UK Parliament Opens Inquiry Into British Overseas Territories' Future

The future of Montserrat as a British Overseas Territory will be examined as part of an inquiry by the UK Parliament.

The Commons Select Committee says the OTs have been exposed to shocks over the years which have led some territories to question the Government’s willingness to support them.

Relations have been put under further strain due to high-profile instances of divergence between the UK and some of the OTs on issues such as civil rights and financial transparency.

It says many of the overseas territories face similar challenges and have struggled to build sustainable economies to adapt to the increasing demands of global transparency.

Amidst these concerns, the inquiry will consider the resilience of the OT’s, how effectively the Foreign and Commonwealth Office manages its responsibilities towards them and how it envisages their future.

The Committee says the inquiry is likely to be structured around overarching themes but may look at individual OT’s as and when appropriate.

The Select Committee is now inviting interested parties to make submissions on the governance of the OT’s, including their adherence to human rights frameworks.

Submissions are also welcomed on how parties view the relationship between the UK and its Territories, the financing of the OTs, representation of the OTs in the UK and the Commonwealth and assets and liabilities of the OT’s.