The legislation to dismantle the FSA is set for a bumpy ride

Now that Parliament is enjoying its long summer recess, we can reflect on what has been achieved exactly in progressing the project to replace the FSA.

The government published its White Paper on 16 June seeking Parliament’s indulgence in clearing the draft Financial Services Bill through pre-legislative scrutiny in 12 weeks when Parliament is sitting. This was followed by a motion from the government suggesting 1 December 2011 as the cut off date for completing this pre-legislative scrutiny, breaking the 12 weeks requirement.

Two Labour MPs objected to this purely procedural motion on the grounds that David Laws MP, who was forced to resign as Treasury chief secretary following a row over his expenses, had been selected to sit on the bill’s joint scrutiny committee.

This is political point scoring of the lowest kind but it points to the vagaries of the political process to be gone through to break up the FSA. We can expect the legislation to have a bumpy ride. When it gets Royal Assent is anybody’s guess.

Richard Hobbs is director of Lansons.