HC Deb 01 February 1977 vol 925 cc147-8W
13. Mr. Hicks

asked the Secretary of State for Employment what total amount he estimates the South-West assisted area received in regional employment premium for the current financial year until it was abolished; what would have been the total amount paid for 1976–77; and how many employees were affected by the abolition.

Mr. Golding

It is estimated that the South-West development area will receive £5 million in regional employment premium during the current financial year. Since REP was claimed quarterly in arrears, roughly the same amount would have been paid within the 1976–77 financial year if REP had not been abolished. The number of employees for whom REP was claimed was 24,800 males and 8,400 females.

41. Mr. Wigley

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will state the expenditure for the last 12 months on the regional employment premium in Wales.

Mr. Golding

The estimated payments made in respect of regional employment premium for the Welsh development area for 1st January to 31st December 1976 was £32 million.

Mr. Steen

asked the Secretary of State for Employment what have been the precise terms of the employment premium which has been offered to the manufacturing industry in development areas, like Merseyside, since 1965; and how much has been paid by the Government by way of employment premium to manufacturing industries in development areas like Merseyside (a) for men and (b) for women.

Mr. Golding

An establishment was eligible for registration for regional employment premium if it was situated in a development area and satisfied the conditions of Section 1 of the Selective Employment Payments Act 1966. These conditions are:

  1. (a) The establishment is engaged by way of business wholly or partly in any of the activities listed in Section 1 of the Act or in scientific research or training relating to such activities. Broadly these are manufacturing activities;
  2. (b) More than half the employees employed in or from the establishment are employed wholly or mainly in connection with such activities, research or training;
  3. (c) Not more than half the employees are employed in "non qualifying" activities, i.e., activities carried on for office purposes or transport or by way of sale of goods.

REP is not payable for any period after 2nd January 1977. Any fresh applications in respect of periods up to 2nd January 1977 must be received by the Department of Employment before 13th February 1977.

Since its inception on 4th September 1967 the REP rates remained unchanged until 5th August 1974, when they were doubled to £3 for men, £1.50 for women and boys and £0.95 for girls. Half these rates were paid for part-time employees.

Separate totals of amounts paid for men and women are not available. It is estimated that the total amount which will have been paid since September 1976 is:

Development area £ million
Northern 365
Merseyside 226
South-West 25
Wales 171
Scotland 463