Clause 50

Part of Pensions Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 1:30 pm on 31st January 2008.

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Photo of Nigel Waterson Nigel Waterson Shadow Minister, Work & Pensions 1:30 pm, 31st January 2008

I am not sure that takes me a lot further. Let me explain why. Yes, we have already had some discussions with Tim Jones and Paul Myners and have every intention, as do they, of continuing those discussions. It is sensible from both their points of view, as well as ours, that in a massive undertaking like this, which in anyone’s view is going to straddle another general election, the Government and the official Opposition should both be in the loop about what is going on. I was not suggesting that Mr. Jones is going to produce a report of the sort that might be put in the Library of the House of Commons.

However, unless he is doing the review on the back of a fag packet, I assume that he is going to produce some internal conclusions and I assume that he is going to share them with Minister, perhaps just in the form of a two page letter. Even a one-paragraph letter that says, “Not on your life mate, there is no way we can deliver this by 2012, you’ll be lucky to get it by 2015”, would be worrying enough. All I am saying is that the Minister should share that with us as part of the consensus process. Unless the minister can give us that undertaking, I will seek to press this to a division. I do not know if that finds favour with the Liberals as well, but that is my intention. Clearly nobody has a review without coming up with some conclusions, and the results of the review ought to be shared with us. We ought to know anything that the Minister knows.