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Departmental Finance

Volume 502: debated on Wednesday 16 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the (a) approved budget for the 10-year equipment budget and (b) expenditure on the 10-year equipment programme was in each year since 1997. (307357)

The MOD does not have an approved equipment budget for the 10-year planning horizon. The most recent comprehensive spending review set the Department’s budget for the financial years 2008 to 2011 and departmental expenditure plans after 2010-11 have not yet been agreed. The Department does however have a 10-year Equipment Plan which is used for internal planning purposes only. As a general rule we do not currently comment on the plan as it is based upon internal planning assumptions which are inevitably subject to a significant amount of variation, and their availability could prejudice our commercial interests. In the future, as part of implementing the Bernard Gray recommendations we plan to provide an annual statement of the affordability of the programme against the defence budget.

Expenditure on the 10-year Equipment programme is published in the UK Defence Statistics 2009, Chapter 1—Finance, Table 1.4 and UK Defence Statistics 2002, Chapter 1, Table 1.7.

The UK Defence Statistics 2009, Chapter 1—Finance, Table 1.4 explains the omission of figures for 2001-02 and 2002-03.