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Summary

  1. MPs question Paul Johnson, director of the IFS
  2. Treasury questions starts the Commons day
  3. Urgent question on victims of child sexual abuse in football
  4. Statement on corporate governance from Greg Clark
  5. Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill examined
  6. Peers debate economy in light of the Autumn Statement

Live Reporting

By Kate Whannel, Patrick Cowling and Claire Gould

All times stated are UK

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House adjourns

House of Lords

Parliament

House of Lords clock
BBC

Lord Young concludes his remarks by saying he has enjoyed listening to the "vast knowledge and wisdom" that has been shared in the debate.  

He finishes by saying that "even our most grudging opponents might agree that the government has gone some way with the Autumn Statement to ensure that Britain has a brighter future".

With that the debate ends and the House adjourns.

Peers return tomorrow at 3pm.

Minister responds

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Government spokesperson Lord Young of Cookham now faces the gargantuan task of responding to five and a half hours of debate.

On the issue of living standards, he says that they are currently at their highest ever level - 3.3% higher than 2010 as measured by real household disposable income per head. 

He says that the forecast of the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) based on this measurement is that living standards will be 2.8% higher by 2021 than they are today. Lord Young says that other peers tended to use earnings growth figures to measure living standards.

"Of course we need to do more but progress is being made" he says.

Lord Young addresses the issue of borrowing raised by several peers who urged ministers to borrow more to increase growth. More borrowing, he says, would reverse the progress made by the government in getting borrowing "down to a manageable level". 

Lord Young of Cookham
BBC

Debate 'in the shadow' of the Autumn Statement

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Davies of Oldham
BBC

Shadow minister Lord Davies of Oldham responds to the debate for the Labour Party.  

He says that the debate is somewhat mis-titled, and that rather than being called 'the economy in the light of the Autumn Statement' it should read - "in the shadow of the Autumn Statement and of Brexit".  

Lord Davies says this is clear from the "whole range of real anxieties" expressed across the House during the debate.  

"How did we arrive at this point?" he asks, and goes on to accuse the government of making "no confession" that there have been "six wasted years in pursuit of austerity".  

Speaking of the vote to leave the European Union, he says that although Brexit might turn out "much better" than some fear; "what is almost undeniable is that we are bound to live through this period of uncertainty". 

"One of the greatest dangers to the economy is a period of uncertainty" he says.

'Immediate reaction' needed on NHS - Lid Dem peer

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Kramer
BBC

Liberal Democrat spokesperson Baroness Kramer is summing up the debate for her Party.

She says that the shadow of the national debt has "paralysed the chancellor and limited his options". 

"Whilst there are many ways that I support the various spending commitments he has made, almost all of them are very small and very limited because he faces a situation where he sees almost no room to maneuver."

Baroness Kramer warns that young people and "the least well off in our communities" are going to "bare the economic brunt" of the years ahead.

She also says she is "absolutely shocked" that there was no mention of additional funding for the NHS, whose funding she says is in a "perilous state".

This, she argues, merits an "immediate government reaction".

Crossbench peer 'warmly welcomes' employment levels

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Earl of Listowel
bbc

Crossbencher the Earl of Listowel begins by "warmly welcoming" the current employment figures and the work of government ministers on the issue.

He speaks about his concerns around children growing up without a father present, and says that he has been informed that high levels of male unemployment is followed by increases in couple breakdown.

"So I do welcome the government's success in securing record levels of employment", he says.

The Earl tempers this praise by saying that he also recognises concerns about the use of sanctions, the quality of employment, and that two thirds of children in poverty have a parent in work.

'Race to the bottom'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Labour's Baroness Donaghy says the Conservative led Coalition Government "made enormous capital" out of its long term economic plan and the need for austerity. 

"We had it every day from the despatch box" she says, going on to declare "now the long term economic plan is dead and the national debt is rising". 

The government has cut public service jobs, cut public pensions, slashed benefits and attacked trade unions and their ability to collectively bargain, she tells peers. 

She says of the government that "instead of investing in a high wage, highly skilled economy; the government is continuing its race to the bottom". 

Tory peer: Aim for a 'more prosperous trajectory'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
BBC

Conservative peer Baroness Vere of Norbiton says she found the Autumn Statement a "measured and sobering" account of the economic state of the nation.

She says that she notes Labour peers acting as though Brexit is "somehow nothing to do with them", saying that having worked on the referendum campaign, her report card for Labour during the campaign would have said "should have tried harder".

Baroness Vere urges peers to "redouble our efforts" to build a better foundation for the future and to help to "adjust the course of our great nation along a different and more prosperous trajectory". 

But, she warns, "we have to start this today". 

'The ghosts of industrial strategies past'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Hennessy of Nympsfield
BBC

Crossbench peer Lord Hennessy of Nympsfield rises to speak in the debate, saying that perhaps future historians will single out the new industrial strategy element in the Autumn Statement as its "most enduring and significant ingredient".

"I hope so" he says, but admits that his hope is "tempered somewhat". 

"We have form as an industrial strategy nation" he tells peers.

Lord Hennessy says that as he watched the statement being given last week "I could almost sense the ghosts of industrial strategies past flitting about in the chamber with rueful, if sympathetic, smiles creasing their pallid faces"

He says that by his calculation there have been at least seven industrial strategies since 1945.

What was in the Autumn Statement?

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Full BBC analysis of the announcements in the chancellor's Autumn Statement can be found here.

Commons adjourn

House of Commons

Parliament

House of Commons clock
BBC

The debate concludes as does the day in the House of Commons.

MPs will return tomorrow at 11:30am for Wales questions followed by PMQs.

Government measures are 'sufficient'

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Nicola Blackwood
BBC

Health Minister Nicola Blackwood says there is no evidence that any CJD cases have been linked to blood transfusions performed after 1999.

She believes that the current measures are sufficient and that no changes are needed at the moment but says that this will be kept under review.

She adds that the government has ring-fenced £5.5m for CJD research. 

Conservative MP fears return of CJD

Adjournment debate

House of Commons

Parliament

Paul Beresford
BBC

Conservative Paul Beresford says that an estimated 1 in 2,000 people carry variant CJD proteins and that the incubation period can last for decades.

He tells MPs these proteins can be passed through blood transfusions and on surgical instruments.

He worries that his grandchildren could see the re-emergence of CJD. 

He urges the government to fund a testing system which could detect carriers of CJD.

Labour peer: 'Clear and welcome' housing announcements

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Warwick of Undercliffe
BBC

Labour peer and chair of the national housing federation, Baroness Warwick of Undercliffe, says there was a "clear and welcome" commitment in the Autumn Statement to increase the supply of affordable housing.

She tells peers that as a country we are 100,000 houses short of the number we need to build each year, and that this has a "real impact" on the lives of ordinary families who are faced with high housing costs. 

"The public looks for the government to act" she says, and says the housing features of the Autumn Statement were "an important step in the right direction". 

She says that for more houses to be built the country needs a determined government and an ambitious house building industry, and tells peers that housing associations need "certainty and freedom" to build more homes. 

Bishop calls for 'focused intiatives'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Bishop of Birmingham
BBC

The Bishop of Birmingham says the population will continue to depend on the freely available social measures of faith and hope and love.

He says that, espeically in the regions of England, those who are "just about managingwill receive encouragement from this statement; but warns the minister not to underestimate the "dire need" of those who are not managing at all. 

The bishop says that "focused initiatives" on things like managing debt and promoting saving money should be utilised by the government. 

He speaks of an "underlying anxiety" behind some remarks in the debate, about the government's responsibility for those who are not financially active - the elderly and children. 

In this vein he urges the minister to work to ensure that "the weakest and the poorest are saved first".

Adjournment debate on CJD

House of Commons

Parliament

Artistic image of brain infected by CJD
Science Photo Library

Conservative Sir Paul Beresford now begins his adjournment debate on variant CJD and surgery.

There are concerns that variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease can be passed through surgery.

There have been over 170 deaths from variant CJD since 1990.

Government will not oppose bill

New Southgate Cemetery Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Philip Lee
BBC

Justice Minister Philip Lee begins by appreciating the rare experience of taking part in one of parliament's "less used procedures" ie debate of a private bill.

He tells MPs that in the 19th century the majority of bills were private bills dealing with issues such as permissions for divorce. 

Concerning this bill he says the government will not oppose it.

He adds that they are keeping the general issue under review but believes this bill addresses the specific local problems.

Economy could 'continue to surprise'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Former treasury minister and Conservative peer Lord O'Neill of Gatley says of the economic outlook post-Brexit, "the outlook is always uncertain".

"It just seems now that it is more uncertain than usual. I suspect that is probably not the case" he says.

He also notes that the Office for Budget Responsibility is less pessimistic than it has sometimes chosen to be in comparison to other financial bodies.

He says that it is "just possible" that the economy could continue to surprise.

On the issue of inequality, he says that there is a problem of "separating fact from fiction" on the issue, telling peers that in the last 20 years there has been a "massive decline" in global inequality, but says many people are either "unaware or choose to ignore" this achievement.

Cemetery will run out of space in ten years

New Southgate Cemetery Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Theresa Villiers
BBC

Conservative MP for Chipping Barnet Theresa Villiers supports the bill noting that the cemetery will run out of space in 10 years.

She argues that it needs to be able to make better use of existing burial space.

She adds that if owners could have made more space by acquiring neighbouring land they would have done so. 

Chope: Governments have avoided issue of reusing graves

New Southgate Cemetery Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Christopher Chope
BBC

Conservative Christopher Chope opposed the bill and is therefore the reason the debate is taking place.

He believes the bill touches on a larger issue that successive governments have been "avoiding for a long time". 

He says proper work is needed to determine how graves can be reused.

Concerning the cemetery in New Southgate he notes there have been no petitions objecting to the proposed changes. "People in the locality seem to be content" he says "perhaps they are content in their ignorance".

'Welcoming attitude' needed on immigration

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Bilimoria
BBC

Crossbencher Lord Bilimoria, Vice Chancellor of Birmingham University, addresses immigration and the UK's relationship with India in his speech.

He calls for international students not to be included in the immigration statistics and for the UK to develop a  "positive, welcoming attitude to immigration" wherever there are skills shortages - including in hospitality and in the health and social care sector.

Lord Bilimoria criticises the Prime Minister for not promoting UK universities on a recent visit to India, where he says she chose instead to raise Indian nationals who overstay their visas in the UK.  He says Indian officials were left with the impression that the UK's relationship with India was merely "transactional".

MPs begin debate of New Southgate Cemetery Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Gravestones
BBC

The Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill passes its second reading without a vote and MPs now move on to debate of the New Southgate Cemetery Bill.

The bill allows New Southgate Cemetery to “disturb human remains” in order to increase space for future burials.  

The bill is a private bill is normally one that affects specific private interests rather than a matter of public policy.

Private bills normally go through on the nod but can be opposed by MPs

If an MP opposes a private bill at second reading time must be found on the floor of the House to debate it.

Poorest face the 'difficult decisions'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Baroness Hollis
BBC

Labour's Baroness Hollis is scathing about the impact of the Autumn Statement, and the government's policy on welfare reform.

"Our tax system isn't progressive, its simply proportional," she says, with most people paying for their own welfare costs wtihin their lifetime through taxes paid - far from the image of "handouts for the feckless".

Referring to the various tax offsetting measures announced in the Autumn Statement, such as more hours of free childcare, she says these "budget goodies are basically trivial" for people in the bottom third of incomes.

The "difficult decisions" on spending will be borne by the poorest families, rather than by ministers, she says.

Poverty alleviation relies on economic growth says minister

Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Rory Stewart
BBC

International Development Minister Rory Stewart responds to the debate.

He notes that some MPs were worried about the weight placed by the government on investing in the private sector.

He argues that poverty alleviation relies on economic growth and that relies on private sector growth.

"It isn't a zero sum game," he says.

Notes spotted on briefing

BBC political editor tweets

Labour seeks assurance bill will not 'privatise aid'

Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Imran Hussain
BBC

Shadow international development minister Imran Hussain says the bill may be small in size but will have "huge ramifications" for the developing world.

He outlines some of Labour's concerns including the "sheer size" of the increase in the amount Dfid can give the CDC.

He worries this represents "a movement" towards trade over traditional aid. 

We need assurance, he says, that this is not about privatising aid.

Introducing a 'moral note'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Bishop of Portsmouth
BBC

The Bishop of Portsmouth says that he recognises the restrictions the chancellor faces, but says he wants to focus on what the government "ought" to be doing.

"I do introduce a moral note in using that word," he says.

The bishop asks what is the government doing to repair the "fractures of trust" and address growing injustices that are "perceived to be more hurtful than inequalities".

He asks the minister to "better articulate its rationale and approach in the important area of inequality and injustice". 

The bishop welcomes the rise in the minimum wage but notes the reduction in the universal credit rate.

Aid scepticism 'not just fuelled by the press'

Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Richard Fuller
BBC

Conservative Richard Fuller welcomes the "modern and effective" bill.

He notes that there is "tremendous scepticism" about the international aid budget. The scepticism is, he suggests, "not just fuelled by the press".

He argues this can be overcome if there is trust in the organisations handling the budget.

The government should therefore ensure that those at the CDC have the right skill set to invest the money he argues.

What is the Commonwealth Development Corporation?

House of Commons

Parliament

The CDC was established in 1948 with the aim to support the growth of enterprises in developing countries.

CDC funds are directed to African and South Asian countries. In 2012 all Latin American countries were removed from the list of eligible countries.

In 2015, the CDC's total net assets increased from £3,370m to £3,901m - a rise of 15%.

In 2011 an International Development Committee made a number of criticisms of the CDC.

The committee report said the CDC was not focusing on the right sectors (such as agriculture) and paid its bosses too much.

An NAO report, published yesterday, said the CDC had addressed concerns over salaries by reducing average from £123,000 to £90,000.

The report said the CDC needed to provide a "clearer picture of actual development impact".

Lib Dem peer: Chancellor 'seriously constrained by reality'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Fox
BBC

Liberal Democrat Lord Fox says the chancellor had "a tough job" in his statement last week, saying that Philip Hammond was "seriously constrained by reality". 

He says that although the chancellor "tried to make the best of it", there is "no gloss shiny enough" to hide the terrible prospects for public finances by the end of this Parliament. 

Lord Fox says a "£220bn Brexit-induced debt black hole looms for our country" - this from a government, he says, that stood in the last election on economic probity. 

The Lib Dem peer does accept some positive points in the Autumn Statement - mentioning specifically the British investment bank and research and development funding. 

'No doubt' about government commitment on foreign prisoners

Foreign National Offenders

Westminster Hall

Sam Gyimah
BBC

Justice Minister Sam Gyimah answers the debate on the return of foreign national offenders.

Mr Gyimah says the Justice department works closely with the Home Office and the International Development department to achieve the return of as many foreign offenders as possible, but that the process is different for each country.

Mr Gyimah says steps are being taken to improve and speed up the system, including requiring offenders to state their nationality in court, and to produce their passport.

The EU Prisoner Transfer Agreement is increasing the numbers of prisoners being returned as countries get better at understanding what is involved in that agreement, says Mr Gyimah.

Mr Gyimah pledges to meet MPs to go into more detail as he concludes this short debate.

He says MPs should be "in no doubt" as to the government's commitment to increasing the numbers of foreign offenders who are removed from the UK.

Labour peer pulls no punches

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Livermore
BBC

Gordon Brown's former adviser and director of strategy Lord Livermore is pulling no punches in his speech.

He begins by saying the Autumn Statement "downgraded forecasts, dropped targets, and revealed an economy in decline", and goes on to say that the British people "will indeed be poorer" following the vote to leave the EU.

"Growth and productivity will be lower, borrowing and inflation will be higher, wages will stagnate and living standards will fall," he says.

Lord Livermore says that the government has shown "by its actions and because of its values" it has shown it "cannot govern for all in society".

"For all their words their chief concern can never be for the working people in this country." 

'List of shame' of foreign offenders

Foreign National Offenders

Westminster Hall

Philip Hollobone
BBC

Conservative MP Philip Hollobone opens the debate on the return of foreign offenders to prisons in their own countries.

He says UK prisons are "full" with about 10,000 foreign nationals locked up and that the UK appears to have "imported a crime wave" from the EU accession countries.

Mr Hollobone quotes NAO figures saying it costs an average of £33,000 per year to keep a person in prison - or £330m per year on foreign offenders.  Taking into account all court and policing expenses, Mr Hollobone says these costs amount to an estimated £850m.

Mr Hollobone reads a "list of shame" of the countries with the most nationals in UK prisons. Poland has the largest number with over 900 offenders.

Former Home Affairs Committee Chair Keith Vaz intervenes to point out that the majority of countries on the 'list of shame' are either EU or Commonwealth countries, he asks why the UK is not able to negotiate a better process with countries with whom the UK has such close links.

Mr Hollobone says he hopes the minister can confirm that foreign offenders are a top priority when UK officials meet their foreign counterparts.

Minister: UK in a 'strong position'

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Speaking on the issue at hand, Lord Young says that he wants to focus on four key areas: fiscal discipline, work to raise British productivity, a competitive economy for business, and building an economy that works for all. 

He says that these key themes help in upholding market confidence in our economy and in securing strong, stable public finances.

"We face a period of uncertainty as we negotiate our departure from the EU," Lord Young says, but argues that "we are in a strong position" to meet any challenges ahead as a result of the actions the government has taken since 2010.

Where are they now?

Autumn Statement debate

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Young of Cookham
BBC

Lord Young of Cookham is leading a debate on the economy in the light of the Autumn Statement. He starts with a "personal reflection" of the last time he responded to an economic debate for the government, "over 20 years ago in the other place" - the House of Commons.

He tells peers that in the Speaker's chair at the time was the now Baroness Boothroyd, and her deputies - Baroness Fookes and Lord Naseby.

Contributors to the debate included the current Lord Speaker - Lord Fowler, as well as Lord Jopling, Lord Carrington of Fulham, Lord Reid, and Lord Young's shadow at the time, Lord Darling.

His peroration in that debate, he tells peers, contained "exactly the sort of partisan language that this House deplores" and that he says made him blush when he reread it, before repeating some of his barbs.

Lord Young tells peers that the young Treasury special adviser who helped ministers "craft their diatribes in those days" was the current upholder of political impartiality Speaker John Bercow. 

"I am a reformed man and I promise to do better at the end of this debate," he says.

'Struggle to explain' CDC's investment decisions

Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Stephen Doughty
BBC

Labour MP Stephen Doughty says CDC is not transparent enough and must have the same level of robust scrutiny as other aid organisations. 

He points out that only four cases of corruption have been reported to corporation in the previous year, something even the Department for International Development (DfID) described as "surprising".

He goes on to state that CDC engages in development work with countries that DfID has ceased funding, including India.  

While countries like Egypt and Thailand face problems, Mr Doughty says, they are not considered to be the poorest nations and yet CDC continues to invest in them.

Mr Doughty accuses CDC of investing only in profitable projects, whilst investment in agriculture accounts for only 6% of investment.

He says he would "struggle to explain" why the government wants to give money to an investment corporation that pays high salaries to its employees and uses secretive tax havens. 

What is a green paper?

Statement repeat on Corporate Governance

House of Lords

Parliament

A green paper is a consultation document issued by the government which contains policy proposals for debate and discussion before a final decision is taken on the best policyoption.

The document will often contain several alternative policy options.

Following consultation, the government will normally publish firmer recommendations in a white paper.

Green papers and white papers are both types of command paper and may be the subject of statements or debates in the House of Commons.

Unsurprisingly, it is printed on pale green paper. 

Lib Dem peer: 'We need to go much further'

Statement repeat on Corporate Governance

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Foster of Bath
BBC

Liberal Democrat peer Lord Foster of Bath says that there should be proposals for more companies to mutualise - arguing that there is "great merit" in having a diversity in types of company.

The "vast majority" of businesses in the UK do act responsibly, he says, but argues that if faith in business is to be restored "we need to go much further". 

Lord Foster argues that putting workers on boards, improving share ownership schemes and highlighting skills development alongside pay would all help towards this end. 

Labour call for 'complete overhaul' of system

Statement repeat on Corporate Governance

House of Lords

Parliament

Lord Mendelsohn
BBC

Shadow minister Lord Mendelsohn says that Labour welcomes the green paper on corporate governance, arguing that since the financial crisis there has been "growing disparities and unfairness that is neither just, justifiable, nor economically efficient".

He says that the government has "long delayed" any serious action to deal with chronic issues.

On those issues, he says that the current arrangements for corporate governance in the corporate code "is the problem", going on to argue that "this green paper is not enough"

"Nothing but a complete overhaul and review of the code will deal with it", he adds. 

SNP: 'People not profit' should be priority

Commonwealth Development Corporation Bill

House of Commons

Parliament

Patrick Grady
BBC

SNP International Development Spokesperson Patrick Grady makes the case for "traditional proven ways" of tackling poverty in developing countries, saying they must not lose out when CDC considers which projects or businesses to support.

He asks for assurances on the criteria CDC will use in judging where it will invest, saying it must consider "people not profit".  

Without sufficient assurances, the SNP "reserves the right" to decline the bill to progress to later stages, he says.

Mr Grady says there is "public and political consensus" in support of international aid, despite the impression given by "the gutter and right-wing press". 

CCTV priority, Plaid MP says

BBC Wales producer tweets