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MPs to quiz Government Ministers on Welsh defence industry and prisons inquiries

13 May 2024

On Wednesday 15th May, the Welsh Affairs Committee will question Government Ministers for its inquiries into the Defence Industry and Prisons in Wales.

At 10.00, MPs will hear from Minister for Defence Procurement James Cartlidge for its Defence Industry in Wales inquiry.

With over 160 Welsh-based companies supporting the defence sector, the inquiry has been considering how Welsh industry contributes to UK defence, and how the UK and Welsh Governments can collaborate to develop opportunities for Welsh firms.

Members are likely to ask the Minister how he thinks Wales can contribute to the Government’s ambitions for the UK’s defence industrial base, and how the MoD plans to support this. They may also discuss to what extent the MoD is working with the Welsh Government in areas such as developing science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) skills in Wales.

Meanwhile at 14.10, Minister for Prisons, Parole and Probation Edward Argar will give evidence on Prisons in Wales, accompanied by Executive Director for HM Prisons and Probation Service Wales, Ian Barrow.

As a ‘reserved’ policy area, the UK Government has responsibility for prisons in Wales, although the Welsh Government is responsible for health, education and housing, which often intersect with criminal justice issues.

Members are likely to ask about the performance of prison services, and how effectively the UK and Welsh Governments cooperate on supporting prisoners in Wales. They may also ask for an update on the UK Government’s plans for a Residential Women’s Centre in Swansea, which is due to open in 2024.

Members are also likely to discuss Welsh prisons’ ability to cope with projected increases to the prison population, and whether recent Government measures such as extending the early release scheme up to 70 days will be successful in reducing these pressures.


Defence Industry in Wales, 10.00:

  • James Cartlidge MP, Minister of State (Minister for Defence Procurement)
  • Major General Elizabeth Faithfull-Davies, Director of Land Equipment, Defence Equipment & Support
  • Barnaby Kistruck, Director, Industrial Strategy and Exports, Ministry of Defence

Prisons in Wales, 14.10: 

  • Rt Hon Edward Argar MP, Minister for Prisons, Parole and Probation, Ministry of Justice
  • Ian Barrow, Executive Director, HMPPS Wales

Further information

Image credit: HMPPS