HC Deb 26 April 2002 vol 384 cc497-8W
Mrs. Lawrence

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish the UK Debt Management Office's targets and business plan for 2002–03. [53584]

Ruth Kelly

The DMO' s targets for 2002–2003 are set out below, together with a brief commentary on last year's outturn in relation to the comparable target. The DMO is today also publishing its Business Plan for 2002–2003. I will arrange for a copy to be placed in the Library. The DMO, with HM Treasury, will in due course be reviewing its planning objectives in the light of the decision that I announced on 25 March to integrate the National Debt Office (NDO) and the Public Works Loans Board (PWLB) into the DMO with effect from 1 July 2002.

Targets for the Debt Management Office 2002–03

1. To ensure full compliance with the Government's remit for the DMO as set out in the Debt and Reserves Management Report 2002–03, within the tolerances and subject to the review triggers notified separately to the Office and consistent with the objectives of monetary policy. [Target met in 2001–02]

2. To ensure that the maximum time taken to issue the results of gilt auctions does not exceed 40 minutes, that for structured Treasury Bill tenders does not exceed 30 minutes, and that for ad hoc Treasury Bill or other tenders does not exceed 15 minutes, while achieving complete accuracy. [Target met in 2001–02]

3. To achieve complete accuracy, within agreed accounting tolerances, in the recording and reporting of transactions through the Debt Management Account (DMA), and in delivering money (and reconciling payments) to the National Loans Fund (NLF) and to meet the statutory deadlines for publication or submission for audit of the annual accounts of the DMO Agency, and DMA. [First half of target met in 2001–02. The second half relating to timeliness of publication of accounts was also met].

4. To acknowledge all letters and e-mail enquiries from the public within 5 working days and for at least 95 per cent to be sent a substantive reply within 2 weeks. [Target met in 2001–02]

5. To achieve less than 6 breaches of the operational market notices (excluding any breaches that the Treasury accept were beyond control of the Office). [Equivalent target met in 2001–02]

6. To ensure that the statutory constraint on DMO market borrowing (not to exceed its deposits with the NLF and Bank of England) is always met. [Target met in 2001–02]

7. To ensure that, when there is a late change in the forecast, any necessary use of end-of-day borrowing or lending facilities is notified by the due time. [Target met in 2001–02]

8. To ensure that instructions to counterparties, agents and external systems are complete, accurate and timely, and that monitoring of the progress of transactions through to settlement is effective, so that DMO achieves at least 99 per cent (by value) successful settlement of agreed trades on the due date. [Target met in 2001–02]

To release all market sensitive data on announcements in a timely manner and to achieve no more than 10 factual errors in material published by the DMO, including on the web site (insofar as the material is under the control of the DMO and not third parties). [Equivalent target—which required complete accuracy covering also immaterial errors—not met in 2001–02. In particular on 14 March 2002 there was a premature release onto the web site of market sensitive information on the breakdown of planned gilt sales in 2002–03. The proposed target has been expanded to include timeliness of release allows for some but fewer errors than in 2001–02.]

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