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Harm Missiles

Volume 33: debated on Monday 6 December 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence what information he has on the reasons for the refusal of the United States Government to allow sales of HARM missiles to the Federal Republic of Germany for fitting in the jointly manufactured Tornado aircraft.

It is not for me to comment on any discussions that may be taking place between the two Governments.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what information he has about the reasons for the reduction in the purchase of HARM missiles for the United States Air Force; and what has been the effect on his assessment of the missile.

The size of any final purchase by the United States Air Force is but one factor in the future choice of defence suppression weapons.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether he is satisfied that the in-service date of 1986 for HARM missiles will be met.

We have not yet taken any decision in relation to the various weapons becoming available. The inservice date is one of several factors being taken into account in the evaluation of competing defence suppression weapon systems for the Royal Air Force.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what information he has about the design redirection of HARM missiles required by the United States Congress as a factor affecting the availability of the missile to Her Majesty's Forces.

All factors affecting availability will be studied in relation to defence suppression weapons.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether target seeking technology on the HARM missile will be made available to the Royal Air Force by the United States Government.

The terms on which the high speed anti-radar missile is offered have still to be assessed, but I have no present reason to think that they would limit in any way the Royal Air Force's ability to operate and maintain the missile.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what is the estimated cost per copy of HARM and ALARM missiles.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether he plans to seek modification of the dual-role aircraft Tornado to allow it to carry JP233 missiles and HARM missiles at the same time.

We have taken no decision on which defence suppression we will acquire. The capability of aircraft to carry such weapons is one of our studies.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether the difficulties experienced in the United States of America over the dual sourcing of HARM missiles will affect the availability of the missiles for the Royal Air Force.

There is no present reason to think that any decision concerning dual sourcing of the high speed anti-radar missile would affect adversely its availability for the Royal Air Force, if we were to decide to acquire it.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether he expects the United States Government to agree to a fixed price contract for the supply of HARM missiles to the Royal Air Force.

Price terms will be a major consideration in the evaluation of bids for supply of defence suppression weapons.