Today I led a debate in the House of Commons on the privatisation of the Land Registry. You can read the debate in full on Hansard here.
Many Members of Parliament from across our political parties contributed to the debate and set out their very strong opposition to the Government's planned privatisation. The motion of the debate, which was passed unanimously, was:
"This House... believes that any privatisation of the Land Registry will have serious consequences for transparency and accountability in the UK property market and hinder efforts to crack down on corruption and money entering the UK property market via offshore jurisdictions; regrets the Government's decision to seek short-term profit at the expense of the public interest; opposes the proposed privatisation of the Land Registry; and calls on the Government to reconsider that proposed privatisation."
In response to the debate, Minister George Freeman confirmed that the Government have decided to U-turn on their plans to privatise the Land Registry:
"I can confirm that the Government have absolutely no plans for this. We have carried out the consultation and we are in the process of hearing, loud and clear, what is said".
It was clear from the Minister's statement that the Government are aware that if they tried to push through a privatisation that this measure would not have the support of a majority of the House of Commons given the strength of opposition to the proposals, especially from a number of Conservative MP's.
I will continue to campaign to save the Land Registry from privatisation and secure a commitment from the Government that they have changed their mind and will not proceed with this proposed privatisation.