§ Mr. Gardiner
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry pursuant to her answer of 6 October 2003,Official Report, column 1068W, on export controls, what her reasons are for concluding that it would be impractical to maintain a register of arms brokers. 
§ Nigel Griffiths
The Government have already made clear that it proposes to register information on all those applying for licences, both for exports and for arms trafficking and brokering activities, thus creating a 263W database available to be used for licensing and enforcement purposes, including as appropriate on an international basis. In addition, users of Open General Licences have to register to use the licence.
The Government believe that licence applications should be scrutinised on a case-by-case basis, with regard primarily to the nature of the transaction in question. Scrutiny and approval of individual transactions to areas of concern achieves a greater measure of control than simply a general assessment of companies' or individuals' reputation.