Clause 4 — Increase of powers of European Parliament

Part of Orders of the Day – in the House of Commons at 10:00 pm on 3rd March 2008.

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Photo of Jim Murphy Jim Murphy Minister of State (Europe) 10:00 pm, 3rd March 2008

I am delighted to rise in support of clause 4. It does not so much

"secure for the workers by hand or by brain", but it does secure increased powers for the European Parliament. Although that may be one and the same thing. [ Laughter. ]

Clause 4 fulfils the statutory requirement that any increases in the powers of the European Parliament must be approved by Act of Parliament. I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak to this clause and to pay tribute to the work undertaken by Mr. Duncan Smith and the close attention that he has paid to the issue over recent months.

The European Parliamentary Elections Act 2002, which amended the original 1978 Act, requires that:

"No treaty which provides for any increase in the powers of the European Parliament is to be ratified by the United Kingdom unless it has been approved by an Act of Parliament".

Clause 4 therefore meets the requirements of the 2002 Act.