Kerb crawling in Ulster will become an offence for the first time under new legislation to be introduced later this year.
SDLP MP Alasdair McDonnell told policing minister Paul Goggins kerb crawling was "still a major issue" in parts of his south Belfast constituency and needed to be tackled urgently.
But the minister insisted that men who cruise the streets of Northern Ireland looking for prostitutes would soon face prosecution under the changes in the law.
Speaking at the Commons Northern Ireland Grand Committee Mr Goggins said: "We are going to change the law to introduce this as a specific offence."
Campaigners have been calling for Northern Ireland to be brought into line with England and Wales, where kerb crawling is a criminal offence.
Nine out of 10 people who responded to a consultation last year on the province's sex offence laws supported calls for it to be made a crime, with many backing Dr McDonnell's claims it had become a significant problem in the south of the city.
The committee also quizzed the minister on the controversial 50% remission sentencing policy, with DUP politician Sammy Wilson accusing the government of "dragging its feet" over its plans to abolish it.
The East Antrim MP quizzed the minister over whether a rapist who filmed his attack of a young girl on her mobile phone, then sent it to her mother, would be let out after serving half his sentence.
Mr Goggins said he wanted to assure the committee that effective systems were already in place to deal with sex offenders in Northern Ireland.
He added: "I don't accept that the government has been dragging its feet.
"It has taken some time to draft legislation but it was important that is was done properly so the law works in practice.
" Certainly I intend to end 50% remission at the earliest opportunity for violent perpetrators, including sex offenders."
But he admitted that any change in the law would not affect offenders already in jail.
He added: "Public protection is my number responsibility and it goes to the heart of policy."