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Chair of Liaison Committee highlights ‘close co-operation’ of Select Committees in response to Rachel Reeves

23 April 2021

The Chair of the Liaison Committee has responded to Rachel Reeves, Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, regarding commercial lobbying.

Chair's comment

Bernard Jenkin MP, Chair of the Liaison Committee, said:

"All of the issues raised in the letter sent fall under an existing select committee inquiry.

"Select Committees have been working hard and in close cooperation to ensure that their respective inquiries avoid duplication and cover all the necessary questions.

"The chairs of select committees have also made it clear that they do not welcome the Liaison Committee interfering or seeking to pre-empt their inquiries and it is part of my role to listen to them.

"My committee is the only one to hold evidence sessions with the Prime Minister and the Prime Minister has already committed to appearing before the Liaison Committee before the summer recess.

"The Liaison Committee will want to raise any issues which are not covered by the existing Committee inquiries.

"We will also want to make sure that the Prime Minister answers any relevant questions in good time."

Background

Select Committees are already conducting inquiries into the matters raised in the letter from Rachel Reeves, Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.

Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee

The Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee is examining the effectiveness of rules to prevent conflicts of interest and regulation of access by current and former politicians and officials.

They are also examining whether the Codes governing the conduct of Ministers, Special Advisers and Officials properly reflect the behaviours we want them to display in this area.

They are examining how potential conflicts of interest of current and former Ministers, Special Advisors and Officials are identified and managed, and how effective is this.

This will include consideration of how text communications are treated under the rules.

The inquiry will also consider how lobbying activity should be regulated in future.

The Minister for the Constitution has indicated that the Government will be asking the Committee to carry out post-legislative scrutiny of the Lobbying Act 2014 in the summer.

Public Accounts Committee

The Public Accounts Committee is looking at influence and transparency in the government's commercial functions and protections for suppliers to government and government contractors.

This includes the role of supply chain finance and Government's implementation of the PAC's recommendations in its report on Strategic Suppliers.

Treasury Committee

The Treasury Committee's inquiry into Lessons from Greensill Capital will consider lessons for the financial system and its regulation from the failure of Greensill Capital and lessons for HM Treasury (and its associated public bodies) from its interactions with Greensill Capital during the covid crisis.

Further information

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