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Rescue Services: Scotland

Volume 506: debated on Monday 22 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the monetary value is of the contract agreed with the Soteria Consortium for the provision of search and rescue services in Scotland. (317788)

While Soteria have been chosen as the preferred bidder for the search and rescue helicopter (SAR-H) project, the contract has yet to be signed. The finalised value of the contract to provide the search and rescue helicopter capability for the whole of the UK is likely to be in the region of £6 billion over the 25-year life of the service. It is not possible to break down the value of the contract by region.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the effect of the privatisation of search and rescue operations on local economies in Scotland. (317789)

The future SAR helicopter service in Scotland is expected to be provided from four locations (Stornoway, Sumburgh, RAF Lossiemouth and Glasgow airport, which is taking over from RNAS Prestwick). With the introduction of new, modern, more reliable helicopters there is likely to be a reduction in personnel at the two locations where they take over from the MOD Sea Kings (RAF Lossiemouth and RNAS Prestwick). The details will be finalised as the contract is agreed. As such, there is likely to be a negligible impact on the economy of Scotland as a whole from the contractorisation of the future service.