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Procurement

Volume 400: debated on Wednesday 26 February 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many helicopters he plans to buy in the next three years, broken down by (a) type and (b) arm of the armed forces. [98293]

We will take delivery of the outstanding 31 Apache Helicopters for the Army Air Corps during 2003 under an existing contract. In addition, contracts for the RAF to operate four Bell 412s in Cyprus and for the Army to operate three Bell 212s in Belize will come into effect this year, on a commercially owned, military registered basis.It is likely that a number of further helicopter acquisition programmes will be approved over the next three years, but decisions have yet to be taken on the number and type of platform to be purchased or on their delivery schedules.