HC Deb 23 June 1969 vol 785 cc986-7
13. Mr. Dodds-Parker

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs whether, following the Report of the Duncan Committee, he will now grant terms of retirement and pension to members of the Diplomatic Service comparable to those of the Armed Forces.

Mr. Mulley

Pensions for members of the Diplomatic Service are governed by the Superannuation Act, 1965.

My right hon. Friend has received the report of the Duncan Review Committee which is now under study. Any relevant recommendations about conditions of service in the Diplomatic Service will of course be examined carefully.

Mr. Dodds-Parker

Does the right hon. Gentleman agree that my proposal would improve cross-fertilisation with those concerned in the export industry, and might be helpful both to the Diplomatic Service and to our export industry?

Mr. Mulley

I thought that the hon. Gentleman's Question was concerned with terms of retirement, but certainly any suggestions made by the Duncan Committee about improvements in our export services will be most carefully considered.

Mr. Dalyell

Is not the position that because of the post-war recruiting policy, for understandable reasons, the Diplomatic Service is top-heavy in the senior posts and promotion is a problem, and that something will have to be done?

Mr. Mulley

It is the structural difficulties of the Service which have led to the difficult decision to ask 30 senior officers to retire earlier than they would otherwise have done.