Lords debates Government procurement

25 November 2011

Members of the Lords, including a former Employment Minister and business experts, debated the importance of getting a good deal for taxpayers' money through Government procurement on Thursday 24 November.

Lord Sugar (Labour), businessman and entrepreneur, who tabled the debate and spoke first, said in advance of the debate:

“The government spends around £238 billion on procurement and now more than ever, we need to ensure that this money is spent wisely; providing jobs, supporting UK business, industry and innovation.

“The government has a duty to get the best deal possible, especially when spending tax payers’ money.  From my experience in business and from what I have seen in the public sector, this isn’t always the case. 

“With the British economy failing to grow, this is an important debate and the issues I hope to raise will suggest a better deal for small businesses, value for money and value for the country as a whole.”

Other Members contributing to the debate included:

  • Lord Lee of Trafford (Liberal Democrat), former Employment Minister
  • Lord Haskel (Labour), former businessman and Government Spokesman for Trade and Industry
  • Lord Kestenbaum (Labour), former Chief Executive of NESTA, where he highlighted the importance of innovation to economic growth and was an advocate for UK technology start-ups
  • Lord Young of Norwood Green (Labour), Opposition Spokesperson for Business, Innovation and Skills
  • Lord Broers (Crossbench), former President of the Royal Academy of Engineering
  • Lord O’Neill of Clackmannan (Labour), former Chairman of the Commons Trade and Industry Select committee
  • Lord Puttnam (Labour), film producer

Lord Sutherland of Houndwood (Crossbench), Lord St John of Bletso (Crossbench), Lord Hunt of Chesterton (Labour), Lord Davies of Stamford (Labour), Lord Anderson of Swansea (Labour), Lord Palmer of Childs Hill (Liberal Democrat) and Baroness Royall of Blaisdon (Labour) are also expected to take part in the debate.

Lord Wallace of Saltaire (Liberal Democrat) will respond on behalf of the government.

Further information

Members of the public can attend House of Lords debates and follow proceedings from the public gallery.

Image: iStockphoto

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