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482. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of secondments from her Department to external private firms in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and to date in 2015; the firms involved; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1847/15]

483. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of secondments based in her Department from external private firms in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and to date in 2015; the firms involved; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1861/15]

484. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if her Department has a policy regarding secondments between her Department and external firms; when the policy was initiated and last updated; the details of the policy; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1875/15]

Answer

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 482 to 484, inclusive, together.
There were no secondments from my Department to external private firms in the years specified in your question.
My Department had three short term secondments from external firms in the years in question. There was one secondment from Grant Thornton Corporate Finance Limited for the period 12 November 2012 to 11 January 2013; one from KPMG for the period 10 December 2012 to 9 February 2013; and one from Deloitte for the period 4 February 2013 to 12 April 2013. The individuals concerned provided expert assistance on the establishment of the Insolvency Service of Ireland and their services were provided on a pro bono basis.
The Deputy should note that my Department is also involved in secondments, in and out, between other Departments and public sector organisations and has approximately 90 such secondments at the present time. Typically these officers are seconded to serve in Visa Offices in Irish Embassies abroad or to the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform regarding the establishment of Shared Service Centres. Officers are seconded into the Department principally from the Courts Service to serve in the Insolvency Service of Ireland and from the Central Statistics Office.
A Staff Exchange Scheme between the Civil Service and the Private Sector, administered by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, is designed to enhance communication, cooperation and understanding between the Civil Service and the Private Sector and to provide staff development opportunities for participants through new work experiences and project based assignments. My Department nominated a member of staff for participation in the scheme in 2013 who was ultimately not facilitated with an actual secondment.
Other secondments can also arise to address specific business needs which can be considered on a case by case basis.