The Committees on Arms Export Controls (formerly the Quadripartite Committee)

10 March 2006

GOVERNMENT RECORD ON ARMS EXPORTS UNDER SCRUTINY 

Members from four influential select committees will gather together on Monday, 13 March at 1415hrs to quiz Malcolm Wicks, Minister of State at the Department of Trade and Industry, on the operation of government’s arms export control organisation.

The Minister and officials will give evidence to the committees’ inquiry into the Government’s 2004 Annual Report on Strategic Export Controls.

Quad Chairman Roger Berry MP, who also sits on the Trade and Industry Select Committee, said:

“This is an excellent opportunity for members of four key committees to scrutinise the government’s work in licensing arms exports and its plans for the future of the section that takes decisions on export licences.

“Following its recent decision not to contract out the section in the Department of Trade and Industry that licences exports, members want to know what plans the government has for carrying out this crucial work.

“It is vital for the government to show that decisions on licences to export arms are taken thoroughly and also quickly.  Those taking decisions need to have the confidence of exporters and of the public to prevent weaponry and other potentially dangerous goods falling into the wrong hands.”


Notes for Editors:

  1. The meeting will take place on Monday 13 March at 1415 in Committee Room 8,  and will also be available on Webcast audio. ( www.parliamentlive.tv)
  2. The Quadripartite Committee consists of four Committees that meet together to consider the control of strategic exports, including weapons. The Committees involved are: Defence, Foreign Affairs, International Development and Trade and Industry. The Chairman for these meetings is Roger Berry MP, who is a member of the Trade and Industry Committee.
  3. The Committee’s main job is to review Government policy on licensing arms exports and licensing decisions.  Each year the Government produces an annual report on Strategic export Controls which the Committee scrutinizes.
  4. News Release: Quadripartite Committee - No. 2
  5. For further information contact Jessica Bridges-Palmer, Media Officer 020 7219 0718