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Volume 940: debated on Thursday 1 December 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will set out the actual strengths of personnel in the Royal Navy, the Army and the Royal Air Force which fall short of requirements; and to what extent such shortfalls impair operational effectiveness.

It is not our practice to publish detailed comparisons of manpower strengths and requirements. The trained strengths of all three Services are generally in line with present requirements although there are shortages in some areas. These shortfalls are not having any significant adverse effects on our ability to meet our commitments.