HC Deb 20 March 1962 vol 656 c23W
37. Sir C. Osborne

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much of the £1,700 million spent annually on defence is spent on materials and wages, respectively; how many civilians are employed on the production and transport of armaments; how long he estimates it would take to absorb these into non-military production; what study is being made of this problem; and if he will make a statement.

Sir E. Boyle

I would refer the hon. Member to Annex II of the Defence White Paper, which shows that pay and allowances of Service personnel and civilians in 1962–63 are estimated at £611 million. Defence production and research is estimated at £705 million.

As regards the other parts of the Question, the number in manufacturing industry employed on defence work is estimated at approximately 400,000. There is no record of the number engaged in defence work in the transport industries. The time taken to absorb these numbers into non-military production would depend entirely upon the timing of the process of disarmament which made this transition possible. As regards studies of the subject, the United Kingdom has co-operated in the review now being carried out by the United Nations on the economic and social consequences of disarmament.