The Ratification of the European Investment Bank Framework Agreement deferred
The joint sitting of Parliament deferred the deliberation of European Investment Bank Framework agreement and Bhutan through voting system which was proposed by the joint committee.
The Chairperson of the Joint Committee of the European Investment Bank Framework Agreement (FWA) Rinzin Dorji from Phuentsholing constituency submit- ted its report to the Joint Sitting of the Parliament last Friday.
The Chairperson reported that the FWA unlike other Bills is beyond the purview of the Joint Committee. Further, he said that this is the first time that such an International Agreement has been in dispute between the two houses. Hence the Joint Committee has recommended the Parliament to FWA be tabled and voted in its entirely.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs Lyonpo Damcho Dorji shared detailed background on the framework and said that it was significant for the FWA to be ratified given its enormous benefit to the country. However, he added that the concerns raised by the National Council were also for the benefit of the country. The Foreign Minister motioned that considering the importance of this agreement, it would be more appropriate to do a thorough review by the government and defer the agreement to another session for deliberation.
The motion was supported by the Minister for Finance Lyonpo Namgay Dorji. Subsequently, the House unanimously supported for deferring and directed Joint Committee to review and proposed for deferring as per the Legislative Rules of Procedure (LROP).
Accordingly, the Joint Committee submitted a motion to defer the ratification of the FWA with the understanding that this deferment should be treated as an exceptional case and not a precedent as provision for dealing with disputes on international agreements have not been covered in LROP.
Meanwhile, the House decided to endorse the motion where 58 votes supported the motion, 6 members abstained while three voted no. There were 67 members present during the voting.