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Session 2002 - 03
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Order of Business 15 October 2003

Here you can browse the House of Commons Order of Business for 15 October 2003.

* indicates a question for oral answer.
[R] indicates that the Member has declared a relevant interest.
Questions for oral answer not reached receive a written answer.
Supplementary questions will also be asked. Other Ministers may also answer.

+ indicates Government business.
Timings are indicative only.

At 11.30 a.m.      Prayers

Private Business

        Note: Private business is not debated at this time, and may not be proceeded with if opposed.

Third Reading

London Local Authorities and Transport for London Bill [Lords].

Consideration of Bill ordered to lie upon the Table

Transas Group Bill.

Oral Questions to the Secretary of State for International Development
*1 Bob Russell (Colchester):    If he will visit the island of St Helena to discuss the (a) economy and (b) population level.
( 132038 )
*2 Mr Andrew Dismore (Hendon):    If he will make a statement on British development programmes in India.
( 132039 )
*3 Mr Graham Allen (Nottingham North):    What assistance his Department has given to re-establish democracy in Afghanistan.
( 132040 )
*4 Sir Teddy Taylor (Rochford & Southend East):    Which nations in the Middle East receive grants and assistance from the Department.
( 132041 )
*5 Dr Vincent Cable (Twickenham):    What consultations took place with the British Government on the foreign investment and tax policies introduced in Iraq by the interim authorities.
( 132043 )
*6 Mr Mark Lazarowicz (Edinburgh North & Leith):    If he will make a statement on the implementation of the World Trade Organisation's agreement on TRIPS and public health.
( 132044 )
*7 Mr Win Griffiths (Bridgend):    What plans he has to visit Freetown in 2003 to discuss progress on the Department's aid programmes in Sierra Leone.
( 132045 )
*8 Mr Peter Luff (Mid Worcestershire):    If he will make a statement on his Department's contribution to the post-conflict reconstruction of Iraq.
( 132046 )
*9 Chris Grayling (Epsom & Ewell):    If he will make a statement on the post-conflict reconstruction of Iraq.
( 132047 )
*10 Mr Stephen Pound (Ealing North):    If he will make a statement on British aid programmes in India.
( 132048 )
*11 Andrew Selous (South West Bedfordshire):    When he expects electricity will be fully available throughout the British occupied sector of Iraq.
( 132049 )
*12 Mr Tom Clarke (Coatbridge & Chryston):    What recent contributions his Department has made to the global fund to fight AIDS, TB and malaria.
( 132050 )
*13 Mr Bill Tynan (Hamilton South):    What measures are in place to reduce the production of heroin in Afghanistan.
( 132051 )
*14 Ann Winterton (Congleton):    If he will make a statement on the impact on developing countries of the outcome of the fifth ministerial round of the World Trade Organisation meeting at Cancun.
( 132052 )

At 12 noon
Unless otherwise indicated the Members listed below will ask a Question without notice.
Oral Questions to the Prime Minister
*Q1 Mr Andrew Robathan (Blaby):    If he will list his official engagements for Wednesday 15th October.
( 132023 )
*Q2 Ann McKechin (Glasgow Maryhill):    
( 132024 )
*Q3 Mr Henry Bellingham (North West Norfolk):    
( 132025 )
*Q4 Mr Piara S. Khabra (Ealing Southall):    
( 132026 )
*Q5 Mr Huw Edwards (Monmouth):    
( 132027 )
*Q6 Mr Chris Bryant (Rhondda):    
( 132028 )
*Q7 Tony Cunningham (Workington):    
( 132029 )
*Q8 Gregory Barker (Bexhill & Battle):    
( 132030 )
*Q9 Mr Nigel Evans (Ribble Valley):    
( 132031 )
*Q10 Mr Bill Wiggin (Leominster):    
( 132032 )
*Q11 Mr Mark Francois (Rayleigh):    
( 132033 )
*Q12 Stephen Hesford (Wirral West):    
( 132034 )
*Q13 Chris Ruane (Vale of Clwyd):    
( 132035 )
*Q14 Mr Tony McWalter (Hemel Hempstead):    
( 132036 )
*Q15 Mr Anthony Steen (Totnes):    If he will make an official visit to Arcturus House in Totnes.
( 132037 )

At 12.30 p.m.Urgent Questions (if any)
Ministerial Statements (if any)

Preliminary Business

Ten minute rule Motion



[Up to 20 minutes]

      Andrew George
        That leave be given to bring in a Bill to make provision for a reduction in the number of Members of Parliament; to make provision for referendums on regional assemblies; and for connected purposes.

        The Member moving and a Member opposing this Motion may each speak for up to ten minutes (Standing Order No. 23).

Main Business


OPPOSITION DAY (18th allotted day)

[Until 7.00 p.m.]



      Mr David Willetts
      Mr Oliver Heald
      Mr Nigel Waterson
      Mr Paul Goodman
      Mr Patrick McLoughlin
      David Maclean
        That this House expresses its deep concern at Government policies that have led to a decline in funded pension provision and a massive extension of dependence on means-tested benefits; deplores the £5 billion per annum pensions tax and the erosion of incentives to save, which have caused the halving of the Savings Ratio, and have resulted in only 19 per cent. of final salary pension schemes remaining open to new members; condemns the Government for extending dependence on means-testing to over half of pensioners, despite earlier promises to the contrary, and for ignoring the interests of 1.4 million of the poorest pensioners who, on the Government's own target, will still not be receiving Pension Credit in 2006; notes that Government policies have created a big disincentive to save and led to an increase in the number of pensioners in persistent poverty; and calls on the Government to support state pension reform to reduce dependence on means-tested benefits, to remove the disincentive to save, to improve the financial position of pensioners, including the 1.4 million poorest pensioners, and to provide better incentives to save.

            As Amendments to Mr David Willetts' proposed Motion (State Pension Reform):
      Mr Charles Kennedy
      Mr Menzies Campbell
      Steve Webb
      Paul Holmes
      Sandra Gidley
      Mr Andrew Stunell
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `condemns the complacency of the Government in failing to tackle a pensions crisis that has grown in severity during its six years in office; is concerned that the Government's strategy of mass means-testing is unsustainable and leads to large numbers of the poorest pensioners missing out; believes that those workers whose employers have become insolvent at a time when their pension scheme is underfunded are facing catastrophic losses; calls on the Government to implement a compensation scheme for such workers to cover all those who have lost out in this way since the implementation of the Pensions Act 1995; and believes that the most effective response to ensuring that pensioners have dignity and security in old age is to build on the basic state pension with particular emphasis on the oldest pensioners.'.

      The Prime Minister
      Mr Secretary Prescott
      Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer
      Mr Secretary Blunkett
      Mr Peter Hain
      Mr Secretary Smith
 Malcolm Wicks      
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `welcomes the fact that people are living longer than ever before; welcomes Government action to tackle pensioner poverty and to promote retirement flexibility, occupational pension security and informed choice; condemns the inheritance of 1997, with millions of pensioners in poverty, many being expected by the Government to live on under £68 a week, and the legacy of pension mis-selling; endorses the Work and Pensions Committee's judgement that current policies have been successful in reducing pensioner poverty"; notes that the Government is spending £9 billion extra per year in real terms on pensioners compared with the 1997 system; further notes that this is £5.7 billion more than if the basic pension had been linked to earnings; applauds the fact that the poorest third of pensioners will be £1,600 a year better off; welcomes the successful payment of Pension Credit from this month to over two million pensioners and the fact that 1.3 million are gaining more money than they had before; further supports the Government's approach to renew the pensions partnership, outlined in the recent Green Paper and Action Plan; commends plans to introduce a Pension Protection Fund, guaranteeing protection if a company scheme winds up; welcomes proposals to allow individuals to defer their state pension and draw it as a lump sum; looks forward to further measures enabling people to make an informed choice in pension provision, increase flexibility approaching retirement and to work free from age discrimination; and condemns the unfair, unaffordable and unsustainable policies of Opposition parties.'.

      Mr Elfyn Llwyd
      Mr Alex Salmond
      Hywel Williams
      Annabelle Ewing
      Mr Simon Thomas
      Pete Wishart
        Line      15,      at end add `but notes that one of the first acts of the last Conservative Government was to abolish the link between pensions and earnings, which lowered the standard of living for all pensioners; and believes that state pension provision and the welfare of older people in Wales and Scotland would be best served by moving to transfer powers from Westminster to the National Assembly for Wales and the Scottish Parliament.'.



      Mr Oliver Letwin
      Mr Dominic Grieve
      Mr James Paice
      Mr Humfrey Malins
      Mr Julian Brazier
      David Maclean
        That this House welcomes the emerging political and professional consensus about the need to increase the level and effectiveness of neighbourhood policing in Britain in order to restore the confidence of the public but regrets that the Government is seeking to achieve this through a burdensome and ineffective bureaucracy; and urges the Govenment instead to return power to decentralised local policing and to make local policing more accountable to local people.

            As Amendments to Mr Oliver Letwin's proposed Motion (Neighbourhood Policing):
      The Prime Minister
      Mr Secretary Prescott
      Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer
      Mr Secretary Blunkett
      Secretary Margaret Beckett
      Ms Hazel Blears
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `welcomes the Government's investment in policing which has resulted in 136,386 officers by the end of August 2003, an increase of more than 4,000 since December 2002 and the highest level ever; notes that there are now more than 1900 Community Support Officers and record numbers of police staff assisting police officers in their work; further notes the priority given by the Government to reducing bureaucracy to enable officers to concentrate on frontline duties; and welcomes the Government's commitment to further reform to improve accountability and engagement between the police and the communities they serve.'.

      Mr Charles Kennedy
      Mr Menzies Campbell
      Mr Mark Oaten
      Mr David Heath
      Annette Brooke
      Mr John Burnett
 Mr Andrew Stunell      
        Line      6,      at end add `encourages police forces to agree with local authorities a guaranteed minimum number of uniformed individuals to patrol the streets at any one time; calls for an independent assessment of the number of police needed; and further calls for a thorough review of the structure of policing at the local, regional and national level.'.

        The selection of the matters to be debated this day has been made by the Leader of the Opposition (Standing Order No. 14(2)).

Debate may continue until 7.00 p.m.

+  3  


[No debate]

      Mr Secretary Murphy
        That the draft Partnerships etc. (Removal of Twenty Member Limit) Northern Ireland Order 2003, which was laid before this House on 7th July, be approved.

To be decided without debate (Standing Order No. 118(6)).

+  4  


[No debate]

      Mr Secretary Murphy
        That the draft Employment (Northern Ireland) Order 2003, which was laid before this House on 8th September, be approved.

To be decided without debate (Standing Order No. 118(6)).

+  5  


[No debate]

      Mr Ben Bradshaw
        That this House takes note of European Union Documents No. 9081/03, draft Council Regulation establishing measures for the recovery of cod stocks, and No. 10980/03, draft Council Regulation establishing measures for the recovery of the Northern hake stock; welcomes the Government's support of the adoption of recovery plans for cod and hake in which effort control and other measures can play a part, and also supports the Government's intention to ensure a close dialogue with the fishing industry in developing these plans.

To be decided without debate (Standing Order No. 119(9)).

+  6  


[No debate after 7.00 p.m.]

      Mr Peter Hain
        That the following Statutory Instruments be referred to Standing Committees on Delegated Legislation: the Commission for Health Improvement (Functions) Regulations 2003 (S.I., 2003, No. 1587), the Strategic Health Authorities (Consultation on Changes) Regulations 2003 (S.I., 2003, No. 1617), the Patients' Forums (Membership and Procedure) Regulations 2003 (S.I., 2003, No. 2123) and the Patients' Forums (Functions) Regulations 2003 (S.I., 2003, No. 2124).

If opposed, this item cannot be taken after 7.00 p.m.

+  7  


[No debate after 7.00 p.m.]

      Mr Peter Hain
        That the Order of the House of 10th July 2003 appointing a Select Committee to join with a Committee of the Lords to consider and report on any Clauses of a draft Gambling Bill presented to both Houses by a Minister of the Crown be amended by leaving out the words `within the United Kingdom'.

An explanatory Memorandum relating to this Motion is available in the Vote Office.
If opposed, this item cannot be taken after 7.00 p.m.

+  8  


[No debate after 7.00 p.m.]

      Mr Peter Hain
        That Standing Order No. 152B (Human rights (joint committee)) be amended, in paragraph (5), by leaving out the words `shall be three, except that for the purposes of taking evidence, the quorum'.

If opposed, this item cannot be taken after 7.00 p.m.

At the end of the sitting



        Proposed subject: Sussex Police and schemes to counter child abduction (Tim Loughton).

        Debate may continue until 7.30 p.m. or for half an hour, whichever is later (Standing Order No. 9 and Order of 29th October 2002).



1First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation2.30 p.m.Room 12 (public)
To consider the Thurrock Development Corporation (Area and Constitution) Order 2003.


2Education and Skills9.00 a.m.

9.15 a.m.
The Wilson Room,
Portcullis House
Subject: Secondary Education: School Admissions.
Witness: Dr Philip Hunter CBE, Chief Schools Adjudicator.
3Office of the Deputy Prime Minister: Housing, Planning, Local Government and the Regions9.00 a.m.The Thatcher Room,
Portcullis House
4Work and Pensions9.30 a.m.

9.45 a.m.
The Grimond Room,
Portcullis House
Subject: Employers' Liability Compulsory Insurance.
Witnesses: Mr Desmond Browne MP, Minister of State for Work, and officials, Department for Work and Pensions.
5Defence, Foreign Affairs, International Development, Trade and Industry (Quadripartite Committee)10.00 a.m.Room 16 (private)
6Treasury Sub-Committee2.15 p.m.

2.30 p.m.
The Thatcher Room,
Portcullis House
Subject: Office for National Statistics: Annual Report and Accounts 2002-03.
Witnesses: Mr Len Cook, National Statistician, Ms Jil Matheson, Acting Executive Director, Economic and Social Reporting, Mr Colin Mowl, Executive Director, Macroeconomics and Labour Market, and Mr Peter Murphy, Principal Finance Officer, Office of National Statistics.
7Environment, Food and Rural Affairs2.15 p.m.The Boothroyd Room,
Portcullis House

8Defence2.30 p.m.

3.00 p.m.
Room 15
Subject: Intergovernmental Conference 2003: European Security and Defence.
Witnesses: Mr Simon Webb CBE, Policy Director, Dr Sarah Beaver, Director for EU and UN, Ministry of Defence, and Mr Paul Johnston, Head of Security Policy Department, Foreign and Commonwealth Office
9Administration2.30 p.m.Room 18 (private)
10European Scrutiny2.30 p.m.Room 19 (private)
11Transport2.30 p.m.

2.45 p.m.
The Wilson Room,
Portcullis House
Subject: The Future of the Railways
Witnesses: Dr Tim Leunig, Mr Jonathan Tyler, Professor Mark Casson, Professor Stephen Glaister and Professor David Newbery; Rail Interchange Investment Group (at approximately 3.30 p.m.); English Welsh and Scottish Railway, Freightliner Group, GB Railfreight, Direct Rail Services and Freight on Rail (at approximately 3.45 p.m.); ASLEF (at approximately 4.15 p.m.); ASDA (at approximately 4.30 p.m.) and Royal Mail (at approximately 4.45 p.m.).
12Welsh Affairs2.30 p.m.

3.00 p.m.
Room 16
Subject: Railways in Wales
Witnesses: First Great Western; Virgin (at approximately 4.15 p.m.)
13Trade and Industry3.00 p.m.

4.00 p.m.
The Grimond Room,
Portcullis House

Subjects: (i) WTO meeting at Cancun (ii) Manufacturing Strategy
Witnesses: Rt Hon Patricia Hewitt MP, Secretary of State, and Mr Mike O'Brien MP, Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Department of Trade and Industry
14Modernisation of the House of Commons3.45 p.m.Room 17 (private)
15Selection4.45 p.m.Room 13 (private)


16Unopposed Bills: Hereford Markets Bill [Lords]2.30 p.m.Room 9 (public)


17Draft Mental Incapacity Bill3.30 p.m.

3.45 p.m.
Room 6
Witnesses: The Law Socieity of England and Wales.

[The decision of a Committee to sit in public may be rescinded without notice.]

Written Ministerial Statements to be made today

1    Secretary of State for Northern Ireland:      Review of sex offences in Northern Ireland.
2    Secretary of State for Defence:      Oil and Pipelines Agency Quinquennial Review—Stage 1.
3    Secretary of State for Defence:      Key targets for financial year 2003-04 for the Warship Support Agency.
4    Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs:      Code of Practice on Access to Government Information Monitoring Report for 2002.
5    Secretary of State for the Home Department:      UK immigration control.
6    Secretary of State for Work and Pensions:      Departmental Estates.
7    Secretary of State for Work and Pensions:      National Action Plan for Social Inclusion.
8    Secretary of State for Work and Pensions:      National Action Plan for Employment.
9    Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs:      Report of a financial management and policy review of the Commons Commissioners.
10    Secretary of State for Transport:      First annual report on the delivery of the Government's Powering Future Vehicles Strategy.


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Prepared 15 October 2003