HC Deb 10 July 1984 vol 63 cc453-4W
Mr. Woodall

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what is the current cost to his Department of (a) a Challenger tank, (b) a Commander tank transporter, (c) an anti-tank guided weapon Milan, (d) an anti-tank guided weapon Swingfire, (e) a Lynx helicopter, (f) a TOW antitank missile, (g) a new combat high boot and (h) the general purpose night vision goggles.

Mr. Pattie

I cannot disclose some of these costs because to do so could prejudice the result of current negotiations or competitive tenders with manufacturers, or lead to a breach of normal commercial in confidence arrangements. The prices I can give are as follows, all VAT inclusive and as used in the most recent completed long term costing exercise: Challenger—£1.5 million; Milan — £7,500; Swingfire—£7,600; TOW — £8,500; new combat high boot—£16 per pair.

Our aim remains to seek value for money taking all considerations into account. But the hon. Member will accept, I hope, that at times we are obliged to preserve the commercial confidentiality of our information to serve best the taxpayers' interests.

Recruitment and losses of United Kingdom-based civilian staff
Financial year 1979–80 1980–81 1981–82 1982–83 1983–84 Total
Recruitment 8,825 5,079 4,565 5,451 5,898 29,818
Losses 12,297 10,372 10,632 8,937 9,420 51,658
Recruitment 9,249 7,649 10,187 10,776 37,861
Losses 13,817 14,094 14,157 12,382 54,450

Mr. Pattie

The total number of approvals given per officer rank in the armed forces since 1980 is contained in the table. The figures reflect the total number of applications approved in respect of companies with a contractual relationship with the Ministry of Defence, and in a significant number of cases individual officers have submitted more than one application.

Whilst the figures record the number of approvals given to prospective appointments, records do not exist of those appointments actually accepted.