Topical Questions

Part of Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office – in the House of Commons on 13th October 2020.

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Photo of Imran Ahmad Khan Imran Ahmad Khan Conservative, Wakefield

The merger of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development is a welcome acceptance that the UK’s outward-facing Departments should merge to best employ all the tools at our disposal. I detect, however, a concerning trend in the new FCDO for diplomacy and development to be regarded as separate and equal. Assimilating DFID’s obtuse culture into King Charles Street is dangerous and will cripple the Foreign Office’s ability to achieve its objectives. We must, above all, regard development as a foreign policy tool. Can the Foreign Secretary assure the House that the current reform programme at the Foreign Office ensures that our development programme supports our diplomatic activities, rather than transcends and undermines them?