On 4 February 2015, Hogan Lovells' Constitutional Change Taskforce hosted a roundtable discussion on the implications for British businesses of further devolution within the UK.
Clients and members of the Taskforce were joined by guest speaker Adam Tomkins, Professor of Public Law at the University of Glasgow. Professor Tomkins was a member of the recent Smith Commission on Scottish devolution, and is Rapporteur to the Review of the implications of devolution for the UK as a whole that is currently being conducted by the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law (for more information, see http://www.biicl.org/bingham-centre/devolution).
This event was an opportunity for our clients to hear directly about the on-going work of that Review, and to feed in to it their own business perspective.
The event, which was held under the Chatham House Rule, prompted lively discussion on topics as diverse as the principles of Union constitutionalism and whether British business might be best served by a written constitution, the recent proposals for "English Votes for English Laws", and the possible implications for the union of a British exit from the European Union.
Charles Brasted, Partner in the Hogan Lovells Public Law & Policy Team said, "Many businesses are rightly concerned to understand, and engage with the current wide-ranging debate on, the future of the constitutional arrangements within the United Kingdom. For many of our clients, ensuring that the UK remains a robust, predictable and stable place in which to do business, and one in which the opportunities for locally-driven growth are maximised, is critical. It is no surprise that we are increasingly asked for advice on the issue of devolution and its implications."