HC Deb 10 March 1999 vol 327 cc230-1W
Mr. Steinberg

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list the countries to which(a) the British Government and (b) United Kingdom companies over the last five years have sold arms, the type of weapons sold and the total value of sales. [75516]

Mr. Tony Lloyd

The forthcoming Annual Report on Strategic Exports will list by country of destination the numbers of export licences issued by this Government between 2 May and 31 December 1997 in each equipment category and give details of the military equipment for which licences have been granted. It will also set out the value of defence exports to each country in 1997. This information will also be given in future reports.

As regards information on export licensing decisions taken by the previous administration, it was normal practice for such statistics to be placed periodically in the Library of the House. However, as the then Minister for Small Firms, Trade and Industry, my hon. Friend the Member for Hornsey and Wood Green (Mrs. Roche), made clear in her answer of 30 October 1997, Official Report, columns 870–71, such information should be treated as indicative only. As regards information on actual defence exports in the last five years, I refer to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Defence on 31 March 1998, Official Report, columns 444–45.