HC Deb 11 January 2000 vol 342 c122W
Mr. Jim Cunningham

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what measures he is taking to ensure that large donations to political parties are declared. [104183]

Mr. Mike O'Brien

Part IV of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Bill will give effect to our manifesto commitment to require the disclosure of large donations made to political parties. The registered treasurer of a political party will be required to report to the Electoral Commission, on a quarterly basis, the source and amount of donations of £5,000 or more accepted by the central organisation and of £1,000 or more accepted by a constituency association or other sub-unit of the party's organisation.

In the immediate run up to a general election, reports must be submitted on a weekly basis. All donations so reported would be included on a register of recordable donations, which will be open to public inspection.

In addition, Part IX of the Bill amends the Companies Act 1985 so as to strengthen the requirements on companies to disclose, in the directors' report, donations to political parties which, in aggregate, exceed £200 in a financial year.