6. What recent representations he has received on his Department’s responsibilities in relation to the Crown dependencies. (9418)
I am unsure quite what kind of representations the hon. Gentleman has in mind. As he would expect, however, the Ministry of Justice constantly receives a wide range of communications in relation to its responsibilities for the Crown dependencies.
The representations that I had in mind were from Crown dependencies such as the Isle of Man. Can the right hon. and learned Gentleman assure me that he and his ministerial colleagues in the other place, who I gather have responsibility for Crown dependencies in his Department, will consult with the Crown dependencies if there is any suggestion that responsibility for them be moved to another Department, so that the important distinction between Crown dependencies and overseas territories is recognised throughout the civil service?
As the hon. Gentleman says, it is my right hon. Friend Lord McNally who takes a lead in our Department on the Crown dependencies. I will certainly take note of what the hon. Gentleman says about any question of changing ministerial responsibility, but I should point out that this is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister and the Cabinet Secretary. However, I take on board the hon. Gentleman’s views and will ensure that they are disseminated among those responsible.