§ Mr. Andrew Smith
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of the effect of the privatisation of the Paymaster agency on the Treasury's access to information needed to monitor and control public expenditure; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Oppenheim
The Paymaster General announced on 15 July,Official Report, column 372, that he had accepted the recommendations of the recently concluded prior options review of Paymaster, and the agency would be privatised. A copy of the report is in the Library. It concluded that, to retain control over public expenditure and information on Exchequer balances, such work should continue to be carried out within the public sector.