Lord Callanan Portrait Lord Callanan (Con)
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My Lords, Amendments 54 and 84 require the Secretary of State to consult the devolved Administrations before making regulations on devolved land matters. It is appropriate when the Secretary of State is legislating on devolved matters in this space to consult the responsible devolved Ministers. This approach is supported by Ministers in the Northern Ireland Executive and in the Scottish Government.

The Bill seeks to make amendments to the Land Registration Act (Northern Ireland) 1970 to capture properties in Northern Ireland within the register of overseas entities by adding a new Schedule 8A. Clause 32 of the Bill allows the Secretary of State to amend by regulation the new Schedule 8A measures on Northern Ireland land provisions and the register of overseas entities.

It is, of course, convention that Westminster shall legislate only with the consent and support of devolved Ministers on devolved matters. The support of Northern Ireland Ministers has been secured for the provisions of the Bill but, should the measures be amended in the future, it is justified that the Secretary of State ought to consult with the Department of Finance before laying regulations. It is for this reason that Amendment 54 is being made. It will ensure that devolved Ministers continue to contribute on devolved matters.

The Bill also makes amendments to the Conveyancing (Scotland) Act 1924 and the Land Registration etc. (Scotland) Act 2012, including adding new Schedule 1A to the 2012 Act to include Scottish properties bought on or after 8 December 2014 within the scope of the register of overseas entities. Paragraph 13 of Schedule 4 to the Bill allows the Secretary of State to make further provisions for the purpose of requiring or encouraging an overseas entity owning land in Scotland to submit to the register of overseas entities.

As with Northern Ireland, Scotland has devolved competence for land provisions. I am pleased to say that the Bill has secured a legislative consent Motion from the Scottish Parliament, but this amendment would ensure that Scottish Ministers are consulted before regulations are laid, which will further impact those devolved matters. I beg to move.

Lord Hope of Craighead Portrait Lord Hope of Craighead (CB)
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My Lords, as someone who takes a close interest in devolution matters, I am delighted with these amendments. I have quite often moved amendments in similar terms and not been successful. It is a pleasure to see the Minister produce amendments in the very terms that I would have liked to have seen in the Bill. I very much welcome them both.

Lord Faulks Portrait Lord Faulks (Non-Afl)
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As a fellow member of the Constitution Committee, I endorse what the noble and learned Lord said. This is one of the points that we as a committee regularly make: it is one thing to have the Sewel convention in primary legislation; it is another to have it in subordinate legislation. We very much welcome this as a matter of practice.