Ministerial role

Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

Responsibilities

The minister is based at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office. Responsibilities include:

  • Africa
  • Overseas Territories (not Falklands, SBAs or Gibraltar)
  • conflict issues
  • consular
  • protocol
  • ministerial oversight for FCO services
  • the Caribbean (not including Dominican Republic, Haiti or Cuba)
  • Illegal Wildlife Trade

Current role holder: James Duddridge MP

James Duddridge MP was appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office on 11 August 2014.

He was elected to Parliament in 2005 as the Conservative MP for Rochford & Southend East.

Background

James was educated at Essex University. He had a business career in the private sector, including ten years in the banking industry in Africa and London. He has vast experience on Africa affairs, a keen interest in financial matters and industry, and was a founding member of the polling forum YouGov.

Political Career

James entered the House of Commons in 2005. He was subsequently re-elected in 2015 with a majority of 9,476. During this time, he has held the following positions:

  • Chairman, All Party Parliamentary Group Africa
  • Chairman, Regulator Reform Committee
  • Member of Commons Environment Select Committee
  • Member of International Development Select Committee
  • Opposition Whip, responsible for Cabinet Office and Department for Work and Pensions, Jan – Dec 2008
  • Opposition Whip, responsible for HM Treasury, Dec 2008 – May 2010
  • Lord Commissioner and Government Whip, responsible for Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Department of Education, May 2010 – October 2011
  • Home Office Whip, October 2011 – September 2012

Personal life

James is married and has 3 children (aged 9, 7 and 4), and 2 cats.

Previous holders of this role

  1. Mark Simmonds

    • 2012 to 2014
  2. Henry Bellingham

    • 2010 to 2012

Policies

  1. British nationals overseas
  2. Conflict in fragile states
  3. Iran's nuclear programme
  4. Piracy off the coast of Somalia
  5. Sexual violence in conflict
  6. UK Overseas Territories

Announcements

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  1. Minister for Africa expresses concern over Ethiopian elections

    • 22 June 2015
    • Press release
  2. Minister for Africa welcomes signing of Mali peace accord

    • 22 June 2015
    • Press release
  3. Be passport aware and avoid being hustled on holiday

    • 22 June 2015
    • Press release
  4. Minister for Africa joins African leaders in fight against sexual violence in conflict

    • 12 June 2015
    • Press release
  5. Minister for Africa expresses disappointment at Gambia diplomatic expulsion

    • 11 June 2015
    • Press release
  6. World Economic Forum on Africa 2015: UK involvement

    • 5 June 2015
    • News story
  7. Minister for Africa offers condolences following Ghana fire

    • 4 June 2015
    • Press release
  8. FCO Minister condemns South Sudan decision to expel UN diplomat

    • 2 June 2015
    • Press release
  9. FCO Minister condemns ongoing violence in Burundi

    • 26 May 2015
    • Press release
  10. Minister for Africa visits Mozambique

    • 20 May 2015
    • Press release