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Amendment 59

Part of Trade Bill - Report (2nd Day) – in the House of Lords at 7:33 pm on 13th March 2019.

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Photo of Lord Stevenson of Balmacara Lord Stevenson of Balmacara Opposition Whip (Lords) 7:33 pm, 13th March 2019

I support the noble Lord, Lord Lansley, and congratulate him on the succinctness with which he has made his point. I have been confused for some time as to why the department might resist this. He has made the points exactly as I would have done. This is a key role with a public-facing responsibility and will hold the Government to account on issues of great importance. Indeed, it is the only body that the DIT will have as a marker; it behoves the department to raise the TRA to the appropriate level so that it is seen to have the importance that the department claims for it. For these reasons, it is absolutely right that we have an established routine that the person selected by the Minister to be the chair of this body—we are not expecting the same to happen for the chief executive or more junior staff, just the chair—should be seen by the International Trade Committee. As he says, it is a courtesy in some senses because the Minister can still appoint should they wish to do so. I support the amendment.