Banking Bill — Committee (4th Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:45 pm on 20th January 2009.

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Photo of Baroness Noakes Baroness Noakes Shadow Minister, Treasury 4:45 pm, 20th January 2009

The Minister did not address two of the questions that I asked him. Perhaps I may help him by reminding him. I asked him, first, what the fundamental rationale for the holding company provisions was. Towards the end of his initial remarks, he spoke about dealing with pensions. When we dealt with Clause 71, he indicated that the amendments were about pensions. Are the new clauses fundamentally about pensions or are there other matters? Will the Minister explain how those other matters are unable to be dealt with by the continuity obligations in the clauses just before those affected by the amendments?

My second question was about the application of Clause 20. I asked the Minister why, in subsection (2)(a) of the proposed new clause, the Clause 20 powers apply not only to the directors of the holding company and the failed bank but to the directors of another bank in the same group, notwithstanding that that bank is not a failed bank. The Minister did not explain why the Clause 20 powers should be applied outside the context of the holding company directors, who may well be taken to have some responsibility for the failed bank that is that company's subsidiary. I am unclear why the directors of another bank in the group are dragged into the Clause 20 provisions.