§ Mr. O'Neill
asked the Secretary of State for Defence (1) when work on the Ferranti command and control system for the type 23 frigate was abandoned; for how long research went on; and how much money has been spent;
(2) what is the timetable for the completion of the replacement for the command and control system for the type 23 frigate;
(3) what steps have been taken to find a replacement for the command and control system for the type 23 frigate; and which companies are involved in the final round of tendering.
§ Mr. Archie Hamilton
Work on the Ferranti command and control system for the type 23 frigate has been under way since the early 1980s, and is continuing. The system is planned for operation from the 1990s.
In line with our policy of introducing competition in procurement, it has recently been decided that development and production work on the system will be put out to competitive tender. Invitations to tender have recently been issued. Following evaluation of these bids, consideration may need to be given to a final round of tendering and in any case one option will be to continue with the present work but under new terms.457W
It is not the practice to publicise project costs which are commercially confidential between the Ministry of Defence and individual contractors.