GovWire

Recent News

Offline Access

Use this page when you have no internet access. Ensure that this page loads fully before going offline.

Animal Plant Health Agency

Guidance: Balai Directive: approved premises19 Jul

Research: Zoonoses and veterinary public health: disease surveillance reports19 Jul

Research: Bird flu (avian influenza): cases in wild birds19 Jul

Guidance: Export plants and plant products from Great Britain and Northern Ireland18 Jul

Research: Risk assessment: airborne introduction of bluetongue virus18 Jul

Bluetongue virus – Latest situation: Chief Vet urges vigilance18 Jul

Research: Goats: TSE surveillance statistics17 Jul

Research: Sheep: TSE surveillance statistics17 Jul

Research: Active disease surveillance: TSE statistics17 Jul

Guidance: Plant imports: authorised border control posts in the UK16 Jul

Guidance: Pet travel: approved air, sea and rail carriers and routes16 Jul

Guidance: Pet travel: approved air, sea and rail carriers and routes16 Jul

Cabinet Office

Guidance: Uploading data to the National Fraud Initiative19 Jul

Guidance: National Fraud Initiative: private sector data specifications19 Jul

Guidance: National Fraud Initiative: public-sector data specifications19 Jul

Guidance: Procurement Act 2023 guidance documents - Plan phase19 Jul

Guidance: Procurement Act 2023 guidance documents - Procure phase19 Jul

Guidance: Procurement Act 2023 guidance documents - Define phase19 Jul

Press release: Specialised Committee on the Implementation of the Windsor Framework: joint statement, 18 July 202418 Jul

Research: UK Covid-19 Inquiry: Resilience and preparedness (Module 1) Report18 Jul

Guidance: Privacy Notice for the Going Forward into Employment scheme18 Jul

Transparency data: Government ministers and responsibilities17 Jul

Transparency data: Specialised Committee on the implementation of the Windsor Framework: agenda, 18 July 202417 Jul

Guidance: Privacy notice for Government Communication Service talent schemes16 Jul

Guidance: Government Communication Service Talent Grid privacy notice16 Jul

THURSDAY, 18 JULY 2024  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON BUSINESS APPOINTMENTS

The Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACOBA), that provides independent advice to former Ministers and the most senior servants on appointments they wish to take up on leaving government, has today published a report covering its work from 2020 – 2024. 

Advisory Committee on Business Appointments – Report 2020-24 -  ‘The time to restore trust is now’

The Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACOBA), that provides independent advice to former Ministers and the most senior servants on appointments they wish to take up on leaving government, has today published a report covering its work from 2020 – 2024.

In a foreword to the report, ACOBA’s Chair, Lord Pickles, has repeated the Committee’s call for urgent reform of the government’s Business Appointments Rules and set out steps that could be taken immediately to strengthen the system, with or without further legislation.

The report contains information and statistics relating to applications and appointments taken up between 2020 – 2024 showing:

  • The Committee advised on restrictions in all but one case in the reporting period
  • The Committee advised on 416 applications from former ministers and 401 applications from senior Crown servants 
  • An increasing trend towards roles where there is overlap with official’s responsibilities in office and in consulting work

Lord Pickles said:

“The smooth operation of this system is fundamental to ensuring government benefits from the interchange of skills and experience between the public, private and charitable sectors, while protecting the integrity of government. As Chair of ACOBA, I have overseen a programme of reform to strengthen ACOBA’s approach within the framework set by the government. These reforms have increased transparency, improved risk assessment and ensured public letters are unambiguous but they can only go so far. The system is bust and needs fixing.

“There can be no credibility in a system that continues to have no demonstrable consequences or tangible deterrent for non-compliance and lacks a clear focus on the right things. The Committee is forced to expend considerable resources not only on cases where someone has been working at the heart of policy, regulatory or commercial decision-making that overlaps with their potential new role, but also on unpaid roles that have no relation to someone’s time in office. Scarce public resources need to be directed to where the risks posed to the government’s integrity are greatest.

“Improvements must include an enforceable system with options to meaningfully sanction individuals for egregious breaches. The system should operate on an exception basis - setting clear expectations up front for those in public office and encouraging a culture of proactive management of conflicts of interest.

“Some long overdue changes could be implemented in a matter of weeks without the need for legislation. This would demonstrate a willingness to get things moving immediately and make an unambiguous statement of intent for potential  statutory measures. ACOBA stands ready to help the government and its officials take this opportunity to make impactful changes to the system.”

Download the report

Notes to Editors

  1. Media enquiries about the work of ACOBA go to Maggie O’Boyle on 07880 740627 or oboylecsc@gmail.com
  2. The Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACOBA) is independent from government. ACOBA is an advisory non-departmental public body, sponsored by the Cabinet Office. The Committee is the visible part of a much larger system. The Business Appointments Rules are owned by the government and apply to civil servants at all levels and former Ministers on leaving public office. The majority of cases are handled by the employing department, with ACOBA providing independent advice to the PM on applications from the most senior civil servants and directly to former ministers. 
  3. ACOBA publishes its advice letters detailing its consideration and any restrictions on its website once an appointment has been taken up.
  4. Find out more about ACOBA’s membership and its decisions on gov.uk<

THURSDAY, 18 JULY 2024  |  ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON BUSINESS APPOINTMENTS

The independent Advisory Committee on Business Appointments’ report for its work between 2020 and 2024 . ‘The time to restore trust is now’

The Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACOBA), that provides independent advice to former Ministers and the most senior servants on appointments they wish to take up on leaving government, has today published a report covering its work from 2020 – 2024. 

The report contains information and statistics relating to applications and appointments taken up between 2020 – 2024

In a foreword to the report, ACOBA’s Chair, Lord Pickles, has repeated the Committee’s call for urgent reform of the government’s Business Appointments Rules and set out steps that could be taken immediately to strengthen the system, with or without further legislation.

Updates to this page

Published 18 July 2024

Sign up for emails or print this page

Updates to this page

Published 19 December 2019
Last updated 19 July 2024 + show all updates
  1. Updated to provide more clarity around registration and to better explain which regulator to apply to and for what. Some definitions and example settings have been added as well as more details on the registration and oversight regimes of different settings.

  2. First published.

Sign up for emails or print this page

Share This


Enjoyed this? Why not share it with others if you've found it useful by using one of the tools below: