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Future Aircraft Carrier

Volume 404: debated on Tuesday 29 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many aircraft will be procured for the future aircraft carrier project; what the estimated date is of delivery of the first aircraft; and in which financial year peak procurement expenditure will fall. [110262]

While no final decisions have yet been taken, our planning assumption is based on 150 of the Short Take Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) variant of the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) which will operate from land bases as well as the future carriers. No production contract for the aircraft has yet been placed but current planning assumptions are based upon the first aircraft being delivered to the Operational Evaluation Unit in 2009 and peak procurement expenditure falling in Financial Year 2011–12.