Hugo Swire: Does my hon. Friend share my sense that there are some who have been mischievous and misleading on that subject, because they refuse to believe that the Government take animal welfare seriously and are legislating more than any previous Government have done?
Hugo Swire: My hon. Friend is making some extremely good points. Does he agree that one thing that has hitherto prevented our schools and particularly our armed forces from buying British products is EU procurement legislation? When we leave the EU, we will not have to do that, so we will be able to sell our own British-made products to British institutions.
Hugo Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many prosecutions have taken place for the illegal sale of seahorses in the last five years.
Hugo Swire: To ask the Attorney General, how many successful prosecutions there have been of cyclists riding on pavements in the last 12 months.
Hugo Swire: Is it worth gently reminding the Taoiseach and the Government in Dublin how we behaved when they were in financial trouble and we helped bail them out? Is it also worth gently reminding them that, post Brexit, Irish nationals will continue to have the right to live and work in the UK? Finally, is it not worth gently reminding them that the UK is the most important economy to the Republic of...
Hugo Swire: Coming at a time when we are exiting the EU, this is a prudent Budget. Obviously, we would have liked to see more of our own special things in it, but that is the nature of a Budget. The problem for the Opposition is that, despite stresses in some areas, the British economy is performing pretty well on the whole, which is why the polls show that, even at this stage, the Conservative party is...
Hugo Swire: My hon. Friend is absolutely right, and I will come to that in a minute. When I used to travel around the world on behalf of the Foreign Office, it was fantastic to have the GREAT Britain campaign branding everything that the UK was doing. On the subject of the Foreign Office, I note that the budget will be £2 billion in 2017-18 and then £1.2 billion in the subsequent two years. I have some...
Hugo Swire: Will the right hon. Lady join me and the rest of the House in welcoming the announcement of two major pharmaceutical investments in the UK?
Hugo Swire: Will the right hon. Lady give way?
Hugo Swire: At the risk of being given an honorary captaincy, may I congratulate my right hon. Friend on his job? I am sure he will do it extremely well. In his ongoing and delicate discussions with the Treasury, will he remain aware, first, that there are those of us on this side of the House who believe that the defence budget has been pared back about as far as it can be, and secondly, that when it...
Hugo Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the Government's policy is on protecting Oman's security, sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Hugo Swire: I refer the House to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests as the deputy chairman of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council. Does my right hon. Friend agree that a positive way of showing how a post-Mugabe Zimbabwe could be rehabilitated into the international community would be for it to attend the next Commonwealth summit as a rejoined member? To that end,...
Hugo Swire: I am following what my hon. Friend is saying very closely. Does she agree that another thing we need to carefully look at and do more research on, particularly as winter is approaching, is colony death in winter?
Hugo Swire: I declare an interest as a beekeeper. We should bank this move, which is a good thing, but it does not answer all of the problems for our bee population. My hon. Friend will be aware that the National Bee Unit has identified the Asian hornet in Devon. It poses a real threat to some of our colonies. Does he agree that the Government should do more to support the National Bee Unit in countering...
Hugo Swire: We know a lot of that money ends up not in the overseas territories but in places like Dubai. Does my right hon. Friend agree that we also need to engage with other partners around the world, particularly in places like Dubai, where a lot of this money is to be found?
Hugo Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has commissioned any reports into the use of medical marijuana.
Hugo Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which companies she has licensed to investigate the use of medical cannabis as a medicine.
Hugo Swire: If my right hon. Friend’s thesis is right and Sinn Féin has no desire to return to power sharing this side of a possible election in the Republic, is he actually saying that there is no prospect of the Executive being reformed until at least the other side of that election?
Hugo Swire: On the Department of Health—this could also apply to other Departments—is my hon. Friend concerned that, although the budgets will be approved for continuing its work, there will be no room for any new initiative or flexibility, given that no Minister oversees it?
Hugo Swire: I am interested to learn of the work of my hon. Friend’s Committee, which becomes more important during this tricky period. In the run-up to Brexit, Northern Ireland’s economy is perhaps more important than ever. Will the Committee take a very real interest in the infrastructure, the inward investment and the development of Northern Ireland’s economy, especially in the Brexit period?