HC Deb 16 October 2002 vol 390 c860W
Annabelle Ewing

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what co-ordination he has undertaken of Departments' assessment of the implications of the entitlement card proposals for the devolved powers of the Scottish Parliament. [71964]

Beverley Hughes

Home Office officials met with counterparts in the Scottish Executive to discuss issues of particular relevance to the devolved administration, prior to the publication of the consultation paper on Entitlement Cards and Identity Fraud. These contacts will continue during the consultation exercise.

The consultation paper states that any legislation to establish an entitlement card scheme would be enacted by the Westminster Parliament, as any scheme would need to operate on a UK-wide basis if it was to be effective as an immigration control measure.

One of the detailed options for the scope of any legislation would allow organisations to link services to a card scheme via their own legislation. Under these arrangements, it will be a matter for the Scottish Executive and Parliament to decide whether to link the services they are responsible for to a card scheme. However, they could not prevent the issuing of a card for purposes which are outside the scope of their powers, for example, the UK card as a travel document in Europe.