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Oral Statements on the Order Paper

Volume 460: debated on Thursday 24 May 2007

On 15 March 2007 I informed Members of improvements to the process by which notice is given to the House when Ministers plan to make an oral statement.

I set out plans that wherever notice had already been given to the House via a written ministerial statement, oral or written questions, or elsewhere on the floor of the House (for example, in debate or at business questions) that an oral statement will be made on a certain date, it would be helpful to the House for this to be recorded in the House’s business papers. This improvement has been welcomed on all sides of the House.

However, there have been occasions where it would have been convenient for the House to have been made aware of forthcoming oral statements, even though notice of such a statement had not been previously given as described above. Accordingly, I have asked for a written notice to be printed on the Order of Business on the day of the statement, in those circumstances where I think the House would appreciate prior notification, and only following notification to the House from my office.

The Government would retain the current freedom to make statements without prior notice having been given in this way and, if necessary, not to proceed with a statement of which prior notice had been given.

I am grateful to Mr. Speaker, for acknowledgement of his support for these proposals.