§ Mr. Butcher
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he will initiate discussions with the United Kingdom's partners in the EEC to harmonise data protection legislation within the European Economic Community;
(2) if he will dissociate the United Kingdom from article 3 of the Council of Europe draft Convention on Data Protection—24 May 1979; and if he will urge his counterparts in the EEC to co-operate in re-defining the concept of privacy of a legal person as defined therein;
(3) if he will introduce legislation to establish a data protection agency as recommended by the Lindop report.
§ Mr. Whitelaw
It would not be appropriate for the United Kingdom Government to take an initiative in the European Economic Community on the subject of data privacy or to express a final view on article 3 of the Council of Europe draft convention on data protection until they have reached their conclusions on the 335W report of the data protection committee under Sir Norman Lindop. As I stated in my reply to a question by the hon. Member for Thurrock (Dr. McDonald) on 25 July, I shall be considering the recommendations made by the committee in the light of the outcome of the consultations initiated by my predecessor.—[Vol. 971, c. 251.]