Written Answers. - Social Welfare Fraud.

Noel Ahern

Ceist:

151 Mr. N. Ahern asked the Minister for Finance whether the £200 million reported saved and recovered by the Department of Social Welfare from fraudulent claims over the past two years has been returned to his Department; if so, when; and if the financial controls currently existing allow a Department to retain or redirect such savings. [16821/96]

The annual allocation for the Department of Social Welfare, as set out in the Estimates, takes account of a target for total control savings across all expenditure programmes. Accordingly, the question of returning saving does not arise. Any variations in the target savings are reflected in the overall out-turn of social welfare expenditure.