Press release

Number 10 Press Briefing - Morning 8 January 2013

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Prime Minister's Spokesperson (PMS) answered questions on the Uprating Bill, elderly care costs and Northern Ireland in this briefing session.

Saudi meeting

Questioned on the PM’s meeting with the Saudi Interior Minister Prince Naif, the PMS said that there were a number of items on the agenda including the situation in the Middle East and security issues. The Prince was in London and would meet with the PM, the Home Secretary and the Foreign Secretary.

Uprating Bill

Responding to questions about the Government’s Uprating Bill, the PMS said that the changes needed to be seen alongside the other measures the Government was taking, including on public sector pay. People receiving tax credits would be impacted but the Government was having to take a series of difficult decisions; within those decisions it was also trying to provide support in a number of areas. Asked whether the PM would vote on the measure, the PMS said that the PM intended to vote.

Elderly care costs

Discussing a cap on elderly care costs, the PMS said that the Mid Term Review had set out the Government position and more details would be published in due course.

Green on Blue

Setting out the PM’s stance on the recent Green on Blue attack on ISAF forces, the PMS said that they were tragic incidents. His thoughts were with the friends and family of the deceased. There had been a number of steps taken to protect forces in Afghanistan, including stronger vetting and screening of Afghan security forces and a stepping up of counter intelligence efforts. The military always kept force protection under review.

Northern Ireland

Questioned on the Government’s position on the violence in Northern Ireland, the PMS said that the Northern Ireland Secretary had set out the position that morning. The Government condemned the violence.


Asked whether the PM agreed with President Barroso’s opinion that the Eurozone’s problems had been overcome, the PMS said that the PM believed the UK economy still faced a series of headwinds, including the on-going economic conditions in the Eurozone. Questioned on the date of the PM’s speech on Europe, the PMS said that it was scheduled for mid-January, as the PM had set out.

International tax and G8

Put that companies bidding for Government contracts should be upfront about their tax arrangements before winning the contract, the PMS said that the PM believed companies should pay their due tax. Tax was one of the PM’s agenda items for the G8. On progress with other G8 agenda items, the Government was in constant dialogue with other G8 members.

Military redundancies

Setting out the PM’s position on military redundancies, the PMS said that voluntary redundancies were always preferable. But they needed to be balanced against the operation capability of the armed forces.