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8 Nov 2006 : Column 1557W—continued

The statistics provided are based on trained outflow, which means that this excludes personnel who leave the armed forces before completing basic training. Data are not collected for members of the NRPS scheme, RGR and the GPS. The data illustrate an increase in percentage terms of ill-health retirement from 1997 onwards which is due to a decline in the overall outflow (i.e. trained personnel) in subsequent years.

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the current rate of ill-health retirement is for each public sector pension scheme for which his Department is responsible; and if he will make a statement. [96052]

Derek Twigg: The information requested is shown in the following table.

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Average trained strength Medical outflow Medical outflow rate (percentage)

All service








Other ranks




Naval service








Other ranks












Other ranks




Royal air force








Other ranks




UK regular forces includes nursing services and excludes full-time reserve service personnel, Gurkhas, the home service battalions of the Royal Irish Regiment and mobilised reservists.
DASA (Tri-Service)

Figures show medical outflow from trained UK regular forces including recalled reservists on release and outflow to the home service battalions of the Royal Irish Regiment. Average trained strength is defined as a 13 month rolling average of the trained strength in the individual months.

Annual rates are calculated by taking the number of exits as a percentage of the average strength of all trained officers or other ranks.

Due to the rounding methods used, totals may not always equal the sum of the parts. When rounding to the nearest 10, numbers ending in five have been rounded to the nearest multiple of 20 to prevent systematic bias. Rates are calculated from unrounded numbers.

Price Indices

Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library copies of his Department’s (a) quarterly price index forecast and (b) quarterly foreign price index booklet for the latest five quarters. [93058]

Mr. Ingram: I will place copies of the last five quarters of the DASA Price Indices Foreign Quarterly Summary in the Library of the House.

I am unable to place copies of the last five quarters of the DASA Price Indices UK Quarterly Forecast as their release would, or would be likely to, prejudice commercial interests.

Project Delivery Skills

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what progress his Department has made on the pan-Defence Project Delivery Skills Programme. [71492]

Mr. Ingram: The pan-Defence Project Delivery Skills Programme is now being taken forward as part of the Defence Acquisition Change Programme that is implementing the recommendations of the Enabling Acquisition Change report which was published on 3
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July 2006. The report highlighted the importance of acquisition skills and good progress is being made in a number of areas.

An initial skills review across the Department has been completed by the recently established network of Skills Champions. Champions have identified the skills gaps across the MOD and have developed Skills Growth Plans which will propose specific actions to reduce or remove these skills gaps. In addition, professional standards are being defined for Programme and Project Management, Commercial and Procurement, Logistics, Resource Management, Engineering and Science and Information systems, and reward measures are being refined to increase payments for individuals who achieve Association for Project Management Professional and Practitioner qualifications.

In June 2006 we appointed a Defence Commercial Director. This post established a single senior official responsible for leading on commercial policy and strategy and to act as head of profession and Skills Champion for the entire MOD commercial function. Options and opportunities for joint commercial skills training, particularly in the area of partnering, are now being actively explored with industry.

The behaviours underpinning the Defence Values for Acquisition have been defined, guidance on their use in setting personal objectives has been communicated within the Department and we are working with suppliers to embed these values in industry.


Dr. Whitehead: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he is taking to encourage the use of reused and recycled materials in capital procurement projects for which his Department is responsible. [98007]

Derek Twigg: On 12 June, the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, announced new sustainable operations targets for the Government estate. They focus on key areas such as carbon neutrality and emissions, energy efficiency, waste and water consumption.

The new targets require all central Government Departments' estates to:

The targets also require Departments' construction projects and refurbishments to achieve a high standard in accordance with the Building Research Establishment's Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM), or equivalent. BREEAM gives credit where reused and recycled material has been utilised in capital procurement projects.

In addition, the Waste and Resources Action programme (WRAP) works with some Departments to
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embed sustainable procurement practices in their construction and refurbishment projects.

In accordance with existing legislation and current Government targets and policy on sustainable procurement, the Ministry of Defence now has in place procurement processes aimed at encouraging the maximum use of reused and recycled materials.


Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many reservists have been mobilised under the Reserve Forces Act 1994 and served longer than 12 months mobilised service for or in support of (a) Operation Telic and (b) Operation Herrick excluding personnel retained on Y list for medical conditions. [91486]

Derek Twigg: Under the Reserve Forces Act 1996 some 13,500 reservists have been mobilised to support Op. Telic and some 1,100 to support Op. Herrick. With regard to the number of reservists who may have served in excess of 12 months, the information requested is not centrally held. In order to obtain this information we would have to manually review the records of each serviceman mobilised and this could be done only at disproportionate cost.

Royal Ordnance

Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the value of liabilities his Department has under section 8 of the Ordnance Factories and Military Services Act 1984. [70034]

Mr. Watson [holding answer 11 May 2006]: The Ministry of Defence is unable to answer this question without further clarification.

Science and Technology

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he expects to complete the Science and Technology Capability and Alignment Study. [86655]

Mr. Ingram: A review of the alignment of our research programme with MOD needs, as laid out in the Defence Industrial Strategy, was published as “Maximising Benefit from Defence Research” on 3 October. The document is available at:

Service Accommodation

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost was of renting service accommodation for armed forces personnel in (a) 2004, (b) 2005 and (c) 2006. [71519]

Derek Twigg: The costs for service families’ accommodation in Great Britain were: 2003-04 £186 million; 2004-05 £195 million; and for 2005-06 £233 million. These figures include the cost of renting leased
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properties from Annington Homes Ltd., Substitute Service Families Accommodation and Substitute Single Service Accommodation. There is an occasional requirement in overseas locations for the Department to rent, on a short-term basis, accommodation for service personnel. The cost of this could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Service Personnel (Mail)

Derek Conway: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost of subsidised mail for service personnel on active service abroad was in each of the last three years; and what estimate he has made of the cost of a free mail facility. [99385]

Mr. Ingram: Actual data on the costs of subsidised mail for military personnel serving abroad are not recorded. The majority of mail is carried by RAF aircraft transporting personnel and supplies and the costs are not broken down separately. It has, however, previously been estimated in broad terms that to introduce a free mail service for an entire year would cost in the region of £9 million, once BFPO handling and sorting, and RAF handling and transportation are factored in.

Urgent Operational Requirements

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the approved Urgent Operational Requirements from operations in Iraq and Afghanistan in (a) 2004, (b) 2005 and (c) 2006; and what the cost was of each. [98555]

Mr. Ingram: As the operations in Iraq and Afghanistan are still ongoing, much information regarding specific Urgent Operational Requirements (UORs) remains operationally sensitive; and is withheld as its release would, or would be likely to, prejudice the security of our armed forces.

In financial year 2004-05, UOR spend was £160 million for Iraq and £10 million for Afghanistan (rounded to the nearest £10 million). For 2005-06, a change in accounting systems has meant that the breakdown of UOR spend within overall operational costs is still being finalised. For 2006-07, as the operations are ongoing, costs are still being raised.

As an indicative illustration of the equipment procured using the UOR process, in the order of three quarters of the funds approved for UORs for Iraq (post-warfighting) and Afghanistan have been for force protection (e.g. new body armour, defensive aids suites for aircraft and uparmoured land vehicles); much of the remainder has been for Command, Control, Communications and Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (C4ISTAR) (e.g. additional high frequency radios).

Weapons Systems and Equipment

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the weapons systems and equipment which have come into service in the UK armed forces since January 1976. [83770]

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Mr. Ingram: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.


Bus Services

Mr. Leech: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what new powers to regulate bus services his Department plans to give to local authorities outside London; and what the time scale is for the introduction of those powers. [100338]

Gillian Merron: The Government are committed to improving bus services for passengers across the country and to giving the local transport authorities that need them the powers to make a difference. We have been taking a hard look at bus services to see what works and what does not and have been talking to local authorities, the bus industry, bus users and other stakeholders. The Government’s proposals on the direction of future bus policy will soon be set out.

Departmental Staff

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many staff in his Department received bonus payments in each of the last five years for which information is available; what proportion of the total work force they represented; what the total amount of bonuses paid has been; what the largest single payment was in each year; and if he will make a statement. [98525]

Gillian Merron: The Department for Transport (DfT) comprises a central Department plus seven executive agencies each with its own pay and reward system. Information has been collected from the central Department and all seven agencies and collated into one set of figures. Available information relates only to 2004-05 and 2005-06.

The DfT is committed to rewarding good performance and aims to increase performance awards available to non-SCS staff.

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