A plenary meeting of the Joint Ministerial Committee was held today (15 December 2014) in 10 Downing Street under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister David Cameron.
Participants in the Joint Ministerial Committee
From HM government:
- Prime Minister, Rt Hon David Cameron MP
- Deputy Prime Minister, Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP
- Home Secretary, Rt Hon Theresa May MP
- First Secretary of State and Leader of the House of Commons, Rt Hon William Hague MP
- Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Rt Hon Danny Alexander MP
- Secretary of State for Scotland, Rt Hon Alistair Carmichael MP
- Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP
- Secretary of State for Wales, Rt Hon Stephen Crabb MP
From the Scottish government:
- First Minister, Rt Hon Nicola Sturgeon MSP
- Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Finance, John Swinney MSP
From the Northern Ireland Executive:
- First Minister, Rt Hon Peter Robinson MLA
- Deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness MLA
From the Welsh government:
- First Minister, Rt Hon Carwyn Jones AM
Agenda of the Joint Ministerial Committee
The 3 principal agenda items at the meeting were combating extremism, constitutional change and the economy.
On the first item, ministers discussed current counter-terrorism measures including the Prevent duty, and agreed to work together collaboratively on tackling extremism.
On the second item, ministers discussed the current programme of constitutional change including the recommendations of the Silk and Smith Commission’s reports in relation to intergovernmental relations. Ministers noted that the constitutional landscape has changed fundamentally since the Memorandum of Understanding was agreed between the UK government, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2000 and agreed to commission work on a revised Memorandum of Understanding. Ministers also discussed ways in which their respective Parliaments and Assemblies could be kept informed of the work of Joint Ministerial Committee (JMC).
On the third item, ministers each provided an overview of the economic situation in their administration and discussed the key issues of importance to them in promoting economic growth.
The meeting also covered the state of relations between the 4 administrations. The Prime Minister thanked the leaders of the devolved administrations for their continued commitment to dialogue and ministers reaffirmed the importance they each attached to effective inter-governmental relations and to the effective operation of the Memorandum of Understanding which established the Joint Ministerial Committee. Ministers agreed the JMC Annual Report on the work of the Joint Ministerial Committee since its last Plenary meeting in October 2013. This will be published on each administration’s website. Finally, ministers noted that no disputes had been raised under the formal dispute resolution process since the last plenary meeting in October 2013.