Performance of Companies and Government Departments (Reporting) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:52 pm on 30th January 2004.

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Photo of Mr Andy King Mr Andy King Labour, Rugby and Kenilworth 1:52 pm, 30th January 2004

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

In recent years the growing size, influence and power of large corporations has led many people to realise that they can have serious effects on the environment and communities. Many leading companies have recognised that and have run environmental and community schemes. On the other hand, the public have also realised it, often because of negative impacts on them and their communities. In fact, one could say that the agenda has been driven by a mix of disaster and inspiration. Companies such as Nestlé and Cadbury have faced great criticism of their policies and actions. In my constituency, local people have been extremely concerned by RMC's desire to burn tyres as an alternative fuel. The company insists on continuing with that plan despite the enormous concerns about health issues raised by the people of Rugby and Kenilworth. Companies that have implemented positive schemes have fostered a growing realisation that they can be a force for good. For example, the Co-operative bank continues to thrive and is widely admired for its ethical screening of investments.