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Procedure Committee reopens territorial constitution inquiry

6 July 2023

The House of Commons Procedure Committee is reopening the territorial constitution inquiry to examine options for Overseas Territories representation within the House of Commons

The Committee has been asked by the Speaker to examine options for Overseas Territories representation within the House of Commons Committee mechanism, and in proceedings more generally.

The UK has 14 Overseas Territories (OTs). Ten of these are permanently inhabited by British nationals. Each inhabited territory has its own executive and legislatives branches as well as a UK-appointed Governor.

The UK Government creates the constitutions for the OTs and can change them with or without the consent of that territories’ government. The UK also can, and has, passed primary legislation that extends to the OT’s. There is no direct representation for the OTs in the UK Parliament.

The Committee is reopening the inquiry and specifically seeks written evidence on:

  • The role of the UK Parliament in creating legislation that extends to British Overseas Territories and whether Overseas Territories are sufficiently represented in this process
  • Whether the House of Commons committee system offers a vehicle for joint working between the UK Parliament and the Overseas Territories
  • What level of representation for the Overseas Territories in the UK Parliament would be most effective
  • The procedural steps required to allow for a degree of Overseas Territories representation in UK parliamentary proceedings
  • How the arrangements for Overseas Territories compare with those of the Crown Dependencies, and whether there are any lessons to be learnt

Further information

Image: UK Parliament/Tyler Allicock