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Military Aircraft: Helicopters

Volume 470: debated on Friday 25 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what progress has been made in hiring helicopters for use in theatre by (a) the UK and (b) NATO. (181041)

As the Prime Minister announced on 12 December 2007, Official Report, column 304, NATO has negotiated a contract to lease commercial helicopters to move routine freight in Afghanistan, which will free up military helicopters for other tasks. This contract will commence shortly and will be of significant benefit to UK forces. There are no separate UK commercial helicopter leasing initiatives planned although commercial helicopters were leased for a few days in December 2007 to help deliver Christmas mail and parcels to troops in Afghanistan.