§ Mr. Grocott
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what criteria are taken into account in determining the grading of ambassadors.
§ Mr. Sainsbury
In determining the grading of ambassadorial posts account is taken of the extent of British interests—political, commercial, financial and defence—at stake in the country of accreditation. The nature of inter-governmental business transacted by the head of mission, the level of demand from Whitehall Departments for policy advice and reporting and the degree of access to the leadership of the country are also important. The size of the mission and the consequential management role are further elements in the consideration of grading.