HC Deb 03 May 1983 vol 42 cc33-4W
21. Mr. O'Brien

asked the Secretary of State for Defence how much of the cost of Trident he currently expects to be offset by the American authorities placing defence contracts with British manufacturers.

Mr. Ian Stewart

The arrangements with the United States Government for the Trident II (D-5) programme give United Kingdom firms the opportunity to compete on equal terms with their United States counterparts for subcontracts for weapon system components.

The selection of subcontractors will not commence in earnest until early 1984—when the programme moves into the full-scale engineering development phase—and will certainly continue into 1985. It is, therefore, too soon to assess the likely volume of awards.

However, progress so far is encouraging. Over 150 United Kingdom companies are now, or soon will be, qualified as bidders to the programme.