Banking Bill

Part of Orders of the Day – in the House of Commons at 4:34 pm on 14th October 2008.

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Photo of Alistair Darling Alistair Darling The Chancellor of the Exchequer 4:34 pm, 14th October 2008

If there is any difficulty with that, I will happily look at it, but it is our intention that the notes will still be issued by the banks. If any difficulty is caused as a result of any changes, of course we will look at it.

The final part of the Bill to which I want to draw the attention of the House is clause 214, which provides powers to the Treasury to use public funds to protect depositors. We need to make some changes; the clause would help us to deal with the situation that we have with the Icelandic banks. I can tell the House that negotiations with the Icelandic authorities are continuing, and I hope that we will have something more to say about that in the not-too-distant future.

The Bill is, of necessity, lengthy, but it will provide us with the options that we need on a permanent basis to deal with the situation that we have seen over the past year or so. It is sensible and prudent to have the Bill on the statute book on a permanent basis. I repeat what I have said on many occasions. We will continue to have the special powers at our disposal until February next year. I hope that we will have the Bill enacted to take over from then. We will continue to do whatever it takes to ensure the stability of the financial system. That is absolutely imperative, and I commend the Bill to the House.

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