Whitehall Dialogue - Developing a Sustainable Export Market for UK Defence

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A presentation by the Rt Hon Geoff Hoon, Managing Director of Business, Agusta Westland.

As Defence budgets in the western world continue to decline, exporting defence equipment becomes ever more important as a means of securing the commercial viability of defence businesses. In parallel, all westernRt Hon Geoff Hoon governments are adopting the same policy of cutting their domestic defence spend whilst exhorting their defence companies to sell even more overseas as a route to preserving defence jobs. International competition in defence equipment is becoming still more intense, with US primes leading the way with strong political backing from the US administration through Foreign Military Sales programmes.

In his presentation, Geoff Hoon will consider how UK based companies should deal with these issues. He will discuss whether the government should be picking winners by protecting certain businesses and technologies, or if the interests of the British taxpayer and the armed forces are best served through rigorous competition based on price and capability.

Rt Hon Geoff Hoon was the UK Secretary of State for Defence from 1999 until 2005. He is now Agusta Westland's Managing Director of Business, a position he has held since 2011. He is a barrister and served as an MEP from 1984 to 1994. Geoff was elected to the House of Commons in 1992 and held various ministerial positions in the Lord Chancellor's Department and the Foreign Office before becoming a Cabinet Minister in 1999. In addition to Defence, he held Cabinet positions as the Leader of the House of Commons, Government Chief Whip and Secretary of State for Transport.

Refreshments will be served from 1515.

This event is ‘off the record’ and closed to the media.

Open to Platinum Individuals and Major / Platinum Corporate Level Members only, Whitehall Dialogues are exclusive networking opportunities, that bring together experts from all sectors, in a private forum, to discuss current defence and security issues. To become a Platinum Corporate or Major Corporate Level Member, or to learn more about other RUSI membership benefits, please click here.

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