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Elections: ICT

Volume 464: debated on Wednesday 17 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what plans his Department has (a) to hold further remote electronic voting pilots, (b) to hold further electronic counting pilots and (c) to extend the use of electronic voting to mainstream elections. (158200)

In the Governance of Britain Green Paper the Government set out a long-term aim to investigate the potential benefits of remote electronic voting and to take advantage of emerging communication technologies to provide increased flexibility and choice in the way people vote.

The outcomes of the May 2007 electoral pilot schemes and the subsequent recommendations of the Electoral Commission are currently being considered. I expect to be able to set out our thinking on future piloting involving remote electronic voting and electronic counting pilots in the near future.

The Government currently have no plans to extend the use of e-voting. The Government believe that piloting innovations in e-voting and e-counting have been important in order to test the potential benefits, and establish the evidential basis for future decisions to be taken on whether or not electronic voting could be used more widely in elections.