§ Mr. Riddick
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether any changes will be made to his Department's cash limit and running cost limits for 1991–92.
§ Mr. Lilley
Subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary supplementary estimate, the cash limit for class IV, vote 2 (support for industry, international trade, statutory and regulatory work, consumer protection, and administration) will be increased by £4,559,000 from £758,460,000 to £763,019,000. The running costs limit for the Department of Trade and Industry will be increased by £440,000 from £257,796,000 to £258,236,000.
In order to establish the Patent Office and Companies house executive agencies as trading funds, the increase in the cash limit covers net provision of £7,252,000 for loans to Patent Office and £6,037,000 for loans to Companies House to provide initial working capital and finance for long-term projects. This expenditure will require the prior approval of the House to the establishment of the two funds. It is offset by decreases of £4,125,000 in net provision of Companies house and £655,000 for the Patent Office to reflect their transition to trading fund status together with increased appropriations in aid of £3,184,000 on the administration section as a result of receipts from those new trading funds.
There are also increases of £250,000 in the consumer and investor protection programme to provide assistance for the share ownership movement, £120,000 in the space technology programmes in respect of residual espenditure on Dialtech retrieval services, £71,000 for the Department's promotion of consumer safety, to be fully met by receipts from the European Community, and £20,000 in the industrial research programme to meet the United Kingdom's subscription to the European resource centre for economic redevelopment and restructuring.
These increases are partly offset by a net decrease of £268,000 in telecommunications and posts expenditure, comprising increases in subscriptions to international 173W organisations and regulatory publicity which are more than offset by an increase in related receipts; a decrease of £122,000 in administration in respect of consultancies and formal inquiries; and a decrease of £650,000 in the measurement and technology support programme for strategic research paid to the Warren Spring laboratory, the laboratory of the Government chemist and the national physical laboratory executive agencies, to reflect transfers to other Government Departments which will fund such research directly. These net running cost controlled agencies' gross total and appropriations in aid both accordingly increase by £556,000 for WSL, £84,000 for LGC and £10,000 for NPL. Increased appropriations in aid of £34,000 for the national engineering laboratory executive agency reflect recovery of strategic research costs from other Government Departments by NEL, which is on gross running cost control.
In addition, there are net transfers of provision of £195,000 from NPL to LGC in respect of provision of common services and minor capital purchases, and of £255,000 from the support for industrial research and development programme to civil aircraft research and demonstration in respect of a project under the EUREKA programme.
An increase of £206,000 for additional superannuation liability of suppliers of central services is more than offset by a reduction of £355,000 of superannuation liability in the administration section for export services; the net reduction will be matched by reduced receipts on the superannuation vote.
The departmental running cost limit will be increased by £440,000, reflecting the reclassification to running costs of programme expenditure of £305,000 in respect of companies investigations, transfers of £67,000 from the FCO and Civil Service Commission for recruitment, publicity and the establishment of the export services joint directorate, an increase of £230,000 to facilitate DTI's policy of establishing strict customer/contractor relationships between their central services and customer divisions (fully offset by receipts of central service suppliers) and £120,000 from NPL to the national weights and measures laboratory in respect of the provision of common services. These increases are partly offset by a transfer of £282,000 from running costs to programme expenditure in connection with work on copyright policy by the Patent Office trading fund.
This supplementary estimate increases the DTI's public expenditure provision by a net £623,000 when the non-voted public expenditure consequences of creating Patent Office and Companies house trading funds are taken into account. This increase will be charged to the reserve and therefore will not add to the planned total of public expenditure.