§ Mr. Gray
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to his answer of 2 December,Official Report, column 473W, what steps he has taken to discover whether individual soldiers have failed to be issued with the combat assault boot because of recent production difficulties. 
§ Dr. Moonie
There have been no reports of soldiers being without a pair of serviceable combat assault boots. If there were a shortage, units would report the problem and action would then be taken to resolve the issue. Moreover we have made positive checks with the chain of command who have found no evidence of soldiers being without boots. We have a system whereby orders are prioritised to ensure that all urgent demands are met. All such demands for combat assault boots are being met.
§ Mr. Gray
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) pursuant to his answer of 27 November 2002,Official Report, column 473W on the combat assault boot which company manufactures the combat assault boot and where they are based; how many soldiers are issued with the combat assault boot; how many pairs are issued each year to each soldier; what representations he has received from individual units about the shortage of combat assault boots; and whether combat assault boots are issued to Royal Navy and RAF personnel; 
(2) if he will make a statement on the (a) production and (b) availability of the combat assault boot. 219W
§ Dr. Moonie
UK Safety, based in the United Kingdom, are the main manufacturer of the Combat Assault Boot (CAB). Iturri, based in Spain, also supply a relatively small number of boots. UK Safety relocated within the UK earlier this year and experienced some initial difficulties with production.
Every soldier is issued with two pairs of CAB during basic training and these are replaced as and when necessary through Unit Quartermasters. As explained in my answer of 2 December 2002, Official Report, column 473W 79,000 pairs of CAB were issued to Army Units for the year 1 November 2001 to 31 October 2002. We have not received any representations from units about shortages of CAB. No serviceman should be without at least one pair of serviceable CAB.
All Royal Navy and Royal Air Force (RAF) personnel are issued with one pair of CAB, the exception being RAF Regiment and Royal Marines personnel who are issued with two pairs on the same basis as soldiers.