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Commonwealth Secretary-General

Volume 972: debated on Thursday 25 October 1979

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asked the Lord Privy Seal what are the terms of appointment of the Commonwealth Secretary-General; and what proportion of the salary of the Commonwealth Secretary-General and of other expenses of the Commonwealth Secretariat is borne by the United Kingdom.

Commonwealth Secretaries-General are appointed by Commonwealth Heads of Government acting collectively, in accordance with the agreed memorandum on the Commonwealth Secretariat which was published as Cmnd. 2713 in 1965 and is available in the Library of the House.The present Secretary-General, Sir Shridath Ramphal, was appointed in 1975. At their meeting in Lusaka in August this year Commonwealth Heads of Government agreed to extend his appointment for a further five-year term from mid-1980.The British Government contribute 30 per cent. of the costs of the Commonwealth Secretariat, an element of which is the salary of the Secretary-General.