Press Notice 42, Session 2006-07

International Development Committee seeks additional Minister for DFID

The International Development Committee believes that the Department for International Development needs a third Minister properly to reflect its rising budget and the number of countries in which it works.

The Chairman of the Committee, Rt Hon Malcolm Bruce MP, said:

"DFID is a major spending Department with a budget of over £6 billion which is set to continue to rise. Nearly 100 countries around the world receive DFID funding. Yet DFID has only two Ministers €” the Secretary of State and a Parliamentary Under-Secretary. No other major Government Department has so few Ministers and in comparison the FCO has five."

In advance of Gordon Brown nominating new ministers when he becomes Prime Minister, the Committee has written to ask him to increase DFID's complement of Ministers.

The Chairman said: "We believe the scale and importance of DFID's work justifies it having at least three Ministers. We hope Gordon Brown will give development the priority it deserves and make the change we recommend."

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Further Information:

The membership of the Committee is as follows: Malcolm Bruce MP (Chairman, Lib Dem), John Battle MP (Lab), John Bercow MP (Con), Hugh Bayley MP (Lab), Richard Burden MP (Lab), Mr Quentin Davies MP (Con), James Duddridge MP (Con), Ann McKechin MP (Lab), Joan Ruddock MP (Lab), Mr Marsha Singh MP (Lab), Sir Robert Smith MP (Lib Dem).

Media Enquiries: Alex Paterson, 020 7219 1589, or [email protected]

Committee Contact: Carol Oxborough 020 7219 1226, or [email protected]