To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer to Question 220107, if he will make it his policy to exclude French Overseas Departments in the calculation of average temperature for France for the purposes of determining eligibility for winter fuel payments to UK citizens.
It is the French Government that defines itself as the mainland and its outermost regions, and as such are included in the EU social security co-ordination regulations, used and applied by all member states.
It is because of this that the French Overseas Departments (départments d’outre mer or DOMs) are treated in the same way as mainland France with regard to Winter Fuel Payments, which are currently made to those entitled who live there. Therefore, the hotter French Overseas Departments have to be included in the calculation of the average temperature of France. We are being consistent with our policy approach.