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

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

He first entered 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, as well as in the banking industry in London and Africa for 10 years. He has vast experience on Africa affairs, a keen interest in financial matters and industry, and was a founding member of the polling form YouGov.

Political Career

James entered the House of Commons in 2005. He was subsequently re-elected in 2010 with a majority of 11,050. 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, and 2 cats.

Previous holders of this role

  1. Mark Simmonds

    • 2012 to 2014
  2. Henry Bellingham

    • 2010 to 2012

Policies

  1. Sexual violence in conflict

    • 5 November 2014
  2. Iran's nuclear programme

    • 7 October 2013
  3. British nationals overseas

    • 7 August 2013
  4. UK Overseas Territories

    • 14 March 2013
  5. Piracy off the coast of Somalia

    • 12 December 2012
  6. Conflict in fragile states

    • 12 December 2012

Announcements

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  1. Minister for Africa restates UK’s concern for Chibok girls

    • 14 April 2015
    • Press release
  2. Minister for Africa condemns terrorist attack in Kenya

    • 2 April 2015
    • Press release
  3. FCO launches new consular appointment booking service

    • 27 March 2015
    • News story
  4. Minister for Africa condemns latest Boko Haram abductions

    • 25 March 2015
    • Press release
  5. Progress in reviewing policy on resettlement of the British Indian Ocean Territory

    • 24 March 2015
    • Statement to Parliament
  6. Minister for Africa’s speech on UK’s Africa Policy

    • 23 March 2015
    • Speech
  7. UK concludes chairmanship of global business best practice initiative

    • 17 March 2015
    • Press release
  8. FCO regrets failure of South Sudan leaders to reach a peace agreement

    • 7 March 2015
    • Press release
  9. Foreign Office responds to Sudan's decision to expel two UN officials

    • 27 December 2014
    • Press release
  10. Parents urged to consider devastating consequences of child abduction

    • 18 December 2014
    • News story