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Urgent Operational Requirements

Volume 458: debated on Monday 12 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) pursuant to the answer of 2 February 2007, Official Report, column 963W, on urgent operational requirements, what records are kept of formal requests made by lower echelon commanders which have been submitted to theatre commanders for consideration as urgent statements of user requirement requests; (124995)

(2), what records are kept of urgent statements of user requirements generated by commanders-in-theatre approved by the chain of command;

(3) at what stage an urgent operational order is considered formally to have formally come into being; and by whose decision.

Requests by lower echelon commanders are staffed through the in-theatre chain of command, with both the unit and the brigade in theatre keeping relevant records.

In the Land environment, if the requirement is for a new item of equipment or for more equipment, where insufficient stocks are held on the inventory for the current operations, the request is forwarded to the Divisional Equipment Capability (EC) Cell for further staffing. The Divisional EC Cell constructs an Urgent Statement of User Requirement (USUR) in consultation with the originator to ensure that the exact requirement is captured and submits it to the Permanent Joint Headquarters (PJHQ). Records of the USURs are held in the EC Cells in the appropriate theatre.

Royal Navy and Royal Air Force requirements are staffed up the appropriate chain of command, with USURs then submitted to PJHQ in a similar way.

If PJHQ endorses the requirement, the USUR is passed to MOD Centre for action. Records of endorsed USURs are held in PJHQ and MOD Centre.

Once endorsed by PJHQ, the USUR is considered to have become an Urgent Operational Requirement (UOR), allocated a unique number and tracked on a central UOR database.