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Air Force: Manpower

Volume 461: debated on Tuesday 12 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is for ensuring that there are sufficient numbers of pilots qualified and able to serve as fast jet pilots; and if he will make a statement. (141932)

There is a robust process to establish and sustain the requirement for pilots qualified and able to serve as fast jet pilots. The process for the RAF is undertaken by RAF manpower planners who compare the forecast requirement for fast jet pilots against the forecast strength. Any anticipated gap is then adjusted by modifying the forecast number of fast jet pilots required to graduate from the operational conversion unit as necessary. The RN process is very similar. The process helps to predict manning trends such as premature voluntary release, medical discharge, promotion and normal retirement.