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Armed Forces (Overseas Service)

Volume 974: debated on Monday 19 November 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence on how many occasions the Armed Forces of the United Kingdom have been stationed overseas since 1945; and what numbers were involved and for what periods of time.

Personnel of the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force have been stationed overseas continuously since 1945, principally in North-West Europe, the Mediterranean, the Middle and Far East, but on occasion in other areas also. It would require disproportionate effort to detail the numbers and the periods of time personnel were stationed overseas since 1945, but some of the information is contained in the annual statements on Defence Estimates. Information about numbers and places is also contained in the Tri-Service manpower statistics, copies of which are available in the Library of the House.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence how many Service men and Service women are stationed abroad; where they are stationed; and what was the cost, at constant prices, of maintaining personnel stationed abroad for 1974 and 1979 and what is the estimated cost for 1983.

At 30 June 1979 there were 67,330 United Kingdom Service personnel deployed in Continental Europe, 6,420 in the Mediterranean, Near and Middle East, 4,218 in the Far East, 1,196 in North America, and 2,725 elsewhere overseas. In addition, 46 locally-entered personnel were deployed in the Mediterranean and 7,481 in the Far East. Further information is contained in the Tri-Service manpower statistics six-monthly return TSM 6, which is available in the Library of the House.The cost to the defence budget in 1979–80 of forces stationed overseas is estimated to be approximately £1,150 million. This figure, which reflects estimated outturn price levels, excludes the cost of equipment deployed overseas. Comparable figures for 1974 and 1983 are not readily available.