Through its programme of activities, the BGIPU seeks to engage Parliamentarians in key global issues and works to expand awareness and understanding of foreign relations and the contribution to be made by the UK Parliament to consolidate parliamentary democracy worldwide.
Here you can read the reports of our activities, including our Outward Delegations, IPU conferences and events and inward visits to Westminster.
You can search for specific reports by using keywords, themes, categories or date using the fields on the right.
You can also view our work by geographical location here
The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) has welcomed the adoption of a new sustainable development agenda for the world as a turning point in efforts to shape our future and commits to doing its utmost to help achieve success. The IPU recognises the set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) formally adopted at a UN Summit at its Headquarters in New York (25-27 September), as ground-breaking commitments to eradicate extreme hunger and poverty within 15 years, reduce inequalities and secure both prosperity and the planet for future generations.
A UK delegation led by Bob Blackman MP visited Romania 21-25 September to meet parliamentary counterparts and explore mutual bilateral interests. The delegation included Lord Davies of Stamford, Lord Harrison of Chester, Stephen Pound MP, Graham Jones MP and Philip Hollobone MP. Members concluded that there is perhaps too little knowledge in the UK about Romania but ties between both countries look set to strengthen, not least due to shared energy and defence interests and Romania’s increasing enthusiasm for English.
The IPU President says democracy is only as strong as the political participation of citizens and this must be increased for world peace, social cohesion and development, says the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). Marking the International Day of Democracy on 15 September, IPU is calling for a major stepping-up of efforts to involve the public more deeply in formal political processes and institutions, including parliaments. It is also urging parliaments to be more open and accessible to their citizens, and representative of society as a whole.
The British Group hosted a visit from a Honduran parliamentary delegation, led by the President of the National Congress of Honduras, Mr Mauricio Oliva Herrera. UK counterparts were interested to hear the success of efforts in Honduras to address levels of violence and crime and provide more stable governance. The delegation called for increased UK trade and investment to enhance economic growth and new opportunities for youth. A visit to Northern Ireland provided an opportunity for Honduran MPs to reflect on Northern Ireland’s experiences and similar challenges they face in addressing conflict issues and advancing police reform.
Speaking on the International Day of Democracry in a call for inclusive parliaments, IPU President, Gabriela Cuevas Barron noted that in current times it is not democracy as a system of values, principles and governance that is being questioned. It is the approach to the practice of democracy and the institutions established, often centuries ago, which need to be reviewed and made more effective for the benefit of the people. It is clear that that democracy must be redesigned for the challenges of the 21st century.
Young parliamentarians meeting in Asunción, Paraguay, have called for the pursuit of happiness and well-being to be explicitly integrated into public policy. In the outcome statement, the young MPs asserted that a country’s success could not be gauged merely by measuring its economic growth. Factors such as equality, education levels and emotional fulfilment were just as important.
Globally, threats to journalists are the highest they have been in ten years. Following a landmark FCO conference over summer, the UK Parliament hosted an International Parliamentary Seminar on Media Freedom under the auspices of the BGIPU from 9-11 September 2019. The Chair of the British Group of the IPU, Rt Hon John Whittingdale MP, hosted members of parliament from across the world along with relevant experts to explore parliamentary perspectives on Defending Media Freedom.
A visit by a delegation from the Parliament of Lebanon was successful in consolidating the already strong relationship between both countries discussing the challenges created by the arrival of large numbers of refugees into Lebanon alongside other concerns, particularly the broader regional impact of the conflict in Syria and increasing tensions in the south of the country between Hezbollah and Israel. The Lebanese delegation were keen to take advantage of any changes post-Brexit to establish stronger ties with the UK.