Government to Act on Brokerage but Still No Promises on Arms Trade Bill

Rachel Harford of Campaign Against Arms Trade said: Whilst we welcome the Government’s decision to bring in a system of licensing of arms brokers, as yet we have no details as to when this is to be introduced. Furthermore the government must complement such a system with regular end-use monitoring of arms sales. It is essential that the Government honour its commitments to legislate on a whole range of concerns on the arms trade. UK companies are currently able to circumvent UK arms export control legislation by means of licensed production. Arms produced under licence may be sold on to third countries without a UK export license. This loophole makes a mockery of any pretence at arms export controls.

She added: It is dishonest for the Government to introduce any initiative on the arms trade with statements that the manufacturing base of this country needs the arms export industry. This industry receives millions of pounds in subsidies from the taxpayer every year. The industry receives support via the Defence Export Services Organisation – a government body whose sole purpose is to promote arms exports. And the industry receives support from the Export Credits Guarantee Department – so if payments for a deal don’t come though, the UK taxpayer could pick up the tab.


Contact Rachel Harford on 020 7281 0297 or 0958 449 006

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