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12 Jul 2005 : Column 860W—continued

Jobseeker's Allowance

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the off-flow from jobseeker's allowance (JSA) was for (a) the UK, (b) England and Wales and (c) Birkenhead in each year since 1998, broken down by reason; and what percentage of JSA off-flow this represented in each case. [11693]

Mr. Plaskitt: The information has been placed in the Library.


Armed Forces Recruitment

Mrs. Dorries: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people from Mid-Bedfordshire constituency have been recruited into the armed forces in each year since 1997. [11093]

Mr. Touhig: This information is not held centrally and cannot be collated without incurring disproportionate cost.

Armoured Vehicles

Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 27 June 2005, Official Report, columns 1199–20W, on armoured vehicles, what the cost is of each complete base unit from Iveco. [10445]

Mr. Ingram: The information requested cannot be provided given the confidential nature of the contract between BAE Systems Land Systems and Iveco.
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Command and Liaison Vehicle

Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what other designs were considered in the assessment phase for the Command and Liaison Vehicle. [10444]

Mr. Ingram: Three designs were considered during the Assessment Phase for the United Kingdom's Command and Liaison Vehicle: Alvis Vehicles Ltd. proposed an IVECO Multi-role Light Vehicle (MLV); Vickers Defence Systems proposed a RG32M, and United Defence Limited Partnership proposed a ACMAT Ranger.

Defence Export Services Organisation

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the duration is of Alan Garwood's appointment as Head of the Defence Export Services Organisation; and what his annual salary was in each year between 2001–02 and 2005–06. [9321]

Mr. Ingram: Mr. Alan Garwood took up a three-year contract as the Head of Defence Export Services on 23 September 2002. This appointment has an option to extend and this has now been exercised with the contract extended by mutual agreement, for one year to 22 September 2006. Mr. Garwood, who is seconded from the defence industry, receives a civil service salary within the senior civil service pay band 3 (previously deputy secretary level), which as of April 2005 has a range between £93,139 and £198,197. Industry then pays an element that brings the salary to the level which the individual would otherwise receive in the commercial sector. This figure is agreed by the National Defence Industries Council.

Future Offensive Air System

Mr. Moore: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the total cost has been of the Future Offensive Air System; and what the main components of this expenditure were. [9629]

Mr. Ingram [holding answer 4 July 2005]: Research and technology work carried out as part of the Future Offensive Air System (FOAS) is being used in continuing work on future combat air systems. The total cost of FOAS to date is estimated to be £114 million. The main components are a range of targeted technology demonstrator programmes, studies into concepts for potential FOAS components, and technical support provided by DSTL and its predecessors.

Future Rapid Effects System

Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many battalions will operate the medium weight Future Rapid Effects System vehicles; and how many of those vehicles there will be in each battalion. [10446]

Mr. Ingram: Future Rapid Effects System vehicles will be used in the medium-weight mechanised brigades and are also expected to fulfil a number of roles in both heavy armoured and light brigades.
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The detailed fielding plans that will define which units will be equipped with FRES vehicles, and the numbers of vehicles to be allocated to individual units are currently being developed as part of the initial Assessment Phase.

Ann Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many companies (a) expressed an interest in bidding for and (b) bid for provision of electric armour for the Future Rapid Effects System project; and if he will make a statement. [10928]

Mr. Ingram: Five companies expressed an interest in bidding for a contract to demonstrate electric armour technology. On completion of the assessment of these expressions of interest, two companies were invited to tender. Formal bids were received from both companies.


Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what role UK forces had in Operation Spear in Iraq; whether the operation was fully co-ordinated with (a) Iraqi security forces and (b) the Iraqi Administration; what armaments were used in the operation; whether civilians lived in the area covered by the operation; what warning was given to civilians; what the Government's policy is on legal liability in joint military operations in Iraq; and if he will make a statement. [9786]

Mr. Ingram: Operation Spear was a combined US-Iraqi security force anti-terrorist operation co-ordinated by US forces and the Iraqi Ministry of Defence. Detailed operational information is therefore a matter for the US or Iraqi authorities.

Although there were no specific British plans to support the operation, three RAF Tornado GR4s on routine patrols in Iraq were tasked to respond to calls for close air support assistance from US forces during the course of the operation. Those UK aircraft did not expend any weapons in support of the operation.

It is UK government policy on legal liability on combined operations in Iraq, that each nation would be directly liable for the consequences of actions taken by its own forces.

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many civilian contractors employed by the Department have died during their service in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan since 1997. [11341]

Mr. Ingram: No officially accredited Ministry of Defence contractors have died on operations in Afghanistan or Iraq since the start of the current operations there, in 2001 and 2003 respectively.

Military Bands

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many public performances military bands have given in each of the last three years; and which were free. [11171]

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Mr. Touhig: Military bands undertake a large number of performances each year many of which are open to the public under a variety of arrangements. The level of detail sought in the question can be provided only at disproportionate cost as records are not held centrally.

RAF (Permanent Commissions)

Mr. Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what percentage of service (a) men and (b) women who successfully applied to sign on for a permanent commission in the RAF, broken down by (i)supply, (ii) administration and (iii) engineering in each of the last five years. [10357]

Mr. Touhig: The following figures show the numbers of personnel who converted from a short service commission to a permanent commission during the calendar years shown.

(1)—denotes a number less than 5.
Figures are rounded to the nearest 5.

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