G7 — Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:58 pm on 10th June 2015.

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Photo of Baroness Stowell of Beeston Baroness Stowell of Beeston Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal 4:58 pm, 10th June 2015

My Lords, there is quite a lot there, but first I must thank the noble Lord for correcting me on the current EU Trade Commissioner. He follows these issues far more closely than I do myself and, unfortunately, I had not spotted from the name in my brief that I had got the gender incorrect, so I am pleased to be told that the Trade Commissioner is a woman.

On TTIP, the noble Lord is absolutely right to say that there are a huge number of benefits in the agreement for small businesses because it will help them to export, as well as for consumers generally in terms of cheaper goods and increased trade. I will reflect on his comment about the promotion of the benefits of TTIP, but that leads me back to the point I made earlier, which is that because there is so much to be gained from this trade deal, I think there are some misplaced concerns about issues which are not relevant. They are not ones that we need to be concerned about because we have got the necessary assurances. I know that the noble Lord was very much involved in the balance of competences exercise. I will look at it again.

On corruption and the overseas territories, although I may not be able to find the specifics, I can make the general point that one of the things that we as a Government have done in terms of increasing transparency is to ensure that the Crown dependencies are part of the first wave of the new arrangements for ensuring that transactions are properly recorded as part of one of our new measures to increase transparency, so they are very much part of the effort to make progress in this area.