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Afghanistan

Volume 488: debated on Tuesday 3 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent estimate he has made of the average annual cost, including salary, of the posting of a civil servant in his Department in (a) Kabul and (b) Helmand province. (251700)

In 2009 the average unit cost of a UK member of staff based in Kabul is estimated to be £270,000 and the average unit cost of a UK member of staff based in Helmand is estimated to be £460,000. This constitutes salaries, allowances, administrative costs, accommodation, running costs and security, with the latter constituting the largest proportion.

The additional cost of deploying a member of staff to Helmand mainly relates to providing security for civilian staff to relieve this burden from the military, and covering a fair share of costs in the use of military assets for transport.