§ Mr. Brotherton
asked the Secretary of State for Industry (1) if he will give an assurance that confidential information supplied to him by members of the public as a result of his Department's inquiry into ownership of shares will be destroyed at the conclusion of the survey;
(2) what was the cost to public funds of sending out the circular letter and pro forma from Economics and Statistics Division 6A(1), concerning his Department's analysis of share ownership;
(3) how many people have been asked to provide information for his Department's survey of company share registers; and what proportion this number is of the total number of cases on share registers;
(4) how many people are currently engaged on his Department's analysis of the ownership of shares in limited companies;
(5) how many completed forms have been received to date by the Economics and Statistics Division 6A(1) of his Department from members of the public requested to help in the analysis of share ownership; and what proportion this is of the total number of forms delivered;
(6) what will be the cost to public funds of analysing data received from his Department's survey of share ownership;
(7) when he expects the survey of share ownership currently being conducted by Economics and Statistics Division 6A(1) to be completed;
(8) what sanctions will be taken against those members of the public who do not co-operate in his Department's survey of share ownership;
(9) if the Economics and Statistics Division 6A(1) of his Department has plans to store completed survey forms sent to it by members of the public in its survey of share ownership.
§ Mr. Les Huckfield
Information supplied by members of the public in the 183W course of this survey will be treated in strict confidence and will be destroyed as soon as the survey analyses have been completed. There are no plans to store the completed forms beyond that time.
The cost of sending out the inquiry to personal shareholders—but not processing it—is about £3,000.
Letters have been sent to 3,625 people, which is approximately three in every 10,000 personal shareholders. So far, 1,883 completed forms have been received, 52 per cent, of the total sent out, and replies are still being received.
The survey is entirely voluntary, and there are no sanctions that can be taken against any member of the public who does not co-operate in the inquiry.
Eleven staff are currently engaged in the survey of share registers as a whole and six on the inquiry to personal shareholders.
The cost of analysing the data for the full survey is approximately £38,000.
It is hoped to publish the results in the first half of 1977.