HC Deb 07 February 2001 vol 362 cc550-1W
Mr. Field

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Havant (Mr. Willetts), of 30 January 2001,Official Report, column 139W, if he will recalculate the table on the basis that both (a) the basic State Pension and (b) the Minimum Income Guarantee were uprated with prices. [148757]

Mr. Rooker

[holding answer 5 February 2001]:The information is in the table.

A comparison of total net cost with my previous reply to the hon. Member for Havant suggests that uprating by prices would have reduced net expenditure by about £21¼ billion—from around £3¼; billion to around £1 billion.

Estimated costs of uprating selected benefits by prices, 2001ߝ02
Benefit Cost
Basic State Pension £1,100 million
Minimum Income Guarantee between-£50 million and zero
Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit for those aged 60 and over -£50 million
Total cost £1,000 to £1,050 million


1. Figures are in cash terms and are rounded to the nearest £50 million.

2. Estimates relate to Great Britain.

3. The costs of uprating MIG, Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit with prices are negative. This can be explained by the fact that the September RPI was higher (3.3 per cent.) than the September Rossi (1.6 per cent.). This means that with price uprating, pensioners' State Pensions would have increased at a faster rate than the applicable amount limits in the income-related benefits.