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PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS

House of Commons Hansard Written Answers to Questions Friday 22 October 2010

BAE Systems

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what meetings he has had with BAE Systems on the recent (a) grounding of the BAE Systems Hawk T.1 Trainer and (b) temporary suspension of all but non-essential Typhoon aircraft.

Peter Luff: None. Ministry of Defence officials have, however, had a number of meetings with BAE Systems in order to maintain the continued airworthiness of the Hawk T1 and Typhoon aircraft. Both aircraft fleets are currently airworthy and available for operational tasking.

Departmental Manpower

Mr Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) officials and (b) external advisers are working on his Department’s Strategic Defence and Security Review.

Dr Fox: Within the Ministry of Defence (MOD), a team of about 30 people was established to co-ordinate the Defence contribution to the Strategic Defence and Security Review. A wide range of personnel across the MOD and armed forces participated in developing that contribution. The Department also consulted a number of external experts during the Review. The National Security Secretariat in the Cabinet Office conducted a series of formal and informal consultation exercises with external experts which senior officials from the MOD participated in. No external experts were employed by the Department for this work.

Radioactive Materials: Transport

Mr Mike Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 30 April 2008, Official Report, column 484W, on radioactive materials: transport, what the cost of the procurement of new truck cargo heavy duty tractor heads and trailer refurbishment was; and what the unit cost was of the new vehicles.

Peter Luff: The total cost of the procurement of nine new truck cargo heavy duty tractor heads, eight refurbished truck cargo heavy duty trailers plus associated research and development costs was £12 million at outturn prices.

Strategic Defence and Security Review

Jonathan Reynolds: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what (a) meetings and (b) other consultation his Department has (i) held and (ii) planned with members of academia as part of his Department’s Strategic Defence and Security Review. [17179]

Dr Fox: The Ministry of Defence has engaged a wide variety of academic organisations, including the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) and Chatham House. I have also spoken on a number of occasions at these institutes on the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR), as have my officials and senior members of the armed services. This engagement will continue into the SDSR implementation stage.

Trident

Mr Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the likely savings accruing to his Department’s research and development budget for the new generation of Trident missiles of postponing the programme for those missiles by one year. [16722]

Dr Fox: The Trident D5 missile is expected to remain in-service until the 2040s. While there is some associated life extension work to allow that length of service, as the 2006 White Paper “The Future of the United Kingdom’s Nuclear Deterrent” (Cm 6694) made clear “decisions on whether we wish to acquire a successor to the life-extended D5 missile and what form any successor might take are unlikely to be necessary until the 2020s”. There is therefore no planned research and development spend on a new generation of ballistic missile at this point.

Mr Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of extending the service life of a Vanguard Class submarine by (a) one year and (b) each of the subsequent four years after its original decommissioning date. [16776]

Dr Fox: As the 2006 White Paper ‘The Future of the United Kingdom’s Nuclear Dete

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