§ Mr. Barry Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) if he proposes to purchase a version of the European airbus for the role of multi-role tanker transport; and if he will make a statement;
(2) if he will investigate the prospects of adapting the airbus series of jets for military roles; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Aitken
The RAF will need to replace its VC-10 tanker transport fleet early next century. A number of commercial passenger aircraft types, including Airbus variants, could be suitable for conversion. It will be some time, however, before the draft requirement is ready to be discussed with industry, and Airbus will then be fully considered.