§ The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Bach)
My right honourable friend the Minister of State for Defence, Mr Adam Ingram, has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.
The Ministry of Defence has signed an agreement setting out mechanisms for co-operation with the US in research, development, test and evaluation activities related to missile defence. This agreement is made under the framework memorandum of understanding on missile defence that I announced to the House on 12 June 2003, (Official Report, Commons, col. 57WS), and comes into immediate effect. I am placing in the Library of the House of Commons a copy of this agreement, although parts of the text, relating to the handling of classified and export controlled information, have been withheld at the request of the US. This agreement replaces the 1985 strategic defence initiative MOU as the vehicle for co-operation between the UK and US in the field of missile defence. It is intended that the new agreement will improve co-operation by providing information transfer and contracting mechanisms in keeping with current US and UK practices and the current state of development of the US missile defence capability.