Mr Gavin Shuker Excerpts
Tuesday 24th April 2018

(2 years, 3 months ago)

Commons Chamber
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Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Mr Speaker Hansard
24 Apr 2018, 2:43 p.m.

I greatly enjoyed the Secretary of State’s answer to the hon. Member for Luton North (Kelvin Hopkins), and I hope he will not take offence if I say that the hon. Member for Luton North was not himself in government—he looked rather shocked, nay affronted, by any suggestion that at any time in his career he might have been. The hon. Member for Luton North is a career Back Bencher and is immensely proud of the fact.

Mr Gavin Shuker (Luton South) (Lab/Co-op) Parliament Live - Hansard
24 Apr 2018, 2:44 p.m.

Workers at GKN’s Luton plant in my constituency are world leaders in ice protection systems for flight-deck windows and fast-jet canopies, and I believe they will share my dismay that the assurances the Secretary of State has put in place amount to little more than the new management picking up the phone and informing him before it does things that damage our national security and national interest. Is not the reality of the quasi-judicial nature of the decision-making process that he and future Secretaries of State will always veer on the side of caution, rather than face the prospect of being challenged in court when a takeover goes through?

Greg Clark Portrait Greg Clark - Hansard
24 Apr 2018, 2:44 p.m.

I am sure it is an unaccountable oversight that the hon. Member for Luton North (Kelvin Hopkins) has never served in government.

For the constituents of the hon. Member for Luton South (Mr Shuker), during the takeover bid, the incumbent management criticised the commitment to hold the aerospace division for five years. Given that a majority of the company was to be sold as part of the incumbent management’s plans, it is fair to observe that it is not clear there would be any greater stability—I put it as mildly as that—if the incumbent management had continued, rather than the new management that shareholders chose to manage the company.