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Systems Amd Equipment Exhibition

Volume 405: debated on Tuesday 20 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) if he will list the countries from which buyers (a) have been and (b) will be invited to the Defence Systems and Equipment International exhibition; [114541](2) on which days the Defence Systems and Equipment International exhibition will be open to

(a) overseas customers, (b) the press and (c) the public; [114542]

(3) what the estimated cost is of the Defence Systems and Equipment International exhibition to the UK Government; [114543]

(4) how many visitors are expected at the Defence Systems and Equipment International exhibition. [114544]

The exhibition is an international trade event organised by a commercial company. It will be open by invitation to overseas visitors and accredited members of the media from 9 to 12 September 2003 inclusive. The event will not be open to the public.The organisers hope to attract some 25,000 visitors.

The full list of countries from which Official Defence Delegations will be invited to attend is not yet complete. I will write to my hon. Friend when final details are available and a copy of my letter will be placed in the Library of the House.

The direct cost to the Ministry of Defence identified centrally is estimated at some £400,000. In addition, representatives of Her Majesty's Government may carry out activities associated with the exhibition, as part of their normal duties, which could be identified only at disproportionate cost.