§ Mr. Boswell
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will make a statement on the(a) current operations and (b) use made of the National Academic Recognition and Information Centre. 
§ Mr. Wicks
The UK National Academic Recognition and Information Centre (NARIC) is one of a number of such centres established under the SOCRATES EC education programme. It also forms part of a wider group of European Centres established through the Council of Europe. Both these networks promote the mobility of students by providing them and institutions with information and advice on the comparability of academic qualifications from other countries: UK NARIC handle over 26,500 such inquiries per year. The UK NARIC' s responsibilities also include researching and evaluating foreign qualifications, compiling a newsletter to universities and colleges and others, and organising and participating in meetings, seminars and conferences to disseminate information.