fund the legal costs of the case. Additionally, any costs awarded by the tribunal in recognition of the costs funded by the participating body must also be paid to that body. In this case the participating body was the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

Fines imposed by the FRC under the Audit Enforcement Procedure must be paid to the Secretary of State and the Exchequer. Any costs awarded to the FRC in recognition of the costs funded by one of the recognised audit supervisory bodies must continue to be paid to that body.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with the Jersey Gambling Commission regarding capital adequacy and stress tests carried out on Football Index.

The government is monitoring the situation with Football Index closely and Ministers [the Secretary of State and Minister for Media and Data] have met the Gambling Commission twice to receive urgent reports. A live investigation by the Commission is ongoing. The Commission has been in close contact with the Jersey Gambling Commission throughout this case and continues to work closely with them. Further information can be found on the Commission’s website: https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/news-action-and-statistics/news/2021/BetIndex-update.aspx

The Gambling Commission does not carry out capital adequacy and stress tests, which would normally apply to banks, or routinely monitor the financial viability of operators. It looks at suitability when licensing an operator, including their financial circumstances, and may review these aspects in the course of its compliance activity. The Commission will investigate where there is evidence that operators have breached licence conditions.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what dates capital adequacy and stress tests were carried out by the UK Gambling Commission on Football Index; and what the outcome was of those checks.

The government is monitoring the situation with Football Index closely and Ministers [the Secretary of State and Minister for Media and Data] have met the Gambling Commission twice to receive urgent reports. A live investigation by the Commission is ongoing. The Commission has been in close contact with the Jersey Gambling Commission throughout this case and continues to work closely with them. Further information can be found on the Commission’s website: https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/news-action-and-statistics/news/2021/BetIndex-update.aspx

The Gambling Commission does not carry out capital adequacy and stress tests, which would normally apply to banks, or routinely monitor the financial viability of operators. It looks at suitability when licensing an operator, including their financial circumstances, and may review these aspects in the course of its compliance activity. The Commission will investigate where there is evidence that operators have breached licence conditions.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have conducted a survey to ascertain how many school pupils do not have access to (1) a computer, laptop or tablet, and (2) home broadband; and if not, what plans they have to conduct such a survey.

The Government is investing over £400 million to support access to remote education and online social care services, including securing 1.3 million laptops and tablets for disadvantaged children and young people.

As of 15 February 2021, over one million laptops and tablets have been delivered to schools, trusts, local authorities and further education providers.

Laptops and tablets are owned by schools, trusts, local authorities, or further education providers who can lend these to children and young people who need them most during the current COVID-19 restrictions.

The Government is providing this significant injection of laptops and tablets on top of an estimated 2.9 million already owned by schools before the start of the COVID-19 outbreak. The extra provision of laptops and devices is in line with Ofcom’s estimates for the number of pupils who do not have access to a device.

Ofcom has estimated that between 1.1 and 1.8 million children do not have access to a device across the whole of the UK. Education is devolved so our programme is just for England.

The Department estimated the number of disadvantaged pupils without access to an internet connection using data on pupils eligible for free school meals in each school, taking into consideration that some pupils would already have access to a private internet connection and estimations by Ofcom. Since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, we have delivered over 60,000 routers to schools, local authorities, and trusts.

We have conducted surveys with schools, pupils and parents throughout the COVID-19 outbreak and have collected data on access to technology, which will be published in due course.

To support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the Government has partnered with some of the UK’s leading mobile network operators, to help ensure that families have the data they need to access online educational resources while COVID-19 requires children to learn from home.

In partnership with mobile network operators, the Department is providing a service for schools if they have identified families who do not have a broadband connection and need free mobile data uplifts to engage in remote education.

Following a successful pilot, the offer is now available for schools across England to request free mobile data uplifts for disadvantaged children via the Get Help with Technology service.

8th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what additional resources they plan to make available to (1) schools, (2) colleges, and (3) universities, to administer the Turing scheme.

The Turing scheme will be backed by at least £100 million of public money, providing funding for around 35,000 students in universities, colleges, and schools to go on placements and exchanges overseas, starting in September 2021. We will be making further information available very shortly to enable providers to prepare to bid for funding when applications open in the coming weeks. Successful applicants will receive funding for administering the scheme and students taking part will receive grants to help them with the costs of their international experience.

We are pleased that the new scheme will be administered by the same consortium of the British Council and Ecorys which has been delivering Erasmus+ in the UK for a number of years, so will be able to draw on those organisations’ experience of working with education providers across the UK and ensure helpful continuity.

Further details of the scheme will be published shortly.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact on (1) the quality of water, (2) human health, and (3) the soil condition, of the countries receiving plastic waste exported from the UK.

While waste is a commodity, and there is a legitimate global market for secondary materials, it must be and is subject to strict controls. There is a system of international rules on waste shipments that must be followed when exporting waste. UK legislation requires that those involved in the shipment of waste take all necessary steps to ensure waste is managed in an environmentally sound manner throughout its shipment and at the waste management facility in the country of destination. Any operators found to be illegally exporting waste can face severe sanctions - from financial penalties to imprisonment for a period of up to two years.

The UK Government has conducted no assessment of the impact of UK plastic waste exports. The Government has, however, funded programmes, active in several countries that import plastic waste from the UK, which are working to address the sources of ocean plastic pollution.

Working with the World Economic Forum, the UK has supported the development of National Plastic Action Partnerships (NPAPs) in Ghana and Indonesia, with a third having launched in Vietnam in December 2020, to help create circular plastic economies. In Vietnam this platform aims to help dramatically reduce its flow of plastic waste into the ocean and eliminate single-use plastics from coastal tourist destinations and marine protected areas. We aim to support 25 NPAPs by 2025.

The Commonwealth Litter Programme brings together scientists, policy makers and communities around the world to identify actions which can be taken to stop plastic entering the marine environment, collect beach litter and measure marine microplastics, and raise awareness of what individuals and society can do to protect our marine habitats and wildlife. Having so far worked in Belize, South Africa, the Pacific, and India since its launch in 2018, the Programme is currently expanding in the South Asian region.

Finally, having signed a UK 'Plastics Pact' in 2018, the UK is now funding the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) to support Commonwealth countries to develop their own Plastics Pacts. WRAP is working to develop a network of Plastics Pacts around the world to a support broader transition to a Plastic Circular Economy.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Pension Protection Fund’s rescue of the employee pension schemes operated by Bernard Matthews Limited has resulted in loss of any pension rights of the members of those schemes.

The Pension Protection Fund (PPF) is a scheme, set up by the Labour government and continued by all successive governments, that pays compensation to members of eligible Defined Benefit pension schemes, whose sponsoring employer has become insolvent and where there are insufficient funds in the scheme to secure benefits at or above the level of PPF compensation. It was never intended to replicate in full the pension rights of schemes that, as a result of their employer’s insolvency, do not have sufficient assets to secure the pension benefits initially promised to their members. The usage of the PPF, when the Bernard Matthews Pension Fund transferred to the PPF did not result in any capping of members benefits.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to introduce legislation under which anyone on Universal Credit or other social security benefits would be entitled to a free broadband subscription.

There are no plans to introduce legislation on this issue.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
13th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is (1) the number, and (2) the value, of Defined Benefit Pension Schemes rescued by the Pension Protection Fund after a pre-pack administration.

This data is not readily available and so has been collated manually by the Pension Protection Fund for the last three years. From January 2020 to October 2020, the defined benefit pension schemes of 13 companies have undergone a pre-pack administration through the Pension Protection Fund. The aggregate value of the Section 75 debts of these pension schemes amounts to £196 million. Section 75 debt corresponds to the amount needed to secure a buyout for scheme members to receive their full benefits and provides a picture of the liability taken on by the Pension Protection Fund.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
28th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what resources they provide for defending each of the (1) Crown Dependencies, and (2) British Overseas Territories; and what is the total cost of such resources.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. The Minister will write directly to the Member with a response shortly.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, following the announcement of an independent inquiry into the governance of the British Virgin Islands, what plans they have (1) to support the expansion of its terms of reference to include, and (2) to support any consideration of, the Islands' role in global tax avoidance and money laundering as part of the inquiry.

The Commission of Inquiry was established by the Governor of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) to investigate specific allegations where such an investigation would be in the interests of public welfare in the BVI. The Governor set the Terms of Reference as:

  • to establish whether there is information that corruption, abuse of office or other serious dishonesty in relation to officials, whether statutory, elected or public may have taken place in recent years;
  • if there is such information, to consider the conditions which allowed that corruption, abuse of office or other serious dishonesty to take place and whether they may still exist;
  • if appropriate, to make independent recommendations with a view to improving the standards of governance, to give the people of the Virgin Islands confidence that government is working in a fair, transparent and proper manner;
  • if appropriate, to make independent recommendations with a view to improving the operation of the agencies of law enforcement and justice;
  • should the Commissioner at any time consider that a change to these terms of reference would be beneficial to public welfare in achieving the objectives of the Inquiry, to inform the then Governor of the Virgin Islands at the first opportunity; and
  • to prepare and submit a written report to the then Governor of the Virgin Islands within six (6) months from the commencement of the Inquiry, making all such recommendations as seem fit provided that the Governor may extend the period for submission of the report to a period no longer than 9 months from the date of the Inquiry.

It will be for the Commissioner, Sir Gary Hickinbottom, to determine how best to carry out these Terms.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when the Prudential Regulation authority carried out capital adequacy tests on Kuflink Ltd and related entities; and what was the outcome of those tests.

As you may be aware, Kufflink Ltd is not a regulated deposit taking firm, i.e. a bank, and hence are not regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority. Peer to peer firms are instead regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which in this instance extends to rules regarding capital requirements.

The FCA is an independent non-governmental body responsible for regulating and supervising the financial services industry. Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it has strictly limited powers in relation to the FCA. In particular, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and therefore it is not appropriate to request information regarding capital adequacy tests of individual firms.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what dates the tripartite meetings between the Financial Conduct Authority, directors of Kuflink Ltd and related entities, and their auditors took place; and what was discussed at each such meeting.

This is a matter for the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is operationally independent from Government. The question has been passed on to the FCA. The FCA will reply directly to the noble Lord by letter. A copy of the letter will be placed in the Library of the House.
Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
28th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the financial impact of the collapse of Archegos Capital Management upon entities (1) regulated, and (2) authorised, by the (a) Financial Conduct Authority, and (b) Prudential Regulation Authority.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. The Minister will write directly to the Member with a response shortly.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
28th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the financial impact of the administration of (1) Greensill Capital (UK) Limited, and (2) Greensill Capital Management Company (UK) Limited, upon entities regulated and authorised by the (a) Financial Conduct Authority, and (b) Prudential Regulation Authority.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. The Minister will write directly to the Member with a response shortly.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what dates capital adequacy and stress tests were carried out on Greensill Capital; and what the outcome was of those checks.

Greensill Capital (UK) Limited was not authorised by the FCA. It was a registered entity under the Money Laundering Regulations, which means that the FCA supervised it but only for compliance with Anti-Money Laundering rules, not for wider conduct issues. Greensill Capital Securities Ltd was an Appointed Representative of an FCA-regulated firm, under whose supervision it could conduct some regulated activities. However, it was not itself supervised or authorised by the FCA. Greensill Capital Securities Ltd is no longer an Appointed Representative.

At no time has the Bank of England authorised or supervised Greensill Capital (UK) Limited or any member of their group.

Given Greensill Capital was not authorised by the Bank of England or the FCA no capital adequacy or stress tests were required or carried out.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what record they have of (1) letters, (2) emails, (3) phone calls, (4) text messages, and (5) other communications, from former Prime Minister David Cameron to officials in (a) the Treasury, and (b) the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in connection with Greensill Capital.

Senior civil servants and ministers routinely meet and correspond with a range of private sector stakeholders. Transparency releases are published on a quarterly basis, and are currently publicly available for Senior Official and Ministerial meetings up to and including September 2020, which is in line with normal reporting timelines on disclosures.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what records they have of (1) the dates of meetings between the Financial Conduct Authority, the directors of Greensill Capital, and that company’s auditors, and (2) the details of matters discussed at any such meetings.

This is a matter for the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is operationally independent from Government. The question has been passed on to the FCA. The FCA will reply directly to the noble Lord by letter. A copy of the letter will be placed in the Library of the House.
Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to establish an independent inquiry into the handling by the Financial Conduct Authority of the alleged frauds at (1) Royal Bank of Scotland, and (2) Halifax Bank of Scotland.

As you are aware, the FCA is an independent non-governmental body responsible for regulating and supervising the financial services industry. Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it has strictly limited powers in relation to the FCA. In particular, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and cannot intervene in individual cases.

Given the matters raised are the responsibility of the FCA, in view of its independence, it is not for the Government to provide direction.

However, as you may be aware, in the case of HBOS, Dame Linda Dobbs has been appointed as an independent legal expert to consider whether issues in the HBOS Reading Fraud were investigated and appropriately reported to authorities at the time by Lloyds Banking Group. At present the Dobbs review is ongoing and once completed, its findings will be shared with the FCA.

On Royal Bank of Scotland and GRG, the FCA has concluded their final investigation, which reaffirms the outcome of its enforcement investigation, which was announced in July 2018.

Finally, there are currently no plans for the Government to establish an independent review of the conduct of the Financial Conduct Authority in relation to the RBS and Lloyds Banking Group.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any department has given directions to the Financial Conduct Authority in connection with its investigation of the alleged frauds identified in the 2013 'Project Lord Turnbull Report' at (1) Halifax Bank of Scotland, and (2) Royal Bank of Scotland.

As you are aware, the FCA is an independent non-governmental body responsible for regulating and supervising the financial services industry. Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it has strictly limited powers in relation to the FCA. In particular, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and cannot intervene in individual cases.

Given the matters raised are the responsibility of the FCA, in view of its independence, it is not for the Government to provide direction.

However, as you may be aware, in the case of HBOS, Dame Linda Dobbs has been appointed as an independent legal expert to consider whether issues in the HBOS Reading Fraud were investigated and appropriately reported to authorities at the time by Lloyds Banking Group. At present the Dobbs review is ongoing and once completed, its findings will be shared with the FCA.

On Royal Bank of Scotland and GRG, the FCA has concluded their final investigation, which reaffirms the outcome of its enforcement investigation, which was announced in July 2018.

Finally, there are currently no plans for the Government to establish an independent review of the conduct of the Financial Conduct Authority in relation to the RBS and Lloyds Banking Group.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will publish the penalties levied on accounting firms for designing and marketing unlawful tax avoidance schemes.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) cannot comment on individual cases. HMRC will investigate allegations of wrongdoing brought to their attention.

The Government is determined to tackle promoters and enablers of tax avoidance schemes and in March 2020, HMRC published their strategy for tackling promoters of tax avoidance schemes. The strategy outlines how HMRC will continue to take robust actions against promoters and enablers of tax avoidance.

Finance Bill 2021 includes new measures which will strengthen the existing anti-avoidance regimes and help HMRC act more swiftly against promoters. The Government has also announced a further package of measures to ensure promoters face stronger sanctions more quickly; the consultation was published on 23 March.

These proposals build on the enablers of defeated tax avoidance legislation that was introduced in 2017 and include provision for the publication of information, including the name of the enabler and the total number and amount of penalties incurred by the enabler, if they have been charged 50 or more penalties or £25,000 in penalties in any one year.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the judgment by the Court of Appeal in the case of GDF Suez Teesside Led v Revenue And Customs [2018] EWCA Civ 2075 on 5 October 2018, what action they have taken, if any, against Ernst & Young for designing and marketing an unlawful tax avoidance scheme.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) cannot comment on individual cases. HMRC will investigate allegations of wrongdoing brought to their attention.

The Government is determined to tackle promoters and enablers of tax avoidance schemes and in March 2020, HMRC published their strategy for tackling promoters of tax avoidance schemes. The strategy outlines how HMRC will continue to take robust actions against promoters and enablers of tax avoidance.

Finance Bill 2021 includes new measures which will strengthen the existing anti-avoidance regimes and help HMRC act more swiftly against promoters. The Government has also announced a further package of measures to ensure promoters face stronger sanctions more quickly; the consultation was published on 23 March.

These proposals build on the enablers of defeated tax avoidance legislation that was introduced in 2017 and include provision for the publication of information, including the name of the enabler and the total number and amount of penalties incurred by the enabler, if they have been charged 50 or more penalties or £25,000 in penalties in any one year.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the fine issued by the US Department of Justice to Goldman Sachs for its role in a conspiracy to bribe high-ranking foreign officials to obtain business, what discussions they have had with financial regulators in the UK about investigating Goldman Sachs for any similar practices in the UK.

The Financial Conduct Authority is the regulator responsible for supervising the conduct of financial institutions operating in the UK and is independent from the UK government.

The Treasury discusses a wide variety of issues with the FCA regularly. However, the Treasury has no general power of direction over the FCA and any enforcement decisions by the FCA are independent of government.
Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) bodies, and (2) individuals, have been prosecuted each year under the Criminal Finances Act 2017 for failure to prevent tax evasion; and what outcome was secured in each such case.

HMRC currently have thirteen live Corporate Criminal Offence (CCO) investigations with a further seventeen possible investigations under review. HMRC update these figures bi-annually on GOV.UK.

No corporate bodies have yet been prosecuted under the CCO for the failure to prevent the facilitation of UK tax evasion. This is because these investigations are extremely complex and take considerable time before they are ready to be passed to a prosecutor.

The CCO was implemented on 30 September 2017, which means HMRC are only able to consider potential investigations from that date. The offence applies solely to corporate bodies.

Individuals are prosecuted under pre-existing legislation that deals with tax evasion and the facilitation of tax evasion. Since April 2017, HMRC have prosecuted 60 facilitators of tax evasion. These cover a range of professional services and apply to different taxes and duties.

The CCO legislation was not brought in to simply increase the number of corporate prosecutions but to change long standing industry practices and reduce the opportunity for the facilitation of tax evasion to occur. There are positive signs of this happening with many organisations putting in place reasonable preventative procedures.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many transfer pricing specialists are employed by HMRC for dealing with the tax practices of multinational corporations.

In 2019 to 2020 there were 456 (441 in 2018 to 2019) full-time equivalent staff working on international issues involving Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) including transfer pricing, diverted profits tax, Controlled Foreign Companies (CFCs) and cross border debt.

This figure includes time spent on international issues by dedicated international specialists, Corporation Tax specialists and policy and technical advisers.

These staff work with other expert industry and tax specialists to tackle issues that represent a substantial risk of tax loss to the Exchequer in line with HMRC’s “resource to risk” compliance policy.

HMRC have invested significant time in training staff to deal with international issues, including transfer pricing.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many penalty notices for late filing of company tax returns have been issued in accordance with each subsection of paragraphs 17 and 18 of Schedule 18 of the Finance Act 1998 for each of the last five years.

Information in the form requested is not readily available and could only be compiled at disproportionate cost.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many proceedings for insolvency have been initiated by HMRC for failure to pay taxes when they were due.

Routine insolvency action has been paused by HMRC since the first lockdown in March 2020.

The figures below are for the 2020 calendar year relating to proceedings for insolvency which have been initiated by HMRC for failure to pay taxes when they were due:

Bankruptcy/Sequestration

January – March 2020 409

April – June 2020 0

July – September 2020 0

October – December 2020 0

Companies Winding Up/Liquidation

January – March 2020 1108

April – June 2020 9

July – September 2020 1

October – December 2020 1

These figures cover England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many Company Voluntary Arrangements for financially distressed businesses were approved by HMRC in each of the last five years.

HMRC only hold information on approved Creditor Voluntary Arrangements for the last three years, as follows:

2018: 118

2019: 142

2020: 118

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what proportion and value of UK Government bonds are held by the Bank of England.

At 31 December 2020 in nominal values, the Bank of England’s Asset Purchase Facility Fund held £625bn gilts, while a further £11bn of gilts were held in the Bank of England’s Sterling Bond Portfolio. Combined these represent 32.8% of the value of outstanding Government bonds, or 42.8% of outstanding conventional Government bonds.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many individuals have an annual income of less than the £12,500 Personal Tax Allowance.

The estimated number of individuals who have an annual income of less than the £12,500 Personal Tax Allowance in the 2019-20 tax year is 18.4 million.

Note:

  1. Taxpayer numbers are shown to three significant figures

  2. Figures provided are estimates for the 2019-20 tax year, when the Personal Tax Allowance reached £12,500.

  1. The figures for 2019-20 are based on outturn data derived from the 2017-18 Survey of Personal Incomes (SPI) and projected using economic assumptions consistent with the Office for Budget Responsibility’s March 2020 Economic and Fiscal Outlook.

This estimate is based on the Survey of Personal Incomes which represents a sample of individuals in contact with HMRC. However, HMRC do not hold information for all people with personal incomes below the income tax threshold. Further details are set out alongside the Income Tax Liabilities Statistics.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to legislate to authorise the Prudential Regulation Authority to carry out stress tests on the adequacy of capital at (1) hedge funds, and (2) private equity firms.

The Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) was established as the prudential regulator of firms which manage significant risk on their own balance sheet as a core part of their business and regulates and supervises banks, building societies, credit unions, insurers and systemic investment firms in the UK. This does not include any hedge funds or private equity firms, although such businesses may fall into scope of the PRA’s regulatory activity to the extent that they are part of wider banking or insurance groups. The Financial Conduct Authority is responsible for the regulation of other financial services firms not supervised by the PRA, including non-systemic investment firms.

The Financial Policy Committee (FPC) acts as the UK’s macro-prudential authority, tasked with identifying, monitoring and addressing emerging risks and vulnerabilities across the financial system. In its August 2020 Financial Stability Report, the FPC identified the need for further work domestically and internationally to review the resilience of investors and markets under stress, including leveraged investors. The relevant UK authorities are working with their international partners at the Financial Stability Board (FSB) to assess the role of leveraged investors in core funding markets, as set out in the FSB’s November 2020 Holistic Review of the March Market Turmoil.[1]

These institutional arrangements strike the right balance in securing a resilient and stable financial system and maintaining the UK's position as a leading financial centre for hedge fund and private equity investment - providing high quality jobs and capital investment to support businesses. The Government does not currently have plans to change these arrangements.

[1] https://www.fsb.org/wp-content/uploads/P171120-2.pdf

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
20th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many individuals who are enrolled on an approved pension scheme do not receive tax relief on their contributions.

HMRC estimates that 1.3m individuals earning below the personal allowance in 2017-18 made workplace pension contributions via Real Time Information (RTI) using relief at source arrangements. The personal allowance in 2017-18 was £11,500.

HMRC’s Survey of Personal Income (SPI) and administrative data was used to produce the estimates. The 2017-18 SPI data (published in March 2020) is the latest year available.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what are the (1) fees, and (2) costs, which have been paid to each member of the General Anti-Abuse Rule (GAAR) Panel.

The General Anti-Abuse Rule (GAAR) Advisory Panel is an independent body led by a Chair, appointed through an open recruitment process in line with Cabinet Office guidance. Members of the panel are appointed by the Commissioners of HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), advised by the Chair of the panel. There are no plans to introduce new legislation.

The Chair and other panel members do not receive remuneration, but HMRC reimburse expenses reasonably incurred by them in carrying out their duties. It is not possible for HMRC to provide details of expenses reimbursed to each member of the panel due to HMRC’s duty of confidentiality.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Supreme Court judgment in Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (Appellant) v Pendragon plc and others (Respondents) [2015] UKSC 37, whether they have (1) investigated, (2) fined, or (3) prosecuted, KPMG for designing and marketing the tax avoidance scheme.

HMRC cannot comment on individual cases, but will investigate any allegations of wrongdoing brought to their attention.

The Government and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) are determined to continue to tackle promoters and enablers of tax avoidance schemes. In March 2020, HMRC published on GOV.UK their strategy for tackling promoters of tax avoidance schemes. The strategy sets out HMRC’s work to date and outlines how HMRC will continue to take robust actions against promoters and enablers of tax avoidance.

HMRC publish the standards they expect agents to adhere to and monitor these standards. HMRC have several powers to address poor agent practice in instances where the standard for agents is breached.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
14th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to introduce legislation under which partners of law and accounting firms judged by the courts to have sold unlawful tax avoidance schemes would not be permitted to become members of the General Anti-Abuse Rule Panel and advise HM Revenues and Customs.

The General Anti-Abuse Rule (GAAR) Advisory Panel is an independent body led by a Chair, appointed through an open recruitment process in line with Cabinet Office guidance. Members of the panel are appointed by the Commissioners of HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), advised by the Chair of the panel. There are no plans to introduce new legislation.

The Chair and other panel members do not receive remuneration, but HMRC reimburse expenses reasonably incurred by them in carrying out their duties. It is not possible for HMRC to provide details of expenses reimbursed to each member of the panel due to HMRC’s duty of confidentiality.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
8th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what financial contributions they made during the transition period of the UK's departure from the EU; and what financial commitments they have made to the EU for future years.

As was set out in HM Treasury’s latest EU Finances Statement, the Government’s latest forecast of the total net cost of the financial settlement reached with the EU under the Withdrawal Agreement is £30.2 billion. Of this, £8.1 billion corresponds to payments made before the end of 2020, and £22.1 billion corresponds to payments to be made after that date.

The Government has also committed to making a financial contribution to fund its participation in certain EU programmes in the future under the Trade and Cooperation Agreement. The ultimate cost of this commitment will be determined by factors including the Gross Domestic Product of the UK and EU Member States, and finalised EU budgets for the programmes in question.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
8th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the risks to the economy of shadow banking.

Non-banks are a growing area of the global and UK financial system. While they help to diversify the provision of finance to the economy, they may also pose risks. Recognising this growth, the Office for Budget Responsibility’s 2019 Fiscal Risks Report assessed some of the risks of shadow banking.

The Chancellor requested in March 2020, as part of the remit letter to the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee (FPC), that the FPC publishes a detailed assessment of the oversight and mitigation of systemic risks from the non-bank sector.

The FPC published the preliminary findings of this assessment in the August 2020 Financial Stability Report. It highlighted that, as observed in the March 2020 ‘dash for cash’, some non-banks may be vulnerable to liquidity shocks. The report outlined further work to address these risks, both domestically and internationally. The FPC will follow this with a more detailed report in 2021 outlining gaps in, and potential measures that may be taken to increase, non-bank resilience.

Alongside this, HM Treasury and the financial regulators are working internationally at the G20’s Financial Stability Board (FSB) to understand and address the vulnerabilities of the non-bank sector. The FSB has recently published assessments of the risks from non-banks in the ‘Holistic Review of the March Market Turmoil’ (November 2020) and the ‘Global Monitoring Report on Non-Bank Financial Intermediation’ (December 2020).

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
8th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many UK-registered companies have failed to submit corporation tax returns to HMRC in the last five years.

Information in the form requested is not readily available and could only be compiled at disproportionate cost.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
8th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have estimated how much additional tax revenue would be raised by abolishing the Capital Gains tax-free allowance; and if so, how much additional such revenue they estimate would be raised.

HMRC do not currently publish an estimate for the cost of the Capital Gains Tax Annual Exempt Amount (AEA)[1]. A reliable estimate could only be made available at disproportionate cost.

[1] The AEA appears in the “cost unavailable” table for the structural tax relief official statistics here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/minor-tax-expenditures-and-structural-reliefs

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
8th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many employers have been prosecuted for their failure to comply with regulations relating to the National Minimum Wage in each of the last five years; and what was the outcome of each such prosecution.

Everyone who is entitled to the National Minimum Wage (NMW) should receive it.

HMRC enforce the National Minimum Wage (NMW) and National Living Wage (NLW) in line with the law and policy set out by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The majority of NMW cases are subject to civil (non-criminal) sanctions, which include penalties of up to 200% of the arrears, and public naming.

Prosecution does not guarantee payment of arrears to workers, can be lengthy, and is expensive for the taxpayer. HMRC therefore balance recovering NMW arrears for workers as quickly as possible with the robust enforcement of NMW and prosecution is generally reserved for the most serious cases that form part of a pattern of wider criminality and are referred to the Crown Prosecution Service who decide whether or not to prosecute.

HMRC have a strong enforcement record on the NMW and since 2010-11 have completed nearly 25,000 NMW investigations, identifying over £100 million in national minimum wage arrears for over 950,000 workers and levying more than £59 million in penalties.

The table below provides a breakdown of the number of employers prosecuted for breaches of National Minimum Wage legislation and the related outcome (fine imposed, costs imposed and compensation awarded) for each of the prosecutions in the last five (2015–2020) years.

Year

Number of prosecutions

Fine¹

Cost²

Compensation³

2015/2016

0

£0

£0

£0

2016/2017

4

1) £0 2) £500 3) £5,000 4) £14,000 or face possible 12-month jail term

1) £0 2) £0 3) £1,860 4) £2,000

1) £3,247 2) £0 3) £9,300 4) £4,403

2017/2018

1

£2,977

£633

£0

2018/2019

0

£0

£0

£0

2019/2020

1

£250

£0

£500

¹ Fine imposed by the court on the business.

² Court costs payable by the prosecuted individual.

³ Compensation is any sum as decided in the judgment, to be paid to the individual affected by the employer’s actions to cover any financial loss or damage the successful party has suffered.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
25th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the reply by Lord Agnew of Oulton on 11 November (HL Deb, col 1123) whether they intend to provide details of the source and methodology for the statement that the finance industry contributes “£75 billion in tax receipts”.

Her Majesty’s Government has taken this data from the report published by TheCityUK on the 9th of April this year, entitled ‘Key facts about UK-based financial and related professional services 2020’[1]. This report states that in 2018/19, the UK Financial Services sector contributed an estimated £75.5 billion to the UK public finances, which comprised 10.5% of all UK tax receipts.

[1] ‘Key facts about UK-based financial and related professional services 2020’, TheCityUK, 7th April 2020

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
25th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what are the names of the entities that have received financial support through the Job Retention Scheme for the period March to October; and what was the amount received by each such entity.

HMRC are not able to provide information on organisations that have received financial support from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), owing to HMRC’s duty of confidentiality.

HMRC cannot publish identifying information that relates to their functions, which include the CJRS, unless there is an appropriate legal basis for publication. No such legal basis was in place for the CJRS prior to 12 November 2020 when the CJRS Direction of that date was signed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

In line with the published direction, as part of HMRC’s commitment to transparency and to deter fraudulent claims, HMRC will publish information about employers who claim for periods starting on or after 1 December 2020. This will not cover employer details for use of the CJRS prior to December.

Although HMRC cannot specify organisations that have claimed under the CJRS, by midnight on 18 October £41,400,000,000 worth of claims had been made under the scheme.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
25th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what are the capital maintenance concepts they expect to be followed by UK banks when preparing their financial statements.

UK banks are subject to different and separate requirements in respect of solvency, capital maintenance and distribution.

The capital maintenance requirements stem from the Companies Act 2006, which apply to UK companies including companies that are banks. These require the determination of profits available for distribution, including for a public company, to be made by reference to the relevant accounts of a company. These accounts must be properly prepared in accordance with the Companies Act, with relevant accounting standards and with the overriding requirement that they must give a true and fair view of the assets, liabilities, financial position and profit or loss of the company.

Separately, and, in addition, banks in the UK are subject to the Prudential Regulation Authority’s (PRA’s) prudential capital requirements. These require banks to maintain appropriate capital resources, both in terms of quantity and quality, taking into account the risks to which they are exposed. These use as inputs some numbers taken or derived from a bank’s accounts but are otherwise a framework separate from that governing a company’s accounts.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to publish the number of (1) prosecutions, (2) convictions, and (3) fines, resulting from their investigations into the Panama papers.

To date, HMRC’s work on the Panama Papers has produced about £190 million in yield. Data from the Panama Papers has been fully brought into HMRC’s systems and the data continues to be used as part of their usual risking process.

HMRC regularly publish details of prosecutions, convictions and fines and will look to do the same in relation to their Panama Papers work when it is appropriate to do so.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they have taken against PricewaterhouseCooper for any role played in implementing tax avoidance schemes exposed by the 'Luxembourg leaks'.

It is not possible for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to provide details of any action taken in connection with this or any named organisation, for reasons of taxpayer confidentiality.

Should any tax agent be found to be enabling or facilitating tax avoidance then HMRC will use the full range of tools available, which include strict financial penalties, criminal sanctions, and public interest disclosures.

HMRC have reviewed all the documents relating to 142 taxpayers who had documents relating to their tax affairs disclosed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, which have been referred to as the ‘Luxembourg Leaks’.

This work did not reveal a single case of material information where either the detail of the transactions had not already been provided to HMRC, or when examined did any more than confirm HMRC’s understanding of particular arrangements that were already known to HMRC.

The Government has taken resolute action since 2010 to clamp down on tax non-compliance and unfair outcomes. It has targeted a broad range of bad practice in order to ensure that everyone, from individuals to large multinationals, is required to pay the right amount at the right time.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to publish the number of (1) prosecutions, (2) convictions, and (3) fines, resulting from their investigations into tax avoidance schemes exposed by the 'Luxembourg leaks'.

It is not possible for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to provide details of any action taken in connection with this or any named organisation, for reasons of taxpayer confidentiality.

Should any tax agent be found to be enabling or facilitating tax avoidance then HMRC will use the full range of tools available, which include strict financial penalties, criminal sanctions, and public interest disclosures.

HMRC have reviewed all the documents relating to 142 taxpayers who had documents relating to their tax affairs disclosed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, which have been referred to as the ‘Luxembourg Leaks’.

This work did not reveal a single case of material information where either the detail of the transactions had not already been provided to HMRC, or when examined did any more than confirm HMRC’s understanding of particular arrangements that were already known to HMRC.

The Government has taken resolute action since 2010 to clamp down on tax non-compliance and unfair outcomes. It has targeted a broad range of bad practice in order to ensure that everyone, from individuals to large multinationals, is required to pay the right amount at the right time.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the release of the unredacted report RBS Group's treatment of SME customers referred to the Global Restructuring Group by the Treasury Committee on 20 February 2018, how many directors and employees of the Royal Bank of Scotland have been (1) interviewed by the police, (2) charged, (3) convicted, (4) fined, and (5) banned from holding corporate directorships.

In June 2019, the Financial Conduct Authority released their final report regarding their investigative steps in relation to Royal Bank of Scotland, Global Restructuring Group (GRG).

The outcome of the report states that although GRG fell short of the high standards expected from their customers, the investigation by the FCA concluded that RBS did not treat their customers unfairly. However, in light of the findings, the FCA did provide RBS with clear recommendations to adhere to, which RBS have responded to with a series of actions they will undertake in order to address those concerns.

RBS rightly apologised for these mistakes, and set up a scheme to compensate victims. This scheme has, to date, paid out in excess of £150 million to complainants.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
9th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the number of UK-registered companies that have the word “bank” in their name but do not have Part 4A permission under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 to carry out regulated banking activities.

The estimates requested are not held by HM Treasury.

As you may know, a bank is defined as a UK institution that has permission under Part 4A of the Financial Services and Markets Act (FSMA) (2000) to accept deposits and is a credit institution. Financial services, including banks, are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) which are independent non-governmental bodies, given statutory powers by the FSMA as amended by the Financial Services Act (2012) and financed entirely by the financial services industry.

Although the Treasury sets the legal framework for the regulation of financial services, it does not have investigative or prosecuting powers of its own. The Treasury has no general power of direction over the regulators and therefore cannot intervene in individual cases. You can find a list of FCA and PRA regulated firms on their websites at:

FCA: https://www.fca.org.uk/firms/financial-services-register

PRA: https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/prudential-regulation/authorisations/which-firms-does-the-pra-regulate

The word ‘Bank’ is a sensitive word which requires approval of the Secretary of State for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) under section 55 of the Companies Act 2006 and The Company, Limited Liability Partnership and Business Names (Sensitive Words and Expressions) Regulations 2014. Companies House carries out this function on behalf of the Secretary of State. Anybody wishing to register a company name that includes the word ‘Bank’ must also first obtain a letter of non-objection from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) as required by the Regulations. On receipt of the letter on non-objection, Companies House will register the name.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will (1) publish an unredacted version of the report by Lord Justice Bingham Inquiry into the Supervision of The Bank of Credit and Commerce International, published on 22 October 1992, and (2) provide a list of who has received a copy of the unredacted version of that report to date; and if not, why.

There are currently no plans to publish an unredacted version of the report by Lord Justice Bingham into the Supervision of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the report by the Office for Professional Body Anti Money Laundering Supervision Anti-Money Laundering Supervision by the Legal and Accountancy Professional Body Supervisors: Progress and themes from 2019, published in March, and the finding that "92 per cent of accountancy Professional Body Supervisors expressed concerns about taking robust action if this would damage their ability to attract or retain members", what plans they have to consolidate the number of anti-money laundering regulators.

Under the Money Laundering Regulations, the Treasury is responsible for appointing Anti Money Laundering (AML) and Counter Terrorism Financing (CTF) supervisors. It seeks to ensure they deliver a robust and risk-based approach to supervision, applying dissuasive sanctioning powers when appropriate, while minimising unnecessary burdens on regulated firms.

In 2018, the government established the Office for Professional Body Anti-Money Laundering Supervision (OPBAS) to oversee the 22 legal and accountancy Professional Body Supervisors (PBSs) and ensure a consistent standard of supervision. In addition, OPBAS has an overarching responsibility to strengthen the UK’s supervisory regime by facilitating increased information and intelligence sharing between PBSs, statutory AML supervisors and law enforcement.

The introduction of OPBAS reflects the findings of the government’s previous calls for information, which identified that the focus should be on the effectiveness of supervision, rather than the number of supervisors.[1]

As part of the Economic Crime Plan, OPBAS committed to working with the 22 PBSs to ensure they have appropriate plans in place to address the AML/CTF weakness identified in their supervisory assessments and summarised in their first annual report, including in relation to the separation of functions.

Since publication of the first report, all PBSs have taken steps to address the weaknesses identified and have proposed action plans in place. OPBAS’s second report noted significant improvement in the suitability, in principle, of governance arrangements for AML supervision. At the end of 2018, 44% of PBSs lacked clear accountability for supervisory activity. By the end of 2019, this was reduced to zero. OPBAS will continue to monitor PBSs progress against these and assess their effectiveness to deliver more consistent supervisory standards.

Where OPBAS has identified deficiencies in PBSs’ oversight arrangements or practices, they have taken robust action, including using powers of direction. OPBAS will continue to take such action when appropriate with PBSs to ensure consistent high standards of supervision are achieved.

[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/call-for-information-anti-money-laundering-supervisory-regime; https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/anti-money-laundering-supervisory-review

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the judgment in Travel Document Service & Anor v Revenue & Customs (Corporation tax – tax avoidance scheme) UKUT 45 (TCC) by the Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery Chamber) on 7 February 2017, whether they have (1) investigated, (2) fined, or (3) prosecuted, Deloitte for any role it had in unlawful tax avoidance schemes.

It is not possible for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to provide details of any action taken in connection with this organisation.

HMRC challenge scheme promoters and other enablers in the marketed avoidance supply chain in order to disrupt their business. On 19 March 2020, HMRC published their strategy for tackling promoters of mass-marketed tax avoidance schemes and those who facilitate the use of these schemes. The strategy sets out HMRC’s work to date and outlines how HMRC and Government will continue to take robust action against promoters of tax avoidance. The Promoter Strategy is available on GOV.UK.

Lord Agnew of Oulton
Minister of State (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the City of London Police Fraud unit has received any (1) sponsorship, or (2) funding, from Lloyds Banking Group.

City of London Police (CoLP) entered into a three-year funding agreement for a total of £1.5m with Lloyds Banking Group in 2019. This agreement has been used to fund initiatives across policing to reduce fraud and economic crime.

This is in line with the goals of the government’s joint public-private sector Economic Crime Plan that will cut economic crime, including fraud.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the National Economic Crime Centre of the National Crime Agency has received any (1) sponsorship, or (2) funding, from Lloyds Banking Group.

The National Economic Crime Centre (NECC) has not received any sponsorship or funding from Lloyds Banking Group.

The NECC has one non-costing secondee from Lloyds. This is their third private sector secondee. All secondees complete a vetting process and sign a secondment agreement that includes restrictions on disclosure of National Crime Agency information.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will publish the financial contributions made by (1) the Crown Dependencies, and (2) Overseas Territories, to the annual defence budget of the United Kingdom.

The annual defence budget is funded entirely from the Supply Estimates process.

Supply Estimates are the means by which the Government seeks Parliament's authority for its spending plans. The Estimates reflect the HM-Treasury budgetary control structure and where appropriate are net of certain types of income where this can be used to reduce the overall amount of resource required by the Department.

Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories do not provide a direct contribution to the annual defence budget of the United Kingdom.

Records show that there is a very small amount of income received during Financial Year 2020-21 that has been received from the Government of Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories. This is for actual services supplied to those Governments for which the Ministry of Defence has sought reimbursement on a full cost recovery basis.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
28th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) convictions have been secured, and (2) penalties awarded, for pension scams for each year since 2010.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Dissolution. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member.

Lord Wolfson of Tredegar
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
28th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many, and which, regulatory bodies are responsible for the criminal prosecution of fraud; how many successful prosecutions for fraud have been secured by each of these bodies since 2010; and what penalties have been imposed following each, and any, such prosecutions.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Dissolution. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member.

Lord Wolfson of Tredegar
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the BBC Four documentary Dark Secrets of a Trillion Dollar Island: Garenne, broadcast on 15 March, what assessment they have made of the government of Jersey’s handling of child abuse; and whether they will appoint an independent inquiry to investigate the handling of such abuse.

In December 2013 Jersey’s government appointed an independent inquiry to investigate allegations of the abuse of children in the island’s care system from 1945 to date. The Independent Jersey Care Inquiry (IJCI) opened on 3 April 2014. Led by an independent panel of experts, the IJCI conducted a wide-ranging investigation into all aspects of child care and protection services in Jersey, closing on 3 July 2017 with the publication of the “Final Report of the Independent Jersey Care Inquiry”.

The Inquiry’s Report made eight key recommendations for the future management of child care in Jersey, all of which were accepted by the government of Jersey. The Report also suggested that the IJCI should be invited, in 2019, to review Jersey’s progress against those recommendations. Jersey agreed; the review took place as scheduled with the follow-up report being published on 23 September 2019. It acknowledged Jersey’s commitment to implementing the recommendations of the ICJI and commended Jersey on its progress.

Jersey is not part of the United Kingdom. As a self-governing dependency of the Crown with autonomy in its domestic affairs, child care and protection matters in Jersey are the responsibility of the Jersey authorities. It would not therefore be appropriate for the UK to appoint an independent inquiry to investigate this matter.

Lord Wolfson of Tredegar
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
25th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many prosecutions there have been for rigging foreign exchange rates under (1) the Criminal Justice Act 1993, and (2) the Financial Services Act 2012; and what was the outcome of each such prosecution.

The Ministry of Justice has published information on prosecutions, convictions and sentences for offences committed under both the Financial Services Act 2012 and the Criminal Justice Act 1993, from 2013 to 2019, available in the ‘Principal offence proceedings and outcomes by Home Office offence code’ data tool, here:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/888344/HO-code-tool-principal-offence-2019.xlsx

No defendants were prosecuted where the principal offence fell under the Financial Services Act 2012 between 2013 and 2019.

In this instance, all offences under the Criminal Justice Act 1993 are under one Home Office offence code, so cannot be disaggregated. Search ‘Detailed offence’ in the data tool linked above for ‘Insider dealing’.

12 individuals were prosecuted and 13 were sentenced under the Criminal Justice Act 1993, between 2013 and 2019. Defendants who appear before both magistrates’ and Crown courts may be convicted and sentenced for a different offence to that for which they are counted as having been originally prosecuted if the offence is changed on conviction. Sentence outcomes were 3 suspended sentences and 10 immediate custodial sentences.

Baroness Scott of Bybrook
Baroness in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
25th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many prosecutions for interest rate rigging there have been under (1) the Criminal Justice Act 1993, and (2) the Financial Services Act 2012; and what was the outcome of each such prosecution.

The Ministry of Justice has published information on prosecutions, convictions and sentences for offences committed under both the Financial Services Act 2012 and the Criminal Justice Act 1993, from 2013 to 2019, available in the ‘Principal offence proceedings and outcomes by Home Office offence code’ data tool, here:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/888344/HO-code-tool-principal-offence-2019.xlsx

No defendants were prosecuted where the principal offence fell under the Financial Services Act 2012 between 2013 and 2019.

In this instance, all offences under the Criminal Justice Act 1993 are under one Home Office offence code, so cannot be disaggregated. Search ‘Detailed offence’ in the data tool linked above for ‘Insider dealing’.

12 individuals were prosecuted and 13 were sentenced under the Criminal Justice Act 1993, between 2013 and 2019. Defendants who appear before both magistrates’ and Crown courts may be convicted and sentenced for a different offence to that for which they are counted as having been originally prosecuted if the offence is changed on conviction. Sentence outcomes were 3 suspended sentences and 10 immediate custodial sentences.

Baroness Scott of Bybrook
Baroness in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)