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Commons Treasury Committee Is Set To Launch Inquiry Into Greensill Lobbying

MPs on the committee will probe Greensill relationships with government officials

2 min read

The powerful select committee has announced it will launch an inquiry into the "lessons from Greensill Capital".

MPs on the committee will probe the "regulatory lessons" from the failure of the firm and the "appropriateness of HM's Treasury's response to lobbying" following a growing row over the David Cameron's lobbying controversy.

The move comes just three weeks after Tory MPs on the committee blocked efforts to investigate the Conservative former Prime Minister and his efforts to lobby government officials on behalf of Greensill.

But in a statement on Wednesday, the group said: "The Committee has agreed in principle to launch the inquiry and will officially launch the inquiry next week, at which point it will publish its full terms of reference.

"The Committee will focus on the regulatory lessons from the failure of Greensill Capital and the appropriateness of HM Treasury’s response to lobbying in relation to Greensill Capital."

The announcement comes after MPs voted on a Labour motion which sought to establish a wider MP-led inquiry into Greensill and its relationship with senior ministers and officials, with the plans being rejected 357 votes to 262 after the government opposed the measures.Speaking earlier, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer had said the Greensill revelations showed "sleaze and cronyism" in the Conservative Party as he urged the Prime Minister to back the review.

But Johnson batted away the claims, saying that a review ordered by the government, to be led by lawyer Nigel Boardman, would have "carte blanche" to conduct a proper probe.

The decision to prompt Boardman to head the inquiry has prompted anger from opposition MPs, with shadow cabinet office minister Rachel Reeves saying the government-ordered probe was "wholly inadequate".

“It’s a fact that Nigel Boardman is a very good friend of the Conservative government," she said.

"Some may suspect the son of a former Conservative cabinet minister might be unlikely to make waves – but let’s look at his own record.

"Boardman has been paid over £20,000 per year as a non-executive director at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – a department with a real interest in the British Business Bank which lent to Greensill and the British steel industry, where so many jobs are at risk.

"Boardman has already whitewashed the government’s handling of public procurement during the pandemic, and I fear he will do the same again with this inquiry."

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