Unlock Democracy welcomes new Select Committee report on lobbying
Commenting on the publication of the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee report on the government’s proposals to introduce a statutory register of lobbyists, director of Peter Facey said:
“We welcome this report as it demonstrates there is clear cross-party support for the government to expand both the scope and the detail of its proposed register of lobbyists.
“Expanding the definition of a lobbyist is particularly crucial: under the government’s current plans, a group of small shops hiring a lobbyist to fight plans to expand supermarkets in their area would have to register while Tesco’s vast in-house lobbying team would be exempt. Clearly that is ridiculous.
“In recent months there have been numerous lobbying scandals reported in the press. But what we should be particularly concerned about about is the fact that these are almost certainly the tip of the iceberg. Without full disclosure - including financial information in our view - debates over public policy will continue with the press and public entirely in the dark regarding quite who is lobbying for what.”