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Armed Forces: Deployment

Volume 475: debated on Thursday 15 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what percentage of the (a) armed forces, (b) Army, (c) Royal Navy and (d) Royal Air Force (i) are preparing to deploy on operations and (ii) have recently returned from operations. (193102)

Given the rotational nature of operational deployments, the proportion of RAF and Army personnel preparing to deploy on operations is broadly the same as the proportion that has recently returned from operations. For the RAF this is approximately 7 per cent. For the Army this is approximately 9 per cent. These figures include both Regular and Reserve personnel. Equivalent data for the Royal Navy could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what percentage of the (a) Army, (b) Royal Air Force, (c) Royal Navy and (d) Royal Marines were in breach of the guidelines on individual separated service at the end of the 2007-08 financial year. (199474)

The current levels of Individual Harmony (Separated Service) including operations and all other military tasks, as at 22 April 2008 (Q4 2007-08), show that:

Less than 1 per cent. of RN/RM personnel were in breach of the single service guidelines.

10.3 per cent. of the Army were in breach of Separated Service guidelines. (This is a year on year improvement from 14.5 per cent. in 2005-06 and 13.4 per cent. in 2006-07.) The Army continues to monitor separated service with due diligence utilising directed recruitment and retention initiatives targeted at Pinch point Trades in particular.

9.2 per cent. of RAF personnel breached the single service guideline. This is a decrease of 0.8 per cent. on the previous quarter. There has been an increase over the past year due to changes in the reporting procedures that have brought the RAF into line with the RN and Army rather than an increase in commitments.