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Strategic Defence Review

Volume 506: debated on Monday 22 February 2010

12. What estimate he has made of the extent to which commitments made in the 1998 strategic defence review have been funded by the Government. (317450)

The commitments identified in the 1998 strategic defence review have evolved over the intervening period to reflect the changing strategic setting and the experience of operations. Successive spending reviews have provided resources to fund these.

The Gray review describes the Government’s procurement system as “sclerotic” and “substantially overheated”. Does the Secretary of State accept that the failure to hold a strategic defence review in the past 12 years has contributed significantly to that?

As the hon. Gentleman knows, we have updated the strategic defence review over the intervening period. He ought at least to acknowledge that the Government commissioned the Gray report in order to assess exactly where we are regarding defence acquisition. We have responded to the report with some pretty far-reaching proposals on defence acquisition reform, which we recently announced to the House as part of the Green Paper package.