Saturday, October 31, 2015

RN Parliamentary Questions Answered

HL2636 – Royal Fleet Auxiliary (Answered)

Lord MacKenzie of Culkein

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is the age of each of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships currently in service.

Earl Howe

The year of launch of each Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship currently in service is shown below:

Ship                         Launched
RFA BLACK ROVER 1973
RFA GOLD ROVER 1973
RFA FORT ROSALIE 1976
RFA FORT AUSTIN 1978
RFA ARGUS         1981
RFA DILIGENCE         1981
RFA FORT VICTORIA 1990
RFA WAVE KNIGHT 2000
RFA WAVE RULER 2001
RFA MOUNTS BAY 2004
RFA CARDIGAN BAY 2005
RFA LYME BAY        2005

HL2635 – Royal Fleet Auxiliary (Answered)

Lord MacKenzie of Culkein

To ask Her Majesty’s Government when decisions will be made about replacements for the forward repair vessel RFA Diligence and the aviation training casualty receiving ship RFA Argus.

Earl Howe

The Ministry of Defence is considering a range of options in the Strategic Defence and Security Review; this will include an assessment of the out of service dates of RFA Diligence and RFA Argus.

HL2638 – Royal Fleet Auxiliary (Answered)

Lord MacKenzie of Culkein

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps are being taken to bring the remuneration package for officers serving with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary into line with market rates in the commercial shipping industry.

Earl Howe

The Ministry of Defence is currently conducting a study that will provide a model and methodology to enable comparisons of remuneration packages against Industry.

HL2515 – Aircraft Carriers: Military Aircraft (Answered)

Lord West of Spithead

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Earl Howe on 1 October (HL2376), whether they were assured that there would be a fully implemented Operational Conversion Unit in addition to the Sea Lightnings embarked; and if so, how many aircraft were expected to be in that Unit.

Earl Howe

The Ministry of Defence does not recognise the term ‘Sea Lightning’. The UK Lightning Operational Conversion Unit (OCU) is planned to commence UK training at RAF Marham from August 2019. The OCU will operate in parallel with 617 Squadron, the front line unit. The OCU will be equipped with 10 Lightning aircraft.
The MOD does not comment on operational capabilities as to do so would, or would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the Armed Forces.
I am withholding the information on planning and costing assumptions as its disclosure would prejudice commercial interests.

12151 – Trident (Answered)

Crispin Blunt

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what his Department’s latest estimate is of (a) the whole life programme cost of the Successor programme, (b) capital costs associated with (i) submarine acquisition, (ii) Trident missile renewal and (iii) basing facilities, (c) the running and support costs of the Successor fleet and associated capability to protect and sustain it, (d) all future costs associated with the Atomic Weapons Establishment maintaining a capability to maintain an on-going nuclear warhead design capability and (e) decommissioning costs.

Mr Philip Dunne

The 2014 Update to Parliament set out an estimate for the Successor submarine acquisition of around £25 billion, based on a four boat solution, spread over some 25 years. These estimates are currently being refreshed to inform the Comprehensive Spending Review and Strategic Defence and Security Review.
Once the new fleet of SSBNs come into service, we expect that the in-service costs of the UK’s nuclear deterrent, which include the costs of the Atomic Weapons Establishment, basing and disposals, will be similar to the current system, at around six per cent of the defence budget.
While we have no plans to replace the current Trident D5 missile, we are participating with our US partners in a programme to extend the current life to the 2060s. The estimated cost is around £250 million.

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