Scottish Affairs Committee

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:20 pm on 7th June 2018.

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Photo of Pete Wishart Pete Wishart Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Constitution), Shadow SNP Leader of the House of Commons, Chair, Scottish Affairs Committee 12:20 pm, 7th June 2018

My hon. Friend’s questions are all absolutely spot on, and they are all related. On the question of consultations, we had real issues with how the Lending Standards Board was going about this. Our report found that there is clearly a sense that the voluntary code is not working satisfactorily and that the Government should at least examine the possibility of putting statutory regulations in place so that communities can be consulted in advance about branch closures. I hope that that is something the Minister will be able to take that away from all this. I will say no more about the selling of RBS shares, other than what I said in my statement, because that is not part of the report, although we note the massive profits made by RBS in the first quarter of this year and the comparatively paltry £91 million that has been saved by these branch closures, as well as the impact of the huge reputational cost to the bank.