Sir Alan Duncan is a former Foreign Minister and was the Member of Parliament for Rutland Melton in the English Midlands from 1992 to 2019. He is in that rare category of people who have combined a political career at the heart of government with real world experience of business.
After Oxford and Harvard he became an oil trader, and throughout the 1980s was part of the pioneering set of figures whose enterprise created the free market in oil after the market shocks of 1974 and 1979 had broken the supply patterns previously dominated by the oil majors.
For the past thirty years, he has been at the centre of British political life. He has been at the heart of every Conservative Party leadership race since John Major succeeded Margaret Thatcher in 1990, spearheading William Hague’s 1997 Conservative leadership campaign, and holding positions such as Shadow Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, and Shadow Minister for Justice.
In David Cameron’s government, he held the role of Minister of State for International Development from 2010 to 2014, handling much of the fallout from the ‘Arab Spring’, including the removal of Col Gaddafi in Libya. He went on to become the government’s Special Envoy to Yemen from 2014 to 2016, while also sitting on Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee.
Seen as one of UK politics’ most forthright personalities, Sir Alan Duncan is regarded as one of the most connected and informed experts on the Middle East and, as Boris Johnson’s deputy in the Foreign Office, sat at the very midst of everything in government that took place between the EU referendum and the UK’s eventual exit from the EU.