Following my statement of 27 March, Official Report, 107WS, I have today made available in the Vote Office and Printed Paper Office advanced copies of the UK’s convergence programme ahead of next week’s debates under section 5 of the European Communities (Amendment) Act 1993. This requires the Government to report to Parliament for their approval an assessment of the UK’s medium-term economic and budgetary position. This assessment comprises the Budget report and the Office for Budget Responsibility’s (OBR’s) economic and fiscal outlook. This then forms the basis of the UK’s convergence programme, which is therefore based entirely on information already presented to Parliament. The UK is obliged to submit a convergence programme annually to the European Commission under article 121 of the treaty on the functioning of the European Union (the “Lisbon” treaty).
The debates are scheduled for 24 April in the House of Commons and 25 April in the House of Lords. The convergence programme will be submitted to the EU by 30 April.
A copy of the published programme will be deposited in the Libraries of both Houses and the document will be available electronically via the HM Treasury website following the debate.