Defence Committee

Session 2008-09, 15 January 2009

Evidence session


GOVERNMENT RECORD ON ARMS EXPORTS UNDER SCRUTINY 

Members from four influential select committees will gather together on Wednesday 21 January to take evidence on the Government’s policy on the export of arms. Ian Pearson MP, Economic and Business Minister, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, and officials will give evidence at 0945hrs.

This will be the  first oral evidence session in the Committee’s current inquiry into strategic export controls.

The Chairman of the Committees on Arms Export Controls, Roger Berry MP, said:

“This is an excellent opportunity for members of four key committees to find out from the minister and officials from BERR whether the UK’s system for licensing arms exports is working as intended and if changes need to be made.

“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 also the public to prevent weaponry and other potentially dangerous goods falling into the wrong hands.”

Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform: Wednesday 21 January at 0945 in Committee Room 15, Palace of Westminster

Ian Pearson MP Economic and Business Minister

John Doddrell Director, Export Control Organisation

Jayne Carpenter Head of Policy, Export Control Organisation

FURTHER INFORMATION:

1. The Committees on Arms Export Controls consists of four Committees which meet together to consider the control of strategic exports, including weapons. The Committees involved are: Business and Enterprise, Defence, Foreign Affairs and International Development. The Chairman for these meetings is Roger Berry MP, who is a member of the Business and Enterprise Committee.

2. The Committees’ 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 Committees scrutinise.

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