Parliament to stop printing reports

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It has been decided to publish the annual reports, performance reports and other relevant reports submitted to Parliament as e-versions as a measure to address the contemporary economic crisis in the country and to minimise possible environmental concerns.

The e-versions of the reports will be sent to MPs via e-mails.

“The soft copies are to be uploaded to a specific web portal on the Parliament website. Considering the need for several hard copies of the reports, steps will be taken to make them available to the Committees for reference and kept in the library,” Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena informed the House yesterday (7).

The decision was taken at the recent meeting of the Committee on Parliamentary Business.  Accordingly, it has been decided to appoint an officer to deal on the matter, and to send soft copies to the Hon. Members of Parliament of those reports which are to be tabled on the relevant dates through an e-mail. It was also decided to include soft copies of daily tabled reports in a specialised web portal on the Parliamentary website so that they can be accessed on laptops/ desktops, tablets or mobile phones. The Speaker further stated that steps will be taken to make several hard copies of these reports available to the Committees for reference purposes which will be kept in the library.

Furthermore, it was decided at the Committee on Parliamentary Business meeting held recently to inform the Secretaries of all the Ministries on this regard and expedite the implementation of this program, the Speaker further stated.

The focus of the Committee was directed towards the current environmental difficulties in procuring printing materials, as well as the difficulty of finding imported CDs in the market and the high cost it involves, as well as the adverse environmental impact of CD recycling on the environment when making the decision, the Speaker said.

The Speaker further stated that the Committee has taken this decision considering the timeliness of the creation of a sustainable e-public service through the digitisation of the public service as all the Hon. Members of Parliament are currently using technological tools.

BY Gagani Weerakoon and Methmalie Dissanayake