10/07/2017 House of Commons


10/07/2017

Live coverage of the day's proceedings in the Commons, including debate on the general principles of the Telecommunications Infrastructure (Relief from Non-Domestic Rates) Bill.


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encourage our prime contractors to see where they can use British Steel

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and I am sure in due course he will be pleased to see progress.

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Statement, the Prime Minister. With permission, I would like to make a

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statement on the G20 in Hamburg. At this summit we showed how a global

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Britain can play a key role in shaping international responses to

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some of the biggest challenges of our time. On terrorism, trade,

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climate change, international develop and, migration, modern

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slavery and women's economic empowerment, we made leading

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contributions on issues that critically affect our national

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interest but which can only be addressed by working together with

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our international partners. First on terrorism, as we have seen with the

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horrific attacks in Manchester and London, the nature of the threat we

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face is evolving and our response must evolve to meet it. The UK is

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leading the way. At the G-7 and subsequently through a detailed

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action plan with President Macron, I called for industry take

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responsibility to more rapidly detect and report extremist content

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online and industry has now announced the launch of a global

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Forum to do just that. At this summit we set the agenda again. We

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called on allergy 20 partners to squeeze the life blood of terrorist

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networks by making the global financial system and entirely

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hostile system for terrorists. And we secured agreement on all

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proposals. We agreed to work together to ensure there are no safe

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spaces for terrorist financing by increasing capacity building and

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raising standards worldwide especially in terrorist finance

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hotspots will stop we agree to bring industry and law enforcement

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together to develop new tools and technologies to better identify

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suspicious small flows of money being used low-cost terrorist

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attacks such as those we have seen in the UK. And just as interior

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ministers are following up on the online agenda, so finance ministers

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will follow through on these T20 commitments to cut off the funding

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that throws a terrorist threats we face. I also called for the G 22

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come together to better management arrest throws for foreign fighters

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as exposed in France were Syria and Iraq and we agreed we would work to

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improve international information sharing the movement of individuals

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known to have travelled to and from Dyche territory. By working together

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in these ways we can defeat the terrorist threat and ensure our way

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of life will always prevail. Turning to the global economy, we are seeing

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encouraging signs of recovery with the IMF forecasting the will rise by

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3.5% this year. But many both here and the UK and across the UK are not

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sharing in the benefits. We need to build a global economy that works

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for everyone be ensuring trade is not just free but also crucially

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fair for all. That means fair people in the UK, which is why we are

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forging a modern industrial strategy that will help to bring the benefits

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of trade to every part of the country. It means fair terms of

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trade for the poorest countries which is why we will protect their

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trade preferences as we leave the EU, and in time explore options to

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improve their trade access. And it means strengthening the

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international rules that make trade fair between countries. At this

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summit I argued that we must reform the international trading system

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especially the World Trade Organisation given its central role

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so that it keeps pace with developments in key sectors like

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digital and services and so it is better able to resolve disputes.

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Some countries are not playing by the rules. They are not behaving

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responsibly and are creating risks to the global trading system.

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Nowhere is this more clear than in relation to the dumping of steel on

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global markets. The urgent need to react to remove excess capacity was

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recognised last year at the G20's but not enough has been done since.

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If we are to avoid unilateral action we need immediate collective action.

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We agreed that the global Forum established last year needs to be

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more effective and the pace of its work must quicken. In order to

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ensure its work gets the necessary attention and there is a senior

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accountability, I have pressed for aggressive ministers to meet around

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the world. The UK will play a leading role in championing these

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reforms so that all citizens can share in the benefits of global

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growth. As we leave the EU, we will negotiate a new comprehensive bold

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and ambitious free trade agreement with the EU.

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LAUGHTER Yes. But we will also sees the

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exciting opportunities to strike deals with old friends and new

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partners. And that this summit I hold a number of meetings with other

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world leaders, all of whom made clear their strong desire to form

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ambitious new bilateral trading relationships after Brexit. This

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included America, Japan, China and India. This morning I welcomed

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Australian Prime Minister to handle to Downing Street where he also

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reiterated his desire for a bold new trading relationship. All these

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discussions are a clear and powerful vote of confidence in British goods,

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services, economy and the British people. I look forward to building

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on them in the months ahead. On climate change, the UK reaffirmed

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our commitment to the Paris agreement which is vital if we are

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to take responsibility for the world we pass on to our children and

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grandchildren. There is not a choice between decarbonisation and economic

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growth as the UK's own experience shows. We have reduced emissions by

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around 40% over the last 16 years, but growing GDP by almost two

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thirds. I am my counterparts at the G20 are dismayed at America's

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withdrawal from the agreement. I spoke personally to President Trump

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to encourage him to rejoin the Paris agreement and I continue to hope

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that is exactly what he will do. On international development, we

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reaffirmed our commitment to spend 0.7% of gross national income and an

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element assistance and we set out plans for a new long-term approach

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to reduce Africa's relies on aid. This includes focusing on supporting

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asp and aspirations of trade and growth, creating millions of new

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jobs and harnessing the power of capital markets to generate

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trillions of new investment. We welcomed Germany's new compact with

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Africa which reflects those bristles. On migration, I expressed

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the UK continued support for the scale of the challenge facing Italy

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and agreed with the Prime Minister that a UK expert Home Office

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delegation will travel to Italy to see how we can help further. This is

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yet further evidence that while we are leaving the EU, as a global

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Britain we will continue to work closely with all our EU partners.

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Did you 20 also agreed to use the upcoming negotiations on the UN

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global compact is to seek the conference of approach that the UK

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has been arguing for. This includes ensuring refugees claim asylum in

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the first safe country they reach, Inc proving the way we distinguish

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between refugees and economic migrants, and developing a better

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overall approach to managing economic migration. It is so

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includes providing humanitarian and vegetarian assistance. We committed

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?55 million to support the Government of Tanzania in managing

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its refugee and migrant policies and to support the further integration

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of new naturalise refugees. Turning to modern slavery, it is hard to

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comprehend that in today's modern world, innocent people are being

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enslaved, forced to do hard labour. Raped, beaten and passed from abuse

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to abuse for profit. We cannot it and will not ignore this dark and

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barbaric trade in human beings that is simply horrifying in its

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inhumanity. That is why I put this in shoe on the G20 agenda at my

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first summit a year ago, and at this I pushed for a global and

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coordinated approach to the complex business supply chains which can

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feed the demand for forced labour and child labour. Our

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ground-breaking UK modern slavery and it requires companies to examine

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all aspects of their businesses including their supply chains and to

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publish their results. I called IgE 20 partners to follow Britain's

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lead. And I welcomed Germany's proposed vision zero fund to which

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the UK is contributing as an important part of ensuring the

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health and safety of workers in global supply chains. Finally, we

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agreed to create better job of reduced the women, remove the legal

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barriers and end discrimination and gender-based violence that restrict

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opportunities at home and abroad, and as part of this the UK is

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contributing to the women entrepreneurs finance initiative

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launched by the World Bank which will provide more than $1 billion to

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support women in developing countries to start agribusinesses.

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This is not just Molly really right it is economically essential and the

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UK will continue to play a leading role in driving forward women's

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economic empowerment across the world. Of course we did not agree on

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everything at the summit, in particular climate change. But when

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we have such disagreements it is only more important that we come

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together in forums such as the G20 to try to resolve them. And as a

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global Britain we will continue to work at bridging differences between

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nations and forging global responses to issues that are fundamental to

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our prosperity and security and that of our allies around the world. That

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is what we did at this summit, that is what the Government will continue

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to do and I commend this statement to the house.

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Jeremy Corbyn. Thank you Mr Speaker and I thank the Prime Minister for

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the advance copy of the statement. I am surprised she had so much to

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contribute to the G20 given that there was barely a mention of

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international policy and her party 's election manifesto. Or any policy

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so much so that the government is now apparently asking other parties

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for their policy ideas. So if the Prime Minister would like it am

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happy to finish with a copy of our election manifesto. Or better still

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an early election so that the people of this country can decide! Lets

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face it Mr Speaker the government has run out of steam out of the

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pivotal moment in our country and the world amid uncertainty of

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Brexit, conflict in the Gulf states, nuclear sabre rattling over North

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Korea, refugees continue to flee war and discretion, ongoing pandemics,

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cross-border terrorism, poverty, inequality and the impact of climate

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change are the core global challenges of our time. When we need

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strong government we have weakness from this government. The US

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president attempts to pull the plug on the climate change deal. And only

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Mr Speaker a belated informal mention and brief meeting with him.

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No ability to sign a joint letter from European leaders at the time he

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made the announcement. The UK's trade deficit, Mr Speaker, is

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growing at a time when we are negotiating our exit from the

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European Union. The UK backed Saudi war in Yeaman continues to kill,

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displays and injure thousands. With 300,000 cases of cholera. And on

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this, a man-made catastrophe but was, Mr Speaker the government

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continues to sell arms to Saudi Arabia, one of the most oppressive

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and butter regimes that finances terrorism and is breaching

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humanitarian law. The court may have ruled that the government actively

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gay. It certainly is not acting ethically. -- acted legally. We on

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the ceasefire agreed, it is good news, did the Prime Minister play

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any role in those negotiations. But she commit to work with them to

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expand the ceasefire to the rest of that poor benighted country. The US

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President's attempt to pull out of the climate change deal is both

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reckless and very dangerous. The commitments made in Paris are a

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vital move to stop the world reaching the point of no return on

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climate change. The T20 leaders have been unequivocal with the US

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president but not our Prime Minister who raised the is suing formally. I

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don't know what that means but the Prime Minister can tell us exactly

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what the nature of meeting was. What a complete neglect of her duty both

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to our people and perhaps equally importantly to our planet as well.

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We need a leader prepared to speak out and talk up follies of

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international co-operation, of human rights, social justice and respect

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for international law. She needs to listen. So I ask, will she condemn

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attempts to undermine global co-operation on climate change. Will

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she take meaningful action against our country's role in global tax

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avoidance, which starts many developing countries of funding for

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sustainable growth which is also sucking investment out of our public

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services. Will she offer European union National is in Britain the

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same rights as they have now. What proposals does she have, what

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discussants did she have on Britain's membership of your Tom.

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Will she hold immoral arms sales to Saudi Arabia as Germany has and will

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she backed Germany's call to end the bombing in Yemen. We've heard of the

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Prime Minister talk about safe spaces for terrorist finance. So why

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are so government sat on the report into foreign funding of extremism

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and radicalisation in the UK. When will this report be released. And

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what new regulations is the UK bringing forward for UK companies

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and banks as part of her new accord on terrorist financing. Mr Speaker,

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keeping Britain global is one of our country's most urgent tasks. Yet the

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truth is this country needs a new approach to foreign policy and

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global co-operation. The Conservative government, simply

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cannot deliver. Responding to the grotesque levels of inequality

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within countries and between them is important to the security and

:14:57.:15:01.

sustainability of our world. In a joint report published in April, the

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World Bank, the IMF, the world trade organisation recognised what they

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referred to as the long-lasting displacement as well as large

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winning bosses of workers. And that the negative experience of

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globalisation has informed the public 's rejection of the

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established political order. The Prime Minister talks of the dumping

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of steel in global markets but white as it failed to take the action that

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the other European nations did of the most acute time an our steel

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industry is suffering? This government is the architect of the

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failed austerity policies and now threatens to use Brexit to turn

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Britain into a low wage deregulated tax haven on the shores of Europe.

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And narrow, hopeless vision of the potential of this country, which

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would only serve the few. One that would ruin industry, destroy

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innovation and hit living standards. And finally Mr Speaker the US

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president said, a US- UK trade deal will happen quickly. Can the Prime

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Minister give any detail or timetable or any of the terms of

:16:10.:16:14.

this agreement on environmental protections, workers' rights,

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consumer rights, product safety, any of those PCs that is so concerned

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that so many people? Mr Speaker, she lost her mandate at home and know

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she is losing Britain and her influence abroad. Prime Minister.

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Thank you Mr Speaker. Can I say to the right honourable gentleman on

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the issue of terrorist financing it is the UK that has been not only

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developing approaches within the UK with working with our financial

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sector but is taking this internationally and as I said raised

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this at the G20 and has agreement from those countries sitting around

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the T20 table that we will take this forward together. What was important

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was that we had a separate communique on counterterrorism which

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specifically identifies issues like working with the financial sector to

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identify suspicious small flows of funding. This is what the UK has

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been leading on, it was the UK's proposal and was in the communique

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at the due 20. He talks of global tax avoidance. If the UK that has

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led on the issue of global tax avoidance. Global tax avoidance is

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only on the agenda at international meetings because right honourable

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predecessor David Cameron put it there. It is the UK that has leading

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on that. He talks about trade deals, I am very happy to say that we are

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already working with the Americans and what a trade deal might look

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like, we already have a working group with the Australians and one

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with India as well. We are out there. He says what Britain needs is

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somebody standing up and speaking about these things, what we need is

:17:59.:18:01.

someone doing these things and this is exactly what we are doing. And on

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the issue of climate change this country has a proud record on

:18:07.:18:12.

climate change. We secured the first truly globally legal binding

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agreement on climate change at the Paris agreement, we are third best

:18:18.:18:21.

country in the world on tackling climate change, at the leading edge

:18:22.:18:27.

on putting our own legislation through regarding emissions and we

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will continue to lead on this issue. He refers to the question of the

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sale of arms to Saudi Arabia. I welcome the High Court judgment

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today. This shows that Mike right honourable friend the Defence

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Secretary will make a statement on this later, but it shows that we do

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operate one of the most robust export control regimes in the world.

:18:47.:18:50.

And finally he talked of the government 's agenda. This

:18:51.:18:55.

government has an ambitious agenda to change this country. There are

:18:56.:19:11.

many issues... Mr Ashworth you are a cheeky and other excitable

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whippersnapper. Calm yourself. Take some sort of soothing medicament. It

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is a refrain of mine, with good reason. Per minister. Mr Speaker

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that many issues on which I hope we will achieve consensus across this

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House. Like ensuring that our police and security agencies have the

:19:33.:19:34.

powers they need to deal with the terrorist threat we face. It is like

:19:35.:19:43.

responding to the Matthew Taylor report which I initiated to ensure

:19:44.:19:47.

that in the new gig economy as we see the world of work changing

:19:48.:19:53.

workers have their rights protected. Finally I also hope we talked about

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women's empowerment at this G20 summit. One of the issues that have

:19:57.:20:01.

been concerned about recently is the fact that many female candidates in

:20:02.:20:04.

the general election found themselves bullied and harassed. And

:20:05.:20:11.

in receipt of bullying and harassment. I would have thought, as

:20:12.:20:16.

has been referred to by the right Honourable Lady, the Member for

:20:17.:20:19.

Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford, I would have hoped that

:20:20.:20:24.

every leader of every party in this House would condemn such action and

:20:25.:20:34.

it's time he did so. John Redwood. I congratulate the Prime Minister on

:20:35.:20:37.

her many successes at a productive summit particularly on the trade

:20:38.:20:41.

front. Would she confirmed that ministers are working not just on

:20:42.:20:44.

trade deals with those countries who don't have once about the moment but

:20:45.:20:50.

will when we are outside the EU but or making sure we transferred the EU

:20:51.:20:54.

ones to the UK as well as to the rest of the EU on Brexit. Am happy

:20:55.:21:00.

to give that confirmation to my right honourable friend. Three areas

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in trade we are working on. One, looking ahead to trade agreements we

:21:05.:21:07.

can have with countries we don't have them with as a member of the

:21:08.:21:12.

EU, the second, ensuring that where there are trade agreements with the

:21:13.:21:16.

EU, as we Lee Hook enrolled as Ford, the third area is working with

:21:17.:21:21.

countries like India and Australia to say what changes we can make now

:21:22.:21:26.

before we leave the EU to Wood EU to improve our trade relationship.

:21:27.:21:34.

Thank you Mr Speaker. The G20's and was an eye opening event, the UK is

:21:35.:21:39.

now floundering on a global stage desperately trying to win friends. A

:21:40.:21:44.

disastrous, and predictable alliance formed with the American president

:21:45.:21:48.

on trade. Goodness knows what a trade deal with America would mean

:21:49.:21:53.

for public services, food quality and workers' rights. Talk about UK-

:21:54.:22:00.

US trade deal was dubbed a blow by the Prime Minister 's own Justice

:22:01.:22:03.

Secretary who only hours after the summit ended said it wouldn't be

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enough on its own. The Prime Minister must now come to her

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senses. The United Kingdom outside the single market would be ruinous.

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Our EU friends and partners are moving on without us. This year

:22:19.:22:22.

alone finalising trade deals with Japan and Canada while the UK turns

:22:23.:22:28.

in on itself. Today's Scottish chamber of commerce shows 61% of

:22:29.:22:33.

Scottish businesses feel the UK should remain in both the single

:22:34.:22:37.

market and the customs union. It is quite scandalous that the Prime

:22:38.:22:44.

Minister turns a blind eye to the economy in favour of Eurosceptic

:22:45.:22:51.

colleagues. Mr Speaker, I welcome the progress made at the G20 summit.

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I especially pay tribute to the work of the German Chancellor who hosted

:22:57.:22:59.

and delivered a challenging agenda on global issues. The communique is

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clear, we must redouble our efforts in the Paris agreement, calling it

:23:06.:23:10.

irreversible. As the Prime Minister to set up the next steps in

:23:11.:23:14.

delivering the Paris agreement. The communique also delivers the T20-

:23:15.:23:19.

Africa partnership to boost growth and jobs across Africa including an

:23:20.:23:24.

initiative on rural employment creating 1.1 million new jobs by

:23:25.:23:29.

2022. Can the Prime Minister explain the UK's role in delivering the

:23:30.:23:32.

initiative and confirm whether the UK role will continue after exiting

:23:33.:23:37.

the EU. Mr Speaker, the agreement to take further action to achieve

:23:38.:23:42.

gender equality is universally welcomed in this House. The

:23:43.:23:46.

conclusions also push the T20 to taking immediate effective measures

:23:47.:23:51.

to eliminate child Labour by 2025, forced Labour, human trafficking and

:23:52.:23:55.

all forms of modern slavery, promising step indeed. However Mr

:23:56.:23:58.

Speaker the Prime Minister went to Hamburg with an open message, she

:23:59.:24:04.

wanted the T20 to tackle terrorism. In particular she wanted the G20 to

:24:05.:24:08.

tackle terrorist financing. What staggering hypocrisy. The Prime

:24:09.:24:15.

Minister, sitting on a board commissioned by her predecessor,

:24:16.:24:18.

denying us the truth about terrorist financing in the UK had the brass

:24:19.:24:22.

neck to call upon the G20 to do more. What an absolute outrage. Will

:24:23.:24:27.

she publish the Home Office report on terror funding in the UK and

:24:28.:24:31.

world she said at a public inquiry into questions around the funding of

:24:32.:24:40.

extremism? I hope that the honourable gentleman was not making

:24:41.:24:45.

a personal accusation against the Prime Minister. Order, order, I know

:24:46.:24:49.

what I'm doing in these matters. I cannot believe that he would

:24:50.:24:53.

knowingly do that, make a personal accusation against the Prime

:24:54.:24:56.

Minister because it is disorderly and if he is not aware of that it is

:24:57.:25:00.

time he was. I think he ought to spring to his feet and clarify the

:25:01.:25:07.

position. I'm happy to clarify. Point of explanation. My sense was

:25:08.:25:11.

that there was an element of an accusation. Withdraw. I will

:25:12.:25:15.

withdraw the allegation against the Prime Minister. Per minister. -- per

:25:16.:25:18.

minister. As I stepped out in my statement

:25:19.:25:30.

earlier. We have set out with a number of countries, the United

:25:31.:25:34.

States, Japan, China, India, and other countries at the G20. He asked

:25:35.:25:39.

about the compact with Africa, this is not a unique EU -ish and

:25:40.:25:45.

initiative, it is something that has been led by Chancellor Merkel under

:25:46.:25:51.

the G20 and the UK is playing its role. The principles that underpin

:25:52.:25:54.

the compact with Africa are principles we have used in our

:25:55.:25:58.

systems we have been giving it development aid to do variety of

:25:59.:26:02.

countries in Africa are already, and we already have a compact with

:26:03.:26:06.

Ethiopian witness the UK has put forward which will create 100,000

:26:07.:26:13.

jobs including jobs for refugees living in Ethiopia. Again, we have

:26:14.:26:17.

shown by what we are doing a commitment to these issues already.

:26:18.:26:22.

He talks about the issue of terrorist financing, of course what

:26:23.:26:26.

we looks to cast is that we are looking across the board at all

:26:27.:26:29.

aspects of terrorist financing and that means as we look at the

:26:30.:26:32.

changing nature of terrorism that we do not just look at large-scale

:26:33.:26:37.

financing we also look at the small sums of financing that are harder to

:26:38.:26:41.

trace, harder to identify, but which could potentially underpin attacks

:26:42.:26:48.

that take place. That is where the communique clearly put a focus and

:26:49.:26:52.

that is a new initiative that has been taken. Then he talks about

:26:53.:26:56.

modern slavery, I think it is important to eradicate that. It was

:26:57.:27:01.

in the G20 agenda, because I put it there. Because modern slavery is an

:27:02.:27:07.

issue this Government takes very seriously. We introduced a modern

:27:08.:27:10.

slavery act, the first piece of legislation in its kind in the

:27:11.:27:14.

world, and we are working with others to ensure we eradicate modern

:27:15.:27:18.

slavery. I have to say, his portrayal of the UK's position at

:27:19.:27:22.

the G20 was simply wrong. But then he wasn't there, and I was. If I am

:27:23.:27:29.

to accommodate the extensive interests of colleagues in this

:27:30.:27:34.

matter, there will be an imperative for great brevity, to be I hope

:27:35.:27:42.

spectacularly exemplified now. That is kind of you, but I didn't

:27:43.:27:45.

actually have a question. LAUGHTER

:27:46.:27:50.

Well the answer is, the right honourable lady... All! I didn't

:27:51.:27:57.

imagine it in my sleep, the Right Honourable lay lady was standing. If

:27:58.:28:01.

she sees to do so I did not realise, but she has led to her feet with

:28:02.:28:05.

alacrity, the house is in a state of eager anticipation and baited

:28:06.:28:09.

breath. I would like to take the opportunity to say something. I

:28:10.:28:14.

wondered if my right honourable friend could help is with the modern

:28:15.:28:18.

slavery act because she rightly identifies we have led the world on

:28:19.:28:23.

this sort of legislation and many of us are hugely proud of the work she

:28:24.:28:28.

did when she was Home Secretary. Is she finding that across the world

:28:29.:28:33.

there is now a desire for other countries to follow where she and

:28:34.:28:37.

this country have led? I am pleased to be able to say to her that is

:28:38.:28:41.

indeed the case. We are seeing a much greater awareness of this wish

:28:42.:28:44.

you around the world and we are seeing a much greater willingness

:28:45.:28:47.

for governments to look at this issue. First, I think governments

:28:48.:28:53.

are looking at the human trafficking aspect across borders but as we know

:28:54.:28:56.

in the UK it is also important to look at what happens in country two

:28:57.:29:01.

to citizens of 1's own country, and that is what we are doing. I am

:29:02.:29:06.

certain the member will be as brief as his surname. In the light of the

:29:07.:29:14.

discussions of security, the Prime Minister will no doubt be aware

:29:15.:29:18.

across the house about her proposal to withdraw the UK from the Euratom

:29:19.:29:22.

treaty despite the concerns there are about the implications for

:29:23.:29:29.

scientists, materials and is life-saving therapies. Can she

:29:30.:29:33.

explained what the cake nuclear industry gains from such a policy? I

:29:34.:29:37.

am sure he will be aware from his chairing of the select committee

:29:38.:29:42.

that members see of Euratom is inextricably linked with membership

:29:43.:29:46.

of the EU. What we are doing, as was signalled in the Queen's speech,

:29:47.:29:49.

with reference to a future Bill on this issue, is wanting to ensure we

:29:50.:29:53.

can in maintaining these relationships which enable the

:29:54.:29:59.

exchange of scientists, material, there are countries around the world

:30:00.:30:02.

that have that relationship with Euratom but are not memberships of

:30:03.:30:13.

the EU. I look forward to the Bill. Does my right honourable friend

:30:14.:30:17.

agree that free trade is going to be one of the great Brexit dividends,

:30:18.:30:21.

that it will provide cheaper feud, clothing and footwear to the

:30:22.:30:24.

greatest benefit of the poorest in our society? I agree that it is free

:30:25.:30:33.

trade that enables us to grow economies, increase prosperity,

:30:34.:30:36.

provide jobs. And there will be benefits from the trade agreements

:30:37.:30:40.

that we want to negotiate around the whole of the world. But we also need

:30:41.:30:44.

as a country to defend the concept of free trade because it is under

:30:45.:30:52.

too much attack from protectionists. When journalists and have been

:30:53.:31:02.

murdered in Putin's Russia, does the primaries to share my anger at the

:31:03.:31:07.

chilling sight of Presidents Trump and Putin joking about the

:31:08.:31:11.

inconvenience of a free press? Will she commit to raising the importance

:31:12.:31:15.

of the independence of the media to both leaders when she meets them

:31:16.:31:20.

next? We defend a free press, we think it is an intentional and

:31:21.:31:24.

depending of our democracy here and we want to defend it around the

:31:25.:31:29.

world. I can assure the lady that indeed we do regularly raise this

:31:30.:31:32.

issue with the Russian president and at all levels in Russian

:31:33.:31:41.

authorities. Can I also pay tribute to my right honourable friend for

:31:42.:31:45.

the all that work she has done in the past on the issue of human

:31:46.:31:48.

trafficking and slavery and I commend her for raising this at the

:31:49.:31:53.

G20. With the world on the move unfortunately opportunities for more

:31:54.:31:56.

of this rather than less are now there. So what can we do between the

:31:57.:32:01.

G20's to ensure other countries take this as seriously as we do. We have

:32:02.:32:05.

set the bar in this we need to raise others to it. That is right. We are

:32:06.:32:12.

taking action across a number of areas. The specific area we focused

:32:13.:32:17.

on the G20 was the business supply chains, but one of the key ways of

:32:18.:32:22.

ensuring we can act against human trafficking and modern slavery is

:32:23.:32:26.

through the cooperation of law enforcement agencies here in the UK

:32:27.:32:29.

with others around the world, and that is exactly what we are

:32:30.:32:32.

encouraging and what is happening with some success. A year ago the

:32:33.:32:39.

then financial secretary told the house that the Government supported

:32:40.:32:42.

a multilateral deal on public country by country reporting. He

:32:43.:32:45.

said if we have not made progress by this time next year on reaching a

:32:46.:32:49.

multilateral agreement we will need to look carefully at the issue

:32:50.:32:53.

again. A year on, can I ask for confirmation of what discussant she

:32:54.:32:57.

has had with G20 members to make sure we can cap tackle corporate tax

:32:58.:33:06.

avoidance? This is an issue we regularly raise. It is true to say

:33:07.:33:11.

that we are disappointed at the lack of progress that has been made in

:33:12.:33:15.

this area. We will continue to press on this issue but if we are going to

:33:16.:33:19.

get that multilateral agreement others have to agree to this concept

:33:20.:33:23.

as well. We will continue to press it. It is there because the UK has

:33:24.:33:27.

been putting it on the agenda in the past. We will continue to do so.

:33:28.:33:35.

About this new love fest with the benches opposite, given the record

:33:36.:33:43.

of the Leader of the Opposition on the counterterrorism and security

:33:44.:33:46.

act, does she possessed a very long spoon?

:33:47.:33:54.

LAUGHTER Yes, I can say to my right

:33:55.:33:59.

honourable friend that I have in the past as Home Secretary welcomes the

:34:00.:34:03.

cooperation which I have had from the Labour benches, not from the

:34:04.:34:06.

right honourable gentleman who is currently the Leader of the

:34:07.:34:09.

Opposition, but from others who have seen the need to ensure our agencies

:34:10.:34:13.

have appropriate powers to deal with terrorist threats that we face. I

:34:14.:34:18.

look forward to Labour MPs and indeed others across the benches

:34:19.:34:22.

opposite in this house, coming forward and supporting those

:34:23.:34:24.

counterterrorism measures when they are brought forward. The G20

:34:25.:34:29.

communique includes important reference to investment in global

:34:30.:34:33.

education, including the global partnership for education and

:34:34.:34:36.

education cannot wait. The UK has a proud record in leading in global

:34:37.:34:40.

health. Will she join with Argentina in the forthcoming G20 presidency to

:34:41.:34:45.

give investment in global dedication the premise to it deserves? Indeed I

:34:46.:34:51.

would say it is not about looking at ahead to the agenda for the next

:34:52.:34:56.

meeting, it is also about what the UK has been doing practically

:34:57.:35:00.

through our international development budget as significant

:35:01.:35:03.

number of girls around the world being educated as a result of the

:35:04.:35:07.

input we put in. We think that global education agenda is very

:35:08.:35:14.

important. Thank you. As the Prime Minister said in her statement, as

:35:15.:35:18.

we are leaving the EU we are not leaving Europe. Can I welcome the

:35:19.:35:21.

announcement we will continue to work with our European friends and

:35:22.:35:26.

allies in developing a better overall approach to managing

:35:27.:35:32.

economic migration? He is right. I think this is an issue that the UK

:35:33.:35:37.

again has been leading on. And increasingly we see other countries

:35:38.:35:40.

recognising that what the UK has said about the importance of

:35:41.:35:44.

differentiating refugees and economic migrants, we will continue

:35:45.:35:47.

to work not just in the G20 on that but in the UN work that started last

:35:48.:35:52.

year that will be progressing towards the end of this year in

:35:53.:35:55.

terms of looking at the compact for migration and refugees across the

:35:56.:36:03.

world. We know that US intelligence services leaked sensitive UK

:36:04.:36:07.

intelligence in the hours following the attack on the Ariana Grande

:36:08.:36:11.

concert in Manchester. This weekend we had Presidents Trump and Putin

:36:12.:36:17.

discussing forming and penetrable cyber security unit so that election

:36:18.:36:22.

hacking will be guarded and safe. According to Presidents Trump's

:36:23.:36:28.

tweet. Can she guarantee that UK intelligence assets on cyber warfare

:36:29.:36:32.

will not be compromised or shared in anyway as long as there is a risk of

:36:33.:36:36.

this sort of bizarre and dangerous alliance with the Russians? I can

:36:37.:36:41.

say to the honourable lady that we take the issue of intelligence

:36:42.:36:45.

sharing very seriously. It is important we are able to share

:36:46.:36:50.

intelligence with our allies in the US and with other allies around the

:36:51.:36:53.

world, but what what matters is we are able to do that on the basis of

:36:54.:36:57.

confidence, that that intelligence will be treated appropriately. I can

:36:58.:37:02.

assure her we take the whole issue of cyber security extremely

:37:03.:37:05.

seriously, that is why we set up the new National Cyber Security Centre

:37:06.:37:10.

and we recognise and understand the threat Russia poses in that area.

:37:11.:37:17.

The G20 summit we heard positive words from the president of the US

:37:18.:37:22.

and more this morning from the President of Australia as to the

:37:23.:37:26.

opportunities for rapid and comprehensive trade deals between

:37:27.:37:29.

their companies and the UK. Does my right honourable friend agree that

:37:30.:37:33.

new trade deals with old friends and knew that are only really a risible

:37:34.:37:36.

outside the customs union will add to the prosperity of a new global

:37:37.:37:44.

Britain? He is right. We have been very clear that we want to be able

:37:45.:37:48.

to and take an sign up to and activate those new trade deals with

:37:49.:37:52.

old friends and new allies alike, and that means not being in the part

:37:53.:37:55.

of the customs union that would prevent it. It is important we are

:37:56.:37:58.

able to negotiate trade agreement with the EU and the rest of the

:37:59.:38:05.

world. Can I press the Prime Minister on the issue of migration

:38:06.:38:10.

and displacement that affects 65 million people worldwide? She will

:38:11.:38:15.

know since the 1st of January 82,800 people have risked their lives

:38:16.:38:19.

trying to cross the Mediterranean and 2000 have died. The G20 leaders

:38:20.:38:26.

run 84% of the economy of the world. Apart from the 55 million as you

:38:27.:38:30.

mentioned going to Tanzania, what other resources are being given to

:38:31.:38:35.

deal with this catastrophic problem? The resources being given to this

:38:36.:38:40.

issue are significant and varied. From the UK's own point of view,

:38:41.:38:45.

there is the work we have been doing through our development aid budget,

:38:46.:38:48.

particularly in another of countries in Africa, I referred earlier to the

:38:49.:38:53.

compact we have of Ethiopia, which is providing jobs there for refugees

:38:54.:38:57.

and others, because we see it as important to ensure that there are

:38:58.:39:01.

economic opportunities in the countries of origin for this

:39:02.:39:04.

migration so people do not feel the need to make this journey. We have

:39:05.:39:12.

also, as I announced, we are giving extra funding, 75 million to work

:39:13.:39:16.

with Libya and Italy to ensure that there are humane conditions for

:39:17.:39:23.

people to able to return to countries in Africa that we increase

:39:24.:39:30.

the ability of the Libyan coast guard to ensure they are properly

:39:31.:39:33.

intercepting those boats which could pose a risk to people in terms of

:39:34.:39:37.

their life if they were to make it across the Mediterranean. It is

:39:38.:39:41.

multifaceted, but the UK is involved in every aspect. The Leader of the

:39:42.:39:48.

Opposition has spent his entire life opposing trade deals with countries

:39:49.:39:53.

around the world such as Mexico and India. The Prime Minister success at

:39:54.:39:58.

G20 means we can look both East and West securing trade deals and does

:39:59.:40:02.

my right honourable friend agree that we should recognise and be

:40:03.:40:06.

proud of the global confidence in British services, goods, and the

:40:07.:40:14.

British economy? My honourable friend is absolutely right. I think

:40:15.:40:18.

the fact that a number of leaders, those I have mentioned, but others

:40:19.:40:22.

as well, have expressed their interest in trade deals with the UK,

:40:23.:40:26.

it is a vote of confidence in the British people.

:40:27.:40:33.

Mr Speaker, I would be interested to know when the Prime Minister expects

:40:34.:40:39.

to sign a trade deal with Australia and India how much these deals will

:40:40.:40:42.

be worth and how much extra immigration she will accept as part

:40:43.:40:48.

of these deals. The honourable lady may know that there's a limit to

:40:49.:40:52.

what we can put in place while we are still members of the EU but we

:40:53.:40:56.

can still discuss what a future trade agreement might be and it

:40:57.:41:00.

doesn't mean we can't discuss how to improve trade relations already,

:41:01.:41:03.

there are some areas we can do that which are not covered in terms of EU

:41:04.:41:07.

competences and those discussions are having. Has been found. There

:41:08.:41:14.

does seem to be consensus that when we leave the European Union UK- US

:41:15.:41:20.

free trade deal would be a good and necessary thing. Does the Prime

:41:21.:41:24.

Minister welcomed the clear support of the American administration that

:41:25.:41:28.

this is expressed at the G20 but the other important decision-makers in

:41:29.:41:32.

this are the US Congress. Following her successful visit to Philadelphia

:41:33.:41:37.

with the Republican caucus witchy enable the excellent Congressional

:41:38.:41:40.

relations office of our office in Washington to up MPs make the case

:41:41.:41:44.

to congressional colleagues for this free trade deal? My right honourable

:41:45.:41:49.

friend is right about the role Congress will play, he has raised an

:41:50.:41:53.

interesting idea. I did indeed have discussions with members of Congress

:41:54.:41:58.

in Philadelphia and I know that my right honourable friend was

:41:59.:42:01.

Secretary of State for International Development has been having

:42:02.:42:03.

discussions recently in America with members of Congress as well. We will

:42:04.:42:07.

certainly consider the proposal that my right honourable friend has put

:42:08.:42:12.

forward. He's right, we will work with Congress and the American

:42:13.:42:17.

administration on this. Mr Speaker she says she wants help for building

:42:18.:42:20.

consensus on sensible policies, there a majority in this House to

:42:21.:42:31.

stay in Euratom and also in the European medicines agency so why

:42:32.:42:35.

not. As referred to the membership of ten 2-mac is inextricably linked

:42:36.:42:39.

with membership of the EU and as we leave the EU we will leave Euratom.

:42:40.:42:44.

Yet what we look to put in place is a similar relationship with Euratom

:42:45.:42:47.

like other countries which are not members of the EU having access to

:42:48.:42:52.

the movement of scientists and materials and the standards produced

:42:53.:42:57.

under Euratom. We recognise the importance of this, this is why a

:42:58.:43:00.

bill in relation to this was in the Queen's Speech. Sir Edward Lee. As

:43:01.:43:07.

my right honourable friend is now open to ideas to a man who tried to

:43:08.:43:11.

remove her from office will she take an idea from a friend who stood on a

:43:12.:43:18.

platform of keeping her in office? And once it is day in office. The

:43:19.:43:29.

honourable gentleman from Rhondda should come himself, I want to hear

:43:30.:43:33.

what the honourable member the gains that has to say. We have warm words

:43:34.:43:38.

on helping Italy of migration but as long as Italy is forced to take all

:43:39.:43:41.

the refugees more and more will come. Will my right honourable

:43:42.:43:45.

friend work with our allies to establish safe havens in Libya so

:43:46.:43:49.

that people can be returned safely to Libya. That's a conservative

:43:50.:43:55.

idea, not useless socialist one! I have to say to my right honourable

:43:56.:43:58.

friend not only is that concept of being able to return people to Libya

:43:59.:44:02.

a good one, it is one we already working on. This is one of the

:44:03.:44:08.

issues we will be discussing with the Italians and others in relation

:44:09.:44:12.

to the extra humanitarian aid we are making available. We've also made

:44:13.:44:17.

available, offered to the Italians, support and help to return as to

:44:18.:44:20.

Nigeria because a significant number of those reaching Italy are from

:44:21.:44:25.

Nigeria and we have arrangements already run by the United Kingdom in

:44:26.:44:30.

Nigeria to provide just that sort of area where people are able to stay.

:44:31.:44:36.

Alison McGovern. May I ask the Prime Minister about Syria and the loss of

:44:37.:44:40.

civilian life specifically as it relates to you as operations against

:44:41.:44:44.

Morisi in Raqqa. It appears that the rules of engagement have changed. So

:44:45.:44:51.

has she raised this with the US or have any of her ministers -- US

:44:52.:45:01.

operations against Daesh. We regularly in discussion with the

:45:02.:45:03.

Americans and others in the coalition about the action. The

:45:04.:45:08.

action taken place in Mosul to drive Daesh of muscle is important and the

:45:09.:45:14.

reaction in Raqqa will be important but as United Kingdom we take the

:45:15.:45:18.

position that we want to ensure that these actions deal with those who

:45:19.:45:22.

they are supposed to deal with, ie the terrorists, and don't affect

:45:23.:45:30.

civilians. Mr Costa. Thank you Mr Speaker, may I add my welcome to the

:45:31.:45:34.

statement from the Prime Minister particularly in respect of

:45:35.:45:37.

assistance given to Italy to tackle migration. I am chairman of the APPG

:45:38.:45:43.

research group and as my right honourable friend knows, Greece also

:45:44.:45:49.

has a huge burden with the movement of migrants. Would my right

:45:50.:45:51.

honourable friend agreed to consider whether the delegation that has been

:45:52.:45:56.

sent to Italy might also be sent in due course to Greece? What we are

:45:57.:46:07.

doing is mirroring in Italy something we have offered Greece and

:46:08.:46:15.

which they have taken up. It's difficult because of the deal with

:46:16.:46:19.

Turkey that EU did so we've seen a significant reduction in the number

:46:20.:46:23.

of migrants trying to reach Greece. We've also seen people coming

:46:24.:46:26.

through those roots and trying to go through Libya into Italy. But we

:46:27.:46:31.

will certainly ensure that we are giving as much support as we can to

:46:32.:46:38.

Italy in this matter. Sir Vincent cable. In the Prime Minister's

:46:39.:46:42.

enthusiasm for a bilateral trade union with the USA Wilshere accept

:46:43.:46:47.

American insistence that we don't loot food standards and agree to the

:46:48.:46:51.

establishments of investment protection mechanisms which override

:46:52.:46:56.

British courts -- Wilshere accept? . Nash will she accept that we dilate

:46:57.:47:03.

food standards? This hasn't yet taken place, we will be negotiating

:47:04.:47:07.

trade commissions with the Americans. Thank you, Mr Speaker.

:47:08.:47:17.

Many countries are eager to trade free from punitive tariffs, does my

:47:18.:47:20.

right honourable friend agree that Britain can be a leader in free

:47:21.:47:23.

trade fair trade once we leave the by setting off our own standards and

:47:24.:47:31.

striking our: trade deals. It's important, we will have that ability

:47:32.:47:38.

once outside the EU to strike deals around the world, underpinning what

:47:39.:47:41.

my right honourable friend asks is the need for the UK to stand up and

:47:42.:47:45.

promote free and fair trade around the world. As I said earlier in

:47:46.:47:49.

response to another honourable friend, there is this attempt in

:47:50.:47:55.

some areas to towards protectionism. I think we should stand against

:47:56.:47:59.

that. We should show clearly that it is free trade that brings prosperity

:48:00.:48:03.

and jobs and help is not just economy is like ours but some of the

:48:04.:48:07.

poorest countries in the world to develop. Given the special

:48:08.:48:13.

relationship the Prime Minister enjoys with President Trump can she

:48:14.:48:16.

explain why she failed to influence him from preventing him from pulling

:48:17.:48:23.

out the Paris climate agreement? And will she commend that decision and

:48:24.:48:27.

refrain from rolling out the red carpet in the form of a state visit

:48:28.:48:37.

to him. We made, i-mate, the UK made, our views on the Paris climate

:48:38.:48:42.

agreement is well-known, the US takes its own decisions, this is a

:48:43.:48:47.

commitment President Trump made in his electoral campaign, I said to

:48:48.:48:50.

him more than once that either the USA can be encouraged to come back

:48:51.:48:53.

into the Paris agreement, I think it is important and we will try to work

:48:54.:49:01.

to get them back in. David TC Davies. Mr Speaker given that most

:49:02.:49:06.

of the MPC are stored on a platform backing tracks and including the

:49:07.:49:09.

Leader of the Opposition isn't it time people stopped using these

:49:10.:49:12.

negotiations for political or personal advantage and united behind

:49:13.:49:16.

the Prime Minister and her ministers to get on with the deal that works

:49:17.:49:25.

for the Halliburton? Whole of Britain. My honourable friend is

:49:26.:49:30.

right, 80% of votes in the general election were for parties that

:49:31.:49:33.

wanted to deliver on the Brexit decision taken by the British people

:49:34.:49:36.

in the referendum master. That is what the government will get on and

:49:37.:49:39.

do and I hope others in the House was aborted. The Prime Minister said

:49:40.:49:46.

in a statement that women and children are being enslaved, forced

:49:47.:49:49.

into hard Labour, raped and beaten and passed from abuse and to abuse

:49:50.:49:53.

of profit. Does she agree that this is no more true than the depravity

:49:54.:49:58.

of child prostitution in India and did she raised this with the Prime

:49:59.:50:04.

Minister of India? I have raised this issue previously with the Prime

:50:05.:50:08.

Minister of India, the question of modern slavery, as we have, to

:50:09.:50:16.

address this particular issue. We are very clear that we want to see

:50:17.:50:23.

this issue being dealt with, this is one reason why we have put into

:50:24.:50:26.

legislation requirement for companies in the UK who will be

:50:27.:50:29.

manufacturing and sourcing products from around the world that they need

:50:30.:50:32.

to look at their supply chains and make sure and report on they find in

:50:33.:50:37.

their supply chains and whether or not modern slavery is taking place

:50:38.:50:43.

within those supply chains. Does the Prime Minister agree that while we

:50:44.:50:46.

are still leaving the EU there are many manners in which we still need

:50:47.:50:50.

to cooperate, especially dealing with the migrant problems, how we

:50:51.:50:55.

will manage international trade and work with Europe to tackle the evil

:50:56.:51:00.

of people trafficking, and also cooperate to stop multinationals

:51:01.:51:06.

abusing tax systems across the continent. I agree with my

:51:07.:51:10.

honourable friend, there is much on which we will continue to cooperate.

:51:11.:51:15.

With countries in the European Union, the relations we have with

:51:16.:51:18.

French and Belgium in particular in relation to ports and the traffic of

:51:19.:51:22.

people across the Channel is very important to us. And we have been

:51:23.:51:26.

working increasingly with the French authorities and reversing including

:51:27.:51:29.

the Greek authorities in dealing with this issue of human trafficking

:51:30.:51:33.

and successfully insuring criminal gangs involved in this are not just

:51:34.:51:37.

identified but investigated and prosecuted.

:51:38.:51:51.

Bambos Charalambous. As the Prime Minister spoken to the president of

:51:52.:51:59.

Turkey about the Cyprus talks? Headed on by authors put to the

:52:00.:52:01.

Secretary General of the UN who was president at the talks. About the

:52:02.:52:08.

reasons why they broke down. It is a matter not only of disappointment

:52:09.:52:11.

but great sadness that those talks did not come to fruition, they were

:52:12.:52:16.

the closest we have come to finding a solution for the unification of

:52:17.:52:23.

Cyprus. It was a matter of sadness that this could not be achieved. The

:52:24.:52:31.

United Kingdom played a strong role in trying to achieve that but sadly

:52:32.:52:39.

it did not happen. One quarter of G20 members are also members of the

:52:40.:52:43.

Commonwealth, I welcome my honourable friend welcoming

:52:44.:52:49.

preliminary discussions with Australia and India, can she also

:52:50.:52:51.

say what discussions have been had with other Commonwealth countries

:52:52.:52:55.

like New Zealand. And happy to let my honourable friend know that we

:52:56.:53:01.

have also been discussing with New Zealand, this is an issue we can

:53:02.:53:06.

progress with other members of the Commonwealth, not just New Zealand,

:53:07.:53:13.

also Canada. Catherine West. Mr Speaker, what concrete steps will be

:53:14.:53:16.

taken to get climate change back on the discussion with the US

:53:17.:53:22.

administration. We raise the issue regularly with them but crucially

:53:23.:53:24.

there was a clear message from everyone at the G 22 the US

:53:25.:53:28.

administration about the importance we all placed on that climate change

:53:29.:53:32.

agreement, the Paris agreement and the US being a member of it. Mr

:53:33.:53:41.

Philip collarbone. Kettering is located at the economic beating

:53:42.:53:44.

heart of the nation so a strong economy and new international trade

:53:45.:53:47.

deals post Brexit are very important for all of us live there. The Prime

:53:48.:53:51.

Minister has told the house that over the weekend she met the leaders

:53:52.:53:56.

of America, China, Japan and India to talk about new trade deals. May I

:53:57.:54:00.

say it sounds like a very good start and a very good week and's work. I

:54:01.:54:10.

thank my honourable friend and can I also recognise the important role

:54:11.:54:13.

Kettering plays in the economy of this country and the benefits when

:54:14.:54:16.

we see new trade deals coming into place. Mr Speaker can the Prime

:54:17.:54:25.

Minister guarantee that Brexit will not weaken the fight against

:54:26.:54:34.

terrorism? Will we retain full membership of Eurapo and Eurajust? I

:54:35.:54:45.

have defended our membership of that and various other things, we are

:54:46.:54:49.

informal negotiations with the EU and these will be part of the

:54:50.:55:02.

negotiations but I am sure, some of the arrangements with countries are

:55:03.:55:07.

arrangements we have outside EU but we want to retain that co-operation

:55:08.:55:11.

because it is important not only for us but the countries outside euro

:55:12.:55:23.

FIA - EU. What does she see in that crisis and might not part of it be

:55:24.:55:26.

restrictions against British banks, two of which had impositions against

:55:27.:55:32.

them for inadvertently treading with North Korea. And happy to say I've

:55:33.:55:37.

had discussions with other leaders about what is happening on the

:55:38.:55:43.

Korean peninsula, especially with the president of China because I

:55:44.:55:46.

think the role of China is a crucial one, they are the country that has

:55:47.:55:51.

the greatest leveraged in relation to North Korea and I urge the

:55:52.:55:54.

president of China as I believe others have done to exercise that

:55:55.:55:58.

leveraged. We want to see the denuclearisation of North Korea.

:55:59.:56:06.

The Prime Minister talks about boosting trade but could she tell is

:56:07.:56:09.

what discussions he had with other leaders about the open skies

:56:10.:56:13.

agreement with the USA which depends upon our relationship with the EU,

:56:14.:56:17.

is a cause for concern to the aviation industry. Time is very

:56:18.:56:27.

short. The open skies agreement was referenced in the conversation I had

:56:28.:56:33.

with President ramp. Can I congratulate her on her comments

:56:34.:56:37.

condemning President Trump's decision to abandon Paris? Can I

:56:38.:56:43.

encourage her to keep the UK in the global Vanguard on climate change by

:56:44.:56:52.

publishing so that those who are more reluctant can see the value of

:56:53.:56:55.

a green economy? I think the UK has a good record on this. We can

:56:56.:56:58.

PowerPoint are ready to the actions we have taken, but we can be looking

:56:59.:57:05.

to do more on air quality in the future, but we can already show the

:57:06.:57:09.

action we have taken and the benefit it has had. As I said earlier, there

:57:10.:57:14.

is no contradiction between decarbonisation and a growing

:57:15.:57:20.

economy. Is a bad trade deal with the United States better than no

:57:21.:57:22.

deal? LAUGHTER

:57:23.:57:26.

We will be working to negotiate a good trade deal with the US. She

:57:27.:57:33.

will recall that the recently deceased teat it would have included

:57:34.:57:41.

grotesque provisions for private corporations to prosecute legitimate

:57:42.:57:46.

democratic governments. Would she resist any deal that includes such

:57:47.:57:54.

proportions? I can assure him that as we look to negotiate a trade deal

:57:55.:57:59.

with the US we will be looking for one in the best interest of the

:58:00.:58:05.

United Kingdom. For all the progress against Dyche there are mine

:58:06.:58:07.

hundreds of thousands of civilians in Syria who remain under siege from

:58:08.:58:14.

the evil Al Assad Government. Will she look again at the issue of

:58:15.:58:20.

getting aid with multilateral agreement into those besieged towns

:58:21.:58:25.

and cities? He raised a very important issue which we do

:58:26.:58:30.

regularly discuss with our coalition partners about the possibility of

:58:31.:58:33.

getting that aid in. As he will know, there have been some attempts

:58:34.:58:37.

to ensure aid can be getting through to those civilians who are besieged.

:58:38.:58:42.

They have not always... He says try again. We do regularly raise this as

:58:43.:58:48.

an issue. The best answer is to find a solution to the situation in Syria

:58:49.:58:51.

which leads to a stable Syria meaning those civilians are no

:58:52.:58:58.

longer besieged. In a summit of extraordinarily awkward moments,

:58:59.:59:04.

perhaps the most bizarre was when President Trump's seat was taken by

:59:05.:59:07.

his daughter. The Prime Minister did not seem to bat an eyelid, which I

:59:08.:59:12.

assume is because she's exhuming somebody else will take her seat

:59:13.:59:17.

soon. I wonder who she hopes that will be, the Home Secretary, the

:59:18.:59:19.

Foreign Secretary, or the Chancellor? I have to say, in

:59:20.:59:26.

relation to the fact that Iran could Trump took the present's seat at one

:59:27.:59:30.

point, that was after a session we had had in the morning where we had

:59:31.:59:35.

launched the rim and entrepreneurs financing initiative, which is an

:59:36.:59:38.

initiative that has been developed by Yvonne could Trump and the World

:59:39.:59:43.

Bank so I think it was entirely reasonable! It is welcome and that

:59:44.:59:53.

the Prime Minister raised the issue of the jumping of Chinese steel but

:59:54.:59:59.

quite frankly words are cheap. It is actions that matter. Can she please

:00:00.:00:03.

tell the house what specific actions are going to be taken to ensure

:00:04.:00:08.

China starts playing by the rules? The honourable gentleman will be

:00:09.:00:11.

aware of the action we have taken here in the UK to support our steel

:00:12.:00:17.

industry. We have urged at the last T20 took the decision that the

:00:18.:00:20.

global Forum would be the basis on which work could be done

:00:21.:00:23.

internationally to look at the issue of excess capacity in steel. That

:00:24.:00:27.

has not worked as well as hoped. It was set up under the Chinese

:00:28.:00:31.

presidency and it is that that we want to see with the ministerial

:00:32.:00:34.

meeting to look at excess steel capacity this year. Will the Prime

:00:35.:00:43.

Minister confirmed that the NHS will be excluded from any trade deal with

:00:44.:00:49.

the United States? I am conscious that this was an issue that was

:00:50.:00:54.

raised in relation to the T tip deal and concerned people had that

:00:55.:00:58.

somehow that was about changing the NHS. We are not going to change the

:00:59.:01:03.

NHS. The deal was never a deal that was going to impact on the NHS in

:01:04.:01:11.

the way the opposition suggested. Not all G20 countries have made the

:01:12.:01:15.

same sort of progress we have in this country in relation to racist

:01:16.:01:20.

and discrimination are re-language. That was an issue she discussed and

:01:21.:01:24.

does she agree that where it happens organisations should take decisive

:01:25.:01:30.

and swift action? I have to say to him, I think it is beholden on a

:01:31.:01:34.

salt to make sure we use appropriate language at all times. With the

:01:35.:01:44.

President of German industries stating it would be negative from

:01:45.:01:48.

Brexit, has she got any closer to carrying out an economic assessment

:01:49.:01:57.

of the UK leaving the single market? What is very clear is that we want

:01:58.:02:02.

to negotiate a comp Raza agreement with the European Union, which gives

:02:03.:02:06.

us access to the single market. But anybody looking at the impact that

:02:07.:02:11.

take place of leaving the single market should recognise that the

:02:12.:02:15.

single market that is most important two nations within the ice kingdom

:02:16.:02:25.

is the United Kingdom. Given her personal commitment to ending modern

:02:26.:02:29.

slavery and her desire for other countries to follow the UK's please,

:02:30.:02:34.

why did she think it takes her Home Office more than two years to

:02:35.:02:39.

investigate the case of a woman in my constituency who is a victim of

:02:40.:02:43.

rape, slavery and trafficking? What kind of example issue setting for

:02:44.:02:49.

the G20 there? I am not aware of the individual case that you raise. He

:02:50.:02:53.

talks about investigation of a case of rape. That is not a matter for

:02:54.:02:56.

the Home Office, it is for the police. Following the questions by

:02:57.:03:08.

Mike Right Honourable friend the member for Leeds Central and Exeter,

:03:09.:03:13.

the Prime Minister said our membership of your atom is linked

:03:14.:03:18.

with membership of the EU and yet we have been members of your atom for

:03:19.:03:23.

longer than we have of the EU. So how can that be the case and world

:03:24.:03:29.

Government rethink our arrangements and returns of your atom which is so

:03:30.:03:39.

important? The fact is the treaty makes it clear that there is either

:03:40.:03:43.

link between the membership. If you are a membership of the EU and

:03:44.:03:47.

membership of the Euratom. Across the house we are all agreed that we

:03:48.:03:53.

want to maintain the arrangements and relationships that currently

:03:54.:03:56.

exist under Euratom. But they will be on a different basis in the

:03:57.:03:59.

future. But we want to maintain them. There is no argument about

:04:00.:04:06.

that. I thank her for her statement and note her effort to reform the

:04:07.:04:10.

World Trade Organisation rules in order for them to keep up with the

:04:11.:04:14.

services and digital sectors, crucial to the British economy. Does

:04:15.:04:18.

she agree with me that any reform to the WTA rules will take longer than

:04:19.:04:27.

we have left before we leave the EU? One of the point I was making at the

:04:28.:04:31.

G20's we need to speed up the way the world trade organisation looks

:04:32.:04:34.

at these issues. Looking a trade rules around the Digital economy is

:04:35.:04:37.

not something they will be starting from scratch, they have been doing

:04:38.:04:41.

ever some time, we need to ensure we get on with it and get get rules

:04:42.:04:48.

set. I welcome her indication that she wants to coax the United States

:04:49.:04:51.

back into the Paris agreement. Will she consider strengthening her

:04:52.:04:55.

negotiating hand by suggesting to President Trump that there will be

:04:56.:04:58.

no negotiations on a free-trade deal until they come back into the deal,

:04:59.:05:03.

or is securing a free-trade deal with the US is more important than

:05:04.:05:08.

securing the future the planet? What we want is to ensure we get a good

:05:09.:05:12.

trade deal with the US because it will be to the benefit of people in

:05:13.:05:16.

the UK with proper parity and economic growth and jobs across the

:05:17.:05:20.

UK. But we will continue to press on climate change agreement as well.

:05:21.:05:26.

And as I say, I am encouraging President Trump as are others to

:05:27.:05:29.

find a way back into the Paris agreement. I think it is important

:05:30.:05:32.

for us all. Meanwhile we will continue to do our bit in terms of

:05:33.:05:35.

the application of the Paris agreement. Older. I think the right

:05:36.:05:42.

honourable gentleman wanted to raise a point of order. No? OK. I was

:05:43.:05:48.

going to say if he wanted to it would normally be after statements

:05:49.:05:51.

but he could raise it now if he wanted to. But he does not wish to.

:05:52.:05:59.

That is fine. Thank you. We move now to the second statement. The

:06:00.:06:05.

statement the Secretary of State for International Development, Doctor

:06:06.:06:11.

Liam Fox. With permission I would like to make a station on the High

:06:12.:06:14.

Court judgment on export licensing. We welcome the divisional Court

:06:15.:06:19.

judgment today dismissing the claim by the campaign against Arms trade

:06:20.:06:23.

for judicial review of decisions revising exporter Saudi Arabia for

:06:24.:06:26.

possible use of the conflict in Yemen. We are grateful to the court

:06:27.:06:31.

for the careful and meticulous way the evidence from both sides has

:06:32.:06:33.

been considered in reaching the judgment. The judgment recognises

:06:34.:06:39.

the rigorous and robust processes we have in place across Government to

:06:40.:06:44.

ensure UK defence exports are licensed consistence with the

:06:45.:06:50.

Government consisted national arms licensing criteria. These criteria

:06:51.:06:54.

give effect to an EU Common position setting out rules for assessing

:06:55.:06:58.

Mapes Arias sports. They were introduced in October 2000 and last

:06:59.:07:02.

updated in 2014. The Consolidated criteria used to assess each

:07:03.:07:08.

exporter licence application cover our international obligations

:07:09.:07:11.

including sanctions, human rights and international humanitarian law,

:07:12.:07:17.

and confidence, national security and the security of our allies,

:07:18.:07:22.

terrorism, risk of diversion and the technical and economic capacity of

:07:23.:07:27.

the recipient country. The claim that challenge decisions not to

:07:28.:07:32.

suspend extant licences for the sale of transfer of arms or military

:07:33.:07:36.

equipment and to continue to grant is new lances for such transfers.

:07:37.:07:41.

The judgment states these decisions were lawful and rational. It

:07:42.:07:45.

describes the Government discussion about export licences as and I

:07:46.:07:51.

quote, highly sophisticated, structured and multifaceted. We note

:07:52.:07:54.

the application to appeal and will continue to defend the decision is

:07:55.:07:58.

challenged. We remain confident that the UK operates one of the most

:07:59.:08:02.

robust export control regimes in the world. The central issue in relation

:08:03.:08:08.

to the defence exports to Saudi Arabia in the context of the

:08:09.:08:12.

conflict in Yemen is criterion to see of the Consolidated EU and

:08:13.:08:18.

national arms licensing criteria. That is that the Government will not

:08:19.:08:22.

grant a licence if there is a clear risk that the items might be used in

:08:23.:08:28.

the commission of a serious violation of international

:08:29.:08:31.

humanitarian law. We have sufficient information to carry out proper

:08:32.:08:36.

risk-based assessment is against criterion to see, the core situation

:08:37.:08:39.

has been kept under close review, and to date we have not refused

:08:40.:08:45.

licences on to see grounds because we have assessed on all the event

:08:46.:08:50.

nation available including information not publicly available,

:08:51.:08:53.

that the clear risk threshold has not been reached. The judgment says

:08:54.:08:57.

that on the evidence we were rationally entitled to conclude this

:08:58.:09:05.

threat has not been reached. The exercise taken to into form these

:09:06.:09:09.

rest than is has in the words of the Government, all the hallmarks of a

:09:10.:09:15.

rigorous and robust multilayered process of analysis, carried out by

:09:16.:09:19.

numerous expert personnel upon which the secretary of state could rely.

:09:20.:09:27.

In addition by considered analysis of humanitarian law, there has been

:09:28.:09:31.

intensive engagement with the Saudis at the highest level, stressing the

:09:32.:09:36.

need to comply with international humanitarian law, to investigate all

:09:37.:09:41.

instances of concern and ensure lessons are learned. Through this

:09:42.:09:44.

engagement and our long-standing relationship with the Saudis, we

:09:45.:09:49.

have developed a higher degree of insight into Saudi military

:09:50.:09:53.

processes and procedures adopted in Yemen and might be expected for a

:09:54.:09:57.

country not party to the conflict. We have also considered public

:09:58.:10:01.

commitments to comply with international humanitarian law made

:10:02.:10:04.

by the Saudis and monitored and analysed development on the ground.

:10:05.:10:10.

Each of these strands takes into account a wide range of sources and

:10:11.:10:13.

analyses including those of a sensitive nature to which other

:10:14.:10:18.

parties such as NGOs and the UN do not have access. Taken together,

:10:19.:10:23.

these strands of information and analysis which are reviewed

:10:24.:10:27.

regularly by the FCO in comprehensive reports to the Foreign

:10:28.:10:31.

Secretary, have enabled ministers to take informed decisions about the

:10:32.:10:36.

overall criterion to see position and individual export licence

:10:37.:10:40.

applications. They provide a sound basis on which the Foreign Secretary

:10:41.:10:44.

is able to advise me on these points. That the assessment has been

:10:45.:10:51.

that the issue of military exports to Saudi Arabia is finally balanced,

:10:52.:10:55.

is seen by the judgment as instructive and points two and again

:10:56.:11:00.

I quote, anxious scrutiny given to the matter and the essential

:11:01.:11:03.

rationality and rigour of the process in which the secretary of

:11:04.:11:07.

state was engaged. And as the judgment states on the basis of this

:11:08.:11:11.

information and analysis we were rationally entitled to conclude

:11:12.:11:16.

Saudi Arabia has put processes in place to secure respect for

:11:17.:11:20.

compliance with international humanitarian law and that Saudi

:11:21.:11:25.

Arabia has been and remains committed to compliance with

:11:26.:11:28.

international humanitarian law. The Saudis have engaged and continue to

:11:29.:11:31.

engage constructively with the UK on these matters.

:11:32.:11:36.

We do not receive this judgment as a signal to do anything other than to

:11:37.:11:44.

take our exports responsibilities very seriously. Our policy is to

:11:45.:11:48.

assess licence applications on a case-by-case basis against the

:11:49.:11:52.

rigorous tests set out in the Consolidated EU and national arms

:11:53.:11:56.

export licensing criteria. We will not grant a licence if to do so

:11:57.:11:59.

would be inconsistent with these criteria. We will continue to keep

:12:00.:12:06.

the situation in Yemen under close scrutiny and base our export

:12:07.:12:09.

licensing assessments on the most up-to-date information and analysis

:12:10.:12:13.

available. If we assess that the clear risk threshold under criterion

:12:14.:12:22.

to see of the Consolidated EU and national licensing criteria has been

:12:23.:12:25.

reached them you will not hesitate to refuse export licences and

:12:26.:12:28.

suspend licences already in circulation. I commend the statement

:12:29.:12:38.

to the House. Thank you. I thank the Secretary of State for his

:12:39.:12:42.

statement. I know he and the whole House will agree that the war in

:12:43.:12:46.

Yemen as each monetary tragedy. Thousands of people the --

:12:47.:12:54.

humanitarian tragedy. Thousands of people have been at effect through

:12:55.:12:58.

loss of hospitals and water supplies and all of us should do more on

:12:59.:13:04.

that. The question for the High Court was whether we are entitled to

:13:05.:13:10.

conclude that there was no risk British weapons would be used in

:13:11.:13:15.

serious violations of international humanitarian law. Since the bombing

:13:16.:13:20.

of Yemen began, the UK has licensed more than ?3.3 billion worth of arms

:13:21.:13:26.

to the Saudi regime including 2.2 billion pounds worth of licences

:13:27.:13:29.

dealing with aircraft and helicopters. 1.1 billion pounds

:13:30.:13:38.

worth doing with grenades and bombs and countermeasures and ?430,000

:13:39.:13:43.

worth dealing with armoured vehicles and tanks. The Secretary of State

:13:44.:13:46.

knows that instrument use of air strikes, the destruction of the

:13:47.:13:50.

countries means of food production and the targeting of civilians are

:13:51.:13:53.

all classed as war crimes under international humanitarian law. Does

:13:54.:14:00.

she recall that in January 2016 a United Nations panel of experts

:14:01.:14:02.

reported that Saudi Arabian forces had engaged in widespread and

:14:03.:14:07.

systematic targeting of civilians. Does she recall that in July last

:14:08.:14:13.

year the Government corrected its previous declarations that they had

:14:14.:14:16.

no evidence of any violations and that in September the Foreign

:14:17.:14:19.

Secretary stated in the Government's new position was that they had been

:14:20.:14:23.

unable to make an assessment and that the Saudi authorities are best

:14:24.:14:29.

placed to make such an assessment? Does he accept that the Foreign

:14:30.:14:34.

Secretary was wrong to franchise out our obligation in this way and that

:14:35.:14:39.

we, not the Saudis, have the duty to assess whether there is a risk that

:14:40.:14:42.

British arms sold to the Saudis might be used in contravention? Is

:14:43.:14:47.

she recall that evidence revealed in the High Court in February showed

:14:48.:14:52.

that the civil servant at the head of export control had provided

:14:53.:14:55.

advice to the previous Secretary of State recommending that the UK

:14:56.:15:00.

suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia given in the gaps in knowledge about

:15:01.:15:06.

Saudi operations? Can he explain to the housewife that recommendation

:15:07.:15:09.

was overruled by the then Secretary of State and sits alongside him? But

:15:10.:15:14.

the Secretary of State at the committee should be set up in this

:15:15.:15:20.

Parliament without delay so that export licensing for arms sales and

:15:21.:15:25.

commander of the necessary parliamentary scrutiny? Does he

:15:26.:15:29.

agree that today's judgment did not seek to whether the Government were

:15:30.:15:32.

correct and concluding that there was no clear risk of a serious

:15:33.:15:35.

breach of international managerial role but rather whether Ensor

:15:36.:15:41.

concluding they had reached a decision which could be considered

:15:42.:15:46.

rational given in the procedures they had adopted and the evidence

:15:47.:15:53.

they had considered? Does he further except that if such procedures

:15:54.:15:57.

themselves were defective or the evidence they had considered

:15:58.:16:02.

insufficient or misleading or not comprehensive, then it follows that

:16:03.:16:06.

the decision, however rational within its own parameters, could be

:16:07.:16:11.

deeply flawed and this country might be at grave risk of violating their

:16:12.:16:14.

obligations in international humanitarian law? The Government

:16:15.:16:19.

relied upon material which brought forward only and closed hearing,

:16:20.:16:24.

evidence which was not able to be seen or heard by the campaign

:16:25.:16:27.

against the Arms trade or their lawyers. The court ruling that the

:16:28.:16:33.

Government 's decision was irrational one given in the

:16:34.:16:36.

procedures and evidence at considered was based on secret

:16:37.:16:39.

evidence which it was impossible to challenge. Does the Secretary of

:16:40.:16:44.

State except that the court 's judgment makes specific reference to

:16:45.:16:48.

the substantial body of evidence is presented in open session that in

:16:49.:16:52.

fact suggests a clear risk does exist that British arms might be

:16:53.:16:56.

used in violation of international monetary and more? Will he agree to

:16:57.:16:59.

make evidence that was available on the enclosed session available to

:17:00.:17:05.

members of this House on Privy Council terms or indeed make it

:17:06.:17:10.

available to the intelligence and security select committee? Does he

:17:11.:17:12.

agree that in mattress review would wish this country not only to adopt

:17:13.:17:17.

the highest ethical standards and controls but also to be seen to

:17:18.:17:21.

adopt them, it would be helpful if he could no reassure the House that

:17:22.:17:27.

is his considered view that not only was the Government rational and

:17:28.:17:31.

adopting the view instead given the procedures it followed and the

:17:32.:17:36.

evidence at considered, but that he personally can give his assurance to

:17:37.:17:39.

this House that there is too has a certain knowledge no risk whatsoever

:17:40.:17:45.

that UK arms make use by Saudi Arabia and Yemen or in any way that

:17:46.:17:50.

might constitute a violation of our obligations and international

:17:51.:17:58.

humanitarian law? Can I say first of all that I agree with the honourable

:17:59.:18:03.

gentleman and Yemen is indeed a humanitarian disaster that is

:18:04.:18:07.

begging for a political social ocean to lead to enable us to carry out

:18:08.:18:09.

without a dramatic efforts and Germanic taking efforts. I doubt

:18:10.:18:13.

anyone would disagree with that. In terms of what he said, he wasn't

:18:14.:18:19.

quite accurate in terms for the court case was about. There were

:18:20.:18:23.

three grounds of challenge. Firstly there to ask the correct questions

:18:24.:18:30.

to make enquiries. Failure to apply the suspension mechanism and a

:18:31.:18:34.

rationally concluding there was no clear risk under criterion 2C. All

:18:35.:18:36.

these grounds have been dismissed by the court. He makes the point about

:18:37.:18:42.

targeting. Can I say to him that the efforts by the MOD have gone to the

:18:43.:18:49.

smallest degree to improve the ability of the Saudis to target more

:18:50.:18:53.

effectively including by training. By UK personnel. That is that one of

:18:54.:18:56.

the biggest advantage is that we have helped the Saudis make on this.

:18:57.:18:59.

He said the United Nations have set out their own reservations about

:19:00.:19:05.

what had happened but as the judgment made very clear, it didn't

:19:06.:19:08.

have all the information, that the judges were able to look at as part

:19:09.:19:11.

of that and 20 said that there were gaps in the Government's knowledge,

:19:12.:19:15.

he's the court made very clear that not only did the Government have the

:19:16.:19:18.

ability to assess what the gaps in the knowledge might have been, they

:19:19.:19:23.

had the appropriate means of addressing that and I remain timid

:19:24.:19:27.

that the criteria that we operate a part of the EU Consolidated

:19:28.:19:31.

criteria, not UK Government unilateral criteria. I take

:19:32.:19:36.

exception with the final point that he made because this idea that

:19:37.:19:40.

somehow if we have closed sessions that makes the judgment less valid,

:19:41.:19:45.

I substitute except because I don't accept this idea that we simply

:19:46.:19:49.

cannot have closed sessions. That particular national security for the

:19:50.:19:53.

personnel involved in a national security, our sources need to be

:19:54.:19:58.

protected. Ellis to the argument he makes but I cannot bring myself to

:19:59.:20:02.

accept it. -- I listened to the argument. At the end of the

:20:03.:20:09.

statement he referred to steps that could be taken if it were found that

:20:10.:20:14.

Saudi Arabia were misusing the arms which we supply. Can I ask you to

:20:15.:20:20.

expand on that, an issue that has come up before any committees for

:20:21.:20:26.

arms export controls? Supposing we supply it consists in Saint of

:20:27.:20:29.

sophisticated weapons for use in one way and it is used in a different

:20:30.:20:32.

way or abused in defiance of the laws of war, what could be rendered

:20:33.:20:44.

to rectify that? As he knows from his experience, there are a number

:20:45.:20:46.

of criteria for refusal is and revocations. If he has not seen the

:20:47.:20:54.

list I will ensure he is sent it and if we believe that we are not able

:20:55.:21:01.

to convince ourselves that we were operating entirely within the

:21:02.:21:06.

Consolidated criteria, we can suspend licences and refuse new ones

:21:07.:21:09.

and as I made clear, if we believe that we are not fully in alignment

:21:10.:21:20.

with those criteria, we would do so. Apologies for my horse voice. --

:21:21.:21:33.

horse voice. Amnesty International believes UK and US weapons have been

:21:34.:21:37.

used against Yemeni civilian is. 10,000 civilians have been killed

:21:38.:21:43.

and 3 million displaced. Today's judgment raises questions and be

:21:44.:21:47.

paid tribute to the campaign against Arms trade love taking the

:21:48.:21:49.

Government to court and force them to explain themselves. We have

:21:50.:21:54.

knowledge they plan to appeal but the UK Government should be coming

:21:55.:21:59.

to this House with all the facts at all times, but having to be dragged

:22:00.:22:02.

through the courts for the public to get a full explanation so does he

:22:03.:22:04.

accept that it cannot be beneficial of the public loses confidence in

:22:05.:22:08.

the Government over its solution ship with the supposed ally? One

:22:09.:22:15.

which is infrequent breach of its international humanitarian law and

:22:16.:22:19.

Yemen? Let's not forget that Saudi Arabia, UK's largest weapons client

:22:20.:22:23.

has bought more than ?3 billion worth of British arms and the last

:22:24.:22:27.

two years. UK and EU arms sales rules that state export licences

:22:28.:22:30.

cannot be granted if there is not a clear risk that the equipment can be

:22:31.:22:35.

used in breach of international humanitarian law. He says that he

:22:36.:22:39.

takes it very seriously and he will know that our former colleague Angus

:22:40.:22:43.

Robertson was strong advocate for the re-establish that of the

:22:44.:22:48.

committee on arms export control. UK Government promised before the

:22:49.:22:53.

election it would be reconvened. Can I ask the Secretary of State when

:22:54.:22:58.

will that committee take place, when will its first meeting happen and

:22:59.:23:01.

can he give us categorical assurances that the election does

:23:02.:23:03.

not mean that such an important committee will be kicked into the

:23:04.:23:16.

long grass? As the judgment itself set out, the case focused on the air

:23:17.:23:21.

strikes conducted by a coalition led by Saudi Arabia and support of the

:23:22.:23:23.

legitimate Government of Yemen against the rebellion so we need to

:23:24.:23:27.

put on record that that is the origin of the conflict. Of course

:23:28.:23:33.

the humanitarian issues and Yemen are deeply troubling to all of us,

:23:34.:23:37.

we have all seen the pictures and the United Kingdom through our

:23:38.:23:39.

various agencies and Government departments have been fulfilling as

:23:40.:23:42.

much of our diplomatic and you manage union actions as we can and

:23:43.:23:47.

the circumstances. It will only be brought to an end by a political

:23:48.:23:51.

settlement, not a military one. She talks about the clear risk test, the

:23:52.:23:55.

judgment could not have been clearer that the Government admitted the

:23:56.:24:00.

clear risk test of criterion 2C in the way the Government has carried

:24:01.:24:02.

this out. On her point about the committee on Arms exports, I have

:24:03.:24:08.

absolutely no objections to such a committee being set up in fact I

:24:09.:24:11.

think it is beneficial to us to ensure at all times the highest

:24:12.:24:16.

reputation of our property in these matters and I would have absolutely

:24:17.:24:19.

no objection to such a committee being in place. Does the Secretary

:24:20.:24:27.

of State agree with me that the detail of this judgment actually

:24:28.:24:31.

makes it clear just what a great job as civil servants and other civil

:24:32.:24:36.

servants and officials in both MOD and the Foreign Office have done any

:24:37.:24:39.

rigorous way they have gone about their responsibilities so that the

:24:40.:24:46.

judgment can then say that they were highly sophisticated structures and

:24:47.:24:48.

multifaceted and it deserves congratulations?

:24:49.:24:52.

I don't think the judgment could have been more unequivocal, and I am

:24:53.:24:59.

very grateful for his comments. We have been utterly rigorous in the

:25:00.:25:03.

process. The work between the FCO and the MoD and the de-IT has been

:25:04.:25:08.

extremely close. Our officials have done a wonderful job. I'm not sure

:25:09.:25:12.

they appreciated the number of letters necessary that went between

:25:13.:25:16.

is to ensure the process works as tightly as it has, but I am sure

:25:17.:25:19.

they will all feel totally vindicated by the judgment and in

:25:20.:25:23.

the way they have carried out their duties on behalf of this country's

:25:24.:25:28.

international duties and law. Can I welcome the judgment and say it

:25:29.:25:31.

demonstrates how robust the Arms export control act of 2002

:25:32.:25:34.

introduced by the Labour Government is. It also supports hard-working

:25:35.:25:39.

defence workers in our defence industry. In the judgment, it says

:25:40.:25:45.

the coalition would not targeting civilians and Saudis have procedures

:25:46.:25:49.

to abide by the principles of international humanitarian law. In

:25:50.:25:54.

light of that can the union should make representations of the Saudis

:25:55.:25:58.

to publish their own enquiries ins to the stars? I thank him for his

:25:59.:26:06.

comments. We do as I said have I think the most robust system in

:26:07.:26:11.

place on defence exports that exists. And we have been very clear

:26:12.:26:15.

with the Saudis that they have to carry out investigations into some

:26:16.:26:19.

of the incidents he mentioned and they had to make that clear to the

:26:20.:26:23.

United Kingdom Government and that we had to be very clear if we were

:26:24.:26:28.

to license further defence exports that those lessons had been learned

:26:29.:26:32.

and that mechanisms have been put in place to ensure they would not

:26:33.:26:38.

happen again. Given the High Court has today found the Government has

:26:39.:26:43.

been meticulous in its export licensing processes, could he

:26:44.:26:45.

perhaps inform the house how much the court case will cost the

:26:46.:26:53.

taxpayer in legal fees? I hesitate a little because there may well be an

:26:54.:26:57.

appeal and we may not yet be at the end of the legal process. But to

:26:58.:27:02.

date the case has cost the UK taxpayers somewhat in excess of

:27:03.:27:12.

?600,000. The secretary of state and the Government may have won the

:27:13.:27:15.

legal skirmish but they have not won the moral case and there are still

:27:16.:27:19.

many unanswered questions about the relationship here and the terrible

:27:20.:27:23.

situation we see in Yemen. The Secretary of State says he was

:27:24.:27:26.

confident but on the other hand the court judgment makes it clear he was

:27:27.:27:30.

anxious. He knows he wrote to the Foreign Secretary saying he was

:27:31.:27:33.

concerned that it continue to be finely balanced and he asked they

:27:34.:27:40.

commissioned a further investigation and seek advice from lawyers. Why

:27:41.:27:44.

was he anxious? Was it the civilian deaths,? The use of cluster bombs,

:27:45.:27:53.

all the attacks on humanitarian supplies including water and

:27:54.:27:58.

medication? I know he takes a close interest in this but I would not

:27:59.:28:05.

describe today's landmark case as a skirmish and I think everyone in the

:28:06.:28:08.

house would be advised to read the full judgment. It is my job to be

:28:09.:28:13.

anxious about these things. It is my job to give the nth degree of

:28:14.:28:17.

scrutiny because lives are potentially being lost if we give

:28:18.:28:23.

the wrong judgments. It is the judgment of myself, the Foreign

:28:24.:28:26.

Secretary and other senior ministers that gives us such anxiety. Were we

:28:27.:28:31.

to be cavalier he would be absolutely right to criticise us.

:28:32.:28:34.

When we take the nth degree of care about the judgments we make, as

:28:35.:28:38.

previous governments have done, he ought to be grateful that we are

:28:39.:28:45.

doing so. I welcome my friend's statement as it comes from an

:28:46.:28:49.

independent judiciary and underscores the robustness of the

:28:50.:28:52.

assessment of the export licence applications. He will be aware that

:28:53.:28:58.

Saudi Arabia is going through self authored and hugely welcome

:28:59.:29:01.

modernisation and change. Can he assure me that these changes within

:29:02.:29:05.

the kingdom will be taken into account when considering future

:29:06.:29:11.

export licence applications to our strong and reliable ally in the

:29:12.:29:16.

Middle East? We take all of this information into account when coming

:29:17.:29:19.

to a judgment. We look across what is happening from the information we

:29:20.:29:25.

have from the FCO, the MOD, my department, we will put all this

:29:26.:29:28.

picture together before we come to judgment. I think we can hardly be

:29:29.:29:32.

accused of spending too much time and looking at too much evidence in

:29:33.:29:35.

order to come to the right conclusion. Of course we accept the

:29:36.:29:41.

guy judgment of the court because we accept the rule of law in this

:29:42.:29:47.

country. However, how does this help the Yemeni people? So far 10,000

:29:48.:29:52.

people have died, 14 million people have been displaced and 200,000

:29:53.:29:57.

people are suffering from cholera. He is a former Foreign Minister,

:29:58.:30:01.

former Defence Secretary, could he after this statement go back to the

:30:02.:30:05.

Foreign Office and get everyone back at the negotiating table? Please?

:30:06.:30:16.

This Government are leaving no stone unturned to try to get the peace

:30:17.:30:20.

process driven forward. We have had so many attempts to try to do so.

:30:21.:30:27.

And it is in all our interests to stop what is a dreadful humanitarian

:30:28.:30:32.

disaster. He is absolutely right, the parties need to understand that

:30:33.:30:37.

it cannot be solved by a purely military solution. It has to be a

:30:38.:30:44.

political solution. Can I also welcome today's landmark ruling on

:30:45.:30:50.

what was a very difficult case. Tens of thousands of defence workers,

:30:51.:30:53.

many in my constituency, whose job depends on the deals that are done.

:30:54.:30:57.

Can he assure me we will do is continue to work with the Saudis to

:30:58.:31:01.

ensure accurate targeting and also robust and sales? Of course we will

:31:02.:31:08.

continue to work with the Saudis to get an improvement in the position

:31:09.:31:12.

to make sure any decisions we take our within the criteria. He is right

:31:13.:31:16.

that a lot of jobs in this country depend on our defence industry. And

:31:17.:31:22.

whether campaigns such as the campaigns against the Arms trade to

:31:23.:31:25.

be successful it would mean there would be a rapid proliferation of

:31:26.:31:29.

new defence companies trying to set up around the world. They would

:31:30.:31:33.

actually be less control over proliferation rather than more.

:31:34.:31:39.

Parliamentary scrutiny of arms exports is necessary. May I welcome

:31:40.:31:43.

what he said in response to challenges on arms export controls,

:31:44.:31:48.

it is vitally important they are established soon. Can I also asked

:31:49.:31:52.

the Government to look again at the question of independent UN led

:31:53.:31:58.

investigation into all alleged humanitarian law of the conflict? We

:31:59.:32:05.

have never had any objection to an independent UN enquiry. Part of the

:32:06.:32:09.

trouble was set out in the judgment itself, which is the availability of

:32:10.:32:14.

evidence. Especially in open session, that I'd be available to

:32:15.:32:18.

such an enquiry. That is why I think when members read the full judgment

:32:19.:32:22.

they will see why there is such significance to this particularly

:32:23.:32:26.

judgment, but I am open-minded about any future UN enquiry. Instances

:32:27.:32:34.

have been refused. There are a number of different criteria and

:32:35.:32:37.

they are assessed on a regular basis. There were 366 refusals or

:32:38.:32:45.

revocations in 2016. They are set out in a number of eight different

:32:46.:32:49.

categories. Of refusals and revocations. Additive is helpful I

:32:50.:32:54.

shall make a copy available in the library if it is not there already.

:32:55.:33:01.

Can the secretary of state confirmed that this judgment does not confirm

:33:02.:33:06.

there was no risk of IHL breaches in the Yemen, that the judge

:33:07.:33:09.

acknowledged significant evidence which submits just there was a risk

:33:10.:33:15.

or is and it remains a risk the UK Government is heavily dependent on

:33:16.:33:17.

Saudi guarantees that they are not targeting civilians? It is

:33:18.:33:27.

impossible to sell anybody to anything, anything to anybody, that

:33:28.:33:31.

has no risk attached. That is why we have a clear risk test in the

:33:32.:33:35.

Consolidated criteria. And we are in close touch to a degree I have never

:33:36.:33:40.

known before with a country that is party to a military dispute in terms

:33:41.:33:44.

of seeing how they do their targeting, understanding their

:33:45.:33:48.

methods, and their information, and we have been very close in helping

:33:49.:33:51.

to instruct them in ways that will minimise visual and counselled

:33:52.:33:57.

season future. I have had the opportunity of travelling to Saudi

:33:58.:34:02.

Arabia and visiting the targeting Centre in Riyadh where targets in

:34:03.:34:06.

Yemen are allocated. Would he agree with me that as well as exporting

:34:07.:34:11.

hardware we also export a doctrine of responsible use that at the end

:34:12.:34:15.

of the day saves lives? I would entirely agree. It is not just the

:34:16.:34:22.

doctrine that we export it is the professional expertise and training

:34:23.:34:25.

which can help turn that doctrine into effect. Medicine some frontier

:34:26.:34:40.

say Yemenis are free to go to the cholera treatment centre. Jeered

:34:41.:34:46.

declared this was an unintentional mistake along with facilities

:34:47.:34:53.

elsewhere. All of these were hit by Saudi bombs. How many hospitals

:34:54.:34:57.

protected by international humanitarian law will the secretary

:34:58.:35:00.

of state allow to be hit by Saudi Arabia before he stopped selling

:35:01.:35:05.

them bombs? The Honourable lady talks as though there is only one

:35:06.:35:09.

party in this particular dispute in this part of the world, and

:35:10.:35:18.

unfortunately it is not. We take the absolute the queer risk criteria

:35:19.:35:23.

very seriously but I'm afraid making the sort of uninformed point she

:35:24.:35:27.

does for propaganda purposes does not help the humanitarian situation.

:35:28.:35:33.

Would he agree with me that amongst our many security objectives and

:35:34.:35:38.

values, keeping faith with important allies and being a reliable security

:35:39.:35:42.

partner should be among the most important and so our allies today

:35:43.:35:47.

can see we take these important decisions rigorously, with due

:35:48.:35:49.

process which they deserve, and under the rule of law? He is right.

:35:50.:35:57.

Protection of our allies and working with them is extremely important.

:35:58.:36:02.

But it is almost important that they had themselves understand we will

:36:03.:36:06.

rigorously apply the criteria that we have set out and been party to

:36:07.:36:10.

international agreement for. I think getting the balance right between

:36:11.:36:13.

those things is exactly what the Government has sought to achieve.

:36:14.:36:18.

Will the secretary of state please enlighten us as to why he does not

:36:19.:36:23.

take more notice of the foreign and Commonwealth offices reports into

:36:24.:36:25.

countries of concern for human and repression? Perhaps we are talking

:36:26.:36:34.

about a different judgment, because the judgment makes very clear that

:36:35.:36:39.

we did take very clear account of the advice given by the Foreign

:36:40.:36:42.

Office and indeed sought further advice from the Foreign Office when

:36:43.:36:50.

it was necessary. Does he agree that closed sessions are absolutely

:36:51.:36:52.

standard in litigation of this nature and it is nature wrong to

:36:53.:36:56.

seek to undermine a clear and impartial ruling of the High Court

:36:57.:36:59.

which confirms the rigorous and detailed scrutiny. I think there is

:37:00.:37:06.

a danger in making that sort of attack on the court system. Not

:37:07.:37:12.

least because secret or classified evidence was open to challenge by

:37:13.:37:15.

the special advocates representing the claimants in this case. The

:37:16.:37:21.

Secretary of State will be aware of reports by the BBC and Danish

:37:22.:37:26.

newspapers in relation to the sale of surveillance and decryption

:37:27.:37:30.

technology to Saudi Arabia by British companies via Danish subsidy

:37:31.:37:34.

Aries. This has been used to crush internal dissent and has a potential

:37:35.:37:41.

impact on UK security. Will they be reviewing legislation and oversight

:37:42.:37:44.

procedures governing sales of this data? If any individual or gaunt

:37:45.:37:52.

organisation has evidence they believe quite clearly illustrates

:37:53.:37:55.

wrongdoing they should bring it to the attention of the Government in

:37:56.:38:00.

detail. Could this judgment we have heard today shows the UK is very

:38:01.:38:06.

robust in its licensing criteria but in light of this decision could he

:38:07.:38:10.

reassures the house that under decision decisions to grant such

:38:11.:38:15.

licences are and occasion and indication humanitarian law? The

:38:16.:38:24.

judgment makes clear it is the case. I think that those who criticise the

:38:25.:38:29.

UK system should look to see how robust we are in comparison to other

:38:30.:38:33.

countries. I think it would do everybody in this country good to

:38:34.:38:38.

recognise how robust and clear we are in the decisions we make and how

:38:39.:38:45.

transparent we are in their contact. The secretary of state rightly draws

:38:46.:38:52.

attention to the robust nature of the wording in the document produced

:38:53.:38:58.

by the courts. Does he agree that because this judgment relates to a

:38:59.:39:06.

decision under the EU consolidation criteria that it will be extremely

:39:07.:39:13.

important that in future we continue to maintain control of arms exports

:39:14.:39:18.

at least as strong as under the existing EU Consolidated criteria?

:39:19.:39:25.

It is slightly worrying to me how often I do agree with the honourable

:39:26.:39:28.

gentleman, and I find myself doing so again today. It is not what the

:39:29.:39:34.

criteria are called, it is what they contain that matters. And the

:39:35.:39:39.

content has clearly stood the rigour of scrutiny by the court today and I

:39:40.:39:44.

completely agree with him that it would be wayward to say the least

:39:45.:39:48.

for any Government to consider criteria that were any less rigorous

:39:49.:39:51.

than the ones we have today. He doesn't look worried at all. He

:39:52.:39:56.

looks in a state of high contentment. Anyone would think that

:39:57.:40:00.

Christmas had come early. But I suppose it is always good when

:40:01.:40:01.

people agree with one. Could she tell you House that the

:40:02.:40:13.

High Court had before it all the information needed in order to reach

:40:14.:40:17.

the judgment? That was very much the view of the court. Could I ask if he

:40:18.:40:26.

continues to promote the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia what regard

:40:27.:40:29.

this Government has today factor for hundred and 57 people were executed

:40:30.:40:32.

there last year including minors and four young men arrested as minus

:40:33.:40:41.

remain at imminent risk of execution by crucifixion? By our engagement

:40:42.:40:49.

with Saudi Arabia be able to raise any reservations that we have about

:40:50.:40:53.

international humanitarian law or human rights which we do. At the

:40:54.:41:01.

last Parliament urged to quit some period of time for the committee on

:41:02.:41:04.

Arms export controls to be set up. Will my friend speak to the Leader

:41:05.:41:12.

of the House speak to the two C of this committee can be set up as

:41:13.:41:19.

quickly as possible? The usual channels will have heard the view, I

:41:20.:41:24.

have no objection to be such a committee being in place, it is a

:41:25.:41:28.

balanced judgment as to whether we have such a committee or not but as

:41:29.:41:33.

I have said any committee looking into the property decision of

:41:34.:41:35.

ministers should be welcomed by ministers as well as the House as a

:41:36.:41:41.

whole. In 2013 in the Government launched its plan on business human

:41:42.:41:48.

rights to great fanfare but subsequent questions revealed that

:41:49.:41:50.

appears to be little more than a piece of paper. Not an action plan.

:41:51.:41:56.

How does that suppose it action plan and former business Roshan ship with

:41:57.:41:59.

Saudi Arabia and how will it going forward? It will not be affected by

:42:00.:42:06.

this judgment because it said that the Government was carrying out a

:42:07.:42:12.

rigorous and responsible and rational view of the decisions on

:42:13.:42:15.

defence exports. I would have thought that the House might have

:42:16.:42:18.

been pleased that our systems are working so clearly and transparently

:42:19.:42:24.

well. I visited Saudi Arabia as part of a cross-party delegation in April

:42:25.:42:28.

and have declared this in the register. It is quite right that

:42:29.:42:32.

arms exports are subject to legal challenge and everyone agrees about

:42:33.:42:40.

the material crisis and Yemen but I was surprised to learn that 65,000

:42:41.:42:45.

shells and rockets have been fired from Yemen and Saudi Arabia, that

:42:46.:42:49.

there have been civilian deaths and injuries and Saudi Arabia, civilians

:42:50.:42:54.

have been evacuated and displaced and hospitals damaged all and Saudi

:42:55.:42:57.

Arabia. Would you welcome more balanced coverage of this

:42:58.:43:05.

distressing conflict? He makes a very important point that this was

:43:06.:43:13.

not a conflict that Saudi Arabia or the coalition sought and they have a

:43:14.:43:16.

legitimate right of self-defence and they have a legitimate right to

:43:17.:43:19.

acquire the means of conducting that self defence. It is quite clear that

:43:20.:43:26.

this is a bloody and brutal conflict and it requires a proper political

:43:27.:43:33.

settlement and to continue with humanitarian and automatic efforts

:43:34.:43:36.

and he is right that we could not do any harm to have a little more

:43:37.:43:43.

objective than simply a one-sided blast that we have seen rather too

:43:44.:43:51.

often in this House and elsewhere. Today's judgment was unequivocal.

:43:52.:43:54.

Really Government has failed as an advancing the peace process and

:43:55.:43:56.

Yemen and that includes Saudi Arabia. When will we see the

:43:57.:44:03.

Government make progress on a peace settlement for that country? This

:44:04.:44:09.

Government is doing all it can to help take that process forward.

:44:10.:44:15.

Where it is so simple that we could simply unilaterally create a

:44:16.:44:18.

solution in that walk on part of the world. We are doing what we can to

:44:19.:44:22.

help our allies reached a settlement and we will continue to do so. It is

:44:23.:44:27.

easy monetary disaster but we sadly don't have it unilaterally in our

:44:28.:44:33.

power to bring it to an end. -- humanitarian disaster. I will take

:44:34.:44:41.

the points of order no because there are many of them. The two honourable

:44:42.:44:53.

gentleman can wait. On a point of order, during the most recent

:44:54.:45:00.

business energy and industrial strategy questions, I raised the

:45:01.:45:03.

case of local employers misleading workers about the rights to holiday

:45:04.:45:07.

pay. I was assured that the Government have increased the power

:45:08.:45:12.

is open to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs to enforce those rights. I

:45:13.:45:17.

have received a written answer from the same minister stating that HM

:45:18.:45:23.

Revenue and Customs has no powers to sanction companies from uploading

:45:24.:45:27.

holiday pay. The Minister has given me to Asda is stating the complete

:45:28.:45:30.

opposite and the space of a few days. Clearly one or other of those

:45:31.:45:35.

answers must be wrong and double I am not out of the new to this place

:45:36.:45:39.

I was given to understand that ministers were a particular

:45:40.:45:44.

obligation not to mislead the House even if inadvertently. More

:45:45.:45:46.

importantly this leaves us unable to say for certain what the Government

:45:47.:45:50.

is actually going to do about the problem I raised. Can you advise me

:45:51.:45:53.

whether there is any way to bring the minister back to the House to

:45:54.:45:56.

tell us which of her answers as final? And grateful for the point of

:45:57.:46:04.

order and courtesy in giving me advance notice of it. There was also

:46:05.:46:10.

exceptionally helpful to attach to her proposed point of order the text

:46:11.:46:20.

of those two answers. I must say that textual exegesis is of the

:46:21.:46:24.

essence in these matters. I have pored over the two answers and

:46:25.:46:27.

sought to reflect on whether they might in some way be not

:46:28.:46:35.

incompatible with each other. But such a conclusion is beyond my

:46:36.:46:41.

limited intellectual capacities. It certainly appears that the two

:46:42.:46:44.

answers are echoes of reconcilable. One must be correct and therefore

:46:45.:46:50.

one must not be. It is quit difficult to see how one can

:46:51.:46:53.

increase power is open to her HMO see if in fact we have no such

:46:54.:47:01.

powers at all. We mattered as I think require some clarification.

:47:02.:47:04.

The honourable lady has made her concern clear. The content of

:47:05.:47:09.

answers is not a matter for the chair but our concern has been

:47:10.:47:12.

conveyed to the Minister in the sense that the presenters of the

:47:13.:47:16.

Treasury bench will have heard it at her point will be recorded in the

:47:17.:47:21.

official report. If the Minister considers that she has

:47:22.:47:26.

unintentionally misled the House I'm sure she will take steps to put the

:47:27.:47:32.

record straight. I advise on the honourable lady to watch this space

:47:33.:47:37.

and see whether such an attempt at corrective action is made. If it is,

:47:38.:47:42.

she will be happy. If it isn't, my advice to her would be to become to

:47:43.:47:45.

the matter through further questioning or possibly if necessary

:47:46.:47:50.

in extremists by a recourse to the chair. Given the importance of

:47:51.:48:04.

parliamentary scrutiny on arms export controls, would you believe

:48:05.:48:10.

there is anything preventing the committees on arms export controls

:48:11.:48:15.

or other committees to be able to review and look at classified

:48:16.:48:18.

information that was relevant to these matters provided that the

:48:19.:48:20.

necessary security clearances were obtained? Wouldn't be anything

:48:21.:48:29.

preventing that? I would say that the only thing I can imagine of the

:48:30.:48:34.

top of my head that would prevent that would be a Government refusal

:48:35.:48:42.

to divulge the information on the grounds that it was classified ad

:48:43.:48:46.

that the relative department or agency didn't think such site by the

:48:47.:48:51.

committee was necessary or desirable. Otherwise there is

:48:52.:48:58.

nothing to prevent it. If such a committee were to seek it, it might

:48:59.:49:06.

find that its search was successful. If it had anything to do with the

:49:07.:49:10.

prodigious efforts of the honourable gentleman, I'm sure it would have a

:49:11.:49:12.

very good chance of being successful. I hope that'll do for no

:49:13.:49:17.

because that is the best answer I can offer. During the statements

:49:18.:49:24.

just now, there were strong cross-party support for the

:49:25.:49:26.

re-establishment of the committees on arms export controls. In the

:49:27.:49:29.

previous parliament that committee ceased to meet because one of its

:49:30.:49:35.

component select committees voted to unilaterally leave the committee.

:49:36.:49:38.

Can I ask you to use your good offices to ensure that what both the

:49:39.:49:42.

Secretary of State and Shadow Secretary and SNP spokesperson said

:49:43.:49:44.

during the statement is fulfilled and we re-establish the committees

:49:45.:49:51.

as as soon as possible? It would be desirable for Parliament and for the

:49:52.:49:58.

scrutiny of the executive branch by Parliament for that committee to be

:49:59.:50:02.

re-established sooner rather than later. The word of caution caveat

:50:03.:50:12.

that I insert which you will appreciate is that unless I am much

:50:13.:50:16.

mistaken, that committee can be established only when what might be

:50:17.:50:21.

called the feeder or constituent committees have themselves been

:50:22.:50:27.

established. That requires, I must say to you, not merely the election

:50:28.:50:35.

of the chair is of those committees which is due to take place on

:50:36.:50:40.

Wednesday of this week, but the election by such methods as they has

:50:41.:50:45.

adopted by the respective parties of their member contingent on those

:50:46.:50:54.

committees. I have not been given much encouragement to think that

:50:55.:50:59.

those committees will be fully constituted by the time of the

:51:00.:51:04.

summer recess though I must say to the honourable gentleman that it

:51:05.:51:08.

would be perfectly possible fully to constitute all of the select

:51:09.:51:13.

committees by the time of the summer recess if there were a proper will

:51:14.:51:19.

to do so. If it were the case that none of the constituent political

:51:20.:51:23.

parties was interested in getting its act together, but I think would

:51:24.:51:26.

reflect very badly on them to be frank. The issue is not the interest

:51:27.:51:33.

of the party but the interest of Parliament. Never transpired that

:51:34.:51:37.

some parties were ready to elect their members to those committees

:51:38.:51:40.

and other parties were not, that would look very bad for the parties

:51:41.:51:45.

that were not ready. They have a responsibility in this matter and I

:51:46.:51:50.

don't wish to say this and kindly but it is absolutely natural that

:51:51.:52:01.

the seal and enthusiasm to establish the it site committees scrutinise

:52:02.:52:05.

the executive branch are never as obvious within the executive branch

:52:06.:52:11.

as they are within Parliament. As Speaker, I am concerned about

:52:12.:52:17.

Parliament exercising its rates and Parliament doing its duty. I would

:52:18.:52:23.

rather hope that to put it bluntly, instead of faffing around, we could

:52:24.:52:30.

get on with this matter. Further to that point of order, in defence of

:52:31.:52:35.

the former Foreign Affairs Committee, it must be said that I

:52:36.:52:39.

think the reason for their withdrawal from the committees on

:52:40.:52:42.

arms export controls was the unauthorised leaking of a draft

:52:43.:52:48.

report so it was a more compact situation than was first suggested.

:52:49.:52:58.

Is there anyway reverting to the question, given that they understand

:52:59.:53:02.

the need to 22 committee hasn't held its elections and it would normally

:53:03.:53:08.

handle the election of ordinary members to the select committees, is

:53:09.:53:12.

there anyway that the resources of the House might be involved in some

:53:13.:53:16.

way in assisting this process to get underway more quickly in the absence

:53:17.:53:21.

of the election of members of the executive of the need to 22

:53:22.:53:28.

committee to a minister? I would quibble with your first point, I

:53:29.:53:35.

don't want to enter into the dispute about what caused the ceasing to

:53:36.:53:39.

operate that committee. I simply note what he said. So far as the

:53:40.:53:45.

second point is concerned, I note that he used the word the offices of

:53:46.:53:54.

the 1922 normally handle the election of members. To put it

:53:55.:54:00.

bluntly, but the officers of the 1922 committee usually do in respect

:54:01.:54:06.

of their party is to put it very simply to oversee the count. As to

:54:07.:54:16.

whether the officers of the 1922 committee of our elected, that is a

:54:17.:54:23.

party matter. Overseeing the count does not require the qualities of

:54:24.:54:26.

Einstein. It is a pretty prosaic task. I don't think it would be

:54:27.:54:31.

great to see that the resources of the House can be made available and

:54:32.:54:36.

what is essentially the oversight of the matter undertaken by parties.

:54:37.:54:41.

However it seems to me perfectly feasible of my colleagues were so

:54:42.:54:47.

willing that the Deputy speakers and I could volunteer services to

:54:48.:54:50.

oversee the count of the House thought that that was helpful. My

:54:51.:54:55.

basic point I think stands, do colleagues want these committees to

:54:56.:55:00.

be set up sooner rather than later? If they don't that is a pity but if

:55:01.:55:03.

they do within those of us who are of good will and can be relied upon

:55:04.:55:07.

to conduct the count perfect family would I suspect be very happy to

:55:08.:55:11.

offer our services. I can hardly be more explicit. I think Google leave

:55:12.:55:23.

it there for now. If there are no further points of order, we will

:55:24.:55:28.

note move on and specifically I want to call Diana Johnson to make an

:55:29.:55:33.

application for leave to propose a debate on a specific and important

:55:34.:55:36.

matter that should have urgent consideration under the terms of

:55:37.:55:40.

standing order number 24. The honourable member has to three

:55:41.:55:43.

minutes in which to make such an application.

:55:44.:55:47.

I seek leave to propose that the House should debate a specific and

:55:48.:55:53.

important matter that should have urgent consideration, namely the

:55:54.:55:57.

need for the Government to establish an independent public inquiry into

:55:58.:56:01.

being contaminated blood scandal, the worst treatment disaster in

:56:02.:56:05.

history of the NHS. In his valedictory speech to this House on

:56:06.:56:09.

the 25th of April 2017, B then Honourable member for Lee outlined a

:56:10.:56:15.

dossier of extremely serious allegations amounting to criminal

:56:16.:56:18.

conduct on the part of individuals involved in the contaminated blood

:56:19.:56:22.

scandal. He says that if the Government did not commit to a

:56:23.:56:27.

public inquiry before the summer recess, he was referred as evidence

:56:28.:56:31.

to the police. But then Parliamentary Under-Secretary of

:56:32.:56:34.

State for health asked him to submit his dossier of evidence to the

:56:35.:56:37.

Health Secretary which he did. She assured the House that this would be

:56:38.:56:43.

given the highest priority. However, we have heard nothing since then.

:56:44.:56:47.

And we now have further unanswered questions which underlined the need

:56:48.:56:51.

for an emergency debate. Best of all, last week, the Daily Mail set

:56:52.:56:56.

out evidence that as early as 1980, officials knew that 50 people with

:56:57.:57:00.

haemophilia per year were being infected with hepatitis C. Nothing

:57:01.:57:04.

was done about this for five years. Secondly, as reported in the Sunday

:57:05.:57:09.

Times, on Friday the 7th of July, the Westminster readers of all six

:57:10.:57:14.

non-government parties in the House of Commons, including the Democratic

:57:15.:57:18.

Unionist Party, wrote a joint letter to be Prime Minister urging her to

:57:19.:57:22.

commit to a Hillsborough style inquiry and thirdly yesterday, the

:57:23.:57:25.

Right Honourable Andy Burnham reaffirmed his commitment to take

:57:26.:57:32.

alleged criminality cases to the police confirmed he has an

:57:33.:57:36.

appointment on the 26th of July with the police. We are now fast

:57:37.:57:39.

approaching the summer recess airline, yet what little comments

:57:40.:57:41.

the Government has made is only adding to the confusion and

:57:42.:57:45.

strengthening the case for this emergency debate application. It

:57:46.:57:49.

would appear that the Secretary of State for Health has not considered

:57:50.:57:52.

the dossier as promised on the 25th of April. And last week, but the

:57:53.:57:57.

Prime Minister and a Leader of the House of Commons responded to

:57:58.:58:02.

questions about scandals, one for myself and the other from my right

:58:03.:58:04.

honourable friend the member for Newport East, yet neither address

:58:05.:58:07.

the direct question about the need for a public inquiry. Indeed, both

:58:08.:58:11.

raised further confusion by referring to the financial support

:58:12.:58:17.

for those affecting as compensation, contradicting the position taken by

:58:18.:58:22.

previous ministers. Mr Speaker, please recent developments have been

:58:23.:58:27.

extremely significant. The letter of the 7th of July raises the prospect

:58:28.:58:31.

that if this matter, the matter of a public inquiry, were to be put to a

:58:32.:58:35.

vote in this House, it would command the support of the majority of

:58:36.:58:39.

members of Parliament. For all the reasons I have outlined, I believe

:58:40.:58:43.

that we now need an emergency debate and for the Government to do the

:58:44.:58:46.

right thing and secure justice for those affected in this scandal,

:58:47.:58:52.

including justice by the 2400 people who have already died. Here, here. I

:58:53.:59:01.

have listened carefully to the application from the honourable

:59:02.:59:04.

member and I am satisfied that their matter raised by her is proper to be

:59:05.:59:08.

discussed under the terms of standing order number 24. Has the

:59:09.:59:12.

honourable member the leave of the House? The honourable member has

:59:13.:59:24.

obtained the leave of the House. I can inform the House that the debate

:59:25.:59:27.

will be held... Thank you! Thank you very much. I can inform the House

:59:28.:59:33.

that the debate will be held tomorrow, Tuesday the 11th of July,

:59:34.:59:37.

as the first item of public business. The debate... Excuse me

:59:38.:59:44.

the debate, colleagues, will last for up the hours and will arise on

:59:45.:59:49.

emotion that the House has considered the specified manner set

:59:50.:59:53.

out in the honourable member's application. She may wish to liaise

:59:54.:59:56.

either with my office or at the Clark says that the precise wording,

:59:57.:00:01.

but I think was referenced in her initial application to me and it

:00:02.:00:07.

conveys the gravel and of the issue in terms that are unmistakable. So I

:00:08.:00:10.

hope that is helpful to the honourable member and the House

:00:11.:00:16.

which has a little under 24 hours, or 24 about hours' notice. Perhaps a

:00:17.:00:20.

bit less than that, but anyway, it has notice of the intended debate.

:00:21.:00:29.

Thank you. The clerk will now proceed to read the orders of the

:00:30.:00:35.

day. Telecommunications infrastructure, nondomestic rates

:00:36.:00:42.

bill second reading. Now. Thank you. To move the second reading of the

:00:43.:00:48.

bill, I called the Minister of State, Minister Matt Hancock. Thank

:00:49.:00:55.

you very much, Mr Ziegler. I bid to move that the bill now be ready

:00:56.:00:59.

second time. Mr Speaker, we all know in this House of the importance of

:01:00.:01:03.

being connected whether through traditional means or increasingly

:01:04.:01:07.

through digital connections. Whether the next generation of broadband

:01:08.:01:11.

technology, better mobile phone coverage, or preparing for the next

:01:12.:01:16.

generation of five G. And this bill is all about improved connectivity

:01:17.:01:19.

whether over fixed networks in the ground or using the Next Generation

:01:20.:01:26.

of mobile and wireless connectivity. What people care about is how

:01:27.:01:31.

well-connected they are. Your download speeds, upload speeds,

:01:32.:01:34.

reliability, latency and how quickly you get reconnected when there is a

:01:35.:01:38.

problem. It's a problem, Madam Deputy Speaker, that we can all

:01:39.:01:43.

identify with and if I may say so, it is a great pleasure to see you in

:01:44.:01:47.

the chair for the first time I have been at this dispatch box. Our task

:01:48.:01:52.

is to prepare for a world of considerably greater demand for

:01:53.:01:55.

digital connectivity and just as Moore 's law states that the cost of

:01:56.:02:01.

computing Hafeez year, so Nielsen's law has seen the doubling of data

:02:02.:02:07.

demands every two as world-class collectivity is important for people

:02:08.:02:11.

to function in the modern world, whether that be at work or at play.

:02:12.:02:16.

And it will continue to transform our public services and bring

:02:17.:02:18.

efficiency is important for people to function in the modern world,

:02:19.:02:21.

whether that be at work or at play. And it will continue to transform

:02:22.:02:23.

our public services and bring efficiencies there the challenge is

:02:24.:02:26.

always to stay one step ahead of needs. We need the digital of a

:02:27.:02:30.

structure that can support this, providing ubiquitous coverage so

:02:31.:02:35.

that no one is left out. With sufficient capacity to ensure data

:02:36.:02:38.

can flow at the volume, with the speed and with the reliability to

:02:39.:02:42.

meet the demands of modern life. All these connections rely on Britain

:02:43.:02:46.

laying more fibre-optic cable, whether that is the fibre all the

:02:47.:02:51.

way to the premise or to each home and to ease business or the fibre

:02:52.:02:57.

underpinning the mobile network, all modern collectivity runs off a

:02:58.:03:01.

fiver. Around five years ago, we took a strategic decision as a

:03:02.:03:05.

nation to roll out high-speed broadband based largely on eight

:03:06.:03:09.

part five are part of what copper network and superfast broadband

:03:10.:03:14.

delivered in this way is now available to 93% of UK homes and

:03:15.:03:19.

businesses and we rank amongst the Mac first amongst the big European

:03:20.:03:24.

states for superfast connections on track to reach 95% by the end of

:03:25.:03:28.

this year. In discussing this, may I pay tribute to my right honourable

:03:29.:03:34.

friend the member for Wantage, who did so much and never let me forget!

:03:35.:03:46.

How much he did to deliver first-rate, high-quality, superfast

:03:47.:03:49.

broadband connectivity to homes and businesses around the country that

:03:50.:03:54.

now allows us to say that 93% have access to, but not necessarily all

:03:55.:03:58.

take up, superfast broadband. I will give way. I thank the Right

:03:59.:04:03.

Honourable does never been so quick to give an intervention but may I

:04:04.:04:07.

suggest he is a little paint is glossy and positive in his approach

:04:08.:04:11.

because I think we have received a number of complaints and yet the

:04:12.:04:14.

grin on his face suggests quite the opposite. That was me talking about

:04:15.:04:18.

what we have done so far. Wait until I talk about what we need to do in

:04:19.:04:23.

the future. I agree very strongly with heard that there is much more

:04:24.:04:27.

that we need to do. I will come onto that because that is what the bulk

:04:28.:04:30.

of the speech is all about and indeed, that's what this bill is all

:04:31.:04:34.

about and if she caught the view that she espouses, I look forward to

:04:35.:04:36.

her marching through the division lobbies and support later. Precisely

:04:37.:04:44.

on the point she raises, of course, 7% of people don't yet have access

:04:45.:04:50.

to superfast connections or 7% of premises, I should say. And so we

:04:51.:04:55.

are introducing the new broadband universal service obligation so that

:04:56.:04:59.

by 2020, everyone has the access to a minimum level of service. This

:05:00.:05:03.

will provide a vital safety net and make sure that nobody is left behind

:05:04.:05:07.

as the country takes these strides towards better connectivity. Yet

:05:08.:05:14.

even this isn't enough. Demand marches on. People's needs and

:05:15.:05:19.

expectations have risen further and will continue to keep on rising. So

:05:20.:05:24.

we need to, yes, celebrate what we have done so far but also deliver

:05:25.:05:30.

deeper connectivity now and in the future to support a competitive

:05:31.:05:32.

market and to make sure that we get this infrastructure in the ground.

:05:33.:05:38.

We must work now to deliver the next generation of technologies, 5G and

:05:39.:05:42.

five over the decades ahead. This bill is part of a suite of actions

:05:43.:05:47.

we are taking to boost to Britain's fibre. We will break down barriers

:05:48.:05:52.

to better broadband for visitors and get quicker collectivity for

:05:53.:05:57.

consumers. First, in the Digital economy act, we reformed the

:05:58.:06:00.

electronic communications code which regulates agreements between people

:06:01.:06:04.

who provide the sites and the digital communication operators.

:06:05.:06:08.

This new code will make it easier for electronic communications in the

:06:09.:06:10.

structure to be deployed, maintained and upgraded and we are currently

:06:11.:06:14.

finalising the regulations needed to support the new Golden planned to

:06:15.:06:18.

commence it later this year when the work has been completed. Second,

:06:19.:06:22.

with the separation of open reach from BT, we will see a more

:06:23.:06:26.

competitive market with an Open reach that will serve our customers

:06:27.:06:31.

well, not just focus on BT. This decision has been largely welcomed

:06:32.:06:35.

by BT's competitors and is the result of some intense negotiations

:06:36.:06:39.

between off, and BT and I think it is the right outcome and the one

:06:40.:06:43.

that will ensure Openreach delivers not just for its customers but for

:06:44.:06:48.

the whole country. Third, we support the fibre roll-out through a 400

:06:49.:06:53.

million digital infrastructure investment fund to help competitors

:06:54.:06:56.

in the market to reach scale and to deliver. The fund will improve

:06:57.:07:04.

access to funding for alternative providers for fibre infrastructure

:07:05.:07:07.

to allow them to compete with larger players. Well that assist those

:07:08.:07:15.

areas of which there seemed to be a great number in my old constituency

:07:16.:07:19.

where one part of, say, a market town or small village has actually

:07:20.:07:23.

had the box upgraded by BT but because some of the users are a few

:07:24.:07:29.

yards further away from the box, with longer copper wires, they can't

:07:30.:07:36.

get a decent service? It may well help, but the thing that will really

:07:37.:07:40.

help those people is the universal service obligation. That means that

:07:41.:07:48.

everybody will have a right to a high-speed broadband connection so

:07:49.:07:51.

they can get connected. Some of these will be delivered by the

:07:52.:07:54.

next-generation full fibre collectivity. Some of them by the

:07:55.:08:00.

existing technology, but part of our whole package of measures which

:08:01.:08:04.

delivers better broadband and quicker collectivity will ensure

:08:05.:08:09.

that we reach those people who frustratingly can be just a few

:08:10.:08:14.

yards away, further away, from the box or indeed see the bitter fibre

:08:15.:08:18.

go down the road in front of them but not be connected. I welcome this

:08:19.:08:22.

bill, I think this is essential for moving the country forward in making

:08:23.:08:25.

our businesses are strong as possible, but even in the centre of

:08:26.:08:31.

Thompson, Taunton Deane and the county town Taunton, there are areas

:08:32.:08:33.

they still cannot get fast broadband so I wonder if the Minister might

:08:34.:08:37.

tell us how quickly they might be able to take advantage of this new

:08:38.:08:43.

service? The universal service obligation is in the law to make

:08:44.:08:47.

sure that everybody can have access to that service by 2020, but that is

:08:48.:08:52.

an end state. That is a deadline. As I said earlier, we have now reached

:08:53.:08:58.

93% of premises. Crucially, this is access to broadband for 92% of

:08:59.:09:02.

broadband. You still have to take it up and everybody who takes up the

:09:03.:09:06.

service, if it is in a subsidised area, then puts more money into the

:09:07.:09:11.

box we can get more out and give access to superfast broadband to

:09:12.:09:16.

more people and so we have gone from 42% in 2010 when my right honourable

:09:17.:09:21.

friend for Wantage took up the reins of delivering this. Just 42% of the

:09:22.:09:26.

country had it, now it is 93% have access to it, on track to get to 95%

:09:27.:09:31.

by the end of the year and 100% of premises will have access to

:09:32.:09:36.

high-speed broadband by 2020. As she can see, we are rolling that out.

:09:37.:09:41.

But the crucial thing is that that is delivering today's technology

:09:42.:09:45.

that delivers the needs of the average household today. But we

:09:46.:09:48.

also, at the same time, need to make sure we are ahead of the curve on

:09:49.:09:52.

the next generation of technology and so the digital investment fund

:09:53.:09:59.

will... The idea here is that it supports the commercial finance of

:10:00.:10:01.

alternative developers so we get more players into the market. It's

:10:02.:10:06.

not just BT and Version, but more players into the market and the

:10:07.:10:12.

Government's investment will be matched by private sector investment

:10:13.:10:15.

so we expected to capitalise more private investment and bring over ?1

:10:16.:10:21.

billion of investment over all, we hope, into full fibre broadband,

:10:22.:10:24.

getting very high speeds that some people need and want now but many,

:10:25.:10:27.

many more will in the future as these demands increase.

:10:28.:10:35.

Referring back to the universal service obligation which is a

:10:36.:10:46.

revolution in provision by wonder if she could indicate greater

:10:47.:10:48.

constituents are like this noteworthy cost cap is going to be

:10:49.:10:52.

and whether he will burnish his credentials are as a hero of the

:10:53.:10:57.

rule Britain or not? I know it'd take a condiment as a threat. --

:10:58.:11:08.

compliment. It all depends on the technology because for some places

:11:09.:11:11.

and there are a long way away from the existing network it may cost an

:11:12.:11:16.

awful lot to Dick a trench and get a piece of fibre or the rate to them

:11:17.:11:23.

and new technologies are coming on stream to beam a signal from one

:11:24.:11:29.

place to another and as a last resort satellite technologies which

:11:30.:11:33.

are good but just not as reliable. That means that everybody can get

:11:34.:11:39.

connected to the aim is to get decent speed broadband to every

:11:40.:11:44.

premise that wants them but to make sure that as much of that is as

:11:45.:11:48.

feasibly possible is covered by a fixed network but also using

:11:49.:11:50.

technologies to reach the hardest to reach. Thank you for confirming that

:11:51.:12:01.

100% of properties will have access by 2020 but will he confirm what

:12:02.:12:04.

speeds they will have access to? There is a range of 2 megabits per

:12:05.:12:12.

second and 24 megabits per second, what range of speeds as he talking

:12:13.:12:17.

about? 10 megabits per second as a minimum and that is the off,

:12:18.:12:25.

analysis of the needs today of the average household because this is

:12:26.:12:27.

about making sure there is a service that everybody can use. As we ask

:12:28.:12:33.

people to pay their taxes and get the passport online or indeed or

:12:34.:12:39.

indeed do their applications for payment services for example, it is

:12:40.:12:43.

perfectly reasonable request back to us in Government that people should

:12:44.:12:47.

have a decent level broadband. If you want to be related top level,

:12:48.:12:52.

then people may have to pay more for that and I think that is not a

:12:53.:12:56.

reasonable either. We are saying there must be a decent level of

:12:57.:13:00.

high-speed broadband. At the moment we have said 10 megabits per second

:13:01.:13:03.

as a minimum but we have also said it has to be reviewed in an upper

:13:04.:13:11.

selection in due course. I speak as someone whose constituency is one

:13:12.:13:22.

big roadworks and 52 premises is welcomed by people Robert

:13:23.:13:27.

committees. Will you be able to help us concerns you might have about

:13:28.:13:33.

this discussion with the valuations office agency who seem to not

:13:34.:13:38.

understand the way the world is and at the click of a bureaucrat's

:13:39.:13:46.

modes, cancel radically alter the finances of a local authority in

:13:47.:13:54.

terms of how business rate networks. I beef we are committed to

:13:55.:13:59.

e-business reach review to look at the existing fibre that is currently

:14:00.:14:03.

in the ground and I'm sure the Secretary of State and Minister will

:14:04.:14:09.

have hurt him but the heart of this bill is making sure that new fibre

:14:10.:14:13.

that goes into the ground will have no such right at all for the next

:14:14.:14:17.

five years and that is why we're here legislating today to make sure

:14:18.:14:20.

that companies like the one mentioned can get on and this fibre

:14:21.:14:27.

and stick it into the ground has sufficient it and cheaply as

:14:28.:14:32.

possible and reduce the tax on that. The next thing fibre is important

:14:33.:14:40.

for its gentleman thief IG strategy, including a cut and shut up

:14:41.:14:44.

products. You want mobile phone coverage where people live and work

:14:45.:14:52.

and travel. We are working with off, to make sure they are five G ready

:14:53.:15:01.

and working right across Government to make sure we get the rules around

:15:02.:15:05.

putting that infrastructure in place right. We are supporting 5G pilots

:15:06.:15:13.

so we can rule out the first 5G next year which will mean Britain will be

:15:14.:15:20.

a global leader in 5G. All 5G Robert is supported by fibre. You cant have

:15:21.:15:28.

a 5G mask of 35 connecting it to the network. The programme is about

:15:29.:15:34.

supporting local bodies testability market for fibre connectivity. You

:15:35.:15:39.

can't deliver this with some sort of entirely nationalised top-down

:15:40.:15:43.

taxpayer funded system. You have to do it in collaboration with the

:15:44.:15:50.

private sector. The local fibre networks programme is being

:15:51.:15:52.

delivered in support of local bodies to encourage the market to provide

:15:53.:15:57.

more fibre connectivity for instance through the public sector anchor

:15:58.:16:00.

tenancy which will bring public sector broadband demand together in

:16:01.:16:03.

an area to create an anchor customer to make sure that there is investors

:16:04.:16:06.

know there is enough revenue to reduce the risk of building a new

:16:07.:16:10.

network directly connecting into public sector buildings and schools

:16:11.:16:13.

and hospitals and at the same team will improve the connectivity for

:16:14.:16:16.

those working in our vital public services. And bringing fibre closer

:16:17.:16:21.

to more homes and businesses allowing them to be connected as

:16:22.:16:26.

well. The first will begin later in the year. It is a great example of

:16:27.:16:30.

the public and private sector working together to improve

:16:31.:16:34.

connectivity for all. Our business broadband fibre connection of

:16:35.:16:38.

vouchers, this is incredibly exciting afflict me you are

:16:39.:16:41.

frustrated at the poor quality of broadband been delivered to

:16:42.:16:46.

businesses. Any last parliament we had a really effective voucher

:16:47.:16:51.

scheme for superfast broadband for businesses and this will be trialled

:16:52.:16:55.

by the end of the year. It will be for full fibre connections for

:16:56.:16:58.

businesses and we will roll it out more widely in 2018 to help

:16:59.:17:02.

businesses get the best fibre broadband because we notes are many

:17:03.:17:06.

jobs and business growth depends on it. This Bill takes a further step,

:17:07.:17:11.

business rates are an important source of revenue for local services

:17:12.:17:15.

but have long been sated by the Telecom service as a barrier to

:17:16.:17:21.

investment. Has been consternation about how these rates have been

:17:22.:17:25.

acculturated with the perception of a disparity right for fairness and

:17:26.:17:31.

the rates paid by some operators like BT and virgin media and smaller

:17:32.:17:38.

alternative networks. The rating methodology as a matter for the

:17:39.:17:41.

independent VOA that has been working with the sector on this but

:17:42.:17:45.

this is a complex work and we haven't got a moment to waste. We

:17:46.:17:49.

recognise the urgent need to go the urgent mail so in the Autumn

:17:50.:17:56.

Statement last year the Chancellor announced 100% rates relief on all

:17:57.:17:59.

new fibre networks repeat of five years from April 2017 with any

:18:00.:18:04.

relief to that date. We will find a group of fuel a full fibre future

:18:05.:18:10.

and we have brought forward at this Bill Elliott in this Parliament to

:18:11.:18:16.

bring forward the changes to legislation to make it happen. The

:18:17.:18:21.

bill introduces new rules into each provision for business rates to

:18:22.:18:24.

allow us to vary the rates bill for telecommunication infrastructure

:18:25.:18:27.

which will be set so that no rates are paid on new fibre for five years

:18:28.:18:35.

from the April just gone. I'm grateful for giving way. Does he

:18:36.:18:43.

think the five-year period will be sufficient to incentivise the

:18:44.:18:46.

players and the market to get on and roll out this fibre broadband and

:18:47.:18:51.

can he try and ensure that in doing that we get coverage across the

:18:52.:18:54.

country that is just starting any easy to reach areas first? There is

:18:55.:19:02.

no doubt that the five-year business rates according shows that we are

:19:03.:19:07.

reducing the cost of getting this fibre into the ground. It is time

:19:08.:19:11.

limited so my message to alternative providers and the big players is get

:19:12.:19:16.

on with it. Make use of this relief while it is available. It gives us

:19:17.:19:19.

time through the business rates review and the VOA to look at the

:19:20.:19:25.

context is in this of a reasonable period of time and come forward with

:19:26.:19:37.

a long-term sustainable scheme and and I'm sure Hansard from excess but

:19:38.:19:45.

similarly eloquent, I can't remember right was up to and I have lost my

:19:46.:19:52.

train of thought... The other thing is, the final thing I was going to

:19:53.:19:56.

say is that it will give us the opportunity towards the end of that

:19:57.:19:59.

period to decide whether five years has been long enough and whether we

:20:00.:20:04.

want to extend it. The fact it is a five-year period demonstrates that

:20:05.:20:09.

people should get on with it and it will be no shorter than five years,

:20:10.:20:13.

I can reassure you of that Diane Whipple for the intervention because

:20:14.:20:15.

it allowed me to completely get confused with my own points.

:20:16.:20:25.

Entitled is all part of an effort for the ?1.1 billion to support the

:20:26.:20:29.

market lead role of fibre broadband and ensure we are at the front of

:20:30.:20:34.

the queue for five G. There is a lot more work to be done. You will

:20:35.:20:38.

consult shortly on the technical details of implementation. The

:20:39.:20:42.

relief will introduce cost of 2.1, incentivise the market to deliver

:20:43.:20:47.

and I hope that in the spirit of cross-party collaboration, the bill

:20:48.:20:51.

will get support from all sides as it will benefit people right across

:20:52.:20:55.

our United Kingdom. We want to see a country where people are better

:20:56.:20:59.

connected, where everyone can get online and reach their full

:21:00.:21:02.

potential and make sure nobody is left behind. This bill provides a

:21:03.:21:06.

step on that journey and I commend the bill to the House. The question

:21:07.:21:15.

is that the bill be no read a second time. Thank you. Can I welcome you

:21:16.:21:23.

to nature, it is a pleasure to see you and your rightful place. Kerry

:21:24.:21:27.

also take this opportunity to welcome my shadow communities and

:21:28.:21:31.

local Government team, the honourable friend the member member

:21:32.:21:40.

for old west, the member for make a field and the member for Portsmouth

:21:41.:21:49.

South who has agreed to be my McAfee. We cautiously welcome the

:21:50.:21:59.

Government's apparent commitment for five years for all new investment in

:22:00.:22:03.

full fibre internet. I see cautiously and I will set out wide

:22:04.:22:10.

and the course of my speech. Until the last and from dimension the

:22:11.:22:13.

minister waxed lyrically for 20 minutes before he got onto the

:22:14.:22:18.

subject of a very short bill which is a business rate relief. We on the

:22:19.:22:24.

side of the housework and the opportunity to finally discuss a

:22:25.:22:27.

crucial piece of infrastructure policy which will have a huge impact

:22:28.:22:33.

on the potential investment opportunities for all other

:22:34.:22:35.

amenities over the coming decades. I do think it is rather ironic that on

:22:36.:22:43.

the day that pretty much all of the parliamentary internet connection

:22:44.:22:48.

own that we are talking about IT connections but nevertheless I have

:22:49.:22:51.

it on good assurance that the parliamentary offices at busily

:22:52.:22:56.

trying to reconnect MPs to their e-mail accounts and the intranet.

:22:57.:23:01.

All members all know that this policy will have an impact on every

:23:02.:23:10.

part of the country, urban or rule and we have to get this right.

:23:11.:23:17.

Members I'm sure will fuel the circular today as we and others duff

:23:18.:23:22.

struggle with the collapse of the internet across the Westminster

:23:23.:23:28.

estate. We are expecting a larger and more substantial bill here today

:23:29.:23:34.

not least considering the scope of investment and certainty needed both

:23:35.:23:37.

in terms of a full fibre infrastructure as well as on

:23:38.:23:41.

business rates more widely. It would appear that the Government has been

:23:42.:23:48.

an permanent listening mode for quite some known which would explain

:23:49.:23:52.

their decision to acquiesce to the concerns of independent and large

:23:53.:23:55.

internet providers who had the end of last year faced an excess of

:23:56.:23:58.

fourfold increase and there are rateable values. It has been

:23:59.:24:06.

estimated by the UK's main providers and broadband commission that UK 5G

:24:07.:24:11.

infrastructure will outstrip economic benefits of fibre broadband

:24:12.:24:17.

which most of the country and the users by 2026 when it will be

:24:18.:24:24.

outdated. By 2020 six the UK will reach a tipping point where the

:24:25.:24:32.

direct economic benefits will be the conventional fibre broadband.

:24:33.:24:35.

Various estimates point to a boost to the UK economy between five

:24:36.:24:40.

billion and ?7 billion just to six years from roll-out. With 5G

:24:41.:24:46.

broadband delivering economic growth almost twice as quickly as

:24:47.:24:48.

conventional fibre broadband use today. Much like a railways and

:24:49.:24:57.

roads thanks, the quicker the connection, the faster businesses

:24:58.:25:01.

will grow particularly in an age where online sales, social media and

:25:02.:25:06.

direct online contact with the buyers and sellers is becoming ever

:25:07.:25:08.

more the norm. Boasting all the productivity by a

:25:09.:25:29.

total of ?10 billion. As I've already mentioned, Madam Deputy

:25:30.:25:34.

seeker, this makes good sound economic sense. With improved

:25:35.:25:39.

collectivity comes greater economic growth, more jobs and improved links

:25:40.:25:44.

between business hubs and individuals alike. So whilst I'm

:25:45.:25:48.

sure that today's bill will be welcomed by larger providers in the

:25:49.:25:54.

sector to relieve some of the burden that they face from increases in

:25:55.:25:59.

business rates, this ?60 million on offer and it is a big giveaway to

:26:00.:26:06.

them, I worry we'll do not as much as perhaps it ought to for the

:26:07.:26:10.

independent providers and won't come close to mitigating for the fourfold

:26:11.:26:17.

increase all providers have faced or, perhaps, in winding up perhaps

:26:18.:26:22.

the Minister can give some reassurances that respect. Because,

:26:23.:26:29.

not only do need assurances, also consumers need assurances that those

:26:30.:26:35.

costs will not be passed on to them. Additionally, Madam Deputy Speaker,

:26:36.:26:37.

I am slightly disappointed because today we only have the opportunity

:26:38.:26:42.

to debate a partial bill instead of a more details and wide-ranging set

:26:43.:26:47.

of proposals that were outlined in the local Government Finance bill of

:26:48.:26:52.

which these measures originally were parked. And I specifically mentioned

:26:53.:26:57.

the local Government Finance Bill which I note had already

:26:58.:27:03.

successfully passed committee as it did include proposals on local

:27:04.:27:06.

business rate retention for local authorities as well as the

:27:07.:27:10.

legislation for business rate relief for a new full fibre broadband which

:27:11.:27:15.

we are now discussing today. However, the fullest set of measures

:27:16.:27:20.

seems to have disappeared since the general election. Since that

:27:21.:27:24.

election, I have asked the Secretary of State on three separate occasions

:27:25.:27:30.

for clarification on the progress of delivering business rate retention

:27:31.:27:34.

for local authorities. Now, perhaps the Minister can respond either...

:27:35.:27:41.

I'll allow him to intervene on me or he can respond in the closing, but I

:27:42.:27:50.

ask him again, what is happening to retention and why has business rate

:27:51.:27:55.

relief for a new 5G collectivity now been separated into this smaller

:27:56.:28:01.

separate bill? I wrote to the Secretary of State and I await his

:28:02.:28:06.

response, although by this stage I do hope the department can do

:28:07.:28:09.

somewhat less listening and some more acting, so perhaps we can have

:28:10.:28:17.

some answers and some clarity on the issue of business rate retention and

:28:18.:28:23.

in the spirit of the cross-party co-operation that the Prime Minister

:28:24.:28:29.

herself is now asking for, and in respect of ideas and a genuine

:28:30.:28:34.

dialogue between the opposition and the Government, perhaps we can work

:28:35.:28:38.

together on a shared future for local Government finance because the

:28:39.:28:45.

local Government sector deserve more than a policy and a financial black

:28:46.:28:51.

hole that they are currently faced with, with the exclusion of the

:28:52.:28:56.

local Government Finance bill from the Queen's speech, but at the same

:28:57.:29:02.

time, with the Government still announcing their intention to remove

:29:03.:29:06.

the revenue support grant. So perhaps the Minister can clarify

:29:07.:29:14.

that when closing. Now, Madam Deputy Speaker, the Secretary of State and

:29:15.:29:18.

I both visited the LGA conference last week and admittedly we received

:29:19.:29:23.

a slightly different restriction. At the conference, I'm sure he would

:29:24.:29:28.

have been reminded again and again by representatives from councils of

:29:29.:29:34.

all political colours of the financial certainty that a local

:29:35.:29:37.

authority desperately need. Specifically, at a time when they

:29:38.:29:43.

have already absorbed around 40% of cuts to their budgets. Now, instead,

:29:44.:29:48.

like me, they have received no updates and no certainty, so while

:29:49.:29:51.

we are talking about an element of the business rate in this bill,

:29:52.:30:00.

perhaps we can remind the Secretary of State is that local authorities

:30:01.:30:05.

need to have that clarity and that certainty for financial planning

:30:06.:30:11.

going for words that they are going to get some idea from this

:30:12.:30:14.

Government of where there are wider business rates policy is going.

:30:15.:30:21.

Because I will repeat what I said during my speech to the local

:30:22.:30:25.

Government Association, the Secretary of State told local

:30:26.:30:30.

Government that they faced a looming crisis in confidence. He's wrong.

:30:31.:30:35.

It's this Government that are facing a looming crisis in confidence.

:30:36.:30:41.

Because the lack of clarity on business rates, this Government's

:30:42.:30:46.

botched prisons rates and evaluation have left thousands of businesses

:30:47.:30:52.

facing the cliff edge of increases in their rates as well as the

:30:53.:30:57.

Government's support packages and promises to review the re-evaluation

:30:58.:31:01.

progress is going nowhere near far enough. It's clear that business

:31:02.:31:05.

rates are at this department's ticking time bomb and it threatens

:31:06.:31:09.

to destroy high streets and town centres across the country. Now, on

:31:10.:31:16.

the side of the House, Madam Deputy Speaker, we advocate introducing

:31:17.:31:20.

statutory annual re-evaluations to start businesses facing periodic and

:31:21.:31:28.

unmanageable hikes. And guarantee a fair and transparent appeals

:31:29.:31:33.

process. We will reform business rates, we will scrap quarterly

:31:34.:31:36.

reporting and we will end the scourge of late payments because it

:31:37.:31:41.

is this side of the House, Madam Deputy Speaker, the Labour Party,

:31:42.:31:44.

which is the party of business. LAUGHTER

:31:45.:31:55.

They can heckle, but... But the fact is speak clearly. This Government

:31:56.:32:00.

have lets down a business and they have let down local Government. Now,

:32:01.:32:05.

Madam Deputy Speaker, there was a further mission to this bill. I will

:32:06.:32:10.

give way. Could he just remind us of the Labour Party's policy on

:32:11.:32:17.

corporation tax rates? Absolutely! The Labour Party would have

:32:18.:32:24.

increased corporation tax to pay for better public services, but our

:32:25.:32:26.

corporation tax rates would still have been some of the lowest in the

:32:27.:32:34.

G20. It's a question of priorities. You can either have poorly funded

:32:35.:32:39.

public services or you can put that money where people want it, in a

:32:40.:32:45.

better NHS, in better local governments, in better education or

:32:46.:32:49.

you can give tax giveaways to those at the very top. It seems quite

:32:50.:32:54.

clear that the Conservative Party, for all the rhetoric of ending

:32:55.:33:00.

austerity, have not changed one iota. Now, Madam Deputy Speaker,

:33:01.:33:05.

there was a further admission to this bill, specifically... I will

:33:06.:33:15.

give way. I'm very grateful. I wonder, witty acknowledge, does he

:33:16.:33:17.

recognise that the reductions in corporation tax over the last few

:33:18.:33:20.

years have led to a massive increase to be cast collected by the

:33:21.:33:26.

Treasury? As I said before, it's a question of priorities. You can give

:33:27.:33:32.

tax cuts to big business or you can invest in public services. Now, the

:33:33.:33:37.

point is we made a very clear choice. We have differences of

:33:38.:33:43.

opinions on this. The honourable gentleman, I don't dispute, feels

:33:44.:33:48.

that having the lowest corporation tax is a good thing. I think having

:33:49.:33:54.

some of the lowest corporation tax in the world, but having a better

:33:55.:34:01.

funded public... It's not an anti-business rads! It's both

:34:02.:34:06.

pro-business and pro-public services and that is the choice because our

:34:07.:34:10.

public services are on their knees and if this is the cross-party

:34:11.:34:15.

co-operation Minister and Prime Minister wants, then I'm afraid it's

:34:16.:34:19.

going to be a long time waiting. I will give way because we are talking

:34:20.:34:24.

now about infrastructure. -- I will not give way. No, I have given way

:34:25.:34:30.

once. I am not giving again. There is a further admission to this bill,

:34:31.:34:35.

Madam Deputy Speaker, and it is specifically the exclusion of any

:34:36.:34:40.

real and meaningful legislative commitments on growing of broadband

:34:41.:34:46.

within this bill. I am worried that there appears to be absolutely no

:34:47.:34:50.

mention in the Bill's body or the explanatory notes of growing and

:34:51.:34:55.

expanding the UK's superfast broadband in our rural areas. I know

:34:56.:34:59.

the Minister touched on it and I think that there is some consensus

:35:00.:35:05.

of the desirability of getting this hands I will give a short anecdote

:35:06.:35:10.

that last year, I was privileged to be in the delegation to Zambia with

:35:11.:35:15.

the interparliamentary union for their assembly. In the middle of

:35:16.:35:21.

Africa, and we were in the middle of nowhere on literally one of the

:35:22.:35:28.

visits to a health scheme near the Zambezi River, I received almost

:35:29.:35:37.

perfect for Jie collectivity to my mobile phone. Madam Deputy Speaker,

:35:38.:35:42.

there are parts of my own constituency where you don't get is

:35:43.:35:46.

such perfect 4G connection and so I do think that we do have to look at

:35:47.:35:52.

our Internet connections, our broadband connections, our mobile

:35:53.:35:55.

telephone connections in this country so that we have the very

:35:56.:36:02.

best to support business, to support consumers and to support

:36:03.:36:06.

individuals. As I'm sure the Minister is aware, families living

:36:07.:36:11.

in rural areas are, many of them, struggling to get anything close to

:36:12.:36:15.

fast broadband, let alone 5G which is being discussed today. Many

:36:16.:36:18.

others are struggling to get anything above two mega megabytes

:36:19.:36:23.

per second, making most average use of day-to-day Internet functions and

:36:24.:36:30.

can be frustrating. The impact on rural businesses is steeper with the

:36:31.:36:33.

environment, food and real affairs committee warning before the 2015

:36:34.:36:40.

general election that rural communities are being overlooked for

:36:41.:36:44.

investment by businesses looking to either expand and develop due to

:36:45.:36:49.

certain regions having very poor digital collectivity. In fact, the

:36:50.:36:53.

then chair of the committee, the former member for Thirsk and Malton,

:36:54.:36:59.

said that there is a risk in the current approach that improving

:37:00.:37:02.

services for those who already have it will leave even further behind

:37:03.:37:09.

those that have little or none. Now, rather than taking responsibility

:37:10.:37:15.

for this ever growing chasm in our technology and identifying specific

:37:16.:37:19.

areas that desperately need investment, the Government has

:37:20.:37:23.

instead chosen to rely solely on the market to encourage improvements in

:37:24.:37:28.

any given area. I will give way. I just want to let him know that's not

:37:29.:37:32.

in fact the case and the Digital economy act, which is the last Bill

:37:33.:37:37.

packed in the last Parliament, gives us the power to require the

:37:38.:37:40.

universal service obligation to give high-speed broadband to everybody.

:37:41.:37:46.

Exactly, as my honourable friend the member for Alden Western Royton

:37:47.:37:50.

says, that should be shared with the backbenchers because there is

:37:51.:37:54.

growing dissatisfaction across all areas of the House with some of the

:37:55.:37:59.

Google broadband collectivity. The impact that is having not just on

:38:00.:38:03.

consumers but on businesses and the slow pace at getting those

:38:04.:38:09.

improvements in and it's clear that perhaps the Government ought to use

:38:10.:38:13.

those powers that it has to make sure that those improvements do

:38:14.:38:17.

indeed happen because it is a massive frustration and I can see

:38:18.:38:20.

the Minister nodding his head in agreement. It is a massive

:38:21.:38:23.

frustration for those communities and those businesses. I will give

:38:24.:38:27.

way. It is a massive frustration and we will use the powers. If she can

:38:28.:38:33.

let me answer the intervention that the Minister has just said before

:38:34.:38:37.

taking a second intervention. I'm grateful to hear that from the

:38:38.:38:41.

Minister and we will certainly hold the Government to account to make

:38:42.:38:45.

sure that that intervention takes place because, as he knows, we are

:38:46.:38:50.

all here to make sure that those improvements happen and if he has

:38:51.:38:54.

given a commitment from the dispatch box that he is going to use his

:38:55.:38:59.

ministerial position to ensure that the market isn't given a free for

:39:00.:39:03.

all and that the Government will ensure that those improvements

:39:04.:39:06.

happen in those rural areas, to those rural businesses and those

:39:07.:39:11.

rural consumers then that will certainly have support from the side

:39:12.:39:12.

of the House. I will give way. Many of us are campaigning on behalf

:39:13.:39:25.

of constituents for a better broadband but I would also say that

:39:26.:39:31.

I appreciate on behalf of 20% of the properties and many of my

:39:32.:39:34.

constituents, 20% of those properties have been connected with

:39:35.:39:37.

superfast broadband back to the Government's intervention. I'm

:39:38.:39:43.

expecting to see up to 100% as a minister referred to connected

:39:44.:39:51.

thanks to the obligation so I am looking forward to being very

:39:52.:39:53.

grateful to this Government of what they are doing for my constituents.

:39:54.:40:01.

I'm grateful to the intervention because it wasn't just from the

:40:02.:40:04.

Government and I don't know whether she was a remain or a lever but it

:40:05.:40:09.

would be very remiss of this House would ever 1's views on Brexit are

:40:10.:40:17.

to also acknowledge the involvement of the European Commission in

:40:18.:40:20.

ensuring that the roll-out of some of this infrastructure and

:40:21.:40:23.

technology was funded through the European Commission as well. Not

:40:24.:40:28.

just from this Government but actually from others and you can see

:40:29.:40:35.

from the boxes and down country, the country, the European flag is

:40:36.:40:39.

actually on a number of those cabins and infrastructure. I'm afraid I

:40:40.:40:47.

have probably by mentioning the word Europe have upset the honourable

:40:48.:40:55.

gentleman. On that point of the EU, he has to recognise the downside to

:40:56.:41:02.

the involvement. I know he struggled for a long time with EU state aid

:41:03.:41:07.

rules with the roll-out of broadband and had to come up with a slightly

:41:08.:41:10.

Heath Robinson scheme of vouchers to get around these EU rules. If

:41:11.:41:14.

anything they have the right not assisting. You're absolutely right.

:41:15.:41:20.

I am not saying that everything was perfect with that scheme with the

:41:21.:41:23.

European Community or the European Union. Merely passing the point to

:41:24.:41:31.

the lady's intervention that it would be remiss of us to suggest it

:41:32.:41:38.

was just all from the central Government, the funding for this, it

:41:39.:41:41.

has come from a variety of sources including from the European

:41:42.:41:45.

Commission as on all the cabins give a testament to four. As I have

:41:46.:41:54.

already said, what are rural areas and you need is that long-term

:41:55.:42:00.

investment strategy and we don't just need a short-term subsidy

:42:01.:42:05.

helpful though that is and so I look forward to making sure and holding

:42:06.:42:10.

this minister to account when he is in this post. To make sure he makes

:42:11.:42:18.

good on his word today at the dispatch box, that the short-term

:42:19.:42:22.

subsidy will help of some of this investment but we do need to make

:42:23.:42:26.

sure that investment continues apace beyond the deadline of the five

:42:27.:42:31.

years of this business rate relief and that we continually update our

:42:32.:42:36.

internet connections with whatever is on the latest technology of the

:42:37.:42:45.

day. On the side of the House, focus is touring college investment in old

:42:46.:42:51.

amenities by excluding new investment in plant and machinery

:42:52.:42:54.

from future business rates valuation which will free up medium and large

:42:55.:43:00.

businesses to invest in any area of the country. The country does need

:43:01.:43:05.

fresh ideas in order to meet the emerging challenges of the new

:43:06.:43:09.

century network we have seen today in a strip Stone Bill as the lack of

:43:10.:43:20.

compliance of an compelling alliterative framework supporting

:43:21.:43:23.

all businesses and local authorities in respect of business rates. On

:43:24.:43:33.

that I do desperately plead that the corporation the Prime Minister has

:43:34.:43:41.

asked for is genuine and heartfelt hope and that she doesn't look for

:43:42.:43:47.

ideas genuinely from the side of the House which we are more than happy

:43:48.:43:54.

to provide to the Government both in terms of how we improve

:43:55.:43:58.

infrastructure and cities and in rural areas, how we update our

:43:59.:44:02.

connectivity not just in the physical but also through the cloud

:44:03.:44:11.

and other technologies as well, how we use emerging technologies to

:44:12.:44:13.

benefit British business which is going to be absolutely crucial if we

:44:14.:44:18.

are going to keep a competitive advantage in the uncertain years

:44:19.:44:25.

ahead as we remove ourselves from the European Union and the strike a

:44:26.:44:31.

new set of trade deals across the world, we've got to keep that

:44:32.:44:36.

competitive edge. I agree with the minister is that and emerging

:44:37.:44:42.

technology and infrastructure as part of that mechanism to be able to

:44:43.:44:47.

drive forward the British economy and these new challenges that lie

:44:48.:44:53.

ahead. I will end on this because we would divide the House tonight, we

:44:54.:45:00.

will look to strengthen the bill and committee, we will continue to

:45:01.:45:04.

challenge the Government on the right policy for local Government

:45:05.:45:08.

finance until we get the answers and the certainty that the local

:45:09.:45:12.

Government sector so desperately needs but not infrastructure and

:45:13.:45:16.

building that capacity for Britain to grow, and develop and a changing

:45:17.:45:25.

world, a world where we are looking to emerging markets and looking into

:45:26.:45:29.

new markets, that technology and infrastructure is vital to our

:45:30.:45:35.

present Government in the future, it is incumbent on the party in power

:45:36.:45:39.

working constructively with others to make sure that Britain's

:45:40.:45:44.

infrastructure is kept as up-to-date and as state of the art as possible

:45:45.:45:50.

and in that respect we give our cautious welcome to this bill. We

:45:51.:45:55.

will seek to strengthen it and committee but let's work committee

:45:56.:46:02.

telly-mac together for some of the measures because as local Government

:46:03.:46:05.

minister knows, local Government does need that sister. -- certainty.

:46:06.:46:15.

Am grateful for the chance to appear for the second time and I have sent

:46:16.:46:23.

you to my entries. It is a great pleasure to take part in this debate

:46:24.:46:26.

which I thought might be narrowly focused but a just from the

:46:27.:46:31.

interventions that clearly this is going to be yet another pork -fest

:46:32.:46:42.

about equality but for client -- talk fest. I know they are

:46:43.:46:53.

unswerving and the support of my right honourable friend but don't

:46:54.:46:58.

have a go at me when I did his job. It was good to hear the speech from

:46:59.:47:04.

the opposition spokesman because she spent very little time actually

:47:05.:47:08.

talking about broadband which thinks shows how will the job has been

:47:09.:47:17.

done. He finished his speech to drop wildly about business rates are not

:47:18.:47:22.

broadband. I respect his reasons because what we have seen under the

:47:23.:47:24.

stewardship of my right honourable friend is the most successful rural

:47:25.:47:31.

broadband programme ever devised another in the world. There was

:47:32.:47:40.

Mitsubishi cheer. -- met to be a cheer. I will give you my cue points

:47:41.:47:47.

as I go through my speech. This incredibly successful programme for

:47:48.:47:54.

a few hundred million pounds has delivered superfast broadband to

:47:55.:48:00.

fourth and a half million premises. All that money welcome back to the

:48:01.:48:06.

Government because of the way the contracts reconstructed means that

:48:07.:48:10.

once take-up passes a certain threshold, money is starting to be

:48:11.:48:24.

paid back. I would echo my honourable friend when she talked

:48:25.:48:29.

about the 20% and misses in her constituency that have superfast

:48:30.:48:35.

broadband, it is important that we see our cup is half full and they

:48:36.:48:38.

know the opposition Chief Whip Nick and his cup is half full at the

:48:39.:48:47.

moment though that that deputy chief work? I digress. The cup is

:48:48.:48:54.

half-full and it is absolutely understandable that we hear from

:48:55.:49:00.

people who don't have broadband and are waiting for it and they are

:49:01.:49:02.

understandably irritated but those of voices obviously grow louder as

:49:03.:49:07.

superfast or bond spreads and more and more people do have access to

:49:08.:49:12.

this fantastic technology. I got involved in the debate about

:49:13.:49:19.

business rates for broadband many years ago, when I was in opposition

:49:20.:49:25.

are used to tease then telecoms Minister and they came up with an

:49:26.:49:31.

opposition policy that we were going to reduce or illuminate business

:49:32.:49:38.

rates on telecoms infrastructure and every provider I came to used to

:49:39.:49:42.

tell me that business rates were a big impediment to investment and I

:49:43.:49:47.

challenged the Minister about what he was going to do about it. The

:49:48.:49:53.

valuation office agency was in charge and it was his job to sort

:49:54.:49:59.

this out and when I got into office I realised there was absolutely

:50:00.:50:03.

nothing I could do about this. The VOA is independent, it says the

:50:04.:50:09.

level of business rates and certainly sees off any Minister that

:50:10.:50:14.

tries to alter its independence or affect its judgment and quite right

:50:15.:50:20.

too. The other role we had is that apparently BT gets a better deal on

:50:21.:50:25.

its business rates compared to some of the smaller providers about

:50:26.:50:28.

understanding is that is because of long-standing court case which BT

:50:29.:50:34.

took and it is one of those unfortunate things because BT has

:50:35.:50:39.

much more infrastructure and the ground, it was able to cut a

:50:40.:50:43.

wholesale deal but it is much more difficult for small providers

:50:44.:50:46.

getting underway. The point I am trying to make in my rambling

:50:47.:50:53.

fashion is that the impact is real, one of the factors people take into

:50:54.:50:58.

account when they are trying to build infrastructures so this bill

:50:59.:51:01.

is a welcome measure to address that problem. I have to say, the bill is

:51:02.:51:09.

the most boring and technical bill I have a read. It is only six clauses

:51:10.:51:13.

and they sought six officials in the box and I wondered of each one had

:51:14.:51:16.

been given a clause because the chance of making it to the end of

:51:17.:51:21.

even one as most impossible and I don't know if under the stress of

:51:22.:51:25.

doing this job any of my honourable friend to suffer from insomnia but I

:51:26.:51:28.

strongly recommend you take this bill home and halfway through clause

:51:29.:51:34.

one you will be sound asleep. But we understand the thrust of what it is

:51:35.:51:37.

trying to do which is to encourage new investment in broadband

:51:38.:51:41.

infrastructure so by suspending the levying of business rates it should

:51:42.:51:46.

encourage investment in infrastructure and I think the

:51:47.:51:50.

Government has cultivated something like ?60 million worth of savings

:51:51.:51:52.

are potentially going to be made available. I echo what was said at

:51:53.:51:58.

the dispatch box and I hope that all new infrastructure providers will

:51:59.:52:07.

take advantage of this because this bill is aimed squarely at them to

:52:08.:52:12.

remove a financial barrier to further investment. Of course what I

:52:13.:52:20.

think the Government is trying to do is understand that we are no moving

:52:21.:52:23.

to the next phase broadband roll-out. The key task of the last

:52:24.:52:29.

Parliament was to get effectively workable broadband, speeds of around

:52:30.:52:35.

24 megabits to as many people as possible and that has pretty much

:52:36.:52:39.

been completed and I understand people and the last 5% might get

:52:40.:52:43.

lower speeds but those are still workable speeds. Starting to build

:52:44.:52:46.

the infrastructure that will be future proof, that will be able to

:52:47.:52:50.

deliver fast and reliable broadband at speeds above 30 megabits and more

:52:51.:52:55.

indicator broadband speeds you will be able to dial up as more and more

:52:56.:53:00.

people make use of this technology. We all know how much of this

:53:01.:53:06.

technology and data be no use in terms of just the average home, with

:53:07.:53:15.

CO2 teenagers at home and parents watching four K content at home,

:53:16.:53:18.

became the bandwidth you need for that kind of content let alone

:53:19.:53:23.

business needs as well. I would mention the biggest impediment apart

:53:24.:53:29.

from business rates is of course planning. This is what a lot of

:53:30.:53:35.

people do forget, that you think it is very easy to build this

:53:36.:53:40.

infrastructure, it is not at all. One comes across far too many cases

:53:41.:53:49.

of cancels not being coordinated, of broadband providers having to go to

:53:50.:53:53.

five different departments and a council to get permission to dig up

:53:54.:54:01.

the highway all the sort of permissions they need to make the

:54:02.:54:05.

skin of infrastructure. That really is something that needs to be

:54:06.:54:12.

gripped in some shape of fashion and in the spirit of cooperation, the

:54:13.:54:21.

Prime Minister has announced this morning, there must be an

:54:22.:54:24.

opportunity for the London mayor to set up a broadband task force to get

:54:25.:54:29.

local London boroughs to coordinate the planet. I have heard of cases of

:54:30.:54:34.

cancels, doesn't really matter for political colour, not granting way

:54:35.:54:40.

leads to broadband provider who wanted to provide broadband for

:54:41.:54:43.

social housing in London. I've heard of other councils the green boxes on

:54:44.:54:47.

the pavements because they didn't like the design. I came across other

:54:48.:54:53.

councils who because the broadband provider hadn't cleared up after

:54:54.:54:55.

themselves on the previous work refused to let them go ahead with

:54:56.:54:59.

future work. I understand the irritation but at the same time

:55:00.:55:01.

there are still holding it back. There must be an opportunity, it is

:55:02.:55:06.

a credible adult point, to coordinate the planning functions of

:55:07.:55:11.

the Dunbar is but also cancels all across the country.

:55:12.:55:16.

I disagree vigorously as it is not a boring point, it is a very important

:55:17.:55:22.

point that these companies got after themselves because it gives

:55:23.:55:24.

reputational damage as well when a company goes in trying to deliver

:55:25.:55:28.

superfast broadband and they leave a mess behind them. That causes

:55:29.:55:32.

concern to residences, has caused concern in my constituency. This is

:55:33.:55:38.

an important point as well, it is important for them to get it right

:55:39.:55:41.

so they can be encouraged to do more in the future as well. Virgin Media,

:55:42.:55:49.

while I welcome their investment in Didcot, has in fact irritated quite

:55:50.:55:53.

a few of my constituents on the Lido Grove estate, is you are quite

:55:54.:55:56.

right. They should clear up after themselves. I did not make light of

:55:57.:56:01.

clear, whilst they should be held accountable for that, their

:56:02.:56:07.

reputation should not be, "You can't do any more work" because then they

:56:08.:56:12.

are punishing other constituents for a past transgression. Clearly what

:56:13.:56:16.

the Government wants to do is to encourage full fibre, fibre to the

:56:17.:56:20.

premises and it is true that we are falling behind to some other

:56:21.:56:24.

countries. Spain, for example, is well advanced but that is a

:56:25.:56:28.

historical advantage that Spain has because it put the infrastructure in

:56:29.:56:32.

some 30 years ago with extraordinary foresight and also, one has to

:56:33.:56:36.

remember, topography. The built environment topography, the more

:56:37.:56:40.

apartment blocks and someone you have, the easier it is to deliver

:56:41.:56:46.

broadband quickly as opposed to spread out domestic homes. It is

:56:47.:56:50.

also the case that one shouldn't necessarily be seduced by

:56:51.:56:52.

statistics. You might see for example that France is ahead of us

:56:53.:56:56.

in terms of fibre to premises but that fibre is in the same place as

:56:57.:57:01.

fibre to the Cabinet and very few people therefore take it up. A lot

:57:02.:57:05.

would say they have wasted investments in the approach that has

:57:06.:57:08.

been taken so far, the incremental approach in the UK, in terms of

:57:09.:57:15.

moving on to fibre are premises is the right approach because it keeps

:57:16.:57:21.

pace with customer demand. Nevertheless, the good news about

:57:22.:57:25.

fibre to premise is that the cost is coming down rapidly. Talk talk has

:57:26.:57:30.

conducted trials in Europe and it is very telling to see what has

:57:31.:57:33.

happened in Europe. They have the cost of connecting each home down to

:57:34.:57:42.

a few hundred. -- in York. In the community, they talk about whether

:57:43.:57:45.

people are in the Green zone which is word the fibre to the premises,

:57:46.:57:49.

people want to be there and also interestingly, in terms of what

:57:50.:57:53.

customers want, they don't actually care whether or not they're able to

:57:54.:57:58.

access per gigabit. What they get, and all of us who have accessed as a

:57:59.:58:05.

bras brought man's, is that they get 100% reliable servers whereas even

:58:06.:58:08.

those who have superfast broadband know that the service can drop out.

:58:09.:58:16.

So this is a very important and very welcome bill. All I would ask the

:58:17.:58:21.

Minister is whether... If he could talk a little bit in summing up, I

:58:22.:58:25.

don't know whether it will be the Secretary of State or my right

:58:26.:58:28.

honourable friend summing up, about whether or not the Government has

:58:29.:58:33.

considered how this release impacts on mobile infrastructure, so the

:58:34.:58:37.

roll out of forgery in this country has been very successful and let's

:58:38.:58:41.

not forget that has all been done by private investment. We really get

:58:42.:58:44.

the mobile operators, but we have to remember that they pay us, as it

:58:45.:58:47.

were, as taxpayers by paying into the Treasury coppers and then build

:58:48.:58:52.

up their networks effectively with their own capital. They come across

:58:53.:58:57.

the most bizarre planning issues all the time. I know the minister talked

:58:58.:59:01.

about the electronic dealing cases code which is going to help make

:59:02.:59:04.

mobile planning easier but whether or not this bill applies potentially

:59:05.:59:09.

to be fibre Google from masts bark to the cabinets or whether it could

:59:10.:59:17.

be amended, perhaps, to include mobile masts being free from

:59:18.:59:20.

whatever business rates they pay. And also how this bill will

:59:21.:59:25.

encourage the roll-out of 5G because 5G is going to potentially transform

:59:26.:59:28.

everything and what we need there is a small cells dotted throughout an

:59:29.:59:35.

urban environment and I know I company like our Kiva is already

:59:36.:59:43.

trialling if 5G network. We knew that a rethink on planning that will

:59:44.:59:46.

make it much much easier for mobile companies to roll out the small

:59:47.:59:49.

cells because if they have to get some form of planning permission

:59:50.:59:52.

regarding small cells they need for the dense coverage for the cells for

:59:53.:59:57.

5G, it will be a real hindrance to the fast roll-out of 5G. I could

:59:58.:00:03.

tell, as they made these remarks, that I had the full attention of the

:00:04.:00:07.

House (!) I noticed one or two yarns, argues that the irritated

:00:08.:00:14.

looks, when is this guy going to finish so I can get my spirits?

:00:15.:00:23.

More! More! The time is now, I have finished. Thank you. Thank you for

:00:24.:00:30.

calling me to speak in this debate is an air also, and perhaps of my

:00:31.:00:35.

Plaid Cymru colleagues congratulate you on your election as Deputy

:00:36.:00:38.

Speaker and is to say how much we're looking forward to working and

:00:39.:00:41.

serving under your guidance for the duration of this Parliament. I will

:00:42.:00:46.

keep my contributions short, as were all in and purposes from lost

:00:47.:00:50.

perspective, this is a neighbouring bill. We broadly welcomed the

:00:51.:00:53.

provisions as outlined in the Bill which provide power was for Welsh

:00:54.:01:01.

ministers to give business relief for properties used to transmit

:01:02.:01:05.

broadband and mobile communications. This is at least one step in the

:01:06.:01:09.

right direction for my constituents who have seen a little digital

:01:10.:01:12.

dividend from the hundreds of millions of pounds spent on

:01:13.:01:15.

broadband and mobile signal to date. I do however have some concerns in

:01:16.:01:22.

relation to the Government strategy into the most advanced technology.

:01:23.:01:27.

As I understand the bill, the plan in England this revival of hundred

:01:28.:01:30.

percent business rate relief for technology that supports 5G and

:01:31.:01:34.

ultrafast broadband. As we heard in an earlier intervention, that is a

:01:35.:01:41.

budget of around 60 million, which equates to budget consequential is

:01:42.:01:44.

around ?3 million for Wales which will go into the general Welsh

:01:45.:01:51.

Government pot and is vital, if I have one message from today's debate

:01:52.:01:56.

that the Labour Boscombe and have ring fenced that cash and that that

:01:57.:02:02.

is not spent on petrol tracks. 40% of my constituents, Madam Deputy

:02:03.:02:07.

Speaker, are unable to access high-speed Internet. An even greater

:02:08.:02:12.

proportion are unable to get a 4G mobile phone signal in their homes.

:02:13.:02:21.

Madam Deputy Speaker, there is quite clear that we have a conductivity

:02:22.:02:24.

problem. There is no doubt of course that is is holding back the Welsh

:02:25.:02:32.

economy. We have no hope of making progress in terms of developing our

:02:33.:02:36.

economy as we are able to get to the bottom of the telecommunication

:02:37.:02:38.

infrastructure problems we face and if we were able to do so, I would be

:02:39.:02:42.

exuding confidence that we have a very, very bright economic future in

:02:43.:02:47.

Carmarthenshire and in Wales due to the incredible natural assets that

:02:48.:02:52.

we have as a county and as a country. I'm very fortunate to have

:02:53.:02:55.

been born and raised in one of the most peaceful parts of the world and

:02:56.:02:59.

I have no hesitation in mentioning that. With a range of incredible

:03:00.:03:03.

leisure activities and I think one of the things we will see in a

:03:04.:03:08.

modern workplace is that work and leisure time will become compressed

:03:09.:03:12.

and people will be looking to set up their businesses where there are

:03:13.:03:16.

leisure activities lie so if you like horse riding, cycling,

:03:17.:03:23.

mountaineering, canoeing, all those leisure activities we have in

:03:24.:03:26.

abundance in Carmarthenshire and I'm very confident that if we were able

:03:27.:03:31.

to deal with those basic telecommunication infrastructure

:03:32.:03:33.

problems that we face that we would be able to put forward a very

:03:34.:03:38.

attractive economic package for investors and people looking to set

:03:39.:03:41.

up their businesses in our beautiful county. While I would urge the last

:03:42.:03:51.

Government to incentivise a conductivity improvements in Wales,

:03:52.:03:56.

I would like to call in my speech, Madam Deputy Speaker, Welsh

:03:57.:03:58.

ministers to take an alternative approach to that put forward by the

:03:59.:04:03.

UK Government. It is absolutely vital that future investment as a

:04:04.:04:07.

bare minimum in ours reels to be too baroque playing field before we

:04:08.:04:11.

start supporting these advanced technologies. He needs to be

:04:12.:04:16.

eradicated are not entrenched and I'm afraid what we have seen over

:04:17.:04:22.

recent years is the Government and providers concentrating investment

:04:23.:04:25.

on easy hits, on the large cities and large towns in my country

:04:26.:04:33.

whereas the more rural areas have been deliberately left behind. The

:04:34.:04:38.

last Government, via this bill now have used these powers and

:04:39.:04:42.

consequential is wisely. Rather than only incentivising the most advanced

:04:43.:04:45.

telecommunications technology, it is time something drastic was done to

:04:46.:04:48.

incentivise the building of telecommunications of the structure

:04:49.:04:53.

in rural areas such as the communities I am fortunate to serve

:04:54.:05:02.

in Carmarthenshire. Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker. I suppose I should

:05:03.:05:07.

apologise particularly to my honorary friends the Secretary of

:05:08.:05:10.

State from the Department of communities and local governments

:05:11.:05:14.

because the last time I was called to speak in a debate which didn't

:05:15.:05:19.

have a time limit was on the local Government finance settlement in

:05:20.:05:24.

2016. I think my honourable friend putter-mac skies have just about

:05:25.:05:26.

heel from that process. I was starting to date, every time I was

:05:27.:05:31.

on the list and call to speak, suddenly a new time limit was

:05:32.:05:34.

imposed, usually shorter than that which had gone before hand and my

:05:35.:05:39.

neighbour for mid Dorset North Poole suggested that one was putting

:05:40.:05:43.

posture is the applicant had to speak but I hope Madam Deputy

:05:44.:05:47.

Speaker will resist this proves a car. I am not allowed to speak with

:05:48.:05:51.

the authority that is my right honourable friend for Wantage spoke

:05:52.:05:56.

with because he speaks with great authority. But I would likely some

:05:57.:06:04.

points. I very much welcome this bill and the fact that it appears to

:06:05.:06:10.

be the result of a collaboration between three important Government

:06:11.:06:17.

departments. The community of local Government, DC MS and the Treasury.

:06:18.:06:23.

And that sort of joined up working of three departments coming together

:06:24.:06:28.

to identify a problem and to create a solution is, I think, to be

:06:29.:06:34.

welcomed and certainly signposts to a very likely successful

:06:35.:06:37.

governmental modus operandi is for the final five years that we have a

:06:38.:06:39.

Conservative Government at the head of us. Now, I find myself lost in a

:06:40.:06:48.

way that I reached for the smelling salts in some form of remedial

:06:49.:06:53.

medication agreeing with the honourable gentleman who spoke from

:06:54.:06:57.

the Labour Party front bench. I probably approach it in a slightly

:06:58.:07:06.

different way, but certainly as far as local Government is concerned and

:07:07.:07:10.

especially small shire districts who are always trying to seek to be more

:07:11.:07:15.

efficient, as welcome as the proposals are within this bill to

:07:16.:07:20.

help speed and underscore the importance of the delivery of

:07:21.:07:24.

broadband, I hope and indeed to note that my right honourable friend the

:07:25.:07:30.

Minister for DC LG will of course be taking this reduction now in a

:07:31.:07:36.

funding stream of nondomestic rates to a local authority into

:07:37.:07:42.

consideration as he evolves the new settlement, the new funding

:07:43.:07:45.

settlement for our local council to do so much good work to do those

:07:46.:07:49.

services and I felt the honourable gentleman made that point well and

:07:50.:07:52.

I'm sure it will have been heard on both sides of the House because both

:07:53.:07:57.

the delivery of broadband and the delivery of those local council

:07:58.:08:03.

services are important, very often to exactly the same constituents who

:08:04.:08:06.

need to see both. And I hope that this bill and the financial

:08:07.:08:14.

incentive, if that is the correct word, will act as a spur to existing

:08:15.:08:24.

providers to deliver on the lot spots very prevalent, particularly

:08:25.:08:28.

though not exclusively in our rural areas where the economic case for

:08:29.:08:37.

delivery is either nonexistent or is marginal. Or where, as a result of

:08:38.:08:46.

further economic investigation, they have fallen out with the confines

:08:47.:08:50.

and the constraints of the initial contract, usually agreed within

:08:51.:08:55.

county councils as in the case with Dorset and so many and British

:08:56.:09:01.

Telecom. My right honourable friend the member for Wantage spoke with

:09:02.:09:06.

huge authority and experience on this and I don't you are from

:09:07.:09:10.

anything that he is said and my right honourable friend the member

:09:11.:09:15.

for West Suffolk talked about the evolving technologies that it isn't

:09:16.:09:20.

just going to be wire, copper, fibre etc but fixed wireless and satellite

:09:21.:09:25.

are playing a part. I think occasionally, Madam Deputy Speaker,

:09:26.:09:28.

so long has been this debate I would to my right arm friend the member

:09:29.:09:35.

for Boston and Skegness who has... I he doesn't look to me but I would to

:09:36.:09:40.

him, he has done so much to promote the delivery of rural broadband in

:09:41.:09:43.

this area, so much that he has been made a PBS in the department which

:09:44.:09:47.

means he can no longer speak on the subject. This, Madam Deputy Speaker,

:09:48.:09:52.

points the route to promotion. Talk with authority and knowledge on a

:09:53.:09:58.

subject and then gives a up and silenced for many years to come.

:09:59.:10:01.

Maybe that is why I was moved to the Home Office, I don't know.

:10:02.:10:07.

Because this debate has not around with public and political debate and

:10:08.:10:14.

the media for so long, it is worthwhile I would suggest just

:10:15.:10:23.

posing for a few moments and reminding ourselves of the most

:10:24.:10:28.

enormous strides that broadband Oregon and

:10:29.:10:37.

and I'm going to cheesy House because I ordered something online

:10:38.:10:48.

yesterday to be delivered to my House tomorrow. The sketch writers

:10:49.:10:56.

and anybody else may wish to run some sort of book on what it was.

:10:57.:10:59.

Why were levelled tell you that it was not something I would have

:11:00.:11:03.

guessed you could have ordered online even three or four years ago.

:11:04.:11:10.

My honourable friend is looking even more perplexed than usual. But it

:11:11.:11:16.

just struck me of the huge change that this has made and this bill

:11:17.:11:19.

helps to underpin its delivery but from a rural point of view, what

:11:20.:11:23.

could be more rural than North Dorset, it is worthwhile reapplying

:11:24.:11:33.

the benefits derived from fast and superfast broadband and which I

:11:34.:11:36.

believe will be further helped by the contents of this bill. It was a

:11:37.:11:44.

pleasure to follow the gentleman who was a right to point out as I do the

:11:45.:11:53.

huge unlocking of charisma potential -- charisma potential in terms of

:11:54.:12:07.

hotel rooms and visitor attractions. Interactive tourist attractions the

:12:08.:12:13.

local authorities have withdrawn from face-to-face encounters, for

:12:14.:12:15.

the farmer trying to buy or sell stock or make a submission to the

:12:16.:12:22.

rural payments agency. Fast reliable broadband of a speed and regularity

:12:23.:12:25.

which no longer drops off just as you are adding that crucial moment

:12:26.:12:30.

of send or loading up on that last map is going to be absolutely

:12:31.:12:37.

crucial. For small and medium-size businesses and I think of to my

:12:38.:12:46.

constituency both based in a small market town, they provide platforms

:12:47.:12:53.

online and interactive platforms for large international conferences.

:12:54.:13:01.

Offices based in Seattle, Sydney and storm and stimulant. There because

:13:02.:13:15.

town has 4G, Herts, the sort of shop review don't say, do you sell, you

:13:16.:13:21.

merely ask queer can I find bequest is one of those shops that sell

:13:22.:13:27.

absolutely everything from blackout curtains to make a lasting, it is

:13:28.:13:32.

all there. None of those things Madam Deputy Speaker you require. No

:13:33.:13:41.

she knows what I was ordering and he would be wrong on all counts. The

:13:42.:13:46.

largest amount of their sales takes place from the Kokrak department

:13:47.:13:54.

online. And a small market town that had until a few years ago their main

:13:55.:13:56.

centre of industry having the largest calf and livestock market in

:13:57.:14:04.

the whole of the south-west, broadband transforming local rural

:14:05.:14:09.

economies and creating good quality high-tech jobs. It also helps and we

:14:10.:14:18.

forget this at our peril, with the delivery of a whole raft of other

:14:19.:14:27.

things, the rural social life. Small businesses disconnected by geography

:14:28.:14:30.

and not particularly will still buy a rural public transport. Trying to

:14:31.:14:37.

support charitable fundraising events. I can see the frustration we

:14:38.:14:44.

now have a faster broadband provision that we used to have but I

:14:45.:14:48.

can see the frustration on my wife's face tried to download posters for

:14:49.:14:54.

events she's trying to organise. Suddenly transformed by a faster

:14:55.:14:57.

speed being able to do it to know everybody in North Dorset and

:14:58.:15:02.

through the official report will no that this trade it sees the Saint

:15:03.:15:08.

Gregory Sommer says love, everyone is invited, a huge fundraising event

:15:09.:15:12.

for a local school, the promotion of which all better enabled through

:15:13.:15:19.

broadband. I'm more about my honourable member's life now than I

:15:20.:15:24.

did five minutes ago. The entire House still wants to reveal what he

:15:25.:15:28.

ordered last week online that he couldn't have ordered four years ago

:15:29.:15:37.

online. It is a terrible mission from the Torah of my honourable

:15:38.:15:40.

friend 's domestic online and agents.

:15:41.:15:45.

I will tantalise the House still further by telling that what it was

:15:46.:15:52.

is that it is inflatable... LAUGHTER

:15:53.:16:01.

And is made of rubber. It happens to be a small two-man dinghy to allow

:16:02.:16:07.

my elder daughter and I to do a little bit of rowing and Michael

:16:08.:16:12.

fishing during our summer holidays. That is either pleased or

:16:13.:16:17.

disappointed, distressed or despondent my honourable friend on

:16:18.:16:25.

the side of the House. Rural isolation... Or are relieved that it

:16:26.:16:31.

was something so entirely innocent and innocuous. Fast broadband

:16:32.:16:39.

allowing us to watch television and order online will help with rural

:16:40.:16:42.

isolation particularly important in an area such as mine, helping keep

:16:43.:16:52.

families together and keep those intergenerational conversations

:16:53.:16:55.

going over geography and a weekly visit may be not always appropriate.

:16:56.:17:09.

Feasible or affordable. Again, my honourable friend has a Glastonbury

:17:10.:17:22.

in his constituency, I know he has lost all of his banks... He mentions

:17:23.:17:29.

banks and they know in my constituency I have had several

:17:30.:17:33.

branches shut and one of the arguments I am given is that people

:17:34.:17:37.

can use online but this is the very reason why we do need to ensure that

:17:38.:17:40.

we have at excellent broadband facilities. You make my point and a

:17:41.:17:50.

far better rate than I was going to because she is absolutely right, a

:17:51.:17:57.

town such as mine which is lost to banks within the last year and loses

:17:58.:18:04.

the bank at the end of this. Customers are being told both

:18:05.:18:09.

private and business customers are being told there is entered banking.

:18:10.:18:16.

That is fine as long as the speed and service is reliable enough to

:18:17.:18:20.

allow you to remember why you were only on by the time you have

:18:21.:18:24.

actually logged on to try and remember what financial transaction

:18:25.:18:26.

you were going to undertake. That will not be a situation... And

:18:27.:18:35.

grateful for giving way and didn't use the word relieved it was

:18:36.:18:41.

reassured that move onto my point and does he agree with me at in more

:18:42.:18:46.

rural areas which is referring to that having the good speed broadband

:18:47.:18:50.

to enable you to access banking services ready are no longer exist,

:18:51.:19:00.

enable particularly small businesses to operate any business environment

:19:01.:19:05.

so they are not competitively disadvantaged against those parts of

:19:06.:19:08.

the country that do have a good broadband coverage? You're

:19:09.:19:14.

absolutely right and which of us will not have gone to an

:19:15.:19:18.

agricultural show or some small business which can't necessarily

:19:19.:19:20.

always afford the infrastructure of having all of those interconnected

:19:21.:19:26.

pieces which allow you to pay by credit card etc? But as you will

:19:27.:19:36.

know all too well, it it baffles me whereby some device plugged into my

:19:37.:19:41.

phone means my credit card can be charged for whatever services I

:19:42.:19:47.

provided, purchased thereby helping small to medium-size businesses

:19:48.:19:50.

particularly than not exclusively also helping those people who make

:19:51.:19:53.

things and sell things from home. They don't actually have a

:19:54.:19:56.

commercial premises on their own from which to trade. For all of

:19:57.:20:03.

those reasons plus our next generation, because I think we are

:20:04.:20:11.

always inclined to look at television advertisements, they will

:20:12.:20:14.

always focus on getting the film a bit faster or watching the spot, all

:20:15.:20:22.

that is of course welcome and laudable but he's huge learning

:20:23.:20:28.

opportunities and potential for young people in delivering education

:20:29.:20:32.

and a 21st-century setting to hopefully boost and bolster

:20:33.:20:38.

productivity can also be assisted by superfast and rival broadband. --

:20:39.:20:49.

reliable broadband. The Government has made the most enormous strides

:20:50.:20:51.

and we have occasionally beaten up ministers and others about, I have

:20:52.:20:57.

this village that villagers and cetera and we have all had it. I

:20:58.:21:00.

said at the start of this is not just an issue reserved solely to the

:21:01.:21:08.

rural setting, it also happens on the edge of London and elsewhere.

:21:09.:21:16.

But when we actually pause and look at the data, notwithstanding some of

:21:17.:21:20.

those problems which we have had, we are striding ahead of many of our

:21:21.:21:28.

European friends and economic and commercial competitors and providing

:21:29.:21:32.

access to broadband as we shouldn't always beat ourselves up. It is a

:21:33.:21:38.

time when we are all been fed on the negative and the anti-, this is

:21:39.:21:43.

actually something which was referenced earlier, something for

:21:44.:21:47.

which we should be I think as a Government duly proud. This bill is

:21:48.:21:52.

a fundamental and very important next step in that delivery. We hope

:21:53.:21:58.

and believe that it will assist better and faster delivery and are

:21:59.:22:03.

at rural areas in North Dorset and across the county of Dorset. It has

:22:04.:22:08.

my full support. The ministers promoting it have my admiration and

:22:09.:22:12.

encouragement and I look forward to making a speedy progress through

:22:13.:22:24.

this House. The pleasure and honour to follow my comment from not

:22:25.:22:32.

Dorset. -- my comrade. My first day I was told that if I wanted to keep

:22:33.:22:35.

something secret I should make a speech about it in the House of

:22:36.:22:40.

Commons. So it was on the 13th of September last year that I gave a

:22:41.:22:44.

speech on the subject of this bill and called for a 100% rate relief on

:22:45.:22:49.

new fibre networks. They even went so far as to draft an amendment to

:22:50.:22:55.

the Digital economy Bill not to give that rate relief but to require the

:22:56.:22:59.

valuation office to produce an annual report on the impact of the

:23:00.:23:05.

rating system on competition in the telecoms sector because I had been

:23:06.:23:10.

presented by various players in the industry with the ridiculous

:23:11.:23:15.

conundrum that it was cheaper for them to rent fibre from BT and to

:23:16.:23:20.

pay the rates bill on putting in a new fibre themselves. That was in

:23:21.:23:26.

there a few entrenching the monopoly, near monopoly of BT and

:23:27.:23:31.

giving an enormous structural advantage that was basically

:23:32.:23:37.

chopping off competition. I spoke at the second reading of the Digital

:23:38.:23:40.

economy Bill, draft of this amendment and had a very fruitful

:23:41.:23:43.

conversation with the Minister who is not at his place at the moment

:23:44.:23:48.

but he persuaded me that given some of the other amendments that I

:23:49.:23:53.

should leave this to the Government to mull over for some months and

:23:54.:23:58.

that they would give it some serious thought. So imagine my pleasure and

:23:59.:24:01.

surprise when it appeared in the Autumn Statement last year and even

:24:02.:24:04.

more now that it has appeared in this bill. Because it will provide

:24:05.:24:11.

an enormous boost to competition in the sector, no doubt about it that

:24:12.:24:16.

the differential, the asymmetric deal one business rates between BT

:24:17.:24:21.

and new entrants is talking of new investment in large parts of the

:24:22.:24:26.

country and means smaller countries have very little incentive and

:24:27.:24:32.

competing directly with British Telecom the absolute for areas that

:24:33.:24:34.

are currently underserved and commercial to try and make their

:24:35.:24:40.

networks pay. This has resulted in a situation of innovation is had to

:24:41.:24:45.

come by. BT have been helpful to me and my constituents as they have

:24:46.:24:48.

been to a number of other members and I hope that they will take this

:24:49.:24:54.

measure in the spirit at which it is intended which is that those of us

:24:55.:24:57.

who believe any market economy that think that competition is good and

:24:58.:25:00.

that it will not only be better for the consumer by better for BT

:25:01.:25:04.

because it will drive them to greater innovation and efficiency

:25:05.:25:07.

and hopefully greater profit in the future. This bill also represents a

:25:08.:25:16.

welcome move for me towards seeing broadband and civic vacations as

:25:17.:25:18.

what they should be fit as a utility. -- telecommunications. We

:25:19.:25:26.

have seen recently more and more step towards that position so the

:25:27.:25:30.

building regulations have been changed to make the position

:25:31.:25:34.

broadband compulsory in new developments. We are so seeing

:25:35.:25:38.

broadband been provided as a universal service hopefully over the

:25:39.:25:41.

next few years and now we are seeing this listing of nondomestic rates on

:25:42.:25:47.

parts of the network so that broadband is being treated much more

:25:48.:25:51.

now like water or gas lighter city as a fatal utility which is course

:25:52.:25:57.

is what it is becoming so I am pleased about this particular

:25:58.:26:00.

development and hope this movement towards broadband as utility will

:26:01.:26:01.

continue. Four seats like mine, broadband is

:26:02.:26:13.

incredibly important. Very successful, vibrant countryside, if

:26:14.:26:15.

it is going to compete with its urban neighbours, it needs to be

:26:16.:26:20.

connected to the world. And socially, economically, the current

:26:21.:26:23.

form of connection these days, more and more is not the road or the

:26:24.:26:26.

motorway or visual carriageway but the superfast broadband. As my

:26:27.:26:31.

honourable friend the member for North Dorset said, my constituency

:26:32.:26:35.

like him it is peppered with businesses now wish to most of their

:26:36.:26:39.

business online and we are very pleased to know that on Saturday I

:26:40.:26:43.

attended the amp portrait and came across a brand-new business, very

:26:44.:26:49.

pleasing business called Thames Valley gin which is a new brand of

:26:50.:26:54.

June that is taking the market by storm. -- gender. Kate Griffin, the

:26:55.:26:59.

inventor of this gin is having some success. 36 bottles a week,

:27:00.:27:02.

production are selling like hot cakes, much of it online. I think

:27:03.:27:08.

the website is called Jean Ali .co .uk. I'm very grateful to the

:27:09.:27:13.

honourable gentleman. My ears pricked up when he mentioned gin but

:27:14.:27:18.

perhaps in the interest of cross-party co-operation, you could

:27:19.:27:22.

chairs around. Balls I have to confess to you, I was so taken with

:27:23.:27:29.

the small sample because I was driving, the small sample that I did

:27:30.:27:32.

buy a bottle. Media I will bring one in. I wondered whether at the House

:27:33.:27:37.

of Commons authorities might start serving as in the bars. It is very,

:27:38.:27:42.

very good. Our secret recipe of local herbs and spices, and

:27:43.:27:46.

excellent drink I recommend to you. Businesses like that. Mike I had

:27:47.:27:50.

of being in his constituency yesterday and I will back his

:27:51.:27:57.

forgiveness provided not seek his permission... But honourable members

:27:58.:28:01.

will be pleased to know it was purely for a cricket match and

:28:02.:28:04.

therefore I did not feel I was obligated to seek his permission to

:28:05.:28:07.

play cricket in his wonderful constituency. The point he's making

:28:08.:28:11.

is an important one. It is not just his constituency but all our

:28:12.:28:15.

constituents that broadband is more and more important to and I phrase

:28:16.:28:20.

it as important as road and rail. Part of our infrastructure that all

:28:21.:28:23.

of our constituents just can't do without. The honourable gentleman is

:28:24.:28:28.

absolutely right, of course. He is very welcome to visit my

:28:29.:28:31.

constituency at any time. I'm surprised he has only been once

:28:32.:28:34.

recently, he should come more often. The door is always open. But it is

:28:35.:28:41.

true that it's becoming a vital to maintaining rural life that villages

:28:42.:28:46.

are connected to be world and it is ridiculous more and more to our

:28:47.:28:51.

rural residents that they can see broadcast quality footage of Tim

:28:52.:28:56.

Peake in the International Space Station but they can't go online and

:28:57.:29:00.

post-complementary comments on my Facebook page. But many of my

:29:01.:29:06.

constituents seem increasingly sold to do. By all means. Might I suggest

:29:07.:29:12.

that his constituency might want to do the former rather than the latter

:29:13.:29:18.

more often. That's very... Rather shy Leszek smack given how Coppola

:29:19.:29:24.

Medran have been about him. -- rather churlish considering how

:29:25.:29:27.

complement Riyadh have been about him. Perhaps I will reach the same

:29:28.:29:35.

level of appreciation as Tim Peake. Something like 25% of small

:29:36.:29:39.

businesses now are located in rural areas, nearly half a million

:29:40.:29:44.

businesses are providing lots and lots of employment, jobs and

:29:45.:29:48.

creating wealth that is going to be increasingly important. But this

:29:49.:29:52.

bill points to a wider issue with which this House is going to have to

:29:53.:29:57.

grapple over the next few years and the right honourable gentleman on

:29:58.:30:01.

the front bench opposites did mention it and that's the

:30:02.:30:05.

appropriateness of the business rates system. This is a tax that was

:30:06.:30:12.

first devised in 1572 and now we are applying its to a 21st-century

:30:13.:30:15.

economy, much of which takes place somewhere in the clouds, wherever

:30:16.:30:23.

that might be. The bill acknowledges in its very core that business rates

:30:24.:30:28.

have a disproportionate impact on competition in this sector and those

:30:29.:30:31.

of us who have rural constituencies and indeed anyone with a high street

:30:32.:30:36.

understands the disproportionality of business rates for retail

:30:37.:30:40.

businesses. Particularly as more people are buying things online, as

:30:41.:30:43.

my honourable friend from North Dorset said. If we are going to keep

:30:44.:30:50.

our high-street vibrant and keep our businesses working, if we're going

:30:51.:30:53.

to keep the competitiveness of the real economy against those huge

:30:54.:30:58.

businesses that operate from nowhere these days, then whether business

:30:59.:31:03.

rates, property on investment and expansion, taxes on investment and

:31:04.:31:09.

expansion is an appropriate way to gather the revenue weenies, I would

:31:10.:31:12.

question. I think there is going to, point over the next couple of

:31:13.:31:18.

decades where we have to consider shifting taxation on corporations

:31:19.:31:22.

away, perhaps even from profit and property, towards turnover. It is

:31:23.:31:27.

certainly the case that if we were tasking the turnover of these large

:31:28.:31:31.

international is, Google and Amazon etc, we would collect more from them

:31:32.:31:35.

in a fairer way than we currently do and when we have corporations in

:31:36.:31:41.

this country who transact here, perhaps dispatch goods from a second

:31:42.:31:45.

country and yet booked the profit and a third country competing with

:31:46.:31:50.

small shops on my high streets in north-west and a share, then we have

:31:51.:31:53.

to think about the asymmetric taxation system on those two

:31:54.:31:59.

organisations if we want a level playing field from the competition

:32:00.:32:02.

point of view. So I welcome the bill, I welcome the direction of the

:32:03.:32:07.

build towards broadband as a utility and awards in recognition of

:32:08.:32:11.

business rates has a distorted effect on commerce and I hope that

:32:12.:32:16.

over the next five years or so that many companies will take advantage

:32:17.:32:19.

of this window. I suspect by the time we get to the end of the

:32:20.:32:24.

window, it somehow will be extended and I hope that extension becomes

:32:25.:32:27.

permanent that they will take advantage of the window and come to

:32:28.:32:32.

North West Hampshire where they can plaster my entire constituency with

:32:33.:32:37.

broadband, fibre to the Cabinet, fibre to the premises with my

:32:38.:32:42.

pleasure and approval. Thank you. Thank you very much, Madam Deputy

:32:43.:32:48.

Speaker. Like several other members here this afternoon, and this

:32:49.:32:53.

evening, I had the pleasure of representing a beautiful and very

:32:54.:32:59.

rural constituency. In fact, 42% of my constituency is part of an area

:33:00.:33:05.

of outstanding natural beauty, so it makes a lovely constituency to go

:33:06.:33:11.

walking in, to spend time in, to go for picnics N, fabulous for farming,

:33:12.:33:19.

but is less good for connectivity. And I have, over the two and a bit

:33:20.:33:23.

here is that I have been a member of Parliament, received letters and

:33:24.:33:29.

occasionally e-mails if they have managed to get online, from

:33:30.:33:33.

constituents in many villages including Kingswood, Doddington,

:33:34.:33:38.

Eastern Lane, shelves which, all of which are lovely villages but all of

:33:39.:33:47.

which struggle to be well connected and in all of which there are some

:33:48.:33:50.

of my constituents who have had difficulty getting fast broadband

:33:51.:33:57.

and also in several of those villages, it can be very difficult

:33:58.:34:03.

to get a mobile phone signal. A couple of months ago during the

:34:04.:34:07.

general election campaign, I was in Headcorn and I thought I might tweet

:34:08.:34:11.

a picture from Headcorn station and I went to tweet that is not only did

:34:12.:34:16.

I not have 4G on my mobile phone to do it, I did not have any mobile

:34:17.:34:24.

phone signal at all. I couldn't even make an old-fashioned mobile phone

:34:25.:34:27.

telephone call or send a text message. So there are parts of my

:34:28.:34:33.

constituency like that patch of Headcorn where unless you happen to

:34:34.:34:39.

be only one operator that may serve it a little bit, it's impossible to

:34:40.:34:46.

even make a mobile phone call. So my constituency wants to have better

:34:47.:34:50.

broadband and better mobile phone connections and is that is why I

:34:51.:34:56.

welcome the commitment that this Government has been and is making to

:34:57.:35:01.

connectivity across this country. As I mentioned earlier with an

:35:02.:35:08.

intervention, thanks to the Government's programme on rolling

:35:09.:35:14.

out high-speed broadband, 8432 properties have now got a high-speed

:35:15.:35:17.

broadband connection that would not have had it without this programme

:35:18.:35:25.

and by September 2018, I'm expecting around 2000 more properties to be on

:35:26.:35:29.

high-speed broadband thanks to that programme. Which will amount to a

:35:30.:35:36.

coverage of 25% of the properties in my constituency being connected

:35:37.:35:39.

thanks to this Government's work and commitment to high-speed broadband.

:35:40.:35:47.

That'll get Faversham and Mid Kent to around 90% of properties on

:35:48.:35:50.

high-speed broadband, so we are still some way off the 100% that I

:35:51.:35:58.

would like to see and so I very much welcome the universal service

:35:59.:36:02.

obligation that is coming into force and, in fact, the work of my

:36:03.:36:06.

honourable friend for Boston and Skegness who campaigned very hard to

:36:07.:36:13.

put that into law. And I welcome the commitment made by my right

:36:14.:36:16.

honourable friend the Minister earlier on the front bench of the

:36:17.:36:21.

dispatch box when he mentioned that the cap, the financial cap that will

:36:22.:36:25.

be in place for that will be high enough to make sure that 100% of

:36:26.:36:29.

properties in constituencies like mine should receive access to

:36:30.:36:36.

broadband of at least a 10 megabits per second. Now, that's not the

:36:37.:36:40.

high-speed of the future, that is not the speed that we hope will be

:36:41.:36:45.

delivered by legislation such as the legislation we are debating today,

:36:46.:36:49.

but for those who have no or incredibly slow broadband at the

:36:50.:36:53.

moment, 10 megabits per second will make a great difference. And that is

:36:54.:37:01.

because, to all of us who represent a blog as it was is no, the

:37:02.:37:04.

difference between the haves and have-nots that having high-speed

:37:05.:37:09.

broadband esteem the life changing. Whether it allows you to do things

:37:10.:37:13.

that we now consider to be everyday functions of life like sending

:37:14.:37:19.

e-mails, like booking tickets and booking flights online, like

:37:20.:37:24.

choosing Hall tells or B and B is, like comparing the offers on travel

:37:25.:37:28.

insurance or publishers, like shopping for groceries, there is so

:37:29.:37:32.

much which those about to have high-speed broadband take for

:37:33.:37:37.

granted but some people still in my constituency do not even have that

:37:38.:37:43.

access. I will give way. Which is surely not also adds that watching

:37:44.:37:46.

BBC Parliament to watch this excellent speech for all her

:37:47.:37:49.

constituents in Faversham and Mid Kent? I think my honourable friend

:37:50.:37:56.

very much for that intervention. Although whether there is even one

:37:57.:38:00.

of my constituents watching this speech, I won't hold my breath for

:38:01.:38:07.

confirmation. But we know, for instance, that children often get

:38:08.:38:11.

sent home work tasks that require them to look things up on the

:38:12.:38:14.

Internet a child lives in a rural village or at the end of a track and

:38:15.:38:18.

can't get online, they are disadvantaged in doing that work.

:38:19.:38:21.

There is the very basic thing of staying in touch with distant

:38:22.:38:24.

relatives who live all around the world now and actually I remember

:38:25.:38:29.

when I was a Child is the enormous cost of making international call. I

:38:30.:38:33.

think during my gap year when I was an 18-year-old, I need to phone

:38:34.:38:37.

calls home in a period of nine months to my parents because it cost

:38:38.:38:41.

such a huge amount to phone home. Now, you can do a video call

:38:42.:38:46.

basically for nothing, so families can be in touch around the world and

:38:47.:38:52.

also, as older people manage to get online and many people in their 70s,

:38:53.:38:58.

80s and 90s are very active Internet users, it is one way I hope we will

:38:59.:39:02.

be able to tackle the challenge of loneliness. Being able to make a

:39:03.:39:06.

face time call to your grandma or grampa is a great way of keeping in

:39:07.:39:10.

touch and much easier often than actually if it is very difficult to

:39:11.:39:15.

go and see them. Then there is the question about work and that makes a

:39:16.:39:21.

huge difference in rural areas as it does for the economy. Whether it is

:39:22.:39:25.

enabling people to work from home, and I have two caseworkers who do

:39:26.:39:28.

the majority of their work supporting me in my constituents

:39:29.:39:31.

from home which enables them to double that work around their home

:39:32.:39:39.

commitments. There are many people who run businesses from home in my

:39:40.:39:43.

constituency and many quite significant rural businesses. There

:39:44.:39:47.

is a fabulous business round the corner from where I live just

:39:48.:39:50.

outside Faversham which makes amazing products out of maps. If any

:39:51.:39:55.

of you are interested in making some interesting products with maps of

:39:56.:40:01.

your constituencies, I recommend that you contact Bombast to get all

:40:02.:40:05.

sorts of books, paper goods and lampshades made out of maps of your

:40:06.:40:10.

constituency. On the other side of my constituency near Maidstone there

:40:11.:40:13.

is a business which enables you to compare utility prices with around

:40:14.:40:20.

100 employees. There is no way that business would exist without good

:40:21.:40:24.

broadband so this is really, really important for the real economy.

:40:25.:40:32.

It was around 12 years ago I was working at Warner and launching a

:40:33.:40:43.

digital products and one of them was the UK's first video on demand

:40:44.:40:47.

service so that you can download a film and one of the things we had to

:40:48.:40:52.

do was plan ahead because if you wanted to watch that film you would

:40:53.:40:57.

have two started downloading then go away and maybe cook something and

:40:58.:41:00.

can back a couple of hours later and it would have downloaded enough to

:41:01.:41:04.

be able to watch it if you were lucky. It might well have stopped

:41:05.:41:10.

halfway through. At the time we were launching the product ever to that

:41:11.:41:16.

ahead of 40 technology could do that now my children will sit down in

:41:17.:41:20.

front of the television on a Sunday morning when tried to catch up on

:41:21.:41:23.

some sleep and they will switch on the television and will be watching

:41:24.:41:28.

something absolutely immediately with another delay which is turned

:41:29.:41:33.

watching television into a completely different experience. I

:41:34.:41:40.

very much welcome the Government's commitment to this but I would ask

:41:41.:41:44.

them to press on with making sure that we get high-speed broadband to

:41:45.:41:49.

100% of properties across constituencies like mine and also to

:41:50.:41:55.

make sure the new technologies enabled in this bill like 5G and

:41:56.:42:06.

Phil fibre broadband benefit not only those in urban areas but also

:42:07.:42:11.

have benefits for those in the rural areas of the country. It shouldn't

:42:12.:42:16.

be a simple sequential process as far as possible that you have the

:42:17.:42:24.

kind of work your way and sometime in the distant future the eventually

:42:25.:42:29.

get 5G. I am very keen that there should be almost some with these

:42:30.:42:34.

technologies and that those in more rural areas may be able to catch up

:42:35.:42:37.

thanks to the new forms of technology. It is particularly

:42:38.:42:45.

important that this bill is going ahead and investing in these new

:42:46.:42:49.

technologies in the challenging economic climate in which we live.

:42:50.:42:54.

And the challenging economic times. I am very mental of the ageing

:42:55.:43:04.

population -- I am very mindful of and the cost of that ageing

:43:05.:43:11.

population and the dye desire to increase the page. We also face a

:43:12.:43:18.

productivity challenge and we are not nearly as productive as a

:43:19.:43:22.

country as we need to be for people to have a good and better standard

:43:23.:43:26.

of living and we face global competition in this. I am pretty

:43:27.:43:33.

realistic that unfortunately unlike the proposal from the Honourable

:43:34.:43:39.

member opposite who wishes to raise a business rates and thinks

:43:40.:43:47.

erroneously that that might increase revenue to spend on things like

:43:48.:43:51.

public services, history tells us we very well know that increasing

:43:52.:43:59.

business rates results in a fall in revenue and as he gave way to me I'm

:44:00.:44:05.

me and I did give way to him. I merely want to correct the record

:44:06.:44:08.

that is no stage did either I or the Labour Party say they wanted to

:44:09.:44:15.

increase business rates. What we do want is to have a small increase in

:44:16.:44:21.

corporation tax which would still result in as having one of the

:44:22.:44:25.

smallest corporation taxes in the world. I appreciate him putting the

:44:26.:44:31.

record straight because I have made an error amendments here and instead

:44:32.:44:41.

of business rates, I did indeed mean to say and I was talking about

:44:42.:44:45.

corporation tax and the point that I made earlier that we disagreed about

:44:46.:44:51.

but the point in corporation tax does stand actually raising

:44:52.:44:54.

corporation tax unfortunately results in a reduction in income and

:44:55.:45:03.

revenue to the Government but I'm not happily give way. Was she is

:45:04.:45:13.

shocked as I was that the front bench of Labour referred to the

:45:14.:45:18.

small increase because the rate of 17 is most a 50% increase. That is

:45:19.:45:26.

absolutely right and it is significant because as corporation

:45:27.:45:31.

tax rates come down below 20%, businesses behave in different ways.

:45:32.:45:33.

We are more likely to have businesses locate in this country,

:45:34.:45:36.

invest in the business in this country, create jobs which is what

:45:37.:45:46.

constituents want, to create jobs and also generate the revenue which

:45:47.:45:48.

is then paid in taxes to fund public services. Order the matter of larger

:45:49.:45:59.

increases, giving you you will be outraged about the 50% increase, you

:46:00.:46:06.

must be absolutely distraught with the business rate evaluation that

:46:07.:46:14.

are seen some go up by 200%. I think some respects we may agree, not with

:46:15.:46:18.

the specifics of the point but has other members have said, we know

:46:19.:46:22.

that business rates does need a further look as a system because I

:46:23.:46:28.

am a happy with the way they tend to be nice high street shops and some

:46:29.:46:36.

of my smaller towns. I have a constituency with the largest

:46:37.:46:39.

employer is a brewer and pubs have really struggled with some increases

:46:40.:46:42.

in business rates although I recognise in the efforts the

:46:43.:46:46.

Chancellor made following lobbying to help pubs to help with the

:46:47.:46:51.

changes to business routes but there was no question there is further

:46:52.:46:55.

work to be done on business rates and that has been acknowledged by

:46:56.:47:01.

the Government. Like to be corporation tax point, she is

:47:02.:47:04.

absolutely right that the production has seen an increase in tax take and

:47:05.:47:08.

that is the important thing, not looking at the rate but how much

:47:09.:47:13.

taxes actually read in the final point is the one about jobs, record

:47:14.:47:18.

level of employment across all other constituencies which is to be

:47:19.:47:21.

welcomed and that is because we have businesses that want to expand and

:47:22.:47:26.

take on more people. Thank you for that intervention. I will return to

:47:27.:47:31.

talking about the content of the bill any moment but I am spending a

:47:32.:47:35.

lot of time on this because the Honourable gentleman opposite spent

:47:36.:47:42.

some time talking about corporation tax himself and I just think it is a

:47:43.:47:46.

very important that we on the side of the House make clear that we are

:47:47.:47:49.

absolutely committed to making sure that we can raise revenue for public

:47:50.:47:56.

services. The last thing we want to see as tax changes that might seem

:47:57.:48:02.

to gain any rate headlines but actually unfortunately have the

:48:03.:48:04.

wrong effect on the bottom line from the Government's point of view and

:48:05.:48:07.

we are absolutely committed to making sure we can raise revenue for

:48:08.:48:11.

public services about which we care very much. But we recognise that to

:48:12.:48:16.

do that you have to have a tax environment which is supportive to

:48:17.:48:21.

businesses because they provide jobs and economic growth. To that point,

:48:22.:48:26.

looking at economic growth at how we don't want people to have to just

:48:27.:48:33.

work harder to keep up their standard of living, we know that as

:48:34.:48:38.

an economy we need to be more productive and technology as the

:48:39.:48:43.

crucial enabler of being more productive. That is exactly what

:48:44.:48:52.

this bill is about supporting. For instance, 5G as a technology is and

:48:53.:48:56.

will be a great enabler for instance of the intranet of things. Every

:48:57.:49:04.

second around the world, 127 devices are a newly connected to the

:49:05.:49:10.

intranet. 127 devices every second at the moment and that rate is

:49:11.:49:19.

surely going to increase so the demand for connectivity and the

:49:20.:49:21.

ability to carry large columns of data is only going to go up. It is

:49:22.:49:26.

vital we are at the forefront of this. 5G is forecast to globally

:49:27.:49:37.

boost economic value by four to $11 trillion by 2020. That is a huge

:49:38.:49:43.

increase in economic value so it is vital that we as a country take our

:49:44.:49:47.

share of that and that share of economic growth. What that will mean

:49:48.:49:51.

in practice is things like the developments which will enable us to

:49:52.:49:55.

have smart household appliances, driverless cars in due course and

:49:56.:50:01.

one day driverless lorries which from my constituents are a very

:50:02.:50:05.

unhappy about lorries parked openly buys a lot, could be in interesting

:50:06.:50:16.

prospect. This is an issue we both face, the plight of residents and

:50:17.:50:19.

businesses who are faced by HTV parking. I know this is something

:50:20.:50:26.

she is passionate about, does she agree that as we advance in

:50:27.:50:30.

technology we should be looking at different ways of doing business? I

:50:31.:50:42.

am sure that the Honourable Lady will find an ingenious way of

:50:43.:50:47.

relating the intervention from the other Honourable Lady precisely to

:50:48.:50:53.

this bill. I can see a way of doing it, I'm sure the Honourable Lady

:50:54.:51:01.

will succeed. Thank Q. I can see the frown on your face that might have

:51:02.:51:09.

seemed like a stretch to go from telecommunications to lorry parking

:51:10.:51:12.

but as 5G as an enabler of the internet of things and enabler of

:51:13.:51:20.

driverless cars and lorries, run drivers were longer have to take

:51:21.:51:23.

long breaks to sleep and that is the reason why they are part in the

:51:24.:51:26.

lay-by is on our roads because the housekeeping. They have to do a

:51:27.:51:32.

compulsory rest before they can keep driving but without a driver...

:51:33.:51:33.

LAUGHTER . It does genuinely connect. To

:51:34.:51:45.

return to what I was planning to talk about, another very important

:51:46.:51:52.

application of 5G potentially as an health care and wearable devices.

:51:53.:51:56.

For instance heart rate and blood pressure can be tracked. This is

:51:57.:52:00.

very much part of the future of health care and preventative health

:52:01.:52:03.

and happiness or look after ourselves and somebody who is very

:52:04.:52:07.

committed to the NHS and make sure we have a sustainable NHS and

:52:08.:52:10.

healthier population, I am very keen to make sure that we enable this

:52:11.:52:17.

kind of health care development. Those are just a handful of examples

:52:18.:52:21.

of what we hope that 5G may enable and we will hope to be at the

:52:22.:52:25.

forefront of this technology by investing in it. The full fibre part

:52:26.:52:32.

of this legislation I hope will be an end to what I often hear... You

:52:33.:52:40.

have been generous with your time but before she moves away from 5G,

:52:41.:52:45.

can we reflect on this point that it is important not to leave behind

:52:46.:52:48.

those committees who have yet to clock on to 3G. And should have

:52:49.:52:55.

constituency is the same there are areas for use of the car and get

:52:56.:53:01.

access to 3G 4G Somerville 5G is to be welcomed, can she join me in

:53:02.:53:05.

ensuring some areas are not left behind? There are parts of my

:53:06.:53:14.

constituency which don't have 3G or 4G mobile signal to make a phone

:53:15.:53:18.

call so absolutely I am very keen for the Government to intervene to

:53:19.:53:27.

make sure that there is comprehensive mobile phone reception

:53:28.:53:34.

across rural areas and also I hope we can do a catch up and go very

:53:35.:53:40.

quickly straight to 5G very quickly in those areas. While we are on the

:53:41.:53:49.

subject of areas at and Blackett alias, I wonder if she would agree

:53:50.:53:53.

that there are a keeper at areas such as along really lines in my

:53:54.:53:58.

constituency of Chelmsford, many of my constituents commute every day

:53:59.:54:01.

and there is sophistry tee to be able to get a phone signal online,

:54:02.:54:10.

real realignment that this bill will enable extra infrastructure to have

:54:11.:54:12.

connected commuters would you think is key in the 21st century.

:54:13.:54:18.

My honourable friend makes an important point, the focus on the

:54:19.:54:23.

infrastructure along particular routes like rail lines and motorways

:54:24.:54:28.

where it will be of particular benefit and I have commuters just as

:54:29.:54:32.

she does who would like to be able to do more work on the train, which

:54:33.:54:39.

that will enable. But I was just coming briefly before I conclude to

:54:40.:54:43.

the point about full fibre broadband and how this should bring an end to

:54:44.:54:49.

the problem that I often hear from BT engineers, the challenge of the

:54:50.:54:54.

old last mile of those copper wires which are so very dated, some of

:54:55.:54:59.

them over 100 years old, and though it is a technology that has served

:55:00.:55:02.

us very well for many, many years, it is probably time to move on so

:55:03.:55:07.

that people can genuinely get high-speed broadband and when you

:55:08.:55:14.

live further away from the Cabinet and the traditional infrastructure.

:55:15.:55:17.

I welcome the proposed legislation because I think this is very much

:55:18.:55:21.

the right way of Government supporting this sort of development

:55:22.:55:27.

of infrastructure, by incentivising and providing the conditions or

:55:28.:55:31.

substantial private investment in that infrastructure which will

:55:32.:55:35.

multiply by many, many, many times the level of investment that the

:55:36.:55:39.

Government is making using taxpayer funds. But we've got the combination

:55:40.:55:45.

of the 400 million digital infrastructure fund and the 60

:55:46.:55:49.

million business rate relief included in this legislation and

:55:50.:55:57.

that amount of money should be wearable for the Government

:55:58.:56:00.

financially, put it that way, but result in much, much greater scale

:56:01.:56:05.

investment in the country's digital infrastructure which is what we sow,

:56:06.:56:11.

so badly needs. And one point just to conclude with, very much thinking

:56:12.:56:16.

of the younger voters who I know that I want to make sure we reach

:56:17.:56:22.

out and communicate with, and I would say to younger voters to take

:56:23.:56:28.

note. You may not be watching the Parliament channel on your Internet

:56:29.:56:33.

connection, but actually this is an example of the Government is looking

:56:34.:56:36.

ahead to the sort of economy that we need for the future, looking ahead

:56:37.:56:40.

at investing in the infrastructure that we need so that we will be able

:56:41.:56:45.

to compete globally, so we will be able to have a model economy, so we

:56:46.:56:50.

will be able to have innovation, so we will have the kind of jobs and

:56:51.:56:55.

the kind of economy that will provide opportunities for decades to

:56:56.:57:00.

come for younger workers and provide us with the economic growth we need

:57:01.:57:04.

to fund a high standard of living and the public services that we care

:57:05.:57:13.

so much about. Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker. I would begin, even

:57:14.:57:17.

though he is no longer in his place, by thanking the member for North

:57:18.:57:21.

Dorset and indeed my right honourable friend for Faversham and

:57:22.:57:27.

Mid Kent for being so kind about the work I have done previously on

:57:28.:57:32.

broadband. When the member for North Dorset said I would not speak in

:57:33.:57:36.

this debate, I was going to leap to my feet like some sort of digital

:57:37.:57:40.

gazelle, but I thought I would keep the House waiting and I know that

:57:41.:57:46.

having done that, we have heard several very extensive speech is

:57:47.:57:51.

going through the many benefits of Government investing in digital

:57:52.:57:54.

infrastructure, so while I shall be somewhat brief, I would like to

:57:55.:58:03.

begin just by using a phrase from my right honourable friend for

:58:04.:58:06.

Faversham and Mid Kent is Ebersohn of her constituents were not able to

:58:07.:58:10.

do something as old-fashioned as make a mobile telephone call. Now,

:58:11.:58:16.

more about telephone calls are, in our modern world, pretty

:58:17.:58:19.

old-fashioned, but we should not forget that it was not many years

:58:20.:58:23.

ago in this place when they were simply impossible. Now, we have not

:58:24.:58:29.

only been through the period of the invention of mobile phones, we have

:58:30.:58:34.

been through a period where all of our constituents railed against the

:58:35.:58:39.

installation of mobile phone masts and now we have come full circle as

:58:40.:58:44.

they rail against the absence of mobile phone masts. So the digital

:58:45.:58:50.

revolution has thoroughly revolved. I want to say simply three brief

:58:51.:58:56.

points about this bill. The first about this particular approach to in

:58:57.:59:02.

courage in digital infrastructure investment is to say that while the

:59:03.:59:07.

Government is forgoing a certain amount of revenue with business

:59:08.:59:11.

rates relief, it seems to me obvious that by fostering digital

:59:12.:59:17.

information and digital infrastructure investments, the

:59:18.:59:21.

amount that the Government will get back through the broader benefits of

:59:22.:59:25.

economic growth will be many times greater than that which the business

:59:26.:59:31.

rates themselves cost the state and cost the taxpayer and that is, to

:59:32.:59:35.

me, seems like it is the definition of the way the Government should be

:59:36.:59:42.

using public money. It is pumped prime it economic investment so that

:59:43.:59:47.

we can see the kind of economy develops that works in the digital

:59:48.:59:53.

way that we have heard our children will expect and which all modern

:59:54.:59:58.

businesses already expect. So I would absolutely commend the

:59:59.:00:04.

Government for taking that approach. I would add, however, that it is

:00:05.:00:11.

also commendable that by making this a five-year term for relief which my

:00:12.:00:17.

right honourable friend the Minister hinted could even go beyond five

:00:18.:00:22.

years, then it incentivising firms to invest in putting in a Firebird

:00:23.:00:29.

now, even if they do not turn it on, so to speak, for a number of years,

:00:30.:00:33.

so what effectively happens is that we can get the economies of scale of

:00:34.:00:40.

broader investments, I would hope, but we will see the continued

:00:41.:00:44.

benefits of a business rate relief on this investment and that can only

:00:45.:00:48.

be a good thing and it addresses some of the concerns that industry

:00:49.:00:55.

has raised prior to the introduction of this piece of legislation. And it

:00:56.:01:02.

is worth remembering that that growth in demand for fibre is only

:01:03.:01:09.

going to increase. When I was a journalist writing about the launch

:01:10.:01:13.

of the eye player, which the BBC cunningly launched on Christmas Day

:01:14.:01:16.

because they knew the demand would be rather more limited, they did not

:01:17.:01:23.

think for one minute that they themselves would be broadcasting in

:01:24.:01:30.

four K, 2016, 2017, much less that we would live routinely in

:01:31.:01:32.

households where half a dozen people wanted to download the four K

:01:33.:01:41.

streams that broadcasters now routinely provide. And it is in no

:01:42.:01:47.

small irony that when Basil Jette build London's Sirs, by all accounts

:01:48.:01:53.

he offered quadruple the capacity that was required in Victorian

:01:54.:01:58.

London -- servers. Now we see that that quadruple capacity is more than

:01:59.:02:02.

exhausted by a growing population. We should take the same approach

:02:03.:02:07.

when it comes to investing in our digital infrastructure. The fact

:02:08.:02:13.

that there is a very prominent Basil Jette still involved in the life of

:02:14.:02:19.

our digital nation is not in anyway to draw the comparison between these

:02:20.:02:23.

sewage and the modern digital output with which he is involved. Big huge

:02:24.:02:29.

benefits of the man who brought as Big Brother and a host of other

:02:30.:02:33.

things are not to be considered in that way in the slightest. All we

:02:34.:02:38.

can say is that this is a family who have contributed a huge amount of

:02:39.:02:42.

the life of our nation at every level of infrastructure. But what I

:02:43.:02:50.

would say to conclude these brief remarks is that there is never an

:02:51.:02:56.

excuse in this day and age to underestimate the amount of digital

:02:57.:03:05.

capacity that we will require. 4K may seem like it is pretty adequate

:03:06.:03:08.

for our purposes today. We may look back on it in a number of years and

:03:09.:03:13.

we will see it as a paltry amount compared to what we will be using on

:03:14.:03:18.

a routine basis, whether it is virtual reality, whether it is

:03:19.:03:21.

revellers cars, whether it is all the technologies that will totally

:03:22.:03:26.

eradicate the digital scourge of flight parking that is my honourable

:03:27.:03:30.

friend the member for Cannock Chase previously mentioned. So I think

:03:31.:03:36.

that we should encourage the Government is not only to hasten

:03:37.:03:41.

that this bill as quickly as it possibly can but we should further

:03:42.:03:47.

encourage any Government to make sure that this sort of rate relief

:03:48.:03:52.

applies to investment in digital infrastructure whether that is

:03:53.:03:58.

mobile or whether it is fixed and in that way, to continue from the

:03:59.:04:03.

launch of the iPlayer not all that long ago, the Internet of things

:04:04.:04:08.

that is now coming upon us will be fully served and it will be thanks

:04:09.:04:11.

to the investment of governments such as this one. Thank you.

:04:12.:04:21.

Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker. I am very grateful to speak in this

:04:22.:04:25.

even's debate and it is a real honour to follow my right honourable

:04:26.:04:31.

friend, the member for Boston and Skegness who is a real expert in

:04:32.:04:36.

this field and demonstrated in his contribution to night his expertise

:04:37.:04:44.

in this whole world and I have to admit, Madam Deputy Speaker, that I

:04:45.:04:48.

am a technical dinosaur. When it comes to communication, if I had a

:04:49.:04:56.

choice, e-mail, text or a telephone, every single time, I would like to

:04:57.:05:02.

have a conversation. It takes an awful lot less time to actually pick

:05:03.:05:07.

up the phone and have that conversation one than very lengthy

:05:08.:05:10.

e-mails which often can take hours to construct by virtue of the need

:05:11.:05:17.

to check on the content, and the tone, as well as the text message

:05:18.:05:20.

which at the moment I have about eight messages all building up and I

:05:21.:05:28.

will probably no doubt forget to respond to each and every one of

:05:29.:05:33.

them. Turning to the bill this evening, I welcome the

:05:34.:05:36.

telecommunications infrastructure built which provides business rate

:05:37.:05:41.

relief for new fibre-optic infrastructure. This bill and these

:05:42.:05:47.

measures form part of a wider package to encourage is widely

:05:48.:05:54.

investment in our infrastructure and to help ensure that Britain remains

:05:55.:06:01.

a digital world leader. The Bill will have homes and businesses

:06:02.:06:05.

across the country having faster, more of portable and more reliable

:06:06.:06:10.

broadband collectivity. This evening, we have heard from many

:06:11.:06:16.

members across the House who have a very different constituency to mind.

:06:17.:06:20.

Many of them are very rural. We have heard a lot from many members about

:06:21.:06:24.

the issues in terms of collectivity both in terms of mobile and

:06:25.:06:31.

broadband in rural areas. My constituency, Madam Deputy Speaker,

:06:32.:06:36.

is very different. I have largely towns and one large village which is

:06:37.:06:41.

Cannock, Kingsford and Northern Keynes. The amount of rural space in

:06:42.:06:45.

my constituency is really rather limited. I see my honourable friend

:06:46.:06:49.

the member for Oldridge Brownhills who is one of my new neighbours,

:06:50.:06:55.

nodding away. She recognises what my constituency looks like. I have

:06:56.:06:59.

these towns but then I have a forest. To be honest, Madam Deputy

:07:00.:07:04.

Speaker, if you are driving through the forest of Cannock Chase, the

:07:05.:07:07.

chances are in that conversation that I have been talking about, the

:07:08.:07:12.

phone call will cut off. I have to add, I am on Bluetooth. But it is an

:07:13.:07:20.

issue in some of those smaller rural parts of my constituency so these

:07:21.:07:25.

measures that will make broadband and mobile access is much better

:07:26.:07:31.

will be welcomed by people and businesses across the country,

:07:32.:07:37.

including my constituency. I will happily give way. I am grateful to

:07:38.:07:40.

my honourable friend and neighbour for giving way this evening. Would

:07:41.:07:45.

she agree though that although all her constituency has some

:07:46.:07:49.

similarities with mine, that it is not largely rural. Even in a

:07:50.:07:53.

non-rural constituency, you still can find those not spots, not just

:07:54.:07:58.

in the forest but within built-up areas as well. I are very grateful

:07:59.:08:01.

for my honourable friend because she makes an absolutely perfect point

:08:02.:08:06.

and I will come onto some specific issues as I go into my contributions

:08:07.:08:11.

this evening. I think about my office in the heart of Hednesford,

:08:12.:08:15.

on market Street in Hednesford, the centre of the town, and guess what?

:08:16.:08:19.

When I sat in my office, more often than not I cannot make those

:08:20.:08:22.

telephone calls because I do not have any mobile phone reception.

:08:23.:08:31.

Then also when I go to and from my office to my home, invariably, the

:08:32.:08:38.

mobile phone reception falls. Why is broadband and mobile access so

:08:39.:08:42.

important? Some honourable members today have actually discussed some

:08:43.:08:46.

of the ways in which it is key to family and our daily lives. Keeping

:08:47.:08:52.

in contact with our friends across the world via Facebook and social

:08:53.:08:58.

media, banking, we talked about the closing of banks on high Street

:08:59.:09:02.

across the country because increasingly, people are doing their

:09:03.:09:05.

banking online but you need to have that excellent online access to be

:09:06.:09:12.

able to do that. Actually, one thing I am not sure any members have

:09:13.:09:17.

mentioned this evening is being able to switch your energy supplier so we

:09:18.:09:23.

talk about trying to get better rates for their energy, their gas

:09:24.:09:27.

and outer city, but most of this is best done by looking online portals.

:09:28.:09:32.

If you haven't got a good Internet access, then you are actually

:09:33.:09:35.

restricted in terms of the deals that you can get. Then there are

:09:36.:09:41.

other things we have talked about that watching TV, personally I just

:09:42.:09:45.

turn the TV on which goes back to being a bit of a dinosaur, but I

:09:46.:09:50.

understand a lot of people use OnDemand services.

:09:51.:09:57.

My mother has never used a computer but we bought her and I play than

:09:58.:10:07.

she is reliant on it for clinical eating Li relocating with people.

:10:08.:10:11.

She has to have excellent broadband access and they want to command to

:10:12.:10:15.

specific issues in terms of broadband access and the roar of

:10:16.:10:31.

full fibre connectivity. I have a number of residents who complain of

:10:32.:10:36.

painfully low broadband speeds. This is a new development on the edge of

:10:37.:10:45.

the town which comprises around 130 houses despite being billed as a

:10:46.:10:52.

superb collection of homes including three or four bedroom homes,

:10:53.:10:55.

high-quality homes and a mix of House types to suit a range of

:10:56.:11:01.

tastes, and easy access to the local amenities, to which I fully support

:11:02.:11:05.

these are fantastic things and it is a fantastic development, the one

:11:06.:11:08.

thing that local residents don't enjoy is a fast and reliable

:11:09.:11:18.

broadband access. I'm building a new housing development, developers

:11:19.:11:20.

install gas, electricity and water as a matter of course. We are in a

:11:21.:11:28.

time of broadband is the fourth utility and the provision of

:11:29.:11:30.

superfast broadband should be treated in the very same way. This

:11:31.:11:37.

is not a problem unique to chase water drains. Looking online, and I

:11:38.:11:45.

have done a lot of research on this issue, I have been reading endless

:11:46.:11:48.

reports of residents of new developments up and down the country

:11:49.:11:57.

facing similar issues. My honourable friend the member for North West

:11:58.:12:02.

Hampshire actually made the point that this problem has been

:12:03.:12:05.

recognised in last year an agreement was made between the Government, BT

:12:06.:12:12.

Openreach and the house-builders Federation to insure that superfast

:12:13.:12:16.

and ultrafast broadband connectivity would provided free Oracle funded by

:12:17.:12:22.

open reached new development. This has been extended to all development

:12:23.:12:26.

is with more than 30 homes and it will be connected for free. We are

:12:27.:12:33.

rightly placing emphasis on building new homes, we talk about this issue

:12:34.:12:38.

on a regular basis. I am pleased to see that this recognition that

:12:39.:12:43.

actually broadband connectivity is as important as the other utilities.

:12:44.:12:50.

This is something that home buyers expect. This is something

:12:51.:12:56.

particularly important in my constituency because we are seeing

:12:57.:12:58.

thousands of new homes are being built all the time. I drove around

:12:59.:13:03.

the constituency and I never cease to be amazed by these developments

:13:04.:13:11.

are up to. Grey level we are building homes all the time and we

:13:12.:13:15.

need to make sure we have access to the main utilities but also

:13:16.:13:19.

broadband as well. The moves that have been made by BT Openreach and

:13:20.:13:26.

the House builders Federation, it's good news but the trouble is it's

:13:27.:13:29.

not going to resolve the issues faced by those residents in my

:13:30.:13:35.

constituency. I was very pleased to learn last week that they have made

:13:36.:13:42.

some progress as a community to secure funding from both BT

:13:43.:13:47.

Openreach and Teller bumpy to complete the work to install the

:13:48.:13:52.

fibre -based broadband. The issue however is this still face a

:13:53.:13:59.

shortfall in terms of funding and in the Aaron publication with superfast

:14:00.:14:03.

Staffordshire and hope there will be successful in being able to secure

:14:04.:14:08.

some assistance to be able to fill the gap and ensure that this fibre

:14:09.:14:13.

broadband is connected. I hope as a result of this that the residents

:14:14.:14:20.

will soon be able to enjoy the benefits of fast and reliable

:14:21.:14:24.

broadband, that they will be able to do their banking, that the teenagers

:14:25.:14:30.

will be able to do their homework online. We can all agree that that

:14:31.:14:34.

is important that they can complete their assignments. Also that those

:14:35.:14:39.

of residents that I know want to work for home can work from home.

:14:40.:14:49.

But the issues in terms of broadband speed and just I was cited in my

:14:50.:14:56.

constituency, I hope of other places who have been waiting years for this

:14:57.:15:01.

connectivity to be made. Also those of small number of properties that I

:15:02.:15:09.

do have my constituency. They are still waiting for connectivity as

:15:10.:15:17.

well. However, I want to talk about a slightly more positive aspect of

:15:18.:15:22.

broadband access, fast broadband access and it would take this

:15:23.:15:25.

opportunity took about the opportunities that the redevelopment

:15:26.:15:30.

of the region power station present in terms been able to tuck into

:15:31.:15:33.

existing superfast broadband infrastructure. On this note, the

:15:34.:15:44.

power station sits alongside the West Coast mainline and actually

:15:45.:15:51.

this has the superfast broadband network of running the line so it is

:15:52.:15:56.

right next to this piece of land. Equally the canal network in the

:15:57.:15:58.

area has got this infrastructure as well. The power station site is

:15:59.:16:06.

where we have the real grind and the canal structure, we also have the

:16:07.:16:11.

National Grid infrastructure as well. It is a connectivity crossover

:16:12.:16:15.

as I have described it before in this House and we need to make the

:16:16.:16:24.

most of this. This is an ideal opportunity to ensure we attract

:16:25.:16:29.

businesses that are high-tech and advanced manufacturing to can make

:16:30.:16:35.

the best of this infrastructure. Equally as part of the site there

:16:36.:16:41.

will be some new home developments and the need to have this kind of

:16:42.:16:46.

broadband infrastructure to the doors, the superfast broadband line

:16:47.:16:49.

is so close and we do need to make the most of it. We need to make the

:16:50.:16:53.

most of it not just for today but for future generations. There is a

:16:54.:17:00.

real opportunity to ensure that the regeneration of this power station

:17:01.:17:04.

site attracts the businesses that will create the high skill jobs and

:17:05.:17:14.

high low-paid jobs for future generations. As I have said and will

:17:15.:17:20.

no doubt say again, we need to ensure that we have ambitious, bold

:17:21.:17:26.

and visionary plans. That one other site in my constituency which is

:17:27.:17:31.

where we have excellent digital infrastructure and we need to ensure

:17:32.:17:35.

that we make the most of it. That is the South Staffordshire codgers

:17:36.:17:47.

campus. -- college campus. Disappointing news that it was going

:17:48.:17:51.

to shut given falling numbers but there was multi-million pound

:17:52.:17:54.

investment in a few years ago and part of this investment was insuring

:17:55.:17:56.

it had excellent digital infrastructure. This is an

:17:57.:18:01.

opportunity to make the most of this as we look at the plans for the

:18:02.:18:05.

future, we need to ensure we tap into this digital infrastructure as

:18:06.:18:14.

well. I think it is probably many members who want to speak into this

:18:15.:18:18.

evening is very important debate. Having said that, it is important to

:18:19.:18:27.

come back to the bill we were discussing tonight because this is

:18:28.:18:32.

part of a weight range of reforms that the Government undertaking to

:18:33.:18:35.

ensure that we have excellent digital infrastructure and across

:18:36.:18:46.

our country. I welcome this bill and welcomed what it will do to ensure

:18:47.:18:49.

that my constituents and other constituents in this chamber will

:18:50.:18:56.

have access to faster and more reliable broadband and will be able

:18:57.:18:59.

to enjoy all the benefits that the intranet and e-mails of us. Thank

:19:00.:19:11.

you. Thank you. As always it is a pleasure to follow my constituency

:19:12.:19:16.

neighbour and honourable friend the member for Cannock Chase. It is a

:19:17.:19:21.

pleasure to take part in this debate this evening. Before I get onto the

:19:22.:19:27.

content on my speech I would like to acknowledge and thank the Minister

:19:28.:19:32.

who is not in his place for giving me a very congruence of response to

:19:33.:19:40.

what I thought was quite a simple and straightforward intervention

:19:41.:19:43.

earlier today. -- comprehensive response. And when the five-year

:19:44.:19:50.

limit in terms of the deadline for the business rate relief because it

:19:51.:19:54.

was an important point and death through this bill we can incentivise

:19:55.:20:02.

companies to get paint investment in digital infrastructure then that is

:20:03.:20:05.

a good thing and it is very far-reaching and positive benefits.

:20:06.:20:13.

But this bill didn't make me think a couple of things and rather like my

:20:14.:20:16.

honourable friend the member for Cannock Chase referred to herself I

:20:17.:20:22.

believe is a technology dinosaur, I would trade myself as a technophobe.

:20:23.:20:28.

In recent weeks with the challenges we have had to roared into net

:20:29.:20:34.

connections here in Parliament that has been frustrating to see the very

:20:35.:20:38.

least and on many occasions I will say it is very handy to have a

:20:39.:20:42.

member of staff and your team is a good bit younger than yourself

:20:43.:20:46.

because I have found they know everything about the intranet and

:20:47.:20:54.

have been a huge shock to me. I am also reminded about 20 or more years

:20:55.:21:02.

ago when we first started to see internet appear. I use the word

:21:03.:21:05.

appear because that's what it felt like. I remember our first internet

:21:06.:21:10.

connection, it was a big thing to have internet Atul Madison to recall

:21:11.:21:14.

there was such thing as wireless, there was a wire that led to

:21:15.:21:17.

downstairs from upstairs and you have to plug it in and pluck it out

:21:18.:21:21.

and it wasn't possible for more than one person to be on a computer at

:21:22.:21:26.

the same time. How things have progressed, how things have changed.

:21:27.:21:31.

I'm also reminded of the mobile phone that we first had, I couldn't

:21:32.:21:36.

fit it in even my large handbag. It was more like the size of a brick

:21:37.:21:42.

and it had an aerial on it and used to walk around and even had a

:21:43.:21:47.

handset with a curly cable attached to it. Again I say how things have

:21:48.:21:51.

progressed. You can imagine that he would be standing here this evening

:21:52.:21:58.

talking about 5G... And I'm grateful. I have to say that perhaps

:21:59.:22:07.

my nostalgia is greater than hers because actually my Nokia brick was

:22:08.:22:10.

far more reliable than my Apple iPhone ever has been. I bow to his

:22:11.:22:21.

judgment on that. I didn't have much chance to use the brick that we had

:22:22.:22:28.

as my husband tended to have that is at least I do have my own iPhone

:22:29.:22:34.

these days. Things have changed. We also see today the way that we can

:22:35.:22:43.

stream films into our homes, we can download music and they even have

:22:44.:22:47.

one of these boxes, I call it the beauty box that I can have in the

:22:48.:22:50.

kitchen and move around the House and the case at the music from my

:22:51.:22:56.

iPhone. It is amazing what you can do until it has changed lives. It

:22:57.:23:03.

has also changed business, changed so many other things that we do. The

:23:04.:23:07.

bill we are looking at this evening and debating, the telecoms

:23:08.:23:14.

infrastructure bill is actively relatively short. It is so very

:23:15.:23:18.

important and it gives effect to one of the number of commitments under

:23:19.:23:21.

jockey medication is that are made in the Autumn Statement last year.

:23:22.:23:25.

But it is also important because it aims to give very hacked it is some

:23:26.:23:33.

fought to the Lord of full fibre broadband connections and five

:23:34.:23:36.

Chibhabha publications. The meet up with infrastructure then

:23:37.:23:42.

this post so often we are talking about roads and railways and

:23:43.:23:50.

bridges. We are talking about very visible pieces of infrastructure,

:23:51.:23:56.

very tangible items of infrastructure, obviously items of

:23:57.:23:59.

infrastructure that really matter often to a local area are much more

:24:00.:24:07.

originally on a national basis. But sometimes what may appear to be a

:24:08.:24:11.

small has a much more far-reaching impact. This infrastructure bill to

:24:12.:24:15.

me is about a piece of infrastructure that is far less

:24:16.:24:20.

visible. We may see the green broadband boxes as we drive around

:24:21.:24:24.

our constituencies but we don't see this full fibre broadband would be

:24:25.:24:27.

no it is their rebuild no it is there because we will be able to

:24:28.:24:33.

access it. Whilst it isn't visible, through this Bill that will enable

:24:34.:24:38.

full fibre broadband to reach across England and Wales. I believe global

:24:39.:24:46.

benefit residents and businesses across the country and across my

:24:47.:24:53.

constituency. As we have had this evening, many honourable members

:24:54.:24:56.

have given us examples of their broadband can make a difference in

:24:57.:25:02.

their own constituencies. Whether as individual households, a small

:25:03.:25:05.

retail business, a large manufacturer or a business park. Or

:25:06.:25:08.

someone who is working in the gig economy. If they think my own

:25:09.:25:17.

constituency, a lot of small and medium-size businesses are the

:25:18.:25:19.

absolute backbone of our local economy. It is businesses that are

:25:20.:25:24.

creating the jobs, businesses that has driven investment into driving

:25:25.:25:30.

down unemployment. In developing the skills of four today and for the

:25:31.:25:38.

future. Whether that be in the village centre retail shops, whether

:25:39.:25:42.

it is one of many in the sparks, where we have a whole variety of

:25:43.:25:44.

businesses. But these businesses, they could be

:25:45.:25:53.

using the Internet to sell goods, they could be using the Internet for

:25:54.:25:59.

ordering components for their business, some will use it for

:26:00.:26:05.

customer services. It is now an integral part of business. Access to

:26:06.:26:13.

the Internet is as important as electricity. If the lights go out,

:26:14.:26:19.

power go off, if you have a manufacturing business, you can have

:26:20.:26:22.

a situation where you cannot produce goods. Without the Internet your

:26:23.:26:31.

business grinds to a halt. Yes, my honourable friend is right. Before

:26:32.:26:36.

coming into this place, I worked in a business in the optical industry

:26:37.:26:41.

and we relied on the Internet for processing orders, sending stock

:26:42.:26:44.

orders back across into Europe and the minute the Internet went down,

:26:45.:26:49.

all of a sudden we could do nothing at all, showing just how crucial

:26:50.:26:57.

that connectivity is. So this bill will be absolutely vital. Under

:26:58.:27:03.

current broadband and superfast broadband and mobile coverage, there

:27:04.:27:07.

are still some of those so-called not sports which we have heard about

:27:08.:27:15.

this evening. We have heard a lot of contributions from members

:27:16.:27:19.

representing the more rural constituencies of the country. My

:27:20.:27:22.

constituency does not fall into that category and I agree with my friend

:27:23.:27:29.

there member for Cannock Chase that it is not just the rural

:27:30.:27:35.

constituencies affected. We do have some not sports and in my own home I

:27:36.:27:38.

find that from time to time I have to move around to get some

:27:39.:27:44.

telephone, mobile connection and were it not for the Wi-Fi

:27:45.:27:49.

connection, I would really struggle. I hope that the days of having to

:27:50.:27:56.

lean out of the kitchen window are moved to a certain spot in the

:27:57.:28:01.

living room to enable a pick-up of the mobile phone signal. Be a thing

:28:02.:28:11.

of the past. But it is not just businesses, we have heard a lot

:28:12.:28:16.

about business, it is not just about individuals, but I think also of the

:28:17.:28:21.

many voluntary sector organisations and charities that are in my

:28:22.:28:26.

constituency, many of them provide lifelines to local residents. They

:28:27.:28:31.

also rely on the Internet, they rely on a good Internet connection and

:28:32.:28:34.

that means through their web pages there is information out there 24

:28:35.:28:41.

hours a day so that people can pick up on that information. Through

:28:42.:28:45.

Internet we're able to reach out much further than perhaps we could

:28:46.:28:51.

in the past. But I also wanted to follow up on a point that a couple

:28:52.:28:58.

of honourable friends made and that was related to demographics and

:28:59.:29:02.

ages. Internet access is something that has the potential to cut across

:29:03.:29:08.

all ages of society, whether you are an older person, through good

:29:09.:29:14.

Internet access you can use the Internet to keep in touch with your

:29:15.:29:19.

family, you can use Facebook, face time, things we did not have a fuel

:29:20.:29:24.

years ago. If you have grandchildren living on the other side of the

:29:25.:29:28.

country or the other side of town but you want to have that connection

:29:29.:29:34.

with them, and it is much cheaper than using the telephone, that can

:29:35.:29:38.

be facilitated through having a good Internet connection. I also think

:29:39.:29:46.

about often when I go into a school, have a debate with young people

:29:47.:29:50.

either primary school children or more often than not older, secondary

:29:51.:29:55.

school children. The question will often come up, what does government

:29:56.:30:02.

do for us as young people? Sitting here today has made me realise that

:30:03.:30:07.

this is an excellent example of something that government is doing

:30:08.:30:12.

that will help young people, not just older people but young people

:30:13.:30:16.

as well, because they are the generation that rely and use and are

:30:17.:30:22.

much more tax and phones savvy probably than all of us in here put

:30:23.:30:26.

together, and I know I can speak about myself in regard to that. I am

:30:27.:30:34.

sure my honourable friend will agree as it is that the age disparity we

:30:35.:30:39.

have between young and old can be bridged through the Internet through

:30:40.:30:44.

proper broadband and mobile connection, especially in rural

:30:45.:30:47.

constituencies, those in Scotland and although some of these powers

:30:48.:30:56.

have been devolved, unfortunately none of my SNP colleagues are here

:30:57.:31:03.

tonight, but we recognise the importance Westminster can play in

:31:04.:31:08.

giving funding and directing for broadband and mobile. It is England

:31:09.:31:20.

and Wales and not Scotland. I am grateful to my honourable friend for

:31:21.:31:23.

making that point. A very valuable point but I do think and I am sure I

:31:24.:31:32.

will be corrected if I am wrong, that although this bill is for

:31:33.:31:37.

England and Wales only, the Barnett Formula consequential is will apply.

:31:38.:31:43.

My honourable friend from Scotland made a very valid point. This bill

:31:44.:31:54.

that we are debating this evening, to me is about looking to the

:31:55.:31:59.

future. It is about developing infrastructure for the future so

:32:00.:32:03.

that we can take our country forward. As we seek to develop new

:32:04.:32:07.

relationships and new partnerships in a post-Brexit world, this will

:32:08.:32:14.

make that connectivity around the world so much easier and so much

:32:15.:32:24.

better. If I turn now to the issue of business rates, only briefly,

:32:25.:32:28.

because I believe that by providing the 100% business rate relief for

:32:29.:32:32.

new for fibre infrastructure which this bill will enable, but for a

:32:33.:32:38.

period of five years, I hope and trust this will provide an incentive

:32:39.:32:45.

and an encouragement to telecommunications to get on with

:32:46.:32:52.

the job and delivering what clearly week in this House want to see and I

:32:53.:32:56.

hope that together with the universal service obligation will

:32:57.:33:01.

start to make a real and significant difference to our constituents. Also

:33:02.:33:07.

that in doing that we are able to make big contributions to closing

:33:08.:33:11.

the digital divide, that digital divide that we have heard so much

:33:12.:33:16.

about this evening. And that we can help to get higher quality, more

:33:17.:33:22.

reliable connectivity into households and businesses because

:33:23.:33:26.

that is what I want in my constituencies and that clearly is

:33:27.:33:29.

what other members in this House want also. But this enclosing for me

:33:30.:33:39.

is also about supporting a bill and supporting a government that is

:33:40.:33:43.

investing in our country, investing in our infrastructure and investing

:33:44.:33:51.

in the livelihoods and futures of not just today's generation but

:33:52.:33:55.

tomorrow is as well, so I will be supporting this bill this evening.

:33:56.:34:02.

It is a pleasure to follow my honourable friend who address the

:34:03.:34:09.

substance of this important bill with her customary attention to

:34:10.:34:13.

detail and indeed her personal reflections on the progress that the

:34:14.:34:16.

Internet has made and they change it has made to all of our lives I thing

:34:17.:34:20.

has been enormously valuable this evening. Let me go to the core of

:34:21.:34:29.

the bill first and then let me explain why I believe this is so

:34:30.:34:33.

important. I do believe that it is excellent that this bill will

:34:34.:34:39.

provide for 100% business rate relief for for fibre infrastructure

:34:40.:34:43.

for a five-year period from the 1st of April 2000 and 17. It is also

:34:44.:34:49.

very important that this is backdated so that it will truly

:34:50.:34:53.

support telecommunications companies who invest in their fibre network,

:34:54.:35:00.

but what is also important is that the Government will cover the full

:35:01.:35:03.

costs of this relief and I say that someone who has been a former

:35:04.:35:08.

councillor, who knows the impact that government release can make

:35:09.:35:11.

local government and it is important to note government has said here

:35:12.:35:15.

because of the importance of this measure, that the Government will

:35:16.:35:20.

meet the full costs of this belief. I am grateful to my honourable

:35:21.:35:25.

friend and indeed my honourable friend is a member for South

:35:26.:35:31.

Perthshire for mentioning the impact on Scotland because of course this

:35:32.:35:40.

bill has territorial to England and Wales but the Barnett Formula

:35:41.:35:44.

applies. So it is important to recognise how it affects the whole

:35:45.:35:49.

of the UK. There are varying constituencies today, urban, rural

:35:50.:35:55.

both tightly packed in urban settings button so more sparsely

:35:56.:36:00.

located in rural settings and superfast broadband paste on part

:36:01.:36:06.

five, part copper technology as today is now available to 93% of

:36:07.:36:12.

premises. That is good progress and we have heard from my honourable

:36:13.:36:17.

friend the progress the Internet has made. I recall having the dial-up

:36:18.:36:22.

modem which would be the way which would connect you then to 25

:36:23.:36:31.

kilobits and to be able to do this time or Skype would have been

:36:32.:36:35.

inconceivable in those days. We have made huge progress and 93% of

:36:36.:36:40.

premises being able to access the part copper, part fibre service is

:36:41.:36:46.

good news, this relief provides I believe and the Minister will

:36:47.:36:50.

correct me if I am wrong, ?60 million worth of support to

:36:51.:36:53.

companies who invest in their fibre network by installing new fibre

:36:54.:37:01.

lines and virgin media and it is important at this point to deviate

:37:02.:37:05.

and demonstrate the shows the importance of having a competitive

:37:06.:37:08.

corporation tax regime, which has been noted already today, which

:37:09.:37:15.

means companies like liberty have invested in Britain and have bought

:37:16.:37:18.

virgin media and are now taking it forward and I would have thought

:37:19.:37:25.

this will boost virgin media's ?3 billion project expansion as well as

:37:26.:37:32.

plans by Beattie opened the each -- BT Openreach to increase its

:37:33.:37:37.

investment in fibre optics and also to help smaller alternative players

:37:38.:37:44.

which as my honourable friend reference have been priced out of

:37:45.:37:51.

the market in the past. Due to the impact of business rates along with

:37:52.:37:53.

some other competitive and regulatory pressures. I welcome the

:37:54.:37:59.

Government's aim through this and other measures to provide superfast

:38:00.:38:07.

broadband, speeds of 24 megabits per second or more, for at least 95% of

:38:08.:38:13.

the UK. That is progress beyond what we have achieved today, but I think

:38:14.:38:18.

we should go further and that is why I am pleased that in the digital

:38:19.:38:22.

economy act 2017 the act provided for every household to have a legal

:38:23.:38:30.

right, a legal right to request fast broadband connection. I am grateful

:38:31.:38:42.

that he mentions 95%. I don't apologise for reinforcing this point

:38:43.:38:45.

because it is important. There are still 5%, many of whom are

:38:46.:38:51.

constituencies left out, so will he join me in pressing the Government

:38:52.:38:55.

to ensure this is universal and do we do welcome the measures set out

:38:56.:39:00.

in the bill, we are still speaking out for constituents still waiting.

:39:01.:39:05.

As ever my honourable friend makes a very important and cogent point

:39:06.:39:11.

here. He is right to champion the interest for 100% of the UK and that

:39:12.:39:18.

is why the universal service obligation is so important and it is

:39:19.:39:22.

only a first step towards making sure that Britain is the most

:39:23.:39:29.

competitive country and is the place that other businesses based

:39:30.:39:33.

elsewhere in the world want to do business in the future, and as my

:39:34.:39:38.

honourable friend also noted, that is even more important in a

:39:39.:39:43.

post-Brexit world. We must make sure that we are match fit and ready to

:39:44.:39:50.

go in the next century. That is why it is important that every household

:39:51.:39:54.

has a legal right to request fast broadband connection and as has

:39:55.:39:59.

become customary at some of the exchanges we listen to on Wednesday,

:40:00.:40:04.

I want to reference the few points made by some of my constituents.

:40:05.:40:15.

Some of my constituents in hazy league get less than half of 1

:40:16.:40:20.

megabit per second and that is unacceptable. In fact, they say it

:40:21.:40:27.

is worse than that because they say they have too much downtime because

:40:28.:40:30.

the current connection is unreliable. It is not just homes and

:40:31.:40:39.

individuals and families that are affected, but diversify rural

:40:40.:40:42.

businesses. I got a quote from my constituent who said just yesterday

:40:43.:40:47.

I saw a third visit this week by Openreach to my neighbour will stop

:40:48.:40:52.

I took the perpetuity to talk to the engineer who confirmed there was a

:40:53.:40:59.

major problem, perhaps with the old underground cabling to the area

:41:00.:41:03.

simply giving up. He also confirmed that none of the line managers are

:41:04.:41:07.

likely to take this further because of the cost to Beattie to supply

:41:08.:41:11.

cabling would be too high. Not only is the company dealing with

:41:12.:41:24.

old underground cabling that is simply giving up and was introduced

:41:25.:41:28.

for technologies that are now old-fashioned, as another member

:41:29.:41:36.

referenced but also, it is tackling the cost that applies to businesses

:41:37.:41:41.

through business rates and other regulatory matters, particularly

:41:42.:41:46.

business rates, the costs have been prohibitive in helping businesses

:41:47.:41:50.

invest. I was a British British-American parliamentary group

:41:51.:42:01.

in Tennessee, where the weather was almost as good as it has been here

:42:02.:42:07.

recently. What is important is that I found a ?70 million grant, and

:42:08.:42:14.

there is a population of just over 500,000 people in Chattanooga, a ?70

:42:15.:42:19.

million grant had not local people in Chattanooga notched 24 megabits

:42:20.:42:25.

per second, which is the Government's measure of success in

:42:26.:42:30.

this phase of superfast broadband, but one GB per second and that was

:42:31.:42:34.

through what the Government is trying to do today, fibre to the

:42:35.:42:39.

premises, not just to the Cabinet, so this is absolutely right, as a

:42:40.:42:45.

way forward. But coming back across the pond, to the seat of the Duke of

:42:46.:42:56.

Wellington, the exchange there is the problem because at present, the

:42:57.:43:08.

broadband connection given to my constituents say, and I'm sure

:43:09.:43:16.

undoubtedly others, come from across the county boundary instead of

:43:17.:43:19.

within the county of Hampshire. Bramley is closer than the current

:43:20.:43:28.

location and so the length of cabling required from the exchange

:43:29.:43:34.

to the home would be cut in half if it was from Bramley. This shows the

:43:35.:43:39.

lack of flexibility in the system today, where we really need to make

:43:40.:43:43.

sure it is the right technology in the right places to serve people in

:43:44.:43:50.

the 21st century, not the convenience of telecommunications

:43:51.:43:55.

operators from the 20th. And in Bramley, some are neither

:43:56.:44:05.

Basingstoke but they're connected via cables from Bramley which are

:44:06.:44:08.

steel and not copper because apparently when those cables when

:44:09.:44:13.

installed by BT, at that point state-owned, not sure of the party

:44:14.:44:19.

opposite wish to renationalise that as well... The honourable gentleman

:44:20.:44:29.

said it is a possibility! Perhaps he would like to clarify the matter at

:44:30.:44:36.

the dispatch box but the point being, that BT at the time said, it

:44:37.:44:40.

is all right, we don't face any competition we will just shove some

:44:41.:44:43.

steel cabling in there and it doesn't matter what happens to local

:44:44.:44:48.

people. When it was analog telephone technology that was fine but in this

:44:49.:44:52.

new digital age, we need to make sure people have the right

:44:53.:44:55.

technology to their doorstep and that is why we must tackle this head

:44:56.:45:00.

on. I don't want to be totally critical of BT, they have done good

:45:01.:45:08.

work and have shown flexibility in the way things are delivered, for

:45:09.:45:15.

example, in the parish of Ennis field in my constituency, BT came up

:45:16.:45:19.

with a match funding scheme which said if the community can raise some

:45:20.:45:25.

of the money, BT will put in half. I think that is innovative for a rural

:45:26.:45:32.

community. But therein lies the problem, no one should be penalised

:45:33.:45:38.

for what is, as my honourable friend, the member for Cannock

:45:39.:45:42.

Chase, rightly set out, is now a utility. It is something people

:45:43.:45:50.

should be able to accept and so, to charge people ?558 per dwelling is

:45:51.:45:57.

not only on the cusp of what BT might ordinarily provide as a

:45:58.:46:02.

commercial arrangement, but actually was penalising those resident in

:46:03.:46:06.

rural areas for a living where they do. I am grateful, can I move to

:46:07.:46:17.

Dorset and endorse what he is saying, advocating greater

:46:18.:46:19.

flexibility in saying there is some good work being done but more could

:46:20.:46:25.

be done. Would he not agree to any to see flexibility, not in

:46:26.:46:29.

Hampshire, but across the piece, where that are difficult rural

:46:30.:46:35.

issues, there should be sensible solutions? My honourable friend

:46:36.:46:40.

makes an important further contribution to this debate, he is

:46:41.:46:44.

correct and if I can take him back to the exchange and remarks by the

:46:45.:46:52.

member for North West Hampshire, he pointed out breaks it an opportunity

:46:53.:47:00.

here because European legislation got in the way of allowing local

:47:01.:47:02.

communities to come up with solutions. When I was a local

:47:03.:47:08.

councillor, there was a measure introduced called Kitty, a new way

:47:09.:47:12.

of providing match funding from the Borough Council. And then that was

:47:13.:47:15.

ruled out of order because it was deemed state aid and through careful

:47:16.:47:23.

financial management, we kept council tax down and used excellent

:47:24.:47:27.

initiatives by this Government in match funding and helping local

:47:28.:47:32.

councils keep tax down but further, that money that we had saved and

:47:33.:47:37.

wanted to put to good use for the residents of Basingstoke and steam

:47:38.:47:39.

in North Hampshire could not be used because of state aid rules. Would

:47:40.:47:49.

she give way? I am very grateful to the honourable gentleman for the

:47:50.:47:52.

important point he is making. The combination of local Government and

:47:53.:47:58.

local IT companies. We have a similar situation in my

:47:59.:48:04.

constituency, but through good local governments and the freedom of local

:48:05.:48:10.

companies with sensibly managed local finances, that is where we can

:48:11.:48:14.

find the solution to the internet shortages. I thank my honourable

:48:15.:48:23.

friend for that point and he is right, this is all part of the

:48:24.:48:27.

competitive nature we need to try and show his supported and provide

:48:28.:48:32.

local solutions to local problems. Mr Deputy Speaker, I am sure you are

:48:33.:48:38.

aware that the County Council has been working to go beyond 96%

:48:39.:48:41.

connectivity in the county of Hampshire... And if you weren't

:48:42.:48:53.

aware, you are now! Is to Deputy Speaker, that could be met if we had

:48:54.:48:59.

local firms meeting the 4% shortfall. If we allow local firms

:49:00.:49:05.

to bid for further funding from the state, not hindered by EU state aid

:49:06.:49:09.

rules but indeed further supported by these business rates initiatives,

:49:10.:49:14.

we would close at 4% cap without a shadow of a doubt. And if I can turn

:49:15.:49:23.

now from BT, who have had a great benefit from the current dismissed

:49:24.:49:30.

rates arrangement to Virgin Media, who should benefit, as I outlined

:49:31.:49:34.

earlier in passing but it is important to talk a little bit more

:49:35.:49:39.

to outline the importance of this two British companies based in my

:49:40.:49:41.

constituency, their corporate headquarters is in Coke in my

:49:42.:49:50.

constituency, so they actually are running a competition through their

:49:51.:49:53.

own commercial judgment to supercharge local communities and

:49:54.:50:01.

though they haven't supercharged Hook yet, they have agreed to

:50:02.:50:07.

supercharge Hartley Whitney and Phoenix Green, just down the road

:50:08.:50:11.

and that means that they will have ultrafast fibre to the premise very

:50:12.:50:16.

shortly, which is good news because those residents will get a head

:50:17.:50:21.

start on what the Government aspires the home of the country to receive,

:50:22.:50:27.

they will receive 52 premises, which means they will be eligible to get

:50:28.:50:30.

one gigabit per second telecommunication connectivity that

:50:31.:50:38.

is critical for the future. Businesses will benefit as well, not

:50:39.:50:43.

just households. In Yateley, Samsung has its European quality control

:50:44.:50:49.

centre. If we want those technical businesses to be based in

:50:50.:50:53.

constituencies like mine, we need to make sure they have the connectivity

:50:54.:50:57.

to match. Samsung being the technical giant it is, it needed

:50:58.:51:04.

more than perhaps anyone else. So, it is absolutely brilliant news to

:51:05.:51:08.

hear that these business rates initiatives will be introduced. But

:51:09.:51:14.

it's not just the Giants, the small businesses also and in Fleet, there

:51:15.:51:22.

is a business called CV library, set up in 2000 in the dot-com boom

:51:23.:51:29.

mirror, a different internet era but an internet business it remains. And

:51:30.:51:33.

it is very successful, it was set up by a young carpet fitter and it is

:51:34.:51:39.

now the UK's third biggest job sport, which has thrived on the

:51:40.:51:44.

great number of new jobs created under the economic management of

:51:45.:51:52.

this Government. And it is one of the top 500 most visited website in

:51:53.:52:01.

the UK. This is a well reputed website. This small business, set up

:52:02.:52:12.

in 2000, has come a long, long way. Resume library is now allowing this

:52:13.:52:16.

business to operate in the United States and it is now thriving as an

:52:17.:52:21.

international business but again, just like Samsung, if we want these

:52:22.:52:23.

businesses to be based outside of the main towns and cities, outside

:52:24.:52:30.

of London, across the country, making sure we create an economy of

:52:31.:52:36.

the nations and regions, not just of London, then we need connectivity

:52:37.:52:43.

that serves businesses like CV library, allowing them to thrive and

:52:44.:52:46.

connect with the world, as they have done with resume library and as I am

:52:47.:52:52.

sure they will do in the future. Incidentally, they were the first

:52:53.:52:56.

jobs website to allow people to apply for jobs on a mobile phone.

:52:57.:53:00.

And I will come to that in a moment because I think that is also a very

:53:01.:53:07.

important point. One resident in Bramley said to me, he found it

:53:08.:53:14.

incredible that we are surrounded by much better services and yet it

:53:15.:53:19.

appears we are unable to access fees. People like this resident are

:53:20.:53:24.

used to going on their mobile phone, connecting to 4G and yet, in their

:53:25.:53:28.

House, on fixed broadband, they cannot connect to the decent

:53:29.:53:33.

service. He was told by BT, he says, that it is not possible to switch

:53:34.:53:38.

exchanges. This is the point I raised earlier, from one to another

:53:39.:53:41.

because it was simply too difficult. In the mobile mirror and the mobile

:53:42.:53:46.

age where people can go about their daily business Valley walk to work,

:53:47.:53:50.

it is not acceptable for something to simply be too difficult to a

:53:51.:53:56.

monopoly provider. We must invent on the Government is doing this. And

:53:57.:54:01.

that's why it's important the Government encourages this fool

:54:02.:54:07.

fibre initiative. 100% business rate relief is focused on that fool

:54:08.:54:12.

fibre, fibre to the premises initiative and indeed the digital

:54:13.:54:15.

infrastructure investment fund has been designed to incentivise this

:54:16.:54:19.

also. Traditionally, in Britain, it has been difficult to pronounce this

:54:20.:54:23.

because the industry has been relatively young and there's a lack

:54:24.:54:25.

of certainty that has existed around future demand, which is meant

:54:26.:54:31.

investment has been difficult to secure. So, I hope the digital

:54:32.:54:36.

infrastructure investment fund will pass these business rates

:54:37.:54:40.

initiatives and ignite interest from private finance to invest in the

:54:41.:54:44.

sector, an important sector, a critical part of infrastructure,

:54:45.:54:50.

just like roads and rail, and I hope it will draw in private interest

:54:51.:54:55.

that we really do need. And indeed, as my honourable friend mentioned,

:54:56.:55:02.

drawing in private finance means this market will be more competitive

:55:03.:55:08.

and it will allow local solutions to rise up and meet the needs of local

:55:09.:55:10.

people. For fibre networks are so much more

:55:11.:55:19.

resilient than the traditional copper networks. A constituent told

:55:20.:55:23.

me the copper cabling was failing and that is because most Internet in

:55:24.:55:35.

Britain's homes is delivered by copper cables. From the Green

:55:36.:55:41.

cabinet that my honourable friend reference, the Green cabinet is that

:55:42.:55:47.

people see springing up so that they can be enabled for fibre but still

:55:48.:55:51.

the final part of the service is delivered by copper. These wires can

:55:52.:55:57.

be degraded by distance as has been the case for my constituents, indeed

:55:58.:56:06.

the constituents in Bramley have a long distance from the exchange,

:56:07.:56:11.

whereas for fibre networks seek to run the connection straight to the

:56:12.:56:15.

doors of customers homes or businesses and that is why I make

:56:16.:56:21.

one plead to the Government. In planning law, planning legislation

:56:22.:56:30.

there is still no capability for local councils to mandate on new

:56:31.:56:34.

developments solving the problem that my honourable friend

:56:35.:56:41.

referenced. There is no capability for local councils to mandate the

:56:42.:56:50.

new developments but the only requirement they can make is there

:56:51.:56:53.

will be a telephone connection to way home. If it is done on a scale,

:56:54.:57:02.

the cost is marginalised if at all existent, but the fact that it is

:57:03.:57:05.

made difficult for councils to mandate this could be something that

:57:06.:57:09.

government does very easily and would be transformational in the new

:57:10.:57:13.

homes that the Government aspires to build across the whole of the United

:57:14.:57:19.

Kingdom. My honourable friend mentions copper and he mentioned the

:57:20.:57:26.

fact that the wire can be degraded by age and distance, but it is also

:57:27.:57:31.

by volume of traffic and will he agreed that on a Saturday night when

:57:32.:57:36.

there is a popular programme on and more people want to be streaming or

:57:37.:57:40.

gaming, the whole system grinds to a halt and that is part of the

:57:41.:57:46.

degradation process as well. He is absolutely right. The capacity of

:57:47.:57:52.

copper is insufficient for today's challenges and we must make sure

:57:53.:57:57.

that we are not only dealing with today's challengers but tomorrow's

:57:58.:58:02.

also so we must make sure there is more fibre than we today because we

:58:03.:58:08.

do not want a situation, perhaps five, ten years from now whether

:58:09.:58:13.

fibre we have installed today is not good enough for the challenges of

:58:14.:58:20.

tomorrow. In turning to the challenges of tomorrow, it is

:58:21.:58:24.

important to consider mobile communications which is enabled by

:58:25.:58:29.

fibre broadband, Firebird linking the mobile mast together, five are

:58:30.:58:33.

providing the connectivity to users via the mast who want to connect to

:58:34.:58:40.

their banking on their phone as has been referenced by a number of

:58:41.:58:44.

members. And deploying mobile infrastructure does remain

:58:45.:58:48.

challenging at times, particularly in those remote locations or food

:58:49.:58:53.

then more difficult topography, so it is important reconsidered the

:58:54.:59:02.

viability of these initiatives as we move from 4G 25 G and remedying

:59:03.:59:10.

those communities who have not moved to three or 4G in the first place.

:59:11.:59:14.

We must make sure those initiatives are viable so that no one is left

:59:15.:59:20.

behind. Indeed mobile telecommunications can be an

:59:21.:59:24.

excellent way of providing mobile broadband, fast broadband to rural

:59:25.:59:29.

communities instead of running fibre to those homes. It could be part of

:59:30.:59:34.

the solution, part of dealing with the final 4% is indeed to make sure

:59:35.:59:41.

there is fibre run to mobile masts that is then accessible to those

:59:42.:59:46.

rural communities. Juicing operating costs is critical to make sure the

:59:47.:59:51.

potential economic viability of these sites is considered properly.

:59:52.:59:55.

I am sure the Government will consider this in the deliberations

:59:56.:00:00.

they will have a head. Targeted business rates relief to enable

:00:01.:00:05.

fibre cabling to be rolled out to those hard to reach areas would be

:00:06.:00:11.

particularly helpful in not spots that are badly served by telecoms to

:00:12.:00:17.

date, could be much better served by telecoms in the future. It is

:00:18.:00:22.

important to prioritise sites like railways and motorways as has been

:00:23.:00:27.

referenced by my honourable friend for Faversham Kent. The honourable

:00:28.:00:33.

member for Chelmsford who demonstrated that connectivity,

:00:34.:00:44.

connected commute was the term, connected can need Firebird... I

:00:45.:00:52.

have let a lot of leeway and I do not want to get too involved in 4G,

:00:53.:01:00.

five G, absolutely nothing to do with what we are discussing and I

:01:01.:01:05.

know you have been asked to filibuster. With so many more

:01:06.:01:10.

speakers to con you might deprive them! Filibuster never, informed the

:01:11.:01:21.

nation! But it has to be on the subject we are discussing. We will

:01:22.:01:25.

be talking about cricket next, come on! Thank you, Mr Deputy Speaker.

:01:26.:01:39.

Perhaps I can demonstrate... Mr Deputy Speaker suggests this is a

:01:40.:01:43.

filly Buster, my honourable friend has hardly cleared his throat! The

:01:44.:01:47.

worry is I have heard too much already. You are very kind in your

:01:48.:01:55.

last remark but I shall be bringing my remarks to a close very shortly.

:01:56.:02:03.

I'd just do think it is important to recognise the way that fibre which

:02:04.:02:10.

will be enabled by these initiatives, new fibre rolled out

:02:11.:02:14.

and business rates relief, that new fibre does allow for better mobile

:02:15.:02:17.

connectivity in those hard to reach areas. On the topic of

:02:18.:02:28.

infrastructure, I think he makes a good point around infrastructure

:02:29.:02:31.

linked to railways and roads but would he not agree that airports

:02:32.:02:40.

need infrastructure there as well? I have a suggestion for the House. I

:02:41.:02:44.

think we ought to put in another adjournment debate. As ever you make

:02:45.:02:53.

an excellent suggestion there. I will speak to third honourable

:02:54.:02:58.

gentleman in due course. As we allow fibre to be rolled out through this

:02:59.:03:04.

relief, to areas that have not been accessible in the past, I think it

:03:05.:03:09.

is important they reflect on the way that consumers, people are changing

:03:10.:03:14.

their behaviour. People are moving to mobile, we need to make sure that

:03:15.:03:18.

accessibility to the mobile networks, to the fibre network is

:03:19.:03:23.

possible and that is why it is critical we work with people like

:03:24.:03:27.

Network Rail to roll-up on their land as well as well as across other

:03:28.:03:31.

people's land, but it is in contrast as my honourable friend referenced,

:03:32.:03:40.

to the way in which we used to work, the way in which we used to work and

:03:41.:03:44.

it is important that people are helped along this journey, because

:03:45.:03:49.

if we want to roll out more fibre, we need to make sure there is demand

:03:50.:03:53.

for red otherwise it is not commercially viable. We need to

:03:54.:03:58.

reduced operating costs, we are doing that through relieving

:03:59.:04:02.

business rates from new fibre rolled out but it is good to see new

:04:03.:04:07.

digital training opportunities that are being created, the new digital

:04:08.:04:12.

skills partnership seeing government, business and charities

:04:13.:04:15.

come together, so this is really positive news. Indeed I should

:04:16.:04:23.

declare an interest, refer members to the plan by Lloyds Banking Group

:04:24.:04:27.

to give face-to-face digital skills training to 2.5 million people by

:04:28.:04:34.

2020. Indeed a pledge by Google as part of their commitment to five

:04:35.:04:39.

hours of free digital skills also. This is something adopted by

:04:40.:04:44.

business. Let me conclude by saying that this strategy and these plans

:04:45.:04:50.

do demonstrate that the Government takes businesses and people

:04:51.:04:55.

seriously in rolling out fibre broadband to people across the

:04:56.:04:59.

country. It is part of cuts to business rates, it is part of cuts

:05:00.:05:05.

to business rates to the benefit of all ratepayers and it is part of the

:05:06.:05:12.

Government's focus on making sure that we do create an economy that

:05:13.:05:17.

serves the whole of this country, all of the nations and regions and

:05:18.:05:23.

indeed it is about making sure that the Government is committed to the

:05:24.:05:27.

long-term reforms of our economy. Who would have thought that Ali

:05:28.:05:32.

Babar and Amazon would be the big retailers of today not the

:05:33.:05:37.

greengrocer on the high Street? Who would have thought we would be

:05:38.:05:41.

speaking to people across the world instead of flying to see them? Who

:05:42.:05:46.

would have thought that people would be able to watch this speech on

:05:47.:05:50.

their mobile phone rather than read it, there I say in hindsight? I am

:05:51.:06:01.

sure many will. Sorry? Can I just say, I have a problem, I did not

:06:02.:06:08.

expect to bring in a time limit. Can I just so, I do not want to put a

:06:09.:06:13.

time limit on but if you think we have something up in about an hour

:06:14.:06:18.

and we are still five speakers to come so if we aim for 12 minutes.

:06:19.:06:34.

Thank you. The words that will bring in my ears, filibuster never, inform

:06:35.:06:40.

the nation always. That is a lesson for us all. I will give you an extra

:06:41.:06:51.

lotion. -- lesson. You have to inform the nation on the subject we

:06:52.:06:57.

discuss. Of course, Mr Deputy Speaker. Thank you for that kind

:06:58.:07:04.

reminder. This bill matters. And as my honourable friend the member for

:07:05.:07:09.

Wantage, the former minister in this area mentioned, it is right that

:07:10.:07:14.

this is not necessarily the most thrilling of bills. It is relatively

:07:15.:07:19.

short, six clauses. As a former lawyer I can appreciate that

:07:20.:07:25.

actually brevity is often harder than writing something very long, so

:07:26.:07:29.

I admire the ability of the draughtsman of this bill for putting

:07:30.:07:38.

together something so succinct. I believe that this bill should have

:07:39.:07:42.

strong support not just from government benches but also from all

:07:43.:07:46.

sides of this House as has already been indicated from speakers from

:07:47.:07:51.

the opposition benches. My constituents only 30 to 40 miles

:07:52.:07:57.

from central London face very patchy broadband coverage in many areas. I

:07:58.:08:05.

appreciate the point made by my honourable friend the member for

:08:06.:08:08.

Wantage that often it is harder to get broadband in spread out villages

:08:09.:08:14.

and rural areas than it is in Tower blocks and urban areas and I

:08:15.:08:20.

appreciate that point, but for example in the village of Kimbolton,

:08:21.:08:24.

slap bang in the middle of my constituency, it has bad would ban

:08:25.:08:31.

reception. Some statistics to back this point up. No resident or

:08:32.:08:38.

business receives superfast broadband, not one. We are in the

:08:39.:08:43.

bottom 7% of the country for average download speed and we are in the

:08:44.:08:48.

bottom 0.5% for connections of over 30 megabytes, so there is still a

:08:49.:08:56.

job to do and I would just with do deference as a new member say to the

:08:57.:09:00.

Government, we still do have a job connecting up existing rural areas

:09:01.:09:09.

and we should not forget that. I thank the member for giving way. As

:09:10.:09:14.

he knows my 92-year-old aunt lives in the village of Kimpton. Would he

:09:15.:09:19.

agree with me that it is most important in rural areas where there

:09:20.:09:23.

are older people living in the community that we have access that

:09:24.:09:26.

keeps them engaged with their friends and family? I would agree

:09:27.:09:40.

and also ad that it is not just important that people are connected

:09:41.:09:43.

to friends and family but the converse is one of loneliness in

:09:44.:09:50.

many respects. We live in a society increasingly atomised that it is

:09:51.:09:53.

helpful for older members to make sure that they have that fall

:09:54.:09:58.

digital connectivity and that is another reason for this bill being

:09:59.:10:03.

important. In a recent meeting, a business owner told me that in her

:10:04.:10:09.

business situated in a rural area, it takes three days to back-up

:10:10.:10:13.

server such as the slow download speed.

:10:14.:10:19.

Business rates relief for the installation of fibre broadband will

:10:20.:10:28.

provide an incentive for investors and that point has been made by

:10:29.:10:33.

several members, not least the member for North East Hampshire. But

:10:34.:10:38.

it is, I think, important to consider why. In the broader sense,

:10:39.:10:46.

having world's leading digital structure is important, why are we

:10:47.:10:51.

all here? I shall offer a few observations to the House. We are

:10:52.:11:00.

going through a new industrial revolution. Technology, powered

:11:01.:11:07.

largely by the internet, is powering a global future and we need to be

:11:08.:11:11.

the heart of this in this country and fool fibre broadband, rolling

:11:12.:11:16.

this out is central to that charge. This Bill will make that easy, it

:11:17.:11:19.

will enable small businesses in rural areas like mine to have access

:11:20.:11:25.

to the superfast they need and as the Minister of State said earlier,

:11:26.:11:28.

it will break down barriers to business, something that I know

:11:29.:11:31.

everybody at least on our side wants to see. This Bill also shows that

:11:32.:11:42.

Government can, in limited ways, and when the time is right, provide

:11:43.:11:47.

innovative solutions to help solve some of the biggest problem is

:11:48.:11:52.

choking up areas of our economy. We need to strongly support the free

:11:53.:11:55.

market, free enterprise, with the Government intervention, with little

:11:56.:12:02.

Government intervention, unless necessary, but we do need to be bold

:12:03.:12:06.

and I believe this Bill is bold and the Government actions are bold. We

:12:07.:12:11.

need to use the tools of Government to allow the private sector to work

:12:12.:12:15.

more efficiently and be incentivise to provide better results for our

:12:16.:12:19.

constituents, who are, after all, the people who sent us to this place

:12:20.:12:27.

on their behalf. Business rate relief is very welcome and many of

:12:28.:12:31.

my right honourable friends and members on opposition benches have

:12:32.:12:35.

mentioned this fact, but I urge the Government to also make sure we

:12:36.:12:39.

don't lose sight of our manifesto commitment for a review of business

:12:40.:12:44.

rates, a food business rate review, and produce a system more fit for

:12:45.:12:48.

purpose because I think the system in certain ways in recent years has

:12:49.:12:54.

shown itself to be capricious and cumbersome and frankly unfair in

:12:55.:12:59.

some senses. I believe it is perhaps appropriate in discussion of a Bill

:13:00.:13:02.

on digital infrastructure and point out the fundamental asymmetry and

:13:03.:13:10.

unfairness that bricks and mortar businesses have when paying this

:13:11.:13:14.

levy in comparison with some of their digital technology-based

:13:15.:13:17.

businesses that they often compete with on a day-to-day basis. We all

:13:18.:13:20.

know businesses on High Street have this problem. It is important for

:13:21.:13:27.

the House to recognise there are many international taxation treaties

:13:28.:13:31.

which inhibit the UK from taking unilateral action on the taxation of

:13:32.:13:33.

global technology businesses because their nature is global rather than

:13:34.:13:40.

domestic and everybody can appreciate the difficulties but I

:13:41.:13:44.

would urge the Government to look to find more international agreement so

:13:45.:13:47.

we can address the balance of business rate tax paid by physical

:13:48.:13:50.

bricks and mortar businesses compared with their digital cousins.

:13:51.:14:01.

I think it is incumbent on me, in line with staying true to the detail

:14:02.:14:05.

and narrow nature of this Bill, to talk about five G mobile broadband,

:14:06.:14:15.

following on from my honourable friend, this may seem a dull topic

:14:16.:14:23.

but I can assure you, it is not. The reason it can be dull is because 5G,

:14:24.:14:33.

like forgery or 3G, is something we take for granted. We don't think

:14:34.:14:44.

about the work that goes into it. -- like 4G. Good to have released a

:14:45.:14:53.

report that infrastructure for 5G will be just as pivotal over the

:14:54.:14:57.

next ten years and will boost British productivity, something all

:14:58.:14:59.

members of this House should wish to see. And the benefits are four areas

:15:00.:15:09.

like telecare health apps, smarter cities, seamless public services,

:15:10.:15:17.

user many benefits that 5G can bring and I urge members to support this

:15:18.:15:20.

Bill because it provides some of the digital plumbing to enable us to

:15:21.:15:25.

bring tangible benefits to constituents. I should also mention,

:15:26.:15:39.

the point raised earlier, on 3G technology and 4G. There are some

:15:40.:15:49.

areas still not at this level. I am bothered about time that I would

:15:50.:15:56.

like to discuss this around broadband infrastructure rather than

:15:57.:15:59.

4G etc, which is mobile phones. If the debate was on mobile

:16:00.:16:02.

telecommunications that would be brilliant but we're not. The member

:16:03.:16:08.

from North East Hampshire should know better than to lead you on to

:16:09.:16:12.

discuss something not specifically related to... Forgive me, my first

:16:13.:16:19.

point of order, I'm sure you'll indulge me as a relatively new

:16:20.:16:23.

Member of Parliament, within the first clause, there is reference to

:16:24.:16:27.

mobile phone telecommunication... I can help you because I am bothered

:16:28.:16:31.

about the length of time and the number of speakers, so if we can

:16:32.:16:37.

concentrate on the bulk of what it is about, it will be easier to get

:16:38.:16:40.

everyone to speak. The last thing I would hate to do is not allow

:16:41.:16:44.

someone to speak, seeing as you have been sat here all day, so I'd think

:16:45.:16:48.

it is better to help the House move along to the area we need to

:16:49.:16:54.

discuss, to talk about 3G over 4G is not relevant to today's debate, I

:16:55.:16:57.

will make the Woodlands, you will listen and we can discuss it later

:16:58.:17:06.

if you wish. Thank you. In closing, Mr Deputy Speaker, I believe this

:17:07.:17:11.

Bill is a significant step forward, it helps our country to lead the

:17:12.:17:14.

world in the new Industrial Revolution based on digital

:17:15.:17:18.

technology and secondly, to show that this Government, indeed any

:17:19.:17:21.

Government using its powers effectively, to make it truly

:17:22.:17:24.

positive impact on people's lives when acting in the right way. To

:17:25.:17:28.

enable superfast proper to reach more people more quickly. It is a

:17:29.:17:39.

great pleasure to follow the distinguished speakers in this

:17:40.:17:43.

debate who have made excellent points, particularly the member for

:17:44.:17:46.

Hitchin Harpenden who so eloquently spoke of many issues we

:17:47.:17:53.

face in our constituencies. I have some points to make about May I have

:17:54.:17:59.

a little trip down memory lane to start? I recently purchased an

:18:00.:18:07.

iPhone and it reminded me of my first iPhone which had a thing

:18:08.:18:13.

called Edge, it did not have 3G. Those days are long behind us but

:18:14.:18:19.

with this device, I can of course carry out a great number of tasks I

:18:20.:18:24.

could not have done in the past. Today is my baby son, Henry's first

:18:25.:18:30.

birthday. I apologise to him in advance if he ever watches this

:18:31.:18:38.

Speech, but all is not lost, because due to the wonderful invention of

:18:39.:18:44.

mobile phones on the internet, I can take part in the happy day and for

:18:45.:18:52.

example, I can see him on Skype, I can speak to him, he wonders why his

:18:53.:18:56.

father's voices coming out of a small box that my wife is holding in

:18:57.:19:01.

front of him. I can see photographs. I can see videos of him opening

:19:02.:19:07.

presents. These are present but of course were ordered by a well-known

:19:08.:19:12.

very large internet company, I am sure, his everyday necessities are

:19:13.:19:18.

ordered through the internet, there is no longer a requirement to go to

:19:19.:19:26.

the shop and there is a possibility, I understand, to link up the House,

:19:27.:19:31.

so I could turn up and down the lights in his room if I wished. I

:19:32.:19:37.

could check on his welfare through a webcam that I could feel my mobile

:19:38.:19:42.

phone. I think what is perhaps the most extraordinary and perhaps

:19:43.:19:46.

disturbing, is there is a teddy bear in his room which is a company

:19:47.:19:55.

called Cloud Pets, and I can record a message so that when he plays with

:19:56.:20:01.

the Teddy, he can hear my voice. This is extraordinary. Lovely, of

:20:02.:20:10.

course, on his first birthday, but the internet of course is not just

:20:11.:20:16.

something to amuse and perhaps confuse, and perhaps even slightly

:20:17.:20:20.

frightening, it is of course something of everyday importance for

:20:21.:20:24.

us all. So many members have quite rightly referred to already, the

:20:25.:20:29.

internet needs to be seen these days, and ceremony of the people of

:20:30.:20:33.

Whitney and West Oxfordshire, as an essential utility. We all know and

:20:34.:20:37.

expect that we're able to get about my roads, trains, that we're

:20:38.:20:44.

connected to water, electricity and in some cases, gas. Those are things

:20:45.:20:49.

we expect now and of course, the internet, not so many years ago, was

:20:50.:20:52.

once seen as something that was a bit of a luxury. You might go online

:20:53.:20:58.

and look at websites but it wasn't something you needed to have to do

:20:59.:21:03.

but now it is very much the case because in many cases, services take

:21:04.:21:08.

place online, so it is increasingly hard to carry this out over the

:21:09.:21:15.

telephone and you increasingly encouraged by, for example,

:21:16.:21:18.

utilities companies, rather than ringing and to speak to a person, to

:21:19.:21:26.

go online and change your car off, for example, so it is absolutely

:21:27.:21:31.

critical that everybody has access to these services immediately. --

:21:32.:21:47.

change your car -- tariff. We have discussed broadband, superfast, and

:21:48.:21:55.

I appreciate the House is aware that it's worth mentioning, it is

:21:56.:22:01.

fibre-optic to Cabinet but from Cabinet to House is only copper and

:22:02.:22:04.

that is an old system and it simply doesn't carry the data required

:22:05.:22:10.

these days due to attenuation, the breakdown over the course of

:22:11.:22:14.

difference and the physical effect of the current going through the

:22:15.:22:18.

copper, the signal slows down so that by the time, even if you have

:22:19.:22:23.

fibre-optic to the Cabinet, by the time you get to the House, you're

:22:24.:22:26.

not receiving anything like superfast coverage. That is why,

:22:27.:22:32.

although I am glad, and as the honourable member mentioned, that's

:22:33.:22:41.

why there is still a job to do, as I think we would all accept and

:22:42.:22:44.

superfast broadband is being rolled out across the entirety of the

:22:45.:22:49.

country but there are 5-10% of people who don't have that, never

:22:50.:22:52.

mind anything else and what we increasingly need his five to the

:22:53.:22:56.

property, which enables you to have full speed broadband all the way. In

:22:57.:23:04.

my own profession, I see why Mrs and I know other honourable members will

:23:05.:23:12.

feel the same. As a barrister, papers are sent through the last

:23:13.:23:17.

minute and they can be very large and Clerks would wish to e-mail them

:23:18.:23:21.

to save us coming to Chambers to pick up papers before we go home and

:23:22.:23:24.

if I had been in court in London and want to go to Chambers in Oxford

:23:25.:23:30.

before I went home, I would wish to avoid that step. And that has been

:23:31.:23:39.

the case, where I have had to go home to look at the e-mails to see

:23:40.:23:43.

if it had been sent to me because there just wasn't broadband speed

:23:44.:23:45.

enough to download the papers, so I had to get into the car, driving to

:23:46.:23:49.

Chambers, pick up the political bundles and right back. All that

:23:50.:23:58.

time I was wasting, wasting money, downgrading my productivity, adding

:23:59.:24:01.

to the traffic on the roads, the pollution on the roads, all of which

:24:02.:24:05.

was unnecessary and it is for those reasons, so when people write to me,

:24:06.:24:10.

as they do frequently, who say it is impossible to carry out their

:24:11.:24:14.

business, I entirely understand the point they make because I have

:24:15.:24:17.

suffered from the same frustration myself. West Oxfordshire is full of

:24:18.:24:24.

businesses who operate from home and I have been written to, I hope the

:24:25.:24:29.

House will forgive me if just for a moment, I looked to my e-mails

:24:30.:24:33.

before this debate and looked at how many villages had written to me and

:24:34.:24:37.

over the brief time I have been a Member of Parliament I have been

:24:38.:24:46.

contacted by constituents from various locations. 18 altogether.

:24:47.:25:01.

I was written to by a gentleman and I quote him because he makes the

:25:02.:25:12.

point very succinctly. He makes the point that they are lucky to get a

:25:13.:25:17.

speed of 1.5 megabits per second and he points out that the indications

:25:18.:25:23.

are that businesses working from high simply cannot, secondly, that

:25:24.:25:29.

the traffic flow as I have alluded to people having collect items in

:25:30.:25:36.

person or having to go to a workplace, but also third leave the

:25:37.:25:46.

matter of education, that in many cases children are required to do

:25:47.:25:51.

their homework online and cannot. My correspondent has missed out one of

:25:52.:25:56.

the real drawbacks of the absence of a proper broadband connection and

:25:57.:26:07.

that is in the ROMs of elderly care. We often go away to go and work

:26:08.:26:13.

leaving in many case of elderly relatives in places without

:26:14.:26:16.

immediate access to family. It is crucial that people are able to be

:26:17.:26:22.

in contact with loved ones quickly and easily, and secondly, that they

:26:23.:26:26.

are able to access the services as they need them the year to get

:26:27.:26:31.

online to get medical advice or to book transport if that is necessary.

:26:32.:26:38.

We are a long way away really from the days where I remember my father

:26:39.:26:44.

going abroad on business trips and if he telephoned during the week, he

:26:45.:26:48.

would wait while the signal parts of the satellite, went round the world.

:26:49.:26:57.

When I was working in New Zealand, I was able to have a video conference

:26:58.:27:01.

with my loved ones very quickly those powers exist only if you are

:27:02.:27:08.

in an adequate Internet signal. For businesses particularly with regards

:27:09.:27:13.

to the elderly, family and with regards to care as well. I have

:27:14.:27:19.

referred to rural areas where I am conscious and I know many members

:27:20.:27:23.

represent areas where that is the chief concern, but it is much the

:27:24.:27:29.

same in cities as well. We are here in Westminster and in Westminster

:27:30.:27:33.

and Lambeth, the speeds that are experienced by householders here in

:27:34.:27:38.

many cases are not much better than those that we in representing rural

:27:39.:27:44.

areas deal with there. Let us not think this is only something that

:27:45.:27:48.

affects those of us who have loads of small villages in their area. The

:27:49.:27:54.

same is true of cities as well. In my biggest town, Whitney, I was

:27:55.:27:58.

written to by a lady and she makes the same point that has been

:27:59.:28:05.

referred to by friends for Cannock Chase. With regards to developers.

:28:06.:28:11.

Developments are built and certainly where my correspondent wrote to me,

:28:12.:28:15.

she was frustrated to see that the Cabinet was very close but the

:28:16.:28:18.

developers are not required to connect up the rest of the

:28:19.:28:22.

properties and that clearly is something that causes immense

:28:23.:28:27.

frustration understandably to that constituent and many others. The

:28:28.:28:36.

digital economy is one, we agree 7%, three times faster than other areas

:28:37.:28:41.

of the economy so it is one of enormous significance to the economy

:28:42.:28:45.

and particularly in areas such as mine where there are so may people

:28:46.:28:50.

who work from home, who are self-employed and who run small

:28:51.:28:58.

businesses. That clearly is something very close to my heart. We

:28:59.:29:04.

have talked about bank closures and there have been in many great bank

:29:05.:29:12.

closures and that is because people are told that people do their

:29:13.:29:16.

services online and that is all well and good provided they have the

:29:17.:29:20.

ability to do so. Whilst you might have the strong signal in Kosten,

:29:21.:29:26.

you would not necessarily in the surrounding villages outside. It

:29:27.:29:32.

necessary to have that to pay your council tax, to go Internet

:29:33.:29:36.

shopping. It is one of the wonders of the Internet age and when I was

:29:37.:29:43.

younger, you might want to have a particular book, and you would have

:29:44.:29:46.

to order from the local book shop and it would take months to arrive,

:29:47.:29:51.

whereas now some of the romance of that is lost because you can have

:29:52.:29:55.

almost anything and then it appears weird in a matter of days. But this

:29:56.:30:02.

is a wonder of the Internet age as it is with music and for those of us

:30:03.:30:10.

who are music lovers, once there was a particular song and album and you

:30:11.:30:14.

might be able to track it down somewhere, now with many well-known

:30:15.:30:18.

streaming services, one can listen to whatever you like immediately

:30:19.:30:23.

again provided that you have a good enough Internet service to do it. It

:30:24.:30:29.

is absolutely crucial that we have the ability to have decent

:30:30.:30:36.

high-speed and I mean proper high-speed ultrafast broadband

:30:37.:30:41.

capabilities for necessities and for business. The honourable member for

:30:42.:30:46.

North Dorset has given an inkling to the sorts of things that happened

:30:47.:30:49.

that are required in rural economies. In years gone by, much of

:30:50.:30:57.

the economy was provided indirectly or directly by something by the

:30:58.:31:03.

Cotswold lion. It is blankets and gloves that in not be too distant

:31:04.:31:11.

past was the mainstay of Whitney's economy. Now we are looking to

:31:12.:31:17.

unlock tourism, we are looking to provide bed-and-breakfast

:31:18.:31:20.

accommodation. We have a great many houses that are let for sure lets.

:31:21.:31:27.

It is essential that people are able to get those online. On Saturday I

:31:28.:31:34.

went to the Whitney Carnival and many of these events and fates which

:31:35.:31:39.

are all over West Oxford, there are small stores which are where people

:31:40.:31:43.

sell things from their business and it may be artists, it may be food

:31:44.:31:47.

products and again all of these are made possible and made successful by

:31:48.:31:55.

access to good, fast broadband and without that, it simply will not

:31:56.:31:59.

take place. The businesses will not work and so I cannot stress and

:32:00.:32:03.

opener Joe for saying it and over again, broadband is not a luxury. It

:32:04.:32:11.

is absolutely essential in this day and age and when people from West it

:32:12.:32:15.

point out they have a slow connection and they ought to have a

:32:16.:32:21.

fast one, I agree with them, it is essential for them for their

:32:22.:32:25.

personal life and businesses. As we look at home businesses, premises,

:32:26.:32:31.

tourism, across the entire industry, broadband is necessary. The

:32:32.:32:38.

Government has taken great steps and I thank the Government from before

:32:39.:32:40.

the times that I came into Parliament and its continuing

:32:41.:32:47.

efforts for rolling out fast broadband, but it is necessary for

:32:48.:32:52.

us to complete the job. I applaud the fact there is a legal rights

:32:53.:32:56.

being introduced to superfast broadband. We have about 90%

:32:57.:33:00.

coverage in Whitney at the moment but clearly we need to work towards

:33:01.:33:05.

100% as possible, and I applaud and welcome the measures the Government

:33:06.:33:10.

is introducing at this stage. The universal service obligation and the

:33:11.:33:14.

400 million going into the digital infrastructure investment fund. I

:33:15.:33:22.

particularly encourage their private investment that we have. I grateful

:33:23.:33:28.

to BT for having being proactive in my constituency but with sound

:33:29.:33:33.

money, good local governance the role of strong, investing locally,

:33:34.:33:42.

we can provide this full solution and using local companies who are

:33:43.:33:47.

flexible and agile and cost-effective for money and I would

:33:48.:33:52.

encourage that. I will touch on the two cruises in the build that I

:33:53.:33:55.

considered the most relevant. The first is business rates relief for

:33:56.:34:01.

this bill quite rightly puts broadband alongside the belief that

:34:02.:34:05.

already exists for small businesses, charitable beliefs and rural

:34:06.:34:12.

businesses. And close six promises the effect of this will be more or

:34:13.:34:16.

less immediate and I applaud that at this stage. Five G of course is

:34:17.:34:24.

something as over the course of time... Broadband and mobile

:34:25.:34:33.

telephony is combining over the course of the years and that is

:34:34.:34:37.

something I wholly applaud. Fixing not spots is something we must do

:34:38.:34:43.

and I applaud the Government for everything it has done. Just to say

:34:44.:34:52.

he may want to take a few pages out at his now ten minutes each. I am

:34:53.:34:59.

grateful for your ruling earlier on this evening because it has given me

:35:00.:35:04.

the opportunity to speak for ten minutes rather than nine or I can

:35:05.:35:12.

make it eight to give someone else more time? I am grateful indeed to

:35:13.:35:23.

you for that. The member for Whitney, I felt great sympathy for

:35:24.:35:32.

him and many would have been in a similar situation when trying to

:35:33.:35:35.

communicate with members of our family whether it be birthdays or

:35:36.:35:40.

anniversaries, but also because he and I and the honourable member for

:35:41.:35:46.

Hexham were all members of the same chambers and therefore in the same

:35:47.:35:50.

situation when trying to download papers on e-mail to make sure that

:35:51.:35:55.

the papers arrived in court on time. But I do stand to me welcome this

:35:56.:36:01.

bill and the importance of broadband as we have heard from so many other

:36:02.:36:06.

members this evening cannot be overstated. It is as important as

:36:07.:36:12.

road and rail, it is a vital part of our infrastructure and although I am

:36:13.:36:15.

pleased with the progress the Government is making I will dwell on

:36:16.:36:20.

one or two brief points to say where improvements still need to be made.

:36:21.:36:25.

But I do start with a word of congratulations because it is right

:36:26.:36:28.

to acknowledge where the Government is moving in the right direction and

:36:29.:36:34.

to stand here and say 93% coverage for superfast at present is an

:36:35.:36:39.

achievement indeed. I also applaud the ambition to have 95% coverage by

:36:40.:36:47.

the end of 2017. I was pleased to hear that the Government is on

:36:48.:36:52.

target. But it is frustrating and this is a point that has been

:36:53.:36:57.

repeated this evening, it is frustrating for those of the 5% who

:36:58.:37:02.

was still left without and many of us who are spoken will represent

:37:03.:37:06.

constituents who are in exactly that position. I know a number of

:37:07.:37:11.

constituents will not be consoled by the fact that 95% of the rest of the

:37:12.:37:16.

population have access to superfast broadband whilst they do not. I

:37:17.:37:22.

needn't dwell on specific speeds in relation to the Internet suffice it

:37:23.:37:27.

to say that the 1000 Mb per second that is lauded as a part of this

:37:28.:37:31.

bill is warmly welcomed but it is a figure that would be staggering to

:37:32.:37:35.

many of my constituents who are struggling on 0.5 - 1 megabit per

:37:36.:37:42.

second and cannot imagine those speeds so vast as 1000 Mb per

:37:43.:37:48.

second. But if I may just well on two or three very brief examples

:37:49.:37:55.

from my constituency. And those are examples that constituents have

:37:56.:37:58.

raised with me and I must declare an interest that I'm a self in the

:37:59.:38:03.

village of Lucian affected by many of these same issues. The first is a

:38:04.:38:09.

constituent who wrote to me with great concern about the broadband

:38:10.:38:13.

speeds and these are speeds of between 0.5 and 1 megabit per

:38:14.:38:18.

second. It has been mentioned that we use our Internet for more and

:38:19.:38:22.

more things these days, including education and I think my honourable

:38:23.:38:27.

friend for Faversham mentioned researching points of education but

:38:28.:38:31.

it goes further. Many of our children are asked to do homework

:38:32.:38:34.

based on the Internet employee based on the Internet, in fact they have

:38:35.:38:39.

to access the Internet to download homework they are doing on that

:38:40.:38:42.

particular evening. One constituent wrote to me saying they have to

:38:43.:38:48.

actually a Russian the amount of homework that their family can do

:38:49.:38:53.

and take it intends to get onto the computer and carry out their

:38:54.:38:59.

homework because the speeds of 0.5 - 1 megabit per second do not allow

:39:00.:39:03.

for two children to do their homework at one and the same time.

:39:04.:39:07.

This additional point was made that when updating software Microsoft

:39:08.:39:12.

these days you don't get a wonderful DVD that you put in your computer,

:39:13.:39:17.

you have to download it and therefore if the speeds are not fast

:39:18.:39:22.

enough, you simply cannot download and update the software. The second

:39:23.:39:28.

example that I have been given by a constituent involves several bull

:39:29.:39:32.

business. This constituent lives about 100 metres from a different

:39:33.:39:37.

network that would be so much faster where the business could function

:39:38.:39:41.

properly, but as it is, struggling on less than 1 megabit per second he

:39:42.:39:46.

has to go to his place of work in order to download his work, the

:39:47.:39:52.

speeds simply will not allow the Atlantis was a point made. BT have

:39:53.:39:59.

not been fixable enough. An example was merchant where Beatty were

:40:00.:40:04.

flexible, however in this case they have not been flexible enough and

:40:05.:40:09.

will not allow my constituent to change despite the distance of

:40:10.:40:11.

nearly 50 metres or so. I am conscious of the time but I

:40:12.:40:21.

want to make one or two final points, in relation to postcodes. I

:40:22.:40:27.

am conscious the Minister will soon jump up to the dispatch box but

:40:28.:40:33.

quite often date is arranged by postcode and percentages are

:40:34.:40:37.

cultivated on the basis of postcodes but some roads in fact have the same

:40:38.:40:42.

postcode but different exchanges and I think of one particular example in

:40:43.:40:47.

Dorset where it is claimed they have the potential to access superfast

:40:48.:40:51.

broadband on the basis of a postcode alone and the fact is that is

:40:52.:40:54.

absolutely not the case because it has one postcode but two separate

:40:55.:41:00.

exchanges. I warmly welcome the measures set out in this Bill but it

:41:01.:41:08.

will not solve all the problems overnight and when my constituents

:41:09.:41:12.

look at the full fibre speeds to the door rather than the Cabinet, they

:41:13.:41:16.

applauded but they wanted soon. Thank you for indulging me, Mr

:41:17.:41:22.

Deputy Speaker and I sit down in advance of those ten minutes. Doctor

:41:23.:41:34.

Caroline Johnson. Thank you. To speak tonight on this Bill is a

:41:35.:41:39.

pleasure because as I campaign to a by-election in December, broadband

:41:40.:41:43.

was one of the major issues and trying to deliver broadband

:41:44.:41:45.

throughout my constituency is part of the 5-point plan many of you

:41:46.:41:50.

helped me campaign on in those winter months. I agree with my

:41:51.:41:56.

colleague, the member for Whitney, when he says broadband is essential.

:41:57.:42:00.

This is a relatively new thing, when a look back to my own childhood and

:42:01.:42:06.

I am not that old, I remember there are simply being one BBC computer of

:42:07.:42:12.

the school that we went to a class at a time to go into use. Only when

:42:13.:42:17.

I got to university to burst out of the really use of the internet and

:42:18.:42:21.

the ability to send e-mails but at that stage, it was e-mails to others

:42:22.:42:26.

within the university. In my case, mostly to a man who is now my

:42:27.:42:34.

husband, actually. But now we cannot see how we could possibly live

:42:35.:42:38.

without it, whether we are young or old, as my colleague has said,

:42:39.:42:41.

whether it is an opportunity to do homework and I know my constituents

:42:42.:42:45.

and indeed my own children have come home with things like maths

:42:46.:42:51.

applications that they're supposed to do online that they simply cannot

:42:52.:42:54.

because with speeds of less than two megabytes of broadband, it is just

:42:55.:42:58.

not possible to do this work and this is affecting opportunities for

:42:59.:43:03.

education for children in our most rural constituencies. Young people

:43:04.:43:08.

in general are having difficulties, when you turn on the television or

:43:09.:43:14.

open sky broadband, you get suggestions to watch downloads, TV

:43:15.:43:24.

on demand or downloading films but you cannot because actually that's

:43:25.:43:27.

not available to those people living in rural constituencies that I

:43:28.:43:31.

represent, where download speed of less than two megabytes are very

:43:32.:43:38.

common. It is perhaps the business people that the lack of broadband

:43:39.:43:43.

represents the greatest problem. For small businesses, particularly in

:43:44.:43:46.

rural areas, farmers, who have to complete single farm payment online,

:43:47.:43:51.

reloading and freeloading and reloading the page becomes very

:43:52.:43:58.

wearisome. We are now being asked to complete tax online and will be

:43:59.:44:02.

asked to come pleated four times a year online and VAT returns and all

:44:03.:44:07.

this becomes more wearisome as we have to do it online and physically

:44:08.:44:11.

cannot. Job applications, you want to advertise for a new employee? You

:44:12.:44:17.

do it online. You want to apply, you do it online. All of the things

:44:18.:44:20.

cannot be achieved because we do not have access to what is now in effect

:44:21.:44:27.

a utility. For families who want to do their shopping, it's not possible

:44:28.:44:32.

in many parts of my constituency. People tell me they live in the most

:44:33.:44:36.

rural area and cannot order shopping. But for the elderly, it is

:44:37.:44:41.

perhaps more of a concern. Jo Cox started a foundation for loneliness,

:44:42.:44:46.

looking at people in our community, the elderly, you're cut off from

:44:47.:44:49.

society and perhaps that more great in the rural communities and in the

:44:50.:44:57.

cities. The internet offers people who live in rural communities the

:44:58.:45:02.

opportunity to connect to families through Skype and other methods of

:45:03.:45:08.

communication and it also offers opportunities for telemedicine, as

:45:09.:45:15.

we look at opportunities for social care and the elderly, telemedicine

:45:16.:45:20.

to monitor the condition and well-being of an elderly person, is

:45:21.:45:25.

something that allows us to improve our social care offering to

:45:26.:45:29.

communities everywhere but if we do not have the internet resource to

:45:30.:45:35.

support that, we cannot do that. I do welcome the Government's 93%

:45:36.:45:41.

coverage for superfast broadband and I think we have seen great strides

:45:42.:45:46.

in increasing those people with access to this wonder but for those

:45:47.:45:52.

who do not have access to it, it has become increasingly frustrating.

:45:53.:46:01.

Those people living in one area, for example, said they can't see the

:46:02.:46:04.

Cabinet and we do not have access to it because we're coming off a

:46:05.:46:09.

different exchange and by the time the signal reaches us from that

:46:10.:46:14.

Cabinet, it is now so slow as to be virtually useless. These people are

:46:15.:46:17.

being supported through the community five Premiership and I

:46:18.:46:26.

hope -- community vibe partnership. One constituents said they were full

:46:27.:46:31.

of excitement at the sight of the superfast broadband sign of growing

:46:32.:46:35.

up in the constituency, the little box in the corner but it was right

:46:36.:46:39.

outside their House and they are not connected to it, they're connected

:46:40.:46:45.

to one down the road. And finally, can I declare an interest that I

:46:46.:46:48.

happen to live close to this village, they were told they would

:46:49.:46:52.

get broadband by September that the railway line, which isn't new, they

:46:53.:46:57.

have been told that because of the railway line, even though they were

:46:58.:47:00.

promised for this September, it will now not certainly happen, it seems

:47:01.:47:07.

to have been indefinitely postponed. It beggars belief that in this day

:47:08.:47:11.

and age something as simple as a branch line should prevent the

:47:12.:47:18.

upgrade of a broadband network. Overall, I think this Bill, which

:47:19.:47:25.

will reduce or abolish temporarily the business rates on fibre

:47:26.:47:29.

broadband for five years, will encourage placement of new fibre

:47:30.:47:34.

lines and I very much hope it will encourage the placement of new fibre

:47:35.:47:38.

lines into rural components of my constituency and I hope that in

:47:39.:47:45.

focusing this money, this benefit, the minister is minded to ensure it

:47:46.:47:50.

is those people in rural communities currently suffering without access

:47:51.:47:53.

to this vital utility that are prioritised over increasing speeds

:47:54.:48:00.

from very fast to even faster in the town centres and cities of this

:48:01.:48:09.

country. Thank you. It is a pleasure to be the last Speaker to be called

:48:10.:48:16.

during this debate, which has been interesting, I think at times the

:48:17.:48:19.

connection between the clauses of this Bill and the content of

:48:20.:48:25.

speeches has been perhaps well and truly lost. Indeed, there was a

:48:26.:48:30.

suggestion that constituents of hours will have been able to watch

:48:31.:48:33.

this debate online, in which case I find myself at certain parts having

:48:34.:48:38.

sympathy with those 93% of the public that do indeed have access to

:48:39.:48:44.

do so. The member for North East Hampton share made the point -- the

:48:45.:48:58.

member for North East Hampshire. He made the point out a battery not

:48:59.:49:05.

lasting long but this has been an interesting debate and one which I

:49:06.:49:08.

am delighted to take the last few minutes to further. Mr Deputy

:49:09.:49:15.

Speaker, despite great work by my county of East Sussex, and indeed

:49:16.:49:19.

the Government, there are too many of my constituents who do not have a

:49:20.:49:25.

connection to fast broadband. My constituency is one where the

:49:26.:49:30.

constituents have an aged profile and from our perspective it is

:49:31.:49:33.

essential to balance our economy to get more people to come and live and

:49:34.:49:37.

work in East Sussex, which is of course not that far from London but

:49:38.:49:43.

from a commuting perspective, for many, particularly with the travails

:49:44.:49:46.

we have with Southern Rail, it is too far to attract workers to come

:49:47.:49:51.

to our constituency. We are also fortunate to have 75% of the

:49:52.:49:55.

geography as an area of outstanding natural beauty, so therefore, it's a

:49:56.:49:59.

natural area for people to want to come and set up their own businesses

:50:00.:50:03.

but they will not do so unless they have the conductivity of superfast

:50:04.:50:07.

broadband. Would my honourable friend give way on that point? He

:50:08.:50:13.

describes the constituency different from my errand, the city of

:50:14.:50:16.

Gloucester, but with similar issues because we struggle with black

:50:17.:50:23.

spots, where most of the city is covered but certain blackspots where

:50:24.:50:27.

people cannot access broadband to enable them to work from home, which

:50:28.:50:33.

is similar to the problem might honourable friend describes. I thank

:50:34.:50:38.

my honourable friend for his point and he's absolutely right, it is not

:50:39.:50:44.

just rural parts that parts which will not continue to regenerate

:50:45.:50:51.

without this problem being fixed. I welcome this Bill as a result of 5G

:50:52.:50:59.

installations and it should Act as a further incentive that they need in

:51:00.:51:03.

my constituency to provide a fix. I also welcome the previous bills

:51:04.:51:09.

introduction of the new universal service obligation, which again

:51:10.:51:12.

should give the last 7% faster broadband. As has been mentioned,

:51:13.:51:19.

this type of conductivity, this infrastructure in the modern age is

:51:20.:51:23.

akin to the delivery of a new road or rail way to our constituents and

:51:24.:51:27.

it is vital for the entire economy than we do not leave these

:51:28.:51:31.

constituents behind. As well as recognising investment from the

:51:32.:51:37.

Government and previous funding initiatives, may I recommend

:51:38.:51:39.

conservative front East Sussex County Council and Labour-run Royton

:51:40.:51:44.

and Hove Borough Council for working together to help businesses. Through

:51:45.:51:53.

their East Sussex Project, Mark County have allocated money for

:51:54.:52:00.

areas too expensive for the market to upgrade. Every exchange in East

:52:01.:52:03.

Sussex will be included in the current project will cover an area

:52:04.:52:11.

of 660 square miles and over 66,500 premises. This will result in over

:52:12.:52:15.

400 new telecoms cabinets and other structures and will lay over 1000

:52:16.:52:20.

kilometres of fibre, the same distance as would be between

:52:21.:52:25.

Brighton and Berlin. The first East Sussex contract is receiving

:52:26.:52:28.

excellent results in bringing better and more reliable fibre broadband to

:52:29.:52:33.

many areas that would not otherwise benefit from an upgraded service.

:52:34.:52:38.

However, there remain properties and hard to reach, for example where it

:52:39.:52:42.

is too far from the upgraded cabinet to benefit from any speed uplift and

:52:43.:52:47.

hard to reach generally means too expensive for the public purse to

:52:48.:52:52.

fund. East Sussex has therefore assigned a secondary contract with

:52:53.:52:56.

BT for further investment so that an additional 5000 homes and businesses

:52:57.:53:00.

in East Sussex will be able to access high-speed fibre broadband.

:53:01.:53:06.

There has been much talk of political parties coming together a

:53:07.:53:09.

a common interest today. Perhaps this is a local illustration of the

:53:10.:53:13.

power of positive collaboration and working together. I give way again.

:53:14.:53:21.

I am grateful. Can he shared with us whether his council and that in

:53:22.:53:27.

Brighton has introduced in its planning requirements and absolute

:53:28.:53:31.

requirement on developers to provide superfast broadband as part of their

:53:32.:53:35.

planning application? This is an area where our councils and others

:53:36.:53:46.

could do more. Thank you. In answer to the comment, I do not believe

:53:47.:53:50.

they have but this touches on another issue because whilst I am

:53:51.:53:54.

referring to East Sussex County Council and Brighton and Hove

:53:55.:53:56.

Borough Council, it is outside of Brighton but with the Sussex, the

:53:57.:54:01.

district councils which actually have the planning powers he

:54:02.:54:06.

referenced, so I am afraid to say that I doubt that they do this is

:54:07.:54:10.

perhaps a good example of where districts could work together with

:54:11.:54:17.

county cousins. Whilst all of this scene is great news for East Sussex,

:54:18.:54:22.

I am afraid we are from a low base in terms of where we operate from. A

:54:23.:54:26.

recent report by the consumer organisation which found that the

:54:27.:54:34.

geography of the District Council in my constituency is in the bottom ten

:54:35.:54:38.

of all district and boroughs in the entire British Isles for average

:54:39.:54:43.

broadband speeds, so rather joins the Highlands, Shetland and Orkney

:54:44.:54:47.

Islands in the bottom ten performing areas. In contrast, those fortunate

:54:48.:54:53.

residents from Tamworth, which topped the list for speeds, with an

:54:54.:54:58.

average of 30 megabits per second, will be more fortunate than my

:54:59.:55:01.

constituents, with the average speed is less than 10 megabits per second

:55:02.:55:08.

for Rother. I very much welcome the commitment

:55:09.:55:21.

by the Minister that by 2020 100% of my constituents will receive 10

:55:22.:55:24.

megabits by second. However it would appear that the increased

:55:25.:55:31.

performance for the District Council will be vital if the Government is

:55:32.:55:36.

going to meet its 100% target, so can I put in a blatant invitation to

:55:37.:55:42.

the Minister to meet with me and discuss what in this bill could be

:55:43.:55:47.

on offer to my constituents in order for me to then assist the Government

:55:48.:55:54.

in meeting their 100% target. In conclusion, I welcome this bill as

:55:55.:55:58.

part of a package of proactive measures from this Government to

:55:59.:56:01.

deliver faster broadband. I should also mention that I additionally

:56:02.:56:08.

welcome further reforms to the business rate mechanism and whilst I

:56:09.:56:15.

do not wish to wander off too far, there have been examples where

:56:16.:56:18.

business rates can impact businesses where services are being offered. We

:56:19.:56:23.

should not forget that members are subject to business rates as well, a

:56:24.:56:28.

matter I found out to my personal cost having excluded my staff

:56:29.:56:37.

budgets. -- exceeded. I welcome the point that business rates can be

:56:38.:56:42.

linked towards turnover rather than to premises and that will help my

:56:43.:56:46.

constituency. As a further meander can I also make... There is no

:56:47.:56:54.

prohibition on him deleting a little further if he is minded to do so. He

:56:55.:57:01.

has clearly got an expected audience. I think at least part of

:57:02.:57:06.

that sentence was perhaps a little helpful to me and perhaps not

:57:07.:57:10.

accurate. But the point I wanted to touch on was with regard to

:57:11.:57:14.

corporation tax and whilst I think I would be making a very collaborative

:57:15.:57:19.

speech so far that members of the opposition may agree, it is this

:57:20.:57:22.

aspect that I wish to take issue with because corporation tax as has

:57:23.:57:28.

been pointed out has reduced and the overall yield, the amount of money

:57:29.:57:33.

that can be put into the public services has increased, so for

:57:34.:57:37.

whatever reason the opposition would want to increase corporation taxes

:57:38.:57:41.

and reduced the amount of money on public services to me is illogical

:57:42.:57:49.

and I give way. Has he not once more powerfully shown the benefits of the

:57:50.:57:52.

Laffer curve where lower rates lead to more tax revenue? I thank the

:57:53.:57:59.

honourable member for reminding me for something I have not heard since

:58:00.:58:05.

my days doing A-levels, studying economics. He is absolutely right

:58:06.:58:09.

and this brings me to another point with respect to the opposition. As

:58:10.:58:16.

well as supporting this bill, it is important to support the aims which

:58:17.:58:20.

are to increase business, to increase turnover, the amounts of

:58:21.:58:23.

money we can put into public services. On a recent visit I've

:58:24.:58:27.

made to the new Bexhill business park where the Government is

:58:28.:58:30.

creating the funds for a new road and in return, there is hope that

:58:31.:58:36.

investment is generated for new businesses setting up. There are

:58:37.:58:39.

many businesses from across Europe who are looking to set up and place

:58:40.:58:44.

their business headquarters on that business Park and at times when

:58:45.:58:50.

perhaps business confidence is a little uncertain due to our own

:58:51.:58:55.

position with regard to the EU, it is essential to make sure we have

:58:56.:58:59.

the lowest possible corporation tax base to ensure those businesses have

:59:00.:59:04.

every incentive to invest in this country not just for the short-term

:59:05.:59:08.

but the long-term and I'm sure those businesses will be delighted that

:59:09.:59:11.

this Government has been returned to deliver just that. In conclusion to

:59:12.:59:19.

my conclusion, I very much welcome the steps that have been taken by

:59:20.:59:25.

this Government to incentivise further broadband roll-out. I hope

:59:26.:59:30.

that it will help my constituents who I repeat again in the lowest ten

:59:31.:59:34.

districts in case the SNP had not heard the first time round and I

:59:35.:59:38.

very much look forward to supporting this bill as it spends its many days

:59:39.:59:47.

through committee stage. Thank you. We on this side of the House to

:59:48.:59:52.

welcome this measure. It is vital that our homes and businesses have

:59:53.:59:57.

access to broadband and that broadband is faster, safer and more

:59:58.:00:02.

reliable than before. That is why we will be scrutinising this bill

:00:03.:00:05.

carefully in committee. As the Chancellor has put it this country

:00:06.:00:10.

was late to the forgery party, so let's do all we can to ensure the UK

:00:11.:00:17.

is at the forefront of five G communications and has full fibre

:00:18.:00:20.

broadband to support it. There was some doubt that this bill would

:00:21.:00:25.

appear. The policy was originally announced in the Chancellor's Autumn

:00:26.:00:30.

Statement in 2016 and was due to be implemented as the local got the

:00:31.:00:33.

Finance bill but this was scuppered by the general election. It was not

:00:34.:00:38.

mentioned in the Queen's speech and there were some industry nervousness

:00:39.:00:43.

that it had been abandoned, but here we are, early July, with the

:00:44.:00:46.

stand-alone bill and I am glad we are. Now as we have heard the bill

:00:47.:00:51.

has a simple premise, at least I thought it was simple before I

:00:52.:00:55.

attended the start of this debate five hours ago. It will encourage

:00:56.:01:00.

firms to install new optical fibre by providing 100th and business rate

:01:01.:01:04.

relief and will do so for a period of five years minimum backdated to

:01:05.:01:09.

last April and we understand it will cost the Exchequer around 65 million

:01:10.:01:16.

by 20 22. Sure to be welcome news to the UK's broadband companies and

:01:17.:01:19.

many of whom wrote to the Chancellor to complain that the current

:01:20.:01:24.

business rate regime is not fit for purpose and it discourages inward

:01:25.:01:28.

investment and upgrades. This reform meets some of those concerns. The

:01:29.:01:34.

fact is those business leaders were really talking about the whole

:01:35.:01:38.

business rates regime. This bill deals with just one aspect where we

:01:39.:01:41.

actually need to be talking about the whole system and many members

:01:42.:01:45.

from across the House have agreed with that. There are many changes to

:01:46.:01:50.

the system that we could help to support businesses and we outline

:01:51.:01:54.

some of those in our manifesto, including switching from RPI to CPI

:01:55.:02:01.

indexation, exempting new investment in plant and machinery and insurance

:02:02.:02:04.

business have access to a proper appeals process. I appreciate this

:02:05.:02:11.

is a stand-alone bill that deals with digital infrastructure, but I

:02:12.:02:14.

do feel it is no more than a sticking plaster for our moribund

:02:15.:02:18.

business rate system when we need a total rethink. It is a framework

:02:19.:02:26.

bill, it is short on detail. For example, conditions of eligibility

:02:27.:02:30.

will be outlined in future regulations and this is why we need

:02:31.:02:33.

to scrutinise the bill, but I wonder which firms will benefit? The relief

:02:34.:02:41.

is expected to boost the big data providers, for example, Virgin

:02:42.:02:46.

Media, project lightning and also BT Openreach but it is not clear

:02:47.:02:51.

whether the smaller firms will benefit at least originally and I

:02:52.:02:55.

would like to hear from the minister about how he expects the reform to

:02:56.:03:00.

impact on the smaller providers. It would be a great shame if this was

:03:01.:03:03.

merely a bill for big business. Would it help smaller firms if the

:03:04.:03:10.

provisions could be applied retrospectively to capture work on

:03:11.:03:13.

the full fibre networks that have already taken place? Like many

:03:14.:03:18.

members across the House I do have the concern about how it will

:03:19.:03:23.

benefit Britain's rural communities who have not done so well out of the

:03:24.:03:27.

broadband revolution. There are many areas that have been dogged by poor

:03:28.:03:32.

connectivity and indeed it applies to urban areas as well. My own area

:03:33.:03:37.

I could not get broadband speeds for the past seven years. It was last

:03:38.:03:41.

week we were connected thanks to the housing plan -- company that built

:03:42.:03:48.

my house not allowing them to cable it. But many customers still do not

:03:49.:03:56.

get the advertised speeds that they are paying for. If they want an

:03:57.:04:01.

upgrade, they pay for the upgrade. And what they are getting is not

:04:02.:04:06.

what is advertised and I really commend their witch report on the

:04:07.:04:12.

broadband speeds. If we pay for our water rates and the utility company

:04:13.:04:17.

media gave us a trickle out of the tap, we would be quick to complain.

:04:18.:04:23.

Many members have said that broadband and speeds are the next

:04:24.:04:27.

utility. Why is this not included then? Businesses have suffered by

:04:28.:04:33.

not having the proper access to markets and customers that they

:04:34.:04:37.

should have, the public have suffered, cutting them off from

:04:38.:04:42.

Internet sites and the entertainment sources and Air Jordan are doubly

:04:43.:04:46.

penalised in so much of the modern education relies on online

:04:47.:04:50.

resources, but I must mention Digital exclusion which has been

:04:51.:04:54.

lacking here. More and more services are going online. In fact there have

:04:55.:05:00.

been closures of job centres recently as people are encouraged to

:05:01.:05:04.

apply online for all their benefits, council services and yet, many

:05:05.:05:11.

people do not have access to this. In fact, in my own constituency in

:05:12.:05:18.

the Wigan Borough, 99% of people do have access to faster broadband,

:05:19.:05:24.

only 74% of them have the skills to use it. I do hope the cuts in the

:05:25.:05:29.

adult education budget particularly of penalising these people from

:05:30.:05:34.

joining the digital economy that we all enjoy here. As I said at the

:05:35.:05:41.

outset, we on this side support the bill. It is an important step

:05:42.:05:47.

towards securing better broadband connectivity and access, but it is

:05:48.:05:51.

more than just access. It can only work if it is part of a broader

:05:52.:05:57.

picture which on the one hand fully incentivises businesses to invest in

:05:58.:06:00.

the future, and on the other hand ensures everyone and not just a

:06:01.:06:06.

select few benefit from the reforms and that is more than just this

:06:07.:06:10.

bill. It does mean education, it means ensuring that everyone has the

:06:11.:06:16.

skills to take advantage of this great step forward. We have had an

:06:17.:06:27.

interesting and at times wide ranging debate on this important

:06:28.:06:34.

bill. It was good to see such interest on the Government

:06:35.:06:39.

backbenchers in relation to this important subject, but slightly

:06:40.:06:47.

disappointing not to see one speech from the opposition backbenches on

:06:48.:06:51.

what is a critical issue across the country. The improvement of

:06:52.:06:57.

connectivity in the digital age helps individuals in their

:06:58.:07:01.

workplace, in their home and can transform public services and the

:07:02.:07:07.

economy. Improved connectivity will bring significant economic reports.

:07:08.:07:14.

Research suggests that increased broadband speeds alone could add ?17

:07:15.:07:20.

billion to the UK output by 2024. This is something which has been

:07:21.:07:24.

recognised by all members who have spoken today. I would like to thank

:07:25.:07:28.

the many colleagues who have made contributions to date and the

:07:29.:07:33.

passionate way in which members have spoken. It shows that we here in

:07:34.:07:41.

Parliament will recognise the importance of investing in our

:07:42.:07:44.

telecommunications infrastructure. This ensures that we help to close

:07:45.:07:48.

the digital divide and help to get higher quality, more reliable and

:07:49.:07:55.

resilient connectivity to more households and businesses. This

:07:56.:07:59.

brings forward the technical changes to legislation needed to introduce

:08:00.:08:03.

100% business rates relief for five years for newly installed fibre

:08:04.:08:09.

infrastructure. The importance which we place in this relief is

:08:10.:08:12.

recognised in the fact we have brought forward this bill so quickly

:08:13.:08:17.

in the session. The Chancellor announced at the Autumn Statement

:08:18.:08:21.

that we would provide relief on new fibre with effect from 1st of April

:08:22.:08:27.

2000 17. It is vital we move quickly to reassure the sector that that

:08:28.:08:31.

relief will follow. Investment decisions have been made upon the

:08:32.:08:34.

back of the Chancellor 's commitment and it is right we move forward with

:08:35.:08:37.

this bill to give us the power was to deliver the relief that has been

:08:38.:08:43.

promised. The supports this bill introduces forms part of a wider ?1

:08:44.:08:48.

billion government package of measures being put in place to

:08:49.:08:52.

support investment in digital infrastructure and forms an

:08:53.:08:57.

important part of the Government's Digital strategy. As such this bill

:08:58.:09:02.

will help to maintain the UK's current high-ranking as an Internet

:09:03.:09:06.

e-commerce economy as well as providing significant coverage of

:09:07.:09:12.

quick reliable broadband connections to homes across the country. I want

:09:13.:09:18.

to mention some of the contributions that have been made in this debate.

:09:19.:09:23.

First of all by the honourable gentleman for Denton and Redditch

:09:24.:09:28.

who did welcome the bill and he also made the economic case for the bill.

:09:29.:09:34.

And I feel he did acknowledge that this Government is investing in the

:09:35.:09:43.

technology of the future. He did intimate that the measures in the

:09:44.:09:49.

bill will favour larger providers, but just to reassure him on the

:09:50.:09:53.

contrary, this bill actually helps the smaller providers and opens up

:09:54.:10:00.

competition and actually puts those smaller providers on a more level

:10:01.:10:03.

playing field and I think we heard several contributions where that was

:10:04.:10:07.

a view that was reiterated. In terms of business rate retention,

:10:08.:10:18.

we're clear we want local Government to keep more of the taxes they raise

:10:19.:10:24.

locally, that was in our manifesto and something we are looking to

:10:25.:10:29.

follow through on. I will give way. I am grateful to the Minister for

:10:30.:10:34.

giving way. I have raised this point in point of order and through other

:10:35.:10:40.

mechanisms in the last week, can he clarify that it is still the

:10:41.:10:43.

Government's intention to proceed with the measures that were in the

:10:44.:10:50.

local Government Finance Bill relating to local retention of

:10:51.:10:53.

business rates in the same timetable that was set out with the changes to

:10:54.:11:01.

the revenue support grant? As I said, this Government is absolutely

:11:02.:11:10.

committed to allowing local Government to keep taxes they raise

:11:11.:11:15.

locally, that was in our manifesto, but he did make an important point

:11:16.:11:20.

during his contribution about local Government wanting certainty, he

:11:21.:11:34.

made that point using a little bit of faux rage, I thought, because

:11:35.:11:42.

local Government currently has a four year... We do need to provide

:11:43.:11:51.

certainty to local Government and it is our intention to do just that. He

:11:52.:12:00.

also mentioned regular evaluations, I won't give way, I want to make

:12:01.:12:05.

some progress, in terms of re-evaluations, I want to tell him

:12:06.:12:10.

we are committed to delivering more frequent re-evaluations. Another

:12:11.:12:16.

point was made about the detail of the measures within the Bill. As the

:12:17.:12:19.

honourable lady who made the point knows, this is a framework and we

:12:20.:12:23.

will bring forward for other regulations to implement this Bill

:12:24.:12:28.

but I can assure her that those regulations will be put forward

:12:29.:12:31.

before the Committee stage of this Bill, so that honourable members can

:12:32.:12:37.

scrutinise those regulations during the passage of the Bill. Moving

:12:38.:12:44.

on... Mr Andrew Quinn, point of order. You know I have stood up this

:12:45.:12:51.

dispatch box on a number of locations on this important issue

:12:52.:12:58.

and ask you how we can get a response and statement from the

:12:59.:13:01.

Secretary of State for his ministers. The last time, the

:13:02.:13:05.

Secretary of State did say we could raise it in a debate. I have asked

:13:06.:13:09.

the question and we still have not got answers. How do we get that

:13:10.:13:15.

certainty for local Government? The answer to the honourable gentleman

:13:16.:13:19.

is that if he had first does not succeed, he must try and try again,

:13:20.:13:22.

I am sure this is something his mother must have taught at school.

:13:23.:13:28.

What I would say is, persist, go to the table office, think of the

:13:29.:13:33.

opportunities for different types of questions and as we approach the

:13:34.:13:37.

summer recess, the relative urgency or emergency of what he seeks.

:13:38.:13:44.

Minister? Thank you, Mr Speaker. Moving onto contributions made by

:13:45.:13:50.

other members. I just want to firstly comment on comments made by

:13:51.:13:56.

the member for Wantage, he showed his significant knowledge in this

:13:57.:14:03.

area when he welcomed the Bill and it was good to see the significant

:14:04.:14:12.

knowledge that he has, he did confirm his fault was this would

:14:13.:14:17.

help and incentivise smaller providers and increase the

:14:18.:14:24.

competition, a point reiterated by the member for North West Hampshire.

:14:25.:14:30.

My honourable friend for Wantage did mention the impact this would have

:14:31.:14:37.

on mobile infrastructure and 5G. He also mentioned looking at the

:14:38.:14:41.

planning system in relation to making sure we have mobile

:14:42.:14:48.

infrastructure we need and I am sure my right honourable friend will be

:14:49.:14:51.

aware that in the Digital Economy Act, there have since from that set

:14:52.:14:57.

of regulations, been put forward in the House last November, which will

:14:58.:15:02.

speed up the planning process for telecom infrastructure. With regard

:15:03.:15:07.

to the honourable gentleman for Carmarthen, he welcomed the

:15:08.:15:08.

framework for England and Wales and acknowledged this Bill actually will

:15:09.:15:14.

put on a framework that will allow the devolved Government to take up

:15:15.:15:19.

or not is the case maybe, the measures in Bill. He was right to

:15:20.:15:23.

point out also that this will provide funding for Wales through

:15:24.:15:30.

Barnett consequentials. My honourable friend for North Dorset

:15:31.:15:36.

also made a very important point about the potential loss of income

:15:37.:15:42.

to local authorities during the implementation of this Bill and just

:15:43.:15:47.

to reassure him, that where a network is on the local waiting

:15:48.:15:51.

list, compensation for local Government will be provided via a

:15:52.:15:58.

grant to cover that particular local authority's share of the cost of

:15:59.:16:04.

providing the business rate relief. My honourable friend for North West

:16:05.:16:07.

Hampshire welcomed the Bill, which fulfils a wish, as I understand it,

:16:08.:16:12.

of his, that he had during the passage of the Digital economy is

:16:13.:16:19.

ill and he seemed extremely pleased that one of the suggestions made was

:16:20.:16:24.

giving this very business rate relief has been taken up by the

:16:25.:16:29.

Government. My honourable friend for Faversham talked about the

:16:30.:16:31.

importance of the Bill in the context of social conclusion and

:16:32.:16:39.

tackling loneliness. Tim Visser into rural small businesses that would

:16:40.:16:47.

benefit from the delivery of five broadband to those communities. My

:16:48.:16:52.

honourable friend for Aldridge-Brownhills recognise that

:16:53.:16:56.

the five-year rate relief period would provide a significant

:16:57.:17:02.

incentive to providers of fibre broadband and she made a perceptive

:17:03.:17:06.

comment, as did my honourable friend for Bexhill and Battle that this

:17:07.:17:13.

type of fibre broadband is becoming as an important part of our nation's

:17:14.:17:20.

infrastructure as is currently our road and rail network. My honourable

:17:21.:17:25.

friend for Boston and Skegness made a very important contribution and I

:17:26.:17:33.

know has campaigned tirelessly on this particular issue, spoke about

:17:34.:17:39.

the benefits the Government will get in terms of its investment in this

:17:40.:17:43.

area being returned many times over, as a result of the increase in

:17:44.:17:49.

economic activity it will create. My honourable friend for Cannock Chase

:17:50.:17:56.

talked about the importance of fibre connectivity on new housing estates

:17:57.:18:03.

and sited close water Grange and also mentioned the opportunity the

:18:04.:18:08.

fibre roll-out could give to new industrial developments and my

:18:09.:18:10.

honourable friend did not lose the opportunity or for covert, to

:18:11.:18:16.

mention the rooms lead the power station site, which China is

:18:17.:18:19.

important to her to her and her constituents. My honourable friend

:18:20.:18:27.

for North East Hampshire welcomed the Bill and mentioned that in rural

:18:28.:18:35.

areas, this profession could well assist tech jobs that had it you may

:18:36.:18:42.

not have been able to be delivered in rural areas. I will give way.

:18:43.:18:48.

Thank you, you are mentioning rural areas and I would like you to

:18:49.:18:54.

reference my constituency, broadband is imperative not only for my

:18:55.:19:01.

constituency need to log files but for many businesses across the three

:19:02.:19:07.

towns I represent, Wayne collectivity in our rural areas and

:19:08.:19:12.

a headache and comment that. High concurrent with what my honourable

:19:13.:19:19.

friend says, and my honourable friend for Sleaford and North

:19:20.:19:24.

Hykeham made similar comments with regard to how these types of

:19:25.:19:28.

measures will help those engaged in her constituency in terms of the

:19:29.:19:33.

agricultural industry and farming. So, Mr Speaker... In conclusion,

:19:34.:19:42.

this Bill will help businesses and households with their broadband and

:19:43.:19:47.

support the economy. It is only one of several measures. The House

:19:48.:19:55.

cannot wait to hear more of the auditory of the honourable

:19:56.:19:59.

gentleman. This is one of several measures we're taking on relating to

:20:00.:20:03.

broadband and business rates and I commend it to the House. The

:20:04.:20:11.

question is that the Bill now be read a second time. As many as are

:20:12.:20:14.

of the opinion, say "aye". To the contrary, "no". I think the ayes

:20:15.:20:22.

have it. Motion to be moved formally. As many as are of the

:20:23.:20:26.

opinion, say "aye". To the contrary, "no". The ayes have it. The question

:20:27.:20:40.

is as on the order paper. As many as are of the opinion, say "aye". To

:20:41.:20:45.

the contrary, "no". The ayes have it. Order, order. We come to the

:20:46.:20:54.

adjournment. Quick to move. The question is that this House does now

:20:55.:20:59.

adjourned. As I am often moved to observe, if inexplicably some

:21:00.:21:05.

members do not wish to hear the debate on the future of the King

:21:06.:21:10.

George Hospital in Ilford, I hope they will leave the Chamber quickly

:21:11.:21:15.

and quietly. So we can hear the oration from the constituency Member

:21:16.:21:22.

of Parliament and his neighbour, to whom the matter is of great

:21:23.:21:27.

importance. The question is that this House do now adjourned. Thank

:21:28.:21:33.

you, it is a pleasure to be called before 10pm. I wish to begin by

:21:34.:21:44.

saying that earlier this evening, I was at a celebration function

:21:45.:21:48.

organised by the barking Havering and Redbridge University trust. This

:21:49.:21:55.

was to celebrate the fact that they, after three years, came out of

:21:56.:22:03.

special measures in March. This event was a very good occasion

:22:04.:22:08.

because it enabled me to get even more up-to-date information before

:22:09.:22:17.

this debate. They have published ten tips to climb out of special

:22:18.:22:21.

measures and I'm sure other NHS trusts may find this accountable.

:22:22.:22:23.

They have also published a booklet, the only way is up, which is

:22:24.:22:32.

original, and this details the strenuous efforts made by all the

:22:33.:22:38.

staff and the management and various people that they were engaged with

:22:39.:22:41.

in order to achieve this great progress. In my 25 years in this

:22:42.:22:51.

House, I have often had to bring to the attention of the House and the

:22:52.:22:57.

Government, problems in the NHS in my area. It's not the first time I

:22:58.:23:04.

have talked about the future of King George Hospital. And although the

:23:05.:23:13.

hospital, which is one of the two hospitals with Queen's Hospital,

:23:14.:23:19.

Romford, within our trust, is now improving and is under the best

:23:20.:23:23.

management, in my opinion, that it is ever had in 25 years, there are

:23:24.:23:31.

still clouds on the horizon. Firstly, there is inexplicably a

:23:32.:23:37.

delay in an announcement about the future of the north-east London NHS

:23:38.:23:43.

treatment centre, where I understand there is some difference of opinion

:23:44.:23:51.

between local CCGs and I have to declare an interest, I had an

:23:52.:23:55.

operation on my nose in that facility a few years ago and found

:23:56.:24:02.

it to be very good. But there is a very strong argument that this

:24:03.:24:06.

facility could be brought in House, within the NHS and no longer

:24:07.:24:15.

provided by Care UK as a provider. And that would allow greater

:24:16.:24:20.

flexibility on site for longer planning of what might happen at

:24:21.:24:27.

King George Hospital. Secondly, I referred to clouds on the horizon,

:24:28.:24:33.

there is the ongoing social care crisis. This has impacted in my

:24:34.:24:37.

local authority and neighbouring authorities very much. It is linked

:24:38.:24:43.

to the 40% cuts in funding for Redbridge local authority which we

:24:44.:24:51.

have hacked and also the one hand, ageing population but secondly...

:24:52.:24:59.

Order, the two move. The question is that this House now do adjournment.

:25:00.:25:09.

The ongoing social care crisis which has major difficulties. Private care

:25:10.:25:18.

homes are struggling and there is an issue of quality. And one advantage

:25:19.:25:24.

it seems to me of the King George Hospital site is that it is

:25:25.:25:32.

co-located next door to the facilities of the north-east London

:25:33.:25:37.

foundation trust, good maize hospital and its various other

:25:38.:25:43.

facilities that provide support for people with learning difficulties,

:25:44.:25:46.

people with acute and severe but also with minor, less severe mental

:25:47.:25:54.

health problems. It would seem logical if we are going to have

:25:55.:25:59.

joined up NHS treatment that we could have alongside a hospital

:26:00.:26:07.

facilities for those who need short-term, temporary or maybe

:26:08.:26:12.

longer care in a transition either to or from the NHS facilities next

:26:13.:26:21.

door. This site is big enough to do that and with imagination, it could

:26:22.:26:26.

be a model which could be followed. We also have a third cloud on the

:26:27.:26:35.

horizon. Which is the north-east London draft stability and

:26:36.:26:38.

transformation plan. The Minister will recall that he and I had a very

:26:39.:26:46.

useful meeting in February when I met him and his then colleague, we

:26:47.:26:53.

had a very useful discussion about the implications of the huge deficit

:26:54.:27:04.

in north-east London, ?586 million, and the potential cuts that would be

:27:05.:27:13.

huge. In the budget over the next four years. And the implications

:27:14.:27:18.

that would have. I raise this in detail in the debate on the 16th of

:27:19.:27:25.

December 2016 and that was why following that I had a meeting with

:27:26.:27:32.

ministers. I have to say I am very concerned that the funding gap, even

:27:33.:27:40.

if we have predicted regular savings within the NHS of around ?220

:27:41.:27:53.

million or ?240 million would still be ?336 million by 2021. One of the

:27:54.:27:59.

most worrying points about this plan and I understand it's still a draft,

:28:00.:28:05.

it has not been signed off, but I went to a meeting last week whether

:28:06.:28:12.

people involved in this organisation looking at the plan were discussing

:28:13.:28:21.

it and reference was made by senior figures in the London NHS to the

:28:22.:28:27.

plan and they said, you have to work on the basis of the plan. The plan

:28:28.:28:33.

has not been signed off, it has not been approved yet by the people

:28:34.:28:38.

within the NHS health economy in north-east London are thinking ahead

:28:39.:28:42.

as though it will be. And one of the points in that plan points out that

:28:43.:28:48.

the population of the north-east London boroughs will increase by 18%

:28:49.:28:58.

over the next 15 years. And that is equivalent to a new city. Normally

:28:59.:29:05.

with that level of population increase you would need a new

:29:06.:29:09.

hospital, but there is no provision and no funding and no expectation of

:29:10.:29:18.

a new hospital. Instead what is proposed and it is still in the

:29:19.:29:25.

plan, is the downgrading of the existing King George Hospital in my

:29:26.:29:30.

constituency and the accident and emergency department to be taken

:29:31.:29:37.

away. This is not a new proposal. In fact I have been campaigning to save

:29:38.:29:42.

the A in my constituency for more than ten years. But formerly the

:29:43.:29:51.

decision was only taken by the former Health Secretary Andrew

:29:52.:30:02.

Lansley in 2011. That decision linked at that time to a suggestion

:30:03.:30:07.

of closing the maternity services at King George Hospital said that those

:30:08.:30:14.

two things would happen in around two years. That was October 2000 and

:30:15.:30:19.

11. The reality is the maternity services did go in early 2013. They

:30:20.:30:26.

went to Queens and they have been improvements, I don't question that,

:30:27.:30:31.

but the way and he could not close, there was no capacity at other

:30:32.:30:36.

hospitals in the region, in the area and in addition it was quite clear

:30:37.:30:41.

that it required a huge capital investment that was not forthcoming.

:30:42.:30:51.

So 2011 decision, 2013 no action. Issue was deferred and then because

:30:52.:30:58.

of a variety of issues, the trust got into the special measures three

:30:59.:31:03.

years ago to which I have already made mention. When the trust came

:31:04.:31:10.

out of special measures, of course, then the question becomes does it

:31:11.:31:15.

then go ahead with the plans to close the A? I know that it is

:31:16.:31:23.

impossible practically for that closure to happen soon. But the

:31:24.:31:32.

plan, the stability and transformation plan still says that

:31:33.:31:40.

it is intended to close the a and D in 2019. The original suggestion was

:31:41.:31:46.

that from September this year they would stop having a 24-hour service

:31:47.:31:53.

and they would get rid of the overnight A In January, that was

:31:54.:31:59.

dropped. Which I welcome. But the reality is it is still in the plan

:32:00.:32:05.

and it is still proposed and this cloud still hangs over this trust

:32:06.:32:12.

and all the accident staff who have done so much to bring our hospital

:32:13.:32:21.

out of special measures. I give way. I congratulate him on securing this

:32:22.:32:25.

important debate. In my capacity as a Labour councillor I am chairing a

:32:26.:32:31.

cross-party working group on the future of A provision and one of

:32:32.:32:35.

the frustrating things is that all of the local health leaves in

:32:36.:32:40.

north-east London are working to a decision made by the previous

:32:41.:32:44.

Secretary of State, a decision which still stands, they have to work

:32:45.:32:48.

towards it, they do not believe it is achievable, clinically sound and

:32:49.:32:53.

yet when pressed to abandon the plan they printed the -- point to the

:32:54.:33:00.

Secretary of State. I hope the Minister will be able to reverse the

:33:01.:33:07.

decision. I am grateful to that intervention. In fact, the Secretary

:33:08.:33:18.

of State came to Ilford to my honourable friend constituency

:33:19.:33:21.

during the election campaign for a private Conservative Party function

:33:22.:33:28.

and he was asked by the local paper about the plans to close the A at

:33:29.:33:35.

King George Hospital, and he said, quote, it would not be closed, there

:33:36.:33:39.

were no plans to close it in the foreseeable future. I don't know how

:33:40.:33:45.

big the crystal ball is, I don't know what kind of telescope the

:33:46.:33:50.

Secretary of State has an witch and he is looking through. The fact is

:33:51.:33:56.

foreseeable does not necessarily mean it is not going to close in

:33:57.:34:02.

2019. If it is not going to close in the near future or even the

:34:03.:34:08.

medium-term future, why not lift the cloud of uncertainty over the staff

:34:09.:34:15.

and over the planning process? And secondly, then we could have a

:34:16.:34:20.

serious look at the draft stability and transformation plan for

:34:21.:34:24.

north-east London, which is predicated as part of its proposals

:34:25.:34:28.

on the closure of the A at King George Hospital. In January, the

:34:29.:34:39.

trust wrote a letter saying that it is our intention to make the changes

:34:40.:34:45.

by 2019, but please be assured nothing will happen until we are

:34:46.:34:49.

fully satisfied all necessary resources are in place, including

:34:50.:34:53.

the additional capacity of neighbouring hospitals and we have

:34:54.:34:57.

made sure it is safe for our patients. In the meantime, the

:34:58.:35:04.

existing A facilities at King George will continue to operate as

:35:05.:35:10.

now. The reality is there real snow additional resorts going in than the

:35:11.:35:15.

capital that will be required to provide the beds for 400 patients at

:35:16.:35:25.

King George Oval all and we are in a very uncertain future if the A was

:35:26.:35:33.

to be close, where with this patients go? There would be need for

:35:34.:35:38.

capital investment at Queens, big capital investment at whips across

:35:39.:35:41.

and that would take time and resources at a time when NHS budgets

:35:42.:35:48.

of seriously pressed, and we still have that huge deficit within our

:35:49.:35:53.

regional health economy. Why not take the issue of the agenda and my

:35:54.:35:59.

friend and I wrote jointly a letter to the Secretary of State with the

:36:00.:36:06.

leader of our council, leader of Redbridge council last month

:36:07.:36:12.

requesting that the Secretary of State reverse the decision taken by

:36:13.:36:18.

his predecessor, formerly to allow certainty and allow planning on a

:36:19.:36:23.

more sensible basis than we currently have. Last week, one of

:36:24.:36:30.

our health campaigners who put various questions and freedom of

:36:31.:36:37.

information requests, Andy Walker, who is a very persistent campaigner,

:36:38.:36:41.

received a response from the barking, favouring an Redbridge

:36:42.:36:46.

trust which commented on this issue and it also made clear the same

:36:47.:36:52.

formulation. We have been very clear, no changes will be made until

:36:53.:36:56.

we have the relevant assurance that it is safe to do so and this remains

:36:57.:37:01.

the case. That formulation has been used for several years. It is like a

:37:02.:37:09.

stuck record. It is not safe to make the changes, it is not safe, why not

:37:10.:37:14.

have a new approach, an imaginative approach that says let's look at

:37:15.:37:22.

social care? Look at the potential for developing the site? Look at

:37:23.:37:27.

collaboration between the mental health services of the north-east

:37:28.:37:31.

London foundation trust and providing particular forms of

:37:32.:37:35.

housing and support? And this area could be a model for a new way

:37:36.:37:40.

forward. I know from discussions I have had that there are people

:37:41.:37:46.

within various NHS organisations who are currently working on

:37:47.:37:49.

possibilities of this kind. But they cannot go any further than possible

:37:50.:37:57.

explorations whilst this cloud of the threat to close the A still

:37:58.:38:04.

lives on the table. If the Secretary of State would take that off the

:38:05.:38:07.

table then we could have some serious discussions about

:38:08.:38:13.

improvements to health facilities, not just dealing with the A but

:38:14.:38:17.

also trying to deal with other issues. We have on the King George

:38:18.:38:25.

site at this moment, we also have an urgent care centre which just

:38:26.:38:34.

recently had a CQC inspection and was rated as requires improvement.

:38:35.:38:41.

And this is an indication again of the problems that we face. I then my

:38:42.:38:48.

constituency have a lot of inadequate GP facilities. I have

:38:49.:38:51.

lots of problems with people coming to me complaining that they cannot

:38:52.:38:56.

get through one-stop primary care has a crisis in north-east London.

:38:57.:39:03.

Of of recruitment, of standards of services. Again, if we could have an

:39:04.:39:11.

Emmanuel at it you of the facilities at the King George Hospital site, we

:39:12.:39:15.

could make a big difference to primary care as well as to the acute

:39:16.:39:18.

services and the mental health services next door. So my plea to

:39:19.:39:24.

the Minister, to the Government is take the closure of the A off the

:39:25.:39:30.

table and let us then work in a collaborative way to improve the NHS

:39:31.:39:34.

in north-east London and in my constituency. It is a pleasure to

:39:35.:39:46.

serve under you, Mr Speaker, this evening and to have another debate

:39:47.:39:51.

sponsored by the honourable member for Ilford South and I congratulate

:39:52.:39:56.

him for his tenacity in keeping the subject of the King George Hospital

:39:57.:39:59.

at the forefront of health ministers's minds in recent years,

:40:00.:40:04.

not least during my tenure as he rightly said earlier on, we had a

:40:05.:40:11.

meeting in February with myself and my former colleague to discuss many

:40:12.:40:15.

of the issues he has raised this evening, so I hope he will forgive

:40:16.:40:20.

me if some of what I say he has heard before, but his honourable

:40:21.:40:25.

friend their member for Ilford North, I congratulate him on joining

:40:26.:40:30.

us this evening. He obviously has experience of these matters as well

:40:31.:40:31.

given his role in the local council. I'd like to stand by joining the

:40:32.:40:41.

honourable gentleman in paying tribute to the staff and management

:40:42.:40:49.

at the University Hospital NHS Trust in the extenuating measures after

:40:50.:40:52.

what has undoubtedly been a long journey for them over the last three

:40:53.:40:57.

years. I was very pleased they were able to exit special measures in

:40:58.:41:01.

March this year and it's a huge tribute to everyone involved in

:41:02.:41:06.

ensuring they were focused on the areas where the CQC had identified

:41:07.:41:10.

not the best practice and they have focused on improving the

:41:11.:41:18.

deficiencies and the fact they were awarded an improved rating enabled

:41:19.:41:23.

us to take that decision. I also join him in congratulating the

:41:24.:41:26.

quality of management now in place on a substantive basis in the trust,

:41:27.:41:31.

at least one of whose members has himself been a beneficiary of

:41:32.:41:35.

treatment, I think for a different complaint to the honourable

:41:36.:41:42.

gentleman, in the urgent, intermediate treatment centre but

:41:43.:41:47.

all credit to that member of the executive team. He has touched on a

:41:48.:41:53.

couple of clouds, as he described them, which I will touch on before I

:41:54.:41:59.

get into the substance of my response. And the first was the

:42:00.:42:05.

intermediate treatment centre, which provides elective and planned

:42:06.:42:10.

procedures provided by an independent provider, Care UK, and

:42:11.:42:17.

we do as he will appreciate, in fact, under the previous Labour

:42:18.:42:27.

Government, when the independent sector was provided capacity to

:42:28.:42:33.

support the NHS and a number of areas, we have had a policy of

:42:34.:42:38.

allowing independent providers to be commissioned to undertake care and

:42:39.:42:42.

this is a matter for the local commissioners in his area to do so.

:42:43.:42:49.

It is not for me to tell them who are the best providers to undertake

:42:50.:42:53.

care. I am pleased he was a beneficiary of some of that care and

:42:54.:42:58.

it will be up to the commissioners working with the NHS to decide who

:42:59.:43:03.

is best to provide services in his area, as they come up for renewal

:43:04.:43:08.

from time to time. He also referred to the social care challenge which

:43:09.:43:15.

exists in north-east London, as many other parts the country, which is

:43:16.:43:21.

why we decided in the budget in March this year to inject additional

:43:22.:43:29.

?1 billion into adult social care budgets of local authorities across

:43:30.:43:32.

the country and a further ?1 billion in the next financial year and last

:43:33.:43:39.

week announced some measures to scrutinise the performance of local

:43:40.:43:44.

authorities in managing those budgets in particular, so they

:43:45.:43:48.

contribute to the patient flew challenge, which we experience in

:43:49.:43:52.

many hospitals, including the King George Hospital, of having patients

:43:53.:43:57.

occupying hospital beds in acute settings who have no medical reason

:43:58.:44:01.

to continue to be there because of the challenge of providing

:44:02.:44:05.

placements into the community. It is important that is closer integration

:44:06.:44:12.

of social care through local authorities but also, as he rightly

:44:13.:44:15.

identifies, throughout the NHS providers, in particular if they are

:44:16.:44:19.

co-located on the site and he describes an opportunity for the

:44:20.:44:23.

north-east London and NHS Foundation Trust to work alongside BHR in

:44:24.:44:30.

trying to smooth the passage and find other opportunities in the

:44:31.:44:35.

community for a more appropriate patient flew, that was very

:44:36.:44:39.

interesting and I very much hope he is engaging with the SDP leadership

:44:40.:44:45.

to try to put some of these imaginative ideas forward in the

:44:46.:44:49.

hope that some of them will be assessed appropriately when looking

:44:50.:44:53.

at providing the future pattern of health care in his area. The

:44:54.:45:00.

honourable gentleman is focused mostly about the challenge to the

:45:01.:45:08.

A at King George and I would like to spend most of the rest of my

:45:09.:45:15.

remarks on trying to address his concerns as best I can. He will

:45:16.:45:23.

appreciate that across the country, the NHS is coming together through

:45:24.:45:25.

the sustainability and transformation plans, as published

:45:26.:45:34.

at the end of last year, to try to identify the right pattern of care

:45:35.:45:42.

across an individual NHS footprint and north-east London has come

:45:43.:45:48.

together within the SDP for that area and it is our view that this is

:45:49.:45:53.

the right way to try to encourage a more holistic way of looking at the

:45:54.:45:58.

future provision of NHS services. But it needs to be led by clinicians

:45:59.:46:04.

and led by those responsible for managing NHS organisations and to

:46:05.:46:07.

work in a collaborative and perhaps more open way than in the past with

:46:08.:46:11.

local authorities, who have their part to play. In facilitating the

:46:12.:46:22.

passage beyond hospital back into the community. We're clear that any

:46:23.:46:26.

significant service change which arises out of the implementation of

:46:27.:46:37.

STP plans must be subject to consultation proposals must meet

:46:38.:46:44.

reconfiguration tests, which support for clinical commissioners, clarity

:46:45.:46:51.

and a robust public and patient engagement of support for patient

:46:52.:46:54.

choice. And there was additional NHS guidance which means that proposed

:46:55.:46:59.

service reconfigurations should be tested for their impact on overall

:47:00.:47:05.

bed numbers in the area, a point the honourable gentleman identified

:47:06.:47:08.

appears to be lacking at present from the STP plans and something I

:47:09.:47:11.

would urge him to continue to challenge within his area. I am

:47:12.:47:20.

grateful to the Minister for giving way, can the Minister clarify

:47:21.:47:23.

therefore that it would be his expectation that the STP process

:47:24.:47:30.

should now publicly consult on any proposal he romped to close the A

:47:31.:47:33.

at King George Hospital and furthermore that where the

:47:34.:47:39.

recommends ministers that the A should remain, that ministers would

:47:40.:47:43.

heed the advice and the STP process should not be constrained by the

:47:44.:47:47.

decision made by the Secretary of State previously? I will have to

:47:48.:47:53.

disappoint the honourable gentleman because I am not in a position to

:47:54.:47:57.

second-guess the conclusions of the STP discussions and recommendations

:47:58.:48:05.

that they make. It is appropriate for them to take into account its

:48:06.:48:11.

clinical decisions made in the recent past and a decision over the

:48:12.:48:16.

A at King George is one of those and it is up to them to decide

:48:17.:48:20.

whether that is something they intend to take forward as the STP

:48:21.:48:26.

evolves. It is right that the STP management looked at the health

:48:27.:48:34.

provision in the round, they will be responsible for delivering health

:48:35.:48:37.

care to local residents and they need to take into account all the

:48:38.:48:40.

information sources they have available. I don't think it is right

:48:41.:48:49.

to say they have to necessarily re-consult on issues, they need to

:48:50.:48:58.

form a view as to what is the right configuration and then use available

:48:59.:49:04.

data sources and go through the process. I will come on to try to

:49:05.:49:15.

explain to him the process that as I understand it is now under way in

:49:16.:49:24.

his area. Both honourable gentlemen are right that it was a decision in

:49:25.:49:32.

2011 by the then Secretary of State on advice from the independent

:49:33.:49:36.

reconfiguration panel, who approved the proposal, that the north-east

:49:37.:49:41.

London scheme should be allowed to proceed. That the Secretary of State

:49:42.:49:48.

at the time and, as repeated since by anybody who has asked the

:49:49.:49:53.

question of health authorities in the area, made it very clear that no

:49:54.:49:57.

changes were to take place until it was clinically safe to do so. I

:49:58.:50:01.

believe it is in that context that remarks which might have been made

:50:02.:50:05.

by the Secretary of State when visiting the area recently should be

:50:06.:50:15.

considered. There can't be a number of changes since the decision was

:50:16.:50:24.

made -- there have been a number of changes. First of all, the STP team

:50:25.:50:30.

are reviewing entry validating the modelling used in 2010 to ensure

:50:31.:50:36.

proposals then made remain appropriates, which is as one would

:50:37.:50:43.

expect. Secondly, the governing members of the CCG board, the trust

:50:44.:50:47.

board and the STP port will need to agree the business case that arises

:50:48.:50:56.

coming out of STP recommendations. Thirdly, once that has been

:50:57.:51:01.

achieved, if it is, both NHS England and NHS improvement would be

:51:02.:51:05.

required to approve the business case. And finally, it is envisaged

:51:06.:51:15.

it would be a clinically led Gateway assurance team, and NHS construct,

:51:16.:51:19.

who would manage a series of Gateway reviews at different stages of the

:51:20.:51:23.

process, from planning to implementation, as they project

:51:24.:51:31.

proceeds, to assure patient safety and system readiness at every step.

:51:32.:51:43.

Does he think the whole process could be completed by 2019? I am

:51:44.:51:50.

going to have to disappoint him again, it is not for me to prejudge

:51:51.:51:54.

how long I would take. I think in all honesty, it is most unlikely

:51:55.:52:02.

that would take place within less than two years, so it is conceivable

:52:03.:52:08.

it could be concluded by the end of 2019 but I think it is a two-year

:52:09.:52:20.

process. As a minimum. In the meantime, CQC visits and reports

:52:21.:52:24.

will continue to take place on a routine basis, now that the trust

:52:25.:52:30.

has exited special measures they will be somewhat less frequent than

:52:31.:52:34.

when they were in special measures and any information coming from that

:52:35.:52:37.

well-informed decisions taken by rate the trust and the STP area. In

:52:38.:52:47.

the last comment I make, I would like to try to reassure the

:52:48.:52:53.

honourable gentleman and their residents that the proposals include

:52:54.:52:58.

a new urgent care centre at King George Hospital which would provide

:52:59.:53:07.

emergency support to local residents for the majority of present

:53:08.:53:13.

attendances at A, which would be handled by the urgent care centre.

:53:14.:53:18.

It would be blue light trauma and emergency cases requiring full

:53:19.:53:25.

emergency medical teams to provide support to patients which would take

:53:26.:53:32.

place at other hospitals in the area. The majority of cases

:53:33.:53:37.

currently treated at King George would continue to do so in the new

:53:38.:53:41.

urgent care centre would benefit from a number of improvements,

:53:42.:53:47.

including more space and access for diagnosis, x-ray, blood tests and so

:53:48.:53:52.

on. I hope that would provide the honourable gentleman with some

:53:53.:53:57.

reassurance that facilities which would remain at King George would

:53:58.:54:02.

continue to provide the majority of their constituents with the care

:54:03.:54:05.

they need, should they need it in an emergency. Taking an intervention or

:54:06.:54:17.

concluded? Very briefly, what the minister is saying is that the STP

:54:18.:54:21.

process should not be constrained by the decision of 2011 if they think

:54:22.:54:25.

it was the wrong decision? It should be informed by decisions taken in

:54:26.:54:32.

2010 but it will be up to today's STP leadership to decide what to do.

:54:33.:54:38.

The question is that this House now do adjourn. As many as are of the

:54:39.:54:41.

opinion, say "aye". To the contrary, "no". The ayes have it. Order,

:54:42.:54:42.

order. Subtitles will resume at 11pm,

:54:43.:54:56.

with Monday In Parliament.

:54:57.:55:07.

Live coverage of the day's proceedings in the House of Commons, including (estimated timings):

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