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Office of the European High Representative

House of Lords written question – answered on 8th June 2011.

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Photo of Lord Myners Lord Myners Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have reviewed the effectiveness and efficiency of the Office of the European High Representative; and whether this office has contributed to a reduction in the costs of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Photo of Lord Howell of Guildford Lord Howell of Guildford Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (International Energy Policy)

The high representative's office has played an important part in orchestrating EU responses to Iran's nuclear programme, and to political unrest in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The office oversaw the opening of an EU office in Benghazi, and played a helpful role co-ordinating the EU's response to the Pakistan floods. The EAS has not contributed to a reduction in the costs of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, as the role of the EAS is to supplement and complement, not replace national diplomatic services. As a result of lobbying by the UK, the council decision establishing the EAS committed the service to achieving budget neutrality over the long term.

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