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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what the staff vacancy rate in his Department was in 2010-11; and what vacancy rate has been assumed in his Department's budget for 2011-12.
In 2010-11, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) filled 21 Fast Stream programme and 30 other vacancies for UK-based staff through external recruitment campaigns. This represents a vacancy rate of approximately 1.02%.
In 2011-12, the FCO expects to take on a similar number of applicants to the Fast Stream programme to last year. The Fast Stream recruitment programme is exempt from the Government-wide recruitment freeze.
It is not possible to provide an overall figure for vacancy rates in 2011-12. External vacancies arise only when roles are not filled either internally or from across Whitehall and it is difficult to predict these in advance.