SOUTH West Wiltshire MP and former minister Dr Andrew Murrison has warmly welcomed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement that the Department for International Development will merge with the Foreign Office to create a new department.

Dr Murrison, who served as a joint DFID and FCO Minister for the Middle East until February's reshuffle, said: “Very few advanced countries have separate development and foreign affairs ministries.

"This move will help deliver Global Britain and better align our substantial aid commitment with Britain’s foreign policy goals.

"It will be good for those we want to help and good for the UK.”

He added: “I’m personally committed to the UK aid budget but it’s always been a difficult sell on the doorstep with people suggesting it as a way to spend more on domestic priorities."

"This move will be popular as most people want to be generous but with some benefit for the UK in a win-win sort of way.”