HC Deb 31 January 1994 vol 236 cc530-1W
Mr. Matthew Taylor

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list for each scheme operated by her Department under which loans are available, the objectives of the scheme, the number of unrecovered loans, the total value of unrecovered loans, the average number of unrecovered loans for each year since 1990, the average value of unrecovered loans for each year since 1990 and the annual cost of recovering loans.

Mr. Sackville

The table gives information on schemes operated by the Department under which loans are available. It also provides information on any unrecovered loans. It excludes loans to staff, which are recovered through their salaries. It is not possible except at disproportionate cost to provide information on the annual cost of recovering loans.

Departmental loans
Loans Objective
Loans repayable to DH when children's homes close or change use Under section 58 of the Children Act 1989, providers of some children's homes (which were formerly approved schools) are required to repay past grants and loans to the Department of Health when the home closes or changes its use. Central Government capital was invested under section 104 of the Children and Young Persons Act 1933 for the establishment and refurbishment of approved schools and this continues to be recoverable under the Act. We hold no records of any unrecovered loans.
Loans under section 64 of the Health Services and Public Health Act 1968 To support the agreed national activities of the voluntary sector in relation to the health and personal social services. This is achieved by providing grants to voluntary organisations towards their administrative (core) costs and for certain national projects and, exceptionally, for well defined regional and local activities.
While the section 64 power allows loans to be made, none has been made under the section 64 general scheme to date. Any proposal to make a loan would require approval of the Treasury.
Loans to the Medicines Control Agency There are potentially two kinds of loan which the Department can make to the Medicines Control Agency.
When the MCA became a trading fund its net assets were financed by public dividend capital and originating debt. The originating debt is to be repaid to the Department over a five-year period in instalments. The MCA was given the option, which it has taken up, to re-borrow an equivalent amount to that repaid - this amounts to £330,000 in the current financial year.
As regards its recurrent and capital costs, the MCA is a self-financing agency which recovers its costs through licensing fees. However, loans may be made to the MCA for effective management of cash flow. All loan repayments would be recovered as they fall due.
Loans to NHS Trusts The objective of the trust loans system is to provide finance for capital expenditure and for the effective management of cash flow at NHS trusts. All loan repayments are recovered as they fall due. None of the loans can be categorised as unrecovered.