HC Deb 01 February 1995 vol 253 cc1081-2
16. Mr. Denham

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what will be the nature of the United Kingdom representation at the world summit for social development.

Mr. Douglas Hogg

A final decision on attendance at the summit will be taken nearer the date.

Mr. Denham

Is it true that the United Kingdom will not be one of the 94 countries to be represented at the summit by the Head of Government or head of state? Is it not a sad fact that a few years ago this country would have been regarded as a world leader at conferences dealing with international co-operation and development? We now appear to have no one worth sending and nothing worth saying when talking about poverty, whether at home or abroad.

Mr. Hogg

I cannot help feeling that the hon. Gentleman is trivialising the question. As I have said, it is our intention to determine the level of representation nearer the time. We shall do that against a background, first, of what it is reasonable to expect to come out of the conference and, secondly, of the level of representation that may be determined upon by other participating countries.

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