Adam Afriyie
MP for Windsor
Attracting foreign investment

Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he has taken to encourage more foreign direct investment in UK companies.

Andrea Leadsom (Economic Secretary to the Treasury): In 2013-14 the UK attracted 1,773 foreign direct investment projects, giving a total stock of £1.6 trillion of such investments – more than any other country apart from the USA. During this Parliament the Government has taken action to make the UK a more attractive location to run a business including reducing corporation tax so that it will reach 20% next year – the lowest in the G20 – and investing in skills, science and infrastructure. The Government has also increased resources at UK Trade and Investment including for example establishing private sector-led teams in the Gulf, Central Europe, and South America dedicated to attracting inward investment into the UK.

Helping disabled entrepreneurs

Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps the Government has taken to support disabled people in Windsor constituency who want to start their own business.

Matthew Hancock (Minister of State for Business and Enterprise): We are continuing to work hard to provide the right support to make life easier for everyone who wants to start their own business, including disabled people.

Growth of the big data industry

Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps he has taken to encourage growth of the big data industry in the UK; and if he will make a statement.

Mr Edward Vaizey (Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy): The Government has identified big data as one of the ‘eight great technologies’ that will propel the UK’s future economic growth. Since 2010, the Government has made a series of strategic investments to support the growth of the big data industry in the UK. These include:

- a £159 million investment programme in the UK’s high performance computing and networks infrastructure announced in 2011.

- £189 million investment announced in 2012 to support a programme of big data and energy-efficient computing projects across the UK co-ordinated by the Economic and Social Research Council.

- £10.7 million announced in December 2013 to create a new Higgs Centre for Innovation at the UK Astronomy Technology Centre in Edinburgh that will focus on big data and space technologies.

- £42 million announced in March 2014 to establish a world-leading Alan Turing Institute, which will be established in 2015 to research the analysis and application of big data.

- Investment of over £50 million to establish the Digital Catapult, based in London, which will bring researchers and business together to accelerate new innovative products to market.

On 31 October 2013, the Government also published ‘Seizing the Data Opportunity: a strategy for UK data capability’, which examines the UK’s capability to make best use of all data including big data, public sector held data, research data, and data collected by companies. The strategy was developed in partnership with industry to place the UK at the forefront of extracting knowledge and value from data.

Since the publication of the strategy, the Government has introduced new legislation on copyright exceptions in June 2014 to enable text and data-mining for non-commercial purpose, and has developed new UK Trade & Industry marketing material to attract increased overseas investment and custom to the UK data centre market.

The European Arrest Warrant

Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many UK citizens were subject to a European arrest warrant in 2013-14.

And to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many European Arrest Warrant requests levied against British citizens have been refused in (a) 2011-12, (b) 2012-13 and (c) 2013-14.

Karen Bradley (Minister for Modern Slavery and Organised Crime): In 2013-14, the National Crime Agency received 7,881 arrest warrants from other EU Member States, of which 132 (or 1.67%) were issued in respect of UK nationals.

In the financial year 2013-14, ten Arrest Warrants from Member States for British nationals were refused by the courts in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Information is not held for the financial years 2011-12 and 2012-13.

Financial year 2013-14
Final court decisions on Arrest Warrants issued by Member States for the surrender of British Nationals 46
Arrest Warrants for British nationals that were refused by the court 10
Arrest Warrant for British nationals refused as a proportion of total of final court decisions. 22%

Of the total number of surrenders from England, Wales and Northern Ireland between April 2009 and March 2014, over 95% (4,855 of 5,072) of people surrendered were foreign nationals and just over 4.3% (217 of 5,072) were British nationals. By way of comparison, in non-Arrest Warrant cases over a similar period 40% of those extradited have been British nationals.

Universal Free School Meals

Adam Afriyie (Windsor, Conservative): To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the potential costs and benefits of the introduction of universal infant free school meals in the UK.

Mr David Laws (Minister of State for Schools): The Department for Education is responsible for the introduction of the requirement that state-funded schools in England should offer universal infant free school meals, which came into effect on 1 September 2014.

Between 2009 and 2011 the Department for Education and the Department of Health piloted the provision of universal free school meals in Durham and Newham. The independent evaluation of those pilots showed that there were a number of benefits arising from the provision of universal free school meals, including improved attainment, healthier eating habits and increases in the uptake of meals among children who would have been eligible for free school meals under the existing criteria. We also know, from research carried out by the School Food Trust (now Children’s Food Trust), that universal infant free school meals will save families who previously paid for school lunches up to £400 a year per infant child.

The Department has used School Food Trust research into the costs of school meal provision, as well as feedback from local authorities and stakeholders, to inform the allocation of funding for this policy and the targeting of implementation support. In particular, this research informed the decision to allocate £2.30 of revenue funding per meal taken by newly eligible pupils.