UK Ministerial Orders

Kaihsu Tai made this Freedom of Information request to National Archives

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Dear National Archives,

Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, could you please provide the following information:

1 Whether The Competition and Service (Utilities) Act 1992 (Commencement No. 1) Order 1992 (1992 No. 1 (C. 1)) is the only instance in the category of legislation named UK Ministerial Orders.

2 Why there is only one instance of this category of legislation; in other words, the reason this order was not categorized as a Statutory Instrument.

Thank you very much.


Dr Kaihsu Tai

Legislation, National Archives

Dear Dr Tai,

Thank you for your enquiry about the Competition and Service (Utilities) Act 1992 (Commencement No. 1) Order 1992. I have not treated this as a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act as I think your question calls for an explanation rather than the provision of information which The National Archives “holds” in the terms of the Act.

The order is indeed the only document held on that is categorised as a “Ministerial Order”. The reason it is not listed as a Statutory Instrument is because it is not a Statutory Instrument. The order was made under powers contained in section 56(2) of the Competition and Service (Utilities) Act 1992 (c. 43), which permitted the Secretary of State to provide for the commencement of the Act “by order”. However, presumably due to a drafting oversight, no provision was made in the Act for such an order to be made by Statutory Instrument within the terms of section 1 of the Statutory Instruments Act 1946. So this commencement order is just an order made by a Minister which is not a Statutory Instrument. No other commencement orders have been made under the power in the 1992 Act, so this remains the only “Ministerial Order” on the website.

I hope this is helpful.

Norman Hodgett
General Editor of Legislation

The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 4DU  ●

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