James Duddridge was the Minister for Africa at the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) until September 2021. James was first appointed as a Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development on 13 February 2020. He was elected Conservative MP for Rochford and Southend East in May 2005.
James previously served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Exiting the European Union from 27 July 2019 to 31 January 2020 and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office from August 2014 until July 2016. He was a Government Whip from May 2010 until September 2012.
James was educated at Essex University.
James entered the House of Commons in 2005. He was re-elected in 2017 with a majority of 5,548. During this time, he has held the following positions:
- Chairman, All Party Parliamentary Group Africa
- Chairman, Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
- Chairman, Regulator Reform Committee
- Chair, High Speed Rail Bill Select 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, January to December 2008
- Opposition Whip, responsible for HM Treasury, December 2008 to May 2010
- Lord Commissioner and Government Whip, responsible for Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Department of Education, May 2010 to October 2011
- Home Office Whip, October 2011 to September 2012
Career outside politics
He had a business career in the private sector, including 10 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.
James is married and has 3 children.