30 Nov 11. Defence Committee Select Committee EVIDENCE SESSION. General EVIDENCE SESSION with the Secretary of State. Wednesday 7 December 2011. The Grimond Room, Portcullis House (room subject to change).
At 2.30 pm
* The Rt. Hon Philip Hammond MP, Secretary of State for Defence
The evidence session will be the first opportunity for the Committee to question the new Secretary of State for Defence, the Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP since his appointment.
29 Nov 11. Autumn Statement: No Mention of Defence. The Chancellor of the Exchequer delivered (29 Nov 11) his Autumn Statement to the House of Commons. Despite being the fourth largest part of Government expenditure, Defence was not mentioned in the Statement.
Comment: The Statement is recorded in Hansard for 29 Nov 11, starting at Column 799. It remains to be seen how the Chancellor’s public sector pay ‘freeze’ will affect the Armed Forces. The annual Reports from
the Review Bodies on Senior Salaries and on Armed Forces Pay will be of particular interest when published (early in 2012). (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/47, 05 Dec 11)
30 Nov 11. Overseas Territories: Maritime Support. The Armed Forces’ Minister published (30 Nov 11) a Table of the maritime support made available to the British Overseas Territories (BOT). As part of their secondary duties, RN/RFA vessels are required to assist the BOT in monitoring and deterring illegal activity.
Comment: The Table is to be found in Hansard for 30 Nov 11, as a Written Answer. Ascension Island was visited by HMS MONTROSE as recently as November 2011 whereas the Pitcairn Islands have not had a visit since September 2000, when HMS SUTHERLAND and RFA Bayleaf called. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/47, 05 Dec 11)
House of Commons Hansard Written Answers for Thursday 1st December 2011
Afghanistan: Peacekeeping Operations
Jonathan Reynolds: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost of UK operations in Afghanistan was on the most recent date for which figures are available.
Mr Philip Hammond: The net additional cost of military operations in Afghanistan, rounded to the nearest £10 million, is shown in the following table.
Our estimate for the net additional cost of Afghanistan in the current financial year (2011-12) is £4,030 million.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether each nation participating in the ISAF mission in Afghanistan has access to the Afghan Mission Network.
Mr Philip Hammond: An individual from any nation participating in the ISAF mission in Afghanistan is able, in principle, to access the Afghan Mission Network providing that they hold the correct security clearance.
AWE Aldermaston: Planning Permission
Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when his Department expects to submit a planning application for the proposed Technology Development Centre at the Atomic Weapons Establishment Aldermaston to the local planning authority; whether an environmental impact assessment will be prepared for the proposed development; and whether he plans to request a defence-exempt environmental impact assessment direction for the proposed development.
Peter Luff [holding answer 30 November 2011]:The planning application for the proposed Technology Development Centre was submitted to West Berkshire council on 25 November 2011. A Defence environmental impact assessment exemption direction was granted by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, my right hon. Friend the Member for Brentwood and Ongar (Mr Pickles), on 17 August 2011 so an environmental impact assessment will not be submitted. However, a Defence exempt environmental appraisal has been included with the planning application. This provi