§ Mr. Corbett
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what further steps he proposes to take to reduce the 22-month delay between date of application for entry clearance into the United Kingdom and the date of interview at the British Embassy in Islamabad; and whether he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Ennals
As stated in my reply to the hon. Member for Faversham (Mr. Moate) on 31st January we have recently strengthened our immigration staffs in the subcontinent, including Islamabad. However, since some of the new staff have only been at their posts for a few months it will be some time before we are able to assess the effectiveness of these increases. Meanwhile my hon. Friend, the Minister of State, Home Office, is reviewing the immigration procedures with a view to speeding up the processing of applications without reducing the checks against evasion.