Rt. Hon. Tony Blair MP
Prime Minister
10 Downing Street
London SW1A 2AA                               22 June 1999

Dear Tony,


Thank you for your letter of 16th June.

I am afraid the distinction between “confidential” and “conditions of confidentiality” is hardly meaningful to the public. Did the Bank of England not know that under the US ‘freedom of information, laws the Sandstorm Report would be made publicly available? Its concealment from the British people serves no economic, moral or ethical purpose and I would again urge you to either publish the report or explain why the British people are being denied information about matters in their own country, whilst the information about the same matters is freely available in other countries.

It would be helpful to know whether the Sandstorm Report would become publicly available if the present government proposals on freedom of information were to become law?

My letter of 22nd April also stated that  “Parliament should have a right to see and debate the Report. How can we debate the legislation about banking and financial services supervision without a sight of this crucial report?” I would be very grateful to learn why the government is preventing Parliament from seeing the Sandstorm Report?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely

Austin Mitchell