The Queen's Speech: The full text

This is the text of the Queen's Speech to both Houses of Parliament today:

"My Government's legislative programme will focus on economic growth, justice and constitutional reform.

My Government's legislative programme will focus on economic growth, justice and constitutional reform.

My Ministers' first priority will be to reduce the deficit and restore economic stability.

Legislation will be introduced to reduce burdens on business by repealing unnecessary legislation and to limit state inspection of businesses.

My Government will introduce legislation to reform competition law to promote enterprise and fair markets.

My Government will introduce legislation to establish a Green Investment Bank.

Measures will be brought forward to further strengthen regulation of the financial services sector and implement the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking.

My Government will introduce legislation to establish an independent adjudicator to ensure supermarkets deal fairly and lawfully with suppliers.

A Bill will be introduced to reduce burdens on charities, enabling them to claim additional payments on small donations.

My Government will propose reform of the electricity market to deliver secure, clean and affordable electricity and ensure prices are fair.

A draft Bill will be published to reform the water industry in England and Wales.

My Government will bring forward measures to modernise the pension system and reform the state pension, creating a fair, simple and sustainable foundation for private saving.

Legislation will be introduced to reform public service pensions in line with the recommendations of the independent commission on public service pensions.

A draft Bill will be published setting out measures to close the Audit Commission and establish new arrangements for the audit of local public bodies.

My Government will strive to improve the lives of children and families.

My Government will propose measures to improve provision for disabled children and children with special educational needs.

New arrangements will be proposed to support children involved in family law cases, reform court processes for children in care and strengthen the role of the Children's Commissioner.

Measures will be proposed to make parental leave more flexible so both parents may share parenting responsibilities and balance work and family commitments.

A draft Bill will be published to modernise adult care and support in England.

My Government will continue to work with the 15 other Commonwealth Realms to take forward reform of the rules governing succession to the Crown.

Legislation will be brought forward which will introduce individual registration of electors and improve the administration of elections.

A Bill will be brought forward to reform the composition of the House of Lords.

My Government will continue to work constructively and co-operatively with the devolved institutions.

Members of the House of Commons, estimates for the public services will be laid before you.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons, my Government is committed to reducing and preventing crime.

A Bill will be introduced to establish the National Crime Agency to tackle the most serious and organised crime and strengthen border security.

The courts and tribunals service will be reformed to increase efficiency, transparency and judicial diversity.

Legislation will be introduced to protect freedom of speech and reform the law of defamation.

My Government will introduce legislation to strengthen oversight of the security and intelligence agencies. This will also allow courts, through the limited use of closed proceedings, to hear a greater range of evidence in national security cases.

My Government intends to bring forward measures to maintain the ability of the law enforcement and intelligence agencies to access vital communications data under strict safeguards to protect the public, subject to scrutiny of draft clauses.

My Government will seek the approval of Parliament relating to the agreed financial stability mechanism within the euro area.

My Government will seek the approval of Parliament on the anticipated accession of Croatia to the European Union.

My Government will work to support a secure and stable Afghanistan, to reduce the threat of nuclear proliferation, including in Iran, and to bring greater stability to the Horn of Africa.

In the Middle East and North Africa, my Government will support the extension of political and economic freedom in countries in transition.

My Government has set out firm plans to spend 0.7 per cent of gross national income as official development assistance from 2013. This will be the first time the United Kingdom has met this agreed international commitment.

My Government will build strategic partnerships with the emerging powers.

The United Kingdom will assume the presidency of the G8 in 2013: my Government will use this opportunity to promote international security and prosperity.

In the year of the Diamond Jubilee, Prince Philip and I will continue to take part in celebrations across the United Kingdom.

The Prince of Wales and other members of my family are travelling widely to take part in festivities throughout the Commonwealth.

Prince Philip and I look forward to the London Olympic and Paralympic Games and to welcoming visitors from around the world to London and venues throughout the country.

Other measures will be laid before you.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons, I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may rest upon your counsels."

PA

Sport
Alexis Sanchez has completed a £35m move to Arsenal, the club have confirmed
sportGunners complete £35m signing of Barcelona forward
Voices
Poor teachers should be fearful of not getting pay rises or losing their job if they fail to perform, Steve Fairclough, headteacher of Abbotsholme School, suggested
voicesChris Sloggett explains why it has become an impossible career path
Sport
world cup 2014
Sport
Ray Whelan was arrested earlier this week
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Arts and Entertainment
In a minor key: Keira Knightley in the lightweight 'Begin Again'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Celebrated children’s author Allan Ahlberg, best known for Each Peach Pear Plum
books
News
peopleIndian actress known as the 'Grand Old Lady of Bollywood' was 102
News
Wayne’s estate faces a claim for alleged copyright breaches
newsJohn Wayne's heirs duke it out with university over use of the late film star's nickname
Life and Style
It beggars belief: the homeless and hungry are weary, tortured, ghosts of people – with bodies contorted by imperceptible pain
lifeRough sleepers exist in every city. Hear the stories of those whose luck has run out
News
Mick Jagger performing at Glastonbury
people
Life and Style
fashionJ Crew introduces triple zero size to meet the Asia market demand
Sport
Santi Cazorla, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini of Arsenal launch the new Puma Arsenal kits at the Puma Store on Carnaby Street
sportMassive deal worth £150m over the next five years
Arts and Entertainment
Welsh opera singer Katherine Jenkins
musicHolyrood MPs 'staggered' at lack of Scottish artists performing
Life and Style
beautyBelgian fan lands L'Oreal campaign after being spotted at World Cup
Arts and Entertainment
Currently there is nothing to prevent all-male or all-female couples from competing against mixed sex partners at any of the country’s ballroom dancing events
Potential ban on same-sex partners in ballroom dancing competitions amounts to 'illegal discrimination'
News
business
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Business Analyst Consultant (Financial Services)

£60000 - £75000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Business Analyst Consultant (Fina...

Systems Administrator - Linux / Unix / Windows / TCP/IP / SAN

£60000 per annum: Harrington Starr: A leading provider in investment managemen...

AVS, JVS Openlink Endur Developer

£600 - £700 per day: Harrington Starr: AVS, JVS Openlink Endur Developer JVS, ...

E-Commerce Developer

£45000 - £60000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Exciting opp...

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice