To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to his answers of 9 September 2003, ref 127274 and to the hon. Member for Hereford (Mr. Keetch) of 4 February 2003, Official Report, column 174W, on HMS Sheffield, what the reasons are for the difference between the cost of operating HMS Sheffield in 2001–02 and the cost of operating ships in the same class in the same year; and if he will make a statement. 
I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave on 4 February 2003, Official Report, column 174W. There was a misprint in Hansard and the figure for HMS Sheffield's annual operating costs should have read £35 million. The average annual operating costs for Batch 3 Type 22 Frigates I gave in my answer of 9 September 2003, ref 127274 was £11.9 million.The apparent discrepancy arose because the cost for HMS Sheffield included an element for depreciation and cost of capital, but excluded annual maintenance, while the costs provided for Batch 3 Type 22 Frigates included maintenance but excluded depreciation and cost of capital.When compared on a "like-for-like" basis, the average annual operating costs, based on direct costs charged to FY01–02, including costs for manpower, fuel, stores and other costs (such as port visits) were £8.1 million for HMS Sheffield and £8.3 million for Batch 3 Type 22 Frigates.