§ Mr. Webb
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what plans he has to inform benefit and tax credit claimants that they will be able to receive their entitlement in cash over the counter at the Post Office after April 2003; 
(2) what plans he has to publicise the availability of the new Post Office card account. 88W
§ Maria Eagle
A copy of the UK's national strategy report on pensions was sent to the National Pensioners' Convention on 17 September.
All EU member states have produced reports as part of an exercise to exchange information and best practice on pensions. The UK report sets out current pensions policy. A draft Joint Commission/Council Report based on the information in the reports from member states is provisionally scheduled to be considered by EU Heads of State and Government at the spring European Council in 2003.
Copies of the UK report are in the Library.
§ Mr. Webb
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to his answer of 24 October 2002,Official Report, column 487W, on contributions to non-state pensions, if he will estimate for each four year period for (a) all people, (b) men and (c) women the percentage of members of each quintile group who contributed to a non-state pension in at least three out of four years. 
§ Malcolm Wicks
Customers are being supplied with information (including letters and leaflets), which clearly sets out their 'account options'. They can choose the bank or building society account (including the Post Office card account) which best meets their needs and circumstances. All of the Department for Work and Pensions material sets out the key features of the various accounts and mentions the availability of collecting cash from the Post Office, and the Post Office card account. 89W The material the Inland Revenue have sent out with new Tax Credit application forms also clearly sets out the various account options, and the fact that people will still be able to collect their money from the Post Office if they wish.