Clause 248 - Short title

Pensions Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:30 pm on 22nd April 2004.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Malcolm Wicks Malcolm Wicks Minister for pensions, Department for Work and Pensions

We have reached that historic moment in our deliberations when we need to discuss the short title of the Bill. Hon. Members may feel that the full panoply of the Government's imagination is not best displayed by the conclusion we have come up with. We obviously had regard to the nature of the legislation and the precedents and conventions as to how it should be referred to in future. We have also had regard to the subject matter of the Bill, using our best arts of paraphrase and précis. Obviously, we have looked at our calendars and we have some idea of the appropriate—I hope I have got my Latin right—anno domini. Therefore, after much deliberation and full consultation we feel that we should have as a short title, not in regulation but on the face of the Bill, the Pensions Act 2004.

Photo of Nigel Waterson Nigel Waterson Conservative, Eastbourne

I have some notes from the Library on the clause, and the Engineering Employers Federation also had some comments, but I thought, ''sod it.'' [Interruption.] We are delighted to have reached this historic moment, but it would not be right for me to finish this part of our deliberations without making the point that this 2004 Pensions Bill is a different animal—it is almost unrecognisable in some respects—from the one with which we started. It is still a work in progress, and I dare say that we will all get there in the end. Hopefully, if we retain our sense of humour, and if the Minister acquires one—[Hon. Members: ''Withdraw!'']—we will all enjoy the rest of the Committee stage.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 248 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Further consideration adjourned.—[Margaret Moran.]

Adjourned accordingly at twenty-four minutes to Four o'clock till Tuesday 27 April at half-past Nine o'clock.