Government Departments: Correspondence

House of Lords written question – answered on 14th November 2012.

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Photo of Lord Norton of Louth Lord Norton of Louth Conservative 14th November 2012

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) letters, and (2) emails, were received by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in each of the past five years for which information is available; and, of those, how many were sent by (a) members of the House of Commons, (b) members of the House of Lords, and (c) members of the public.

Photo of Baroness Warsi Baroness Warsi Conservative 14th November 2012

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) does not record centrally the number of letters and e-mails received. To ask every FCO department and overseas post how many letters and e-mails had been received would incur disproportionate cost.

The FCO reports annually to Cabinet Office on the performance of the department in replying to Members' and Peers' correspondence. The following table shows returns for the last five years. Separate figures for MPs' and Peers' correspondence are not recorded.

Correspondence from MPs/Peers to Ministers and Agency Chief Executives:
Year Number of Letters Received
2007 9,792
2008 10,334
2009 10,462
2010 9,845
2011 10,402

The Cabinet Office publishes an annual report to Parliament on the performance of departments in replying to Members' and Peers' correspondence. The report for 2011 was published on 15 March 2012 (Hansard, col. WS 42).

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