HC Deb 19 April 2002 vol 383 cc819-21

'(1) Her Majesty may by Order in Council direct that any of the provisions of this Act or any instrument made under it shall extend, with such modifications (if any) as may be specified in the Order, to any of the Channel Islands. (2) An Order in Council under this section may make such transitional, incidental or supplementary provisions as appears to Her Majesty to be necessary or expedient.'.—[Mr. Gareth R. Thomas.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

10 am

Mr. Gareth R. Thomas

I beg to move, That the clause be read a Second time.

Compared with new clause 1, new clause 2 constitutes a minor and less fundamental change. It refers solely to the Channel Islands, where a slightly different legal jurisdiction applies that the Bill does not currently recognise, and which, I am advised, we should mention. The new clause will confer the power to make orders, and follows closely section 75 of the Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1965. It will ensure that industrial and provident societies in the Channel Islands can enjoy the advantages of the Bill, while acknowledging that the islands' unique constitutional position must be respected in the usual way by allowing for application of the legislation with appropriate adaptations by order. On that basis, I commend it to the House.

Rob Marris (Wolverhampton, South-West)

Given that we have just had a debate about whether powers should be wider than is necessary, could my hon. Friend clarify the meaning of the word "supplementary" in the context of subsection (2)?

Mr. Thomas


Mr. Deputy Speaker (Sir Michael Lord)

Order. The hon. Gentleman will presumably deal with that point when he sums up, rather than in an intervention.

Dawn Primarolo

The Government support the new clause, which will allow the provisions in the Bill, or any order made under it, to be extended to the Channel Islands. In practice, no such extension would be made unless the relevant authorities wished it to occur. Existing industrial and provident societies legislation either applies to the Channel Islands with modification, or can be applied by Order in Council. It is therefore right that the Bill should enable the provisions to be extended to the Channel Islands, and I can confirm to the House that we have consulted the relevant Channel Islands authorities, which are content for this provision to be included in the Bill. I therefore urge the House to support it.

Mr. Thomas

I am once again grateful to my hon. Friend the Paymaster General for her remarks. Given the interest of my hon. Friend the Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Rob Marris) in the new clause, perhaps I should set out what it will achieve in a tad more detail than I had intended.

The new clause is necessary because the Channel Islands constitute separate legal jurisdictions, and, as the Paymaster General stressed, in applying the Bill their authorities need to be consulted. It is therefore crucial that the new clause be included in the Bill. For example, under the new clause the Channel Islands co-operative society—a member of the co-operative union with which I consulted before Second Reading—can benefit from the protection afforded by the Bill's provisions, and, if the House is so minded, from modernisation of the industrial and provident society legal form further down the line, as statutory instruments are, hopefully, introduced.

In subsection (2), the word "supplementary" simply refers to necessary provisions in Channel Islands legislation that are additional to, rather than a replacement for, current rules. I hope that I have answered my hon. Friend's query in a sufficiently effective manner, and that the House will support new clause 2.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause read a Second Time, and added to the Bill.

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