HC Deb 04 July 1978 vol 953 cc164-5W
Mr. Lawrence

asked the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how many jobs have been lost in the Armed Services and related occupations to date as a result of defence cuts since February 1974;

(2) what is the latest net anticipated job loss in the Armed Services and related occupations which will result when the Government's proposed defence cuts are fully implemented.

Dr. Gilbert

Compared with the position at 1st April 1974 there were, at 1st May 1978, 29,400 fewer Service personnel employed in the Armed Forces and 36,000 fewer civilians employed in the MOD and on defence work in the PSA.

In addition we estimate that by comparison with the programme contemplated before the defence review, job opportunities in the defence industries and associated suppliers have now been reduced by about 105,000. There has, however, been no significant reduction in the actual level of direct employment in the defence industries, which has remained constant at about 200,000, and is expected to remain at this figure.

The number of Service personnel is not likely to change greatly in the near future. MOD civilian numbers will, however, be reduced by a further 3,500 by 1st April 1979. The reduction in direct job opportunities in the defence industries, as compared with the pre-defence review programme, will, however rise to a maximum of about 140,000 in 1979.