§ Mr. Love
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to his answer of 20 July 2001,Official Report, column 485W, on diplomatic staff, what reference is made in setting pay levels of locally engaged civilian staff to the local poverty datum line; whether the pay levels can fall below local poverty datum lines; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Bradshaw
Pay scales and other conditions of service for our locally engaged staff in each country are set in comparison with the generality of responsible employers in that country. Typically the comparators are other western diplomatic missions, international agencies and major private companies. Our missions pay what is required to recruit, retain and motivate suitable staff. Normally we expect to be in the middle range of rates of pay: neither leading the market nor poor payers. We also meet the requirements of local employment law. Accordingly we are confident that pay levels for our local staff will be above poverty datum lines.