§ Mr. Pound
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when he will lay the Government's proposed social and environmental guidance to the Postal Services Commission; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Alan Johnson
Yesterday I laid in the Library of each House the draft social and environmental guidance which the Secretary of State proposes to issue to the Postal Services Commission in accordance with section 43 of the Postal Services Act 2000. A consultation on the draft guidance was carried out in accordance with section 43(3) of the Act. The consultation closed on 31 January and six responses were received for which the Government are grateful. They contained a number of useful suggestions which have been taken into account in refining the draft guidance.
The process of giving statutory social and environmental guidance has been developed to provide a means of ensuring that regulators take due account of the Government's social and environmental policies in carrying out their statutory functions. Regulators have a statutory duty to have regard to the guidance.