Date lodged: 20 April 2018
To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S5W-14270 by Paul Wheelhouse on 23 February 2018, in light of the minister's comment that "our enterprise agencies do not systematically track or report on all the potential markets companies might export to", what action it takes to ensure that its (a) commitment under the Scotland International Framework and (b) obligations under the UN Sustainable Development Goals are not comprised by its enterprise agencies providing support for companies that export arms.
Answered by: Paul Wheelhouse 2 May 2018
We are fully committed to our International Framework and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The Scottish Government and its enterprise agencies do not provide funding for the manufacture of munitions. Rather, our agencies’ support is focused on helping firms to diversify and to develop non-military applications for their technology.
While matters of defence are reserved to the UK Government, we believe it is of paramount importance to ensure appropriate defence and security capabilities are maintained. With regards to how those capabilities are deployed, it is our firm position that the use of military force should only be sanctioned by Governments where it is lawful to do so and is in accordance with the principles of the UN Charter.
We have been very clear in our expectation that the UK Government, given it's responsibilities, should properly police the export of arms and investigate whenever concerns are raised.